DIVINE Banoffee Cupcakes made with gluten free sponge, generously filled with banana dulce de leche and topped with sumptuous Mascarpone cream.
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DON’T LOSE THIS RECIPE! PIN Banoffee Cupcakes FOR LATER…
Gluten free Banoffee Cupcakes – possibly the best cupcakes EVER
These Banoffee Cupcakes are one of the oldest recipes on Gluten Free Alchemist. Published back in 2013, they were ahead of their time both as cupcakes and for being gluten free. But they are also quite possibly the quickest disappearing cupcakes ever made at GFHQ. And that leads me to think they may possibly be the best cupcakes EVER.
It also means that they are well overdue for a photo and post update. So, I’ve taken the liberty of making them again and republishing in the hope that more of you get to enjoy them. Let’s just say the family were happy!
Inspired by Banoffee Pie
Okay. It’s hard to go wrong with the famous banana-toffee combo. When I first developed this recipe, it was from a desire to replicate the delight of banoffee pie in cupcake form. I love banoffee pie! There is something irresistible about gooey sweet caramel, mingled with firm chunks of fresh banana, sitting on a biscuit base and topped with soft, whipped cream.
In fact, those of you familiar with Gluten Free Alchemist, will know that the iconic flavour pairing has been created in many forms beyond banoffee cupcakes on the blog. We have the ever-popular Banoffee Trifle (possibly one of the easiest dinner party desserts), an incredible Banoffee Layer Cake and some teatime banoffee mini loaf cakes. We even have Banana-Toffee Pancakes. But the pièce de résistance may however be our Banoffee Cheesecake with Salted Caramel.
What makes these gluten free Banoffee Cupcakes the BEST?
There now seem to be endless versions of banoffee cupcakes spattered across the internet. Some use banana sponge, others have banana topping, some have cream and some have butter icing. Some use caramel cake and some use caramel topping, or filling or both. To a banoffee fan, they all sound tempting. But none of them are quite like these gluten free Banoffee Cupcakes.
So, what makes my cakes extra special (apart from being gluten free obvs)? Well… in combination:
- They don’t use butter icing/frosting on the top. That means they are not over-sweet or over-powered by sugar and the banana gets to shine.
- Just like their namesake banoffee pie, they are instead topped with fresh cream. Except this cream is extra special. Whipped with a little Mascarpone, it is still light and fresh in flavour, but exudes decadence from a richer texture. (Although you can just use whipped cream if you want).
- The gluten free sponge for these cupcakes is my tried and tested Best Banana Bread recipe. Hailed by all who have eaten it as a triumph, it has also been re-worked into a roasted banana version for my banana-chocolate celebration cake, and into some epic Double Chocolate-Banana Muffins too.
- These cupcakes are created to bring you all the bits of banoffee pie that make you go ‘Mmmmm’. From rich caramel sauce with that subtle ‘childhood-memory provoking’ condensed milk tang; To soft, fruity, fresh banana inside the cupcake core (mixed with a hidden surprise of caramel); And of course, a hint of chocolate from chocolate chips buried in the sponge.
I accept there is no biscuit base, but feel free to make a few crunchy baked biscuit crumbs to sprinkle on the top. In fact, come to think of it, why didn’t I do that?
Easy Dulce de Leche Caramel
If like me, you dread having to boil cans of condensed milk to make caramel, read on… I get it!
A very dear friend of mine (who sadly died of cancer) caused thousands of pounds worth of damage to her kitchen and nearly put her son in hospital while boiling a can of condensed milk. Seriously. She forgot it was on the stove and it literally exploded… causing a massive and very sticky explosion. Parts of the can shot across the room, just missing her son and destroying tiles, the ceiling and even the stove top as it went.
Thankfully, Carnation now sell the condensed milk caramel already canned and boiled. What a relief!
Of course, it’s fine to use any other preferred caramel sauce (homemade or jarred). Surprisingly, there isn’t yet a caramel recipe on Gluten Free Alchemist. I must rectify that. But in the meantime, this one from Charlotte’s Lively Kitchen looks yum if you want to make your own.
Are gluten free Banoffee Cupcakes easy to make?
If you can bake cupcakes, you can make these. Ultimately, they are simply a banana sponge with added chocolate chips made into cupcakes, cored and filled with fresh banana and caramel.
If you are new to coring cupcakes (or find using a knife for an even hole tricky and tedious), then I thoroughly recommend treating yourself to a cupcake corer. It makes light work of coring and gives you a neat ‘cap’ to pop back on the top.
Take care when you whip the Mascarpone cream for the top however. It is very easy to over-whip (particularly for piping). If you intend to pipe, go for fractionally under-whipped cream.
And if you are worried that the fresh banana used will go brown once cut, it seems that smothering it in caramel and encasing inside the cake keeps it perfectly fresh.
Ready to make Banoffee Cupcakes?
These Banoffee Cupcakes feel delightfully grown-up with a hint of childhood thrown in. And as cupcakes go, this is a recipe you have to try. Seriously. They are that good.
If you do make them, please let me know how you found them. It always makes my day when I hear about your bakes. Leave a comment, or tag me on social media (links at the top) so I can share your banoffee cupcake joy.
Of course these aren’t the only little cakes we have on Gluten Free Alchemist, so why not visit our dedicated Small Cake and Cupcake Index? For everything else, head to our delicious gluten free Recipe Index. All shared for FREE with my love.
Banoffee Cupcakes – gluten free
- muffin tins
- cupcake cases
- small sharp knife
- cupcake corer (optional)
- 210 g plain gluten free flour blend I use GFA Blend A (see NOTES)
- 100 g ground almonds (almond meal)
- 1 tsp xanthan gum leave out if using a commercial blend that already contains xanthan gum
- 1½ tsp GF baking powder
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tsp fine sea salt
- 100 g unsalted butter softened
- 150 g caster sugar preferably golden caster sugar
- 125 g soft light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs UK large – lightly beaten
- 1½ tsp vanilla extract
- 3 medium-sized bananas preferably over-ripe
- 100 g dark chocolate chips/chunks
- 175 ml buttermilk
- 397 g Carnation Caramel dulce de leche (1 tin) or alternative dulce de leche/caramel sauce
- 1 very fresh banana
Cream Topping and Decoration
- 500 ml double cream (heavy cream)
- 200 g Mascarpone
- 1 tbsp icing sugar
- grated chocolate sprinkles
- Prepare a couple of muffin tins by lining with medium cupcake cases.
- Pre-heat the oven to 180 C/350 F/Gas 4.
- Weigh and mix together the flour, almonds, xanthan gum, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt and set aside (TIP : weigh into an airtight container and shake vigorously).
- In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugars using an electric whisk until pale and fluffy.
- Add the egg a little at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Add and beat in the vanilla extract. You should now have a pale smooth batter.
- Mash the bananas for the sponge with a fork in a separate bowl.
- Add the mashed banana and chocolate chips/chunks to the batter and gently fold through using a large spoon/spatula.
- Now gently fold in the buttermilk alternately with the flour-almond mixture about a third at a time, ensuring all the ingredients are JUST combined. Do not over-mix.
- Spoon the batter into the muffin cases to about three-quarters full.
- Bake for approximately 20 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean and the top is firm to the touch but springs back.
- Once baked, transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Filling and topping
- When the cupcakes are cold, core an even-sided hole out of the centre of each using a cupcake corer or a sharp knife, being careful not to cut through the bottom of the cake. Trim and reserve the top piece to cap the cupcake once filled.
- Empty the caramel into a bowl, but remove and reserve a couple of tablespoons for decoration (set aside).
- Peel and cut the very fresh, firm banana into small pieces and mix with the caramel in the bowl.
- Using a teaspoon, fill the hole of each cupcake with caramel-banana mix and close the hole with the reserved piece of cake top.
- Whisk the cream, Mascarpone and icing sugar together in a bowl until it is thick and just holds its shape.
- Pipe or spread the cream on top of each cupcake generously.
- Take the reserved caramel and beat with a spoon to loosen.
- Drizzle a little caramel over each cupcake and decorate with grated chocolate.
© 2019-2023 Kate Dowse All Rights Reserved – Do not copy or re-publish this recipe or any part of this recipe on any other blog, on social media or in a publication without the express permission of Gluten Free Alchemist