Chocolate Chai Cupcakes (vegan + grain-free)

Cozy meets decadent in these vegan Chocolate Chai Cupcakes. Easy grain-free batter, super moist and fluffy, plus a spiced buttercream on top!


Did you just read that title and think: “hmm why have I never tried those flavors together before?” Well the answer is because you have been missing out, and these cupcakes are your sign and fluffy, swirly, frosted chance to change that all rolled into one.

I am a big big fan of spices in my chocolate, but balance is important. Chai is a delicate flavor that can easily be overpowered by the big personality of chocolate. If you asked me whether this is a chocolate cupcake with a touch of chai spice OR a chai cupcake with a touch of chocolate, I couldn’t even give you an answer. It’s both. It’s neither. It’s perfectly balanced. Even the frosting (MESMERIZED) is a hodgepodge of both in the best way.

Chocolate Chai Cupcakes (vegan + grain-free)

How To Make Chai Chocolate Cupcakes

This is a one bowl, stir > scoop > bake, fairly foolproof recipe. The ingredient list may look a little lengthy, but one quarter of that is just spices since we are making our own chai spice mix to use in both the cupcake batter and frosting.

Vegan Grain-Free Cupcake Batter

This cupcake recipe is vegan, grain-free, oil-free, and sweetened naturally, and made with healthier ingredients compared to most holiday sweet treats. You will need:

  • Maple syrup. Another liquid sweetener like agave would work too, but especially around the holidays I adore the cozy flavor of maple in the mix.
  • Coconut sugar. Yes yes I know, two sweeteners. But coconut sugar keeps these cupcakes more moist than maple syrup alone, so trust me it’s worth it. Brown sugar could be swapped in here.
  • Chocolate SunButter. The CHOCOLATE to our chocolate chai, and just the most addictive chocolatey stuff one can possibly buy in a jar. Also grab a few of these squeeze packs for (funneling straight into your face, but also…) swirling into the frosting on top.
  • Almond milk. Or whatever nondairy milk you have/love.
  • Cassava flour. My grain and nut-free favorite. It works very similar to all purpose, making these cupcakes fluffy and not too crumbly. All purpose would be fine too if you are not grain/gluten free.
  • Coconut flour. Just a touch combined with the cassava eliminates any chance of a gummy texture. If you want a crumb that no one will believe is vegan and grain-free, don’t skip it!
  • Chai spice mix. A warm fragrant mixture of cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, nutmeg, cloves, and allspice.
  • Baking powder, baking soda, vanilla, and salt. As we do.

Dairy-Free Chai Spiced Frosting

Look. You’ve made your own chai spice blend, you’ve made the yummiest chocolate chai cupcakes, you deserve to be a little lazy with the frosting. So buy it already made, jazz it up with the rest of the chai spice, and swirl that sweet stuff on already.

Or don’t. Or make your own homemade cashew frosting like this, and add the spices while blending, and top off your cupcakes with a sweet 100% DIY-ed finish. Up to you!

Chocolate Chai Cupcakes (vegan + grain-free)

More Healthy Cupcake Recipes You’ll Love

Chocolate Chai Cupcakes (vegan + grain-free)


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Chocolate Chai Cupcakes

  • Author:

  • Prep Time:
    20 minutes

  • Cook Time:
    25 minutes

  • Total Time:
    45 minutes

  • Yield:
    9 cupcakes 1x

  • Category:

  • Method:

  • Cuisine:


Cozy meets decadent in these vegan Chocolate Chai Cupcakes. Easy grain-free batter, super moist and fluffy, plus a spiced buttercream on top!

Chai Spice mix

  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp ginger
  • 2 tsp cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp cloves
  • 1/2 tsp allspice

Cupcake Batter

  • 1/3 cup (105g) maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup (80g) coconut sugar
  • 3/4 cup (180g) almond milk
  • 1/2 cup (125g) Chocolate SunButter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (140g) cassava flour
  • 3 tbsp (23g) coconut flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp chai spice mix (above)

Frosting: homemade or store-bought vanilla frosting + 2 tsps chai spice mix


  1. Mix together the chai spices. Set aside.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine maple syrup, coconut sugar, almond milk, Chocolate SunButter, and vanilla. Microwave 30 seconds to melt the SunButter slightly, then whisk until smooth.
  3. Add flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices. Mix until combined and smooth.
  4. Scoop into a cupcake pan lined with paper liners, filling each 3/4 of the way.
  5. Bake 22-25 minutes at 350°F. 
  6. Cool 10 minutes in the pan, then move to a cooling rack to cool completely before frosting.
  7. Stir spices into your prepared frosting, pipe or spread onto cooled cupcakes, swirl the frosting with more Chocolate SunButter.
  8. Enjoy! Leftovers can keep in the fridge for 1-2 days frosted, but unfrosted cupcakes can be stored in the fridge for 3-4 days if well sealed.


  • Serving Size: 1 cupcake
  • Calories: 419
  • Sugar: 26g
  • Sodium: 298mg
  • Fat: 24g
  • Saturated Fat: 9g
  • Carbohydrates: 46g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Protein: 4g

Keywords: gluten free, grain free, cassava, chai, spiced, chocolate, nut free, sunbutter, buttercream, dairy free, easy, holiday, dessert, healthy


Chocolate Chai Cupcakes (vegan + grain-free)