Acorn Squash Cupcakes with Mascarpone Cheese Frosting
Acorn squash is the unsung star of fall. It’s such a shame that pumpkin, while still wonderful, pushes this darling out of the way. These acorn squash cupcakes might just help you forget their pumpkin spice counterpart.
This cake is dairy free but the frosting does have butter and mascarpone cheese. If you need a dairy-free version, cut out the mascarpone cheese use your favorite dairy-free butter substitute. When substituting, make sure to double the butter substitute to 1 cup!
Yield: ~18 cupcakes
Prep Time: 25 min
Cook Time: 25 min
Total Time: 50 min
1 3/4 cup spelt flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 1/2 cup coconut sugar
1 cup coconut oil
4 large eggs
1 1/2 cup acorn squash puree
1 cup mascarpone cheese
1/2 stick butter
1 cup coconut sugar
2 tablespoons almond milk
In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Set aside.
Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and add the acorn squash puree. Mix on low-medium speed.
While cupcakes are baking, add the coconut sugar to a food processor bowl and blend for 2-5 minutes or until the coconut sugar is finely ground and resembles powdered sugar. Let settle in bowl before removing lid.
Wash the bowl of the stand mixer and combine the mascarpone cheese, butter, powdered coconut sugar and almond milk. Mix together on low speed. Fit a piping tip in a piping bag. Spoon the frosting into the bag. Once cupcakes are cooled, pipe frosting onto cupcakes. Enjoy!
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This recipe takes a tiny bit more prep work than your average cupcakes. The end result is really worth it. These acorn squash cupcakes are super tender. I would go as far to say they are a refreshing change from pumpkin.
You have to cut an acorn squash in half and bake it in a baking dish filled with water. Once it is soft, just pull the acorn squash “meat” away from the outer shell and blend it to make a puree. I wrote a step-by-step tutorial on how to make fresh pumpkin puree from scratch. You can use the same method with the acorn squash.
I hope you enjoy these cupcakes! I used mascarpone cheese in place of the “normal” cream cheese frosting. There is something special about the use of mascarpone cheese. I can’t quite put my finger on it but it’s delicious!
The cake is made with healthy coconut oil instead of vegetable or canola oil. I used virgin coconut oil in this cake and there isn’t a strong coconut flavor, I suspect that is due to the other strong flavors such as cinnamon and acorn squash.
Instead of powdered sugar I blended coconut sugar to make powdered coconut sugar, which explains the color of this frosting. Look out for a powdered coconut sugar tutorial very soon!
tl;dr: If you’re trying to make your cupcakes a bit healthier, make this acorn squash cupcake recipe. It uses alternative ingredients such as coconut oil and coconut sugar instead of other processed oils and white sugar.
Looking for more healthy baked goods? Follow along for more recipes on Pinterest!