Easy vegan vanilla cupcakes with vegan buttercream that are outrageously sweet, yet are completely Paleo, dairy free, gluten free, and refined sugar free! Add extra sprinkles in for fun!

vegan vanilla cupcakes lined up

So funny story. I actually used to work at a cupcake bakery in college! And I loved every minute of it.

From the baking (yes, I got to help bake!), to the frosting (decorating was my favorite), to chatting with customers, I loved it all.

close up of vanilla cupcake

Now hear me out. My favorite cupcake of theirs was the vanilla on vanilla. It was heaven. People say vanilla is so boring, but let me tell you, my friend, it is quite the opposite!

Vanilla is the base of every other flavor! How could people demote it so easily?!

paleo vanilla cupcakes lined up

So naturally, I had to come up with my own version of a vanilla on vanilla cupcake (because let’s be honest, that’s the best; I don’t want to hear anything about it you chocolate lovers!) buttttt with a twist. A slightly healthier, more allergen friendly twist haha!

Let me introduce you to my new best friends: easy vegan vanilla cupcakes that just so happen to be PALEO!

three vanilla cupcakes lined up

Yep, it’s true! Not only vegan, these are gluten free cupcakes that are also completely grain free, dairy free, refined sugar free, and nut free but so. Gosh darn. DECADENT.

Remember my vegan vanilla cake? It’s like these, but gluten free and bite size!

How are these also Paleo vanilla cupcakes?

My current obsession in gluten free flours is cassava flour, which I’m actually shocked more people aren’t using and experimenting with it!

It’s my goal to have a Paleo vegan vanilla cake on here (as well as chocolate 😉 ), so stay tuned, but I thought cupcakes were a pretty first good experiment!

cupcake liner pulled off of gluten free vanilla cupcakes

If you don’t know what cassava is (most people don’t!), it’s actually very similar to a sweet potato, and it’s dried out and ground into a flour for gluten free and Paleo baking! What I love the most about cassava flour is it is shockingly 1:1 in ratio on most baking.

Some people say it doesn’t work for cakes but…I have the proof right here! It’s pretty outstanding!

The only flour used in these Paleo vanilla cupcakes is cassava, which is pretty amazing for a Paleo vegan baked good (most contain many flours and gums to help them stay together!). And it tastes, feels, and looks like regular flour. It’s pretty phenomenal! What’s more, it’s also completely nut free, so my allergy people, I see you 😉

Now let’s talk about the rest of the ingredients for these healthier funfetti cupcakes!

bite taken out of vegan vanilla cupcake

Ingredients for Vegan Vanilla Cupcakes

So for these egg free and dairy free vanilla cupcakes, you’ll need the following:

  • Cassava flour: as we’ve discussed, but since this is 1:1, you can also use a gluten free 1:1 flour mix that’s not strictly Paleo! I know not everyone wants to try out a Paleo flour, so just so you know, this recipe works great with a 1:1 gluten free flour mix 🙂
  • Coconut sugar
  • Leavening agents
  • Coconut milk mixed with ACV: my key to vegan “buttermilk!” ACV is short for apple cider vinegar- if you don’t have ACV on hand, regular white vinegar will work as well!
  • Unsweetened applesauce: this works as the replacement for eggs in a more traditional homemade funfetti cupcakes!
  • Vegan butter or coconut oil: both work!
  • Vanilla extract: and lots of it! You want that traditional vanilla cake taste 🙂
  • Sprinkles: optional but hey, confetti cupcakes are so fun and perfect for birthdays!
tier of cupcakes

Then we have the creamy yet completely dairy free vegan buttercream frosting:

  • Vegan butter
  • Maple syrup or powdered sugar (use powdered sugar if you’re okay with some regular sugar in there!)
  • Vanilla extract

Simple right? I just love cupcakes for that reason 🙂

stack of vanilla cupcakes

How to make homemade funfetti cupcakes that are vegan and Paleo

Now making vegan vanilla cupcakes, heck making Paleo vanilla cupcakes, is not much different than making regular ones! I promise 🙂

These cupcakes are so incredibly easy!

single vanilla cupcake

First, just make sure that your oven is preheated to the correct temperature and line that cupcake tin with cupcake liners!

Then, whisk together the cassava flour, coconut sugar (yes sugar goes with the flour! These are one bowl vanilla cupcakes!), baking powder, baking soda, and sea salt all together.

Then add in the applesauce, dairy free buttermilk, melted vegan butter, and of course, the vanilla. Mix it until all the flour is absorbed into a nice and thick batter.

Add in the sprinkles if you so desire (gotta love some confetti cupcakes!), and then pour the batter evenly into each cupcake liner.

cupcake batter in tin

Place the cupcakes into the oven and let them bake for about 22-26 minutes (they took average 24 minutes for me!), or until the toothpick comes out clean.

Then let the cupcakes cool for about 15 minutes before moving onto the vegan buttercream!

Vegan vanilla buttercream frosting

Now for the best part: the frosting!

Honestly, I’m such an easy-to-please person. Give me a vanilla cupcake with some vanilla frosting, and I am sold!

This vegan vanilla buttercream frosting is quite simple, and you basically prepare it as you would any other buttercream frosting!

close up of vegan vanilla frosting

For the vegan buttercream, simply beat the softened vegan butter until smooth. Then sift in 1 cup at a time of powdered sugar (if you’re going full Paleo here as well, just add in the maple syrup all at once!). Continue to beat the frosting, slowly adding another cup to the mix.

Add in the vanilla extract and a tablespoon at a time of coconut cream, and there ya go!

bitten vanilla cupcake on marble slab

A nice and thick vegan vanilla buttercream frosting that everyone would think is full dairy 😉

We work magic here in the Banana Diaries kitchen!

Now just top with sprinkles and you’re good to do 🙂

birthday candle in vanilla birthday cupcake

I hope you love these fun vegan birthday cupcakes as much as I do! I honestly will be making these for my birthday (coming up next month, eep!) because who doesn’t love some form of cake on their birthday?!

It’s kinda a necessity 🙂

Let me know how these vegan vanilla cupcakes turn out for you in the comments below, and as always, I’d love to see your beautiful creations on Instagram and Pinterest!

bite taken out of vanilla cupcakes

Happy cupcake baking and frosting! And happy birthday if these are your birthday cupcakes!! 😉

Want to save this recipe for later? Add it to your favorite recipe board on Pinterest!

pinterest image for vegan vanilla cupcakes
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birthday candle in vanilla birthday cupcake

Vegan Vanilla Cupcakes (Paleo)

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 2 reviews
  • Author: thebananadiaries
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 26
  • Total Time: 36 minutes
  • Yield: 12 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking


Buttery and sweet easy vegan vanilla cupcakes with vegan buttercream that are outrageously fluffy and sweet, yet are completely Paleo, dairy free, gluten free, and refined sugar free! Add extra sprinkles in for fun and make these for birthdays, celebrations and holidays! 



Paleo Vegan Vanilla Cupcakes:

  • 1 3/4 cup cassava flour
  • 3/4 coconut sugar
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 cup vanilla unsweetened coconut or almond milk with 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup vegan butter or coconut oil, melted
  • 2 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup sprinkles (optional)

Vegan Buttercream Frosting:

  • 8 ounces vegan butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup or 3 cups organic powdered sugar (non Paleo option)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 23 tbsp coconut cream or milk


  1. Preheat the oven to 350F and line a 12 tin cupcake pan with cupcake liners
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the cassava flour, coconut sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and sea salt.
  3. Add in the applesauce, melted vegan butter, dairy free milk with ACV and vanilla, and mix until well combined.
  4. Add in the optional sprinkles here if desired.
  5. Scoop batter and distribute evenly among 11-12 cupcake liners.
  6. Bake for 22-26 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  7. Let cool for 15 minutes before frosting.
  8. To make the buttercream frosting, beat the vegan butter in a large bowl. Add in 1 cup of powdered sugar at a time or the maple syrup all at once, and continue beating. 
  9. Add in vanilla and a tablespoon at a time of coconut cream/milk until you reach the desired consistency.
  10. Frost or pipe the frosting onto each cupcake and top with sprinkles if desired


  • Serving Size: 1 cupcake no frosting
  • Calories: 204
  • Sugar: 15
  • Sodium: 60
  • Fat: 8
  • Saturated Fat: 6
  • Carbohydrates: 32
  • Fiber: 1
  • Protein: 0
pinterest image for vegan vanilla cupcakes
pinterest image for vegan vanilla cupcakes