Coconut Curry Cupcakes

These sweet Curry Cupcakes have a thick Coconut Filling inside, and a tangy Lime Buttercream frosting piped on top. A sprinkle of chopped peanuts and a Thai basil leaf round out the ultimate cupcake experience. I can’t even describe how incredible these cupcakes are. A delicious meld of savory and sweet, they are the brainchild of myself and my dear friend Kiernan. There is a Vegan Cupcake Competition being held at the Rock Paper Scissors Collective in Oakland, and this seems like an event that I am destined to enter! In order to participate, I had to submit a recipe by email, and then the collective members would choose 10 recipes to enter the actual contest which will be held on May 22nd. So I had to come up with a creative cupcake flavor to submit, and then I sent them the recipe…We dreamt up about a billion different unusual cupcake flavor combinations, but when a “Thai cupcake” was mentioned we stopped short. Kiernan spent last summer in Thailand, and my favorite kind of food is Thai. So obviously we know a lot about Thai food (oh goodness, we know probably know very little between us…So let’s get this straight: This is not going to be an “authentic” Thai cupcake. I have no idea what that even means. But it is drawing on the common flavors found in Thai restaurants that I felt could combine nicely into a sweet vegan cupcake…Like, no fish sauce, obviously). Anyway, Kiernan and I knew this cupcake was going to be the way to go. And it was.

Last week I submitted the recipe, and today I received an email announcing that these cupcakes were chosen to enter the competition! So if you want to try one of these babies without having to make it yourself, please come down to Rock Paper Scissors in Oakland, California, on Saturday, May 22nd from 2-5pm. Everyone who comes gets to be a judge! You will taste-test every cupcake, and then submit your votes for the best one/s. I’m going to encourage you to vote for my Coconut Curry Cupcake! Thank you in advance!

If you can’t make it to the event, I’ll give you the recipe now:

The savory aspect of the Curry Cupcake was in theory too savory for many people; however, when they had the opportunity to try it, they realized that it’s not savory at all! The cupcake is actually quite sweet, with a hint of curry flavor in it. You could add a little fresh ginger to the batter to give it an extra punch but it really doesn’t need it, especially when combined with the Coconut Filling and Lime Frosting. The Thai basil leaf on top really makes the cupcake feel authentically Thai – which obviously it’s not, so I’m not sure where I’m going with that.

Curry Cupcake Batter Ingredients:

1 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp. cornstarch
3/4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
3 tsp. curry powder (or to taste)
1/3 cup canola oil
3/4 cup sugar
2 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin pan with cupcake liners.
Whisk the almond milk and vinegar in a measuring cup and set aside for a few minutes to get good and curdled.
Beat together the soy milk mixture, oil, sugar, and vanilla in a large bowl.
Sift in the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and curry powder, and mix until no large lumps remain.
Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full. Bake for 20-22 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Transfer to a cooling rack, and let cool completely before filling and/or frosting.


Coconut Crème Filling Ingredients:

1 can whole-fat coconut milk
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 1/2 cups unsweetened, dried coconut

Put coconut milk in medium sized bowl. Whisk on medium-high speed in an electric mixer until thick (about 8-15 minutes, depending on your mixer).
Add powdered sugar and dried coconut and combine thoroughly. It should have a thick texture, like a thick pudding. Add more dried coconut if you need to thicken the filling.


Tangy Lime Buttercream Frosting Ingredients:

1/2 cup non-hydrogenated shortening (Earth Balance brand is good)
1/2 cup Earth Balance margarine
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/8 cup unsweetened almond milk
zest from 2 limes
juice from 2 limes

Beat the shortening and margarine together until well combined and fluffy.
Add the sugar and beat for about 3 more minutes.
Add the vanilla, almond milk, and lime juice, and beat for another 5-7 minutes until fluffy.
Add the lime zest and combine thoroughly.

Topping Ingredients:

1/4 cup crushed peanuts
1 small bunch Thai basil, de-stemmed


To Assemble Cupcakes:

Make a hole in the center of each Curry Cupcake by poking with your finger. Very gently press the sides and bottom of the hole to make it a littler larger. You’ll want the space to be able to fill in with lots of Coconut Crème Filling.

Fit a pastry bag with a large round tip, then fill the bag with Coconut Crème Filling. Fill only halfway to make handling the bag easier.

Fill each cupcake with Coconut Crème, trying to get as much filling as possible into the cupcakes. Cupcakes should feel noticeably heavier.

Fit a second pastry bag with a large round or star tip, and fill the bag halfway full with Tangy Lime Buttercream Frosting. Pipe the frosting in a spiral around the cupcake top, starting from the outside and working in and up. Alternatively, you can spread the frosting on top of your cupcake.

Sprinkle crushed peanuts over each cupcake. Top with one or two Thai basil leaves.

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12 Responses to “Coconut Curry Cupcakes”


  1. 1 Zoe May 10, 2010 at 10:55 am

    awesome. i’d been waiting to ogle over these. i’m kicking myself that i didn’t take any home. that was a poor poor decision.

  2. 2 Julie May 10, 2010 at 12:22 pm

    Yay! These were so delicious and mouthwatering and unusual — I can’t wait to taste their deliciousness again (and watch them sweep away all the other competition!)….

  3. 3 Jessi May 10, 2010 at 7:01 pm

    I can’t wait to try them and am so happy for you! I’ll come and vote…

  4. 4 mihl May 11, 2010 at 6:32 am

    Those cupcakes are absolutely stunning!

  5. 5 sonja May 11, 2010 at 1:01 pm

    glad i finally got to see them in pictures! they look delicious. wish i could be there to vote for them!!

  6. 6 Heather May 15, 2010 at 8:59 pm

    Super cool idea to use curry in a cupcake – neeever would have thought of that, although Ive had curry in a chocolate truffle before! lol
    Great blog!

  7. 7 Rebecca May 17, 2010 at 2:24 pm

    YUMMMMMMMMMMM!!!!!!!!!

  8. 8 sophia May 30, 2010 at 9:29 pm

    i am compelled to make this recipe. what a fantastic and creative idea! i know i’m going to adore these.

  9. 10 Ubasti June 5, 2010 at 3:23 am

    Yeah, it’s good, very useful, thanks 🙂

  10. 11 Rachel June 13, 2010 at 9:43 am

    For once while reading Tessa’s blog, I actually got up and made something! And it took something so unusual to motivate me that much… and they turned out super awesome! I took the last few over to a friend’s house and had a lot of fun making them try to guess what combination of flavors they were eating, they weren’t so successful at that! But the cupcakes themselves were a smash hit!


  1. 1 2nd Place! « Cookies and Candids Trackback on May 22, 2010 at 5:47 pm

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