Sometimes, Pinterest is a huge problem. I’ll be sitting and doing work like the diligent college student I am, then all of a sudden, I find myself scrolling through Pinterest. It can be hard to make myself get off. That site is just so crazy addicting, full of brilliant ideas, tantalizing food, and funny cats.
Sometimes though, Pinterest is the solution to a huge problem. Take for example the other day when I was craving something chocolatey for dessert. I was eating relatively healthy that day, and I had no desire to diverge from that in exchange for some thousand-calorie dessert. However, I was sick of my typical low-cal dessert options. In a fit of desperation, I called upon the powers of Pinterest to bestow me with a healthy but delicious treat.
Pinterest, being the gold mine that it is, came through. I discovered a 100-calorie cupcake recipe which was also vegan. Intriguing.
There was one matter that needed to be addressed before diving into the recipe: a topping. If I were to slather the cupcakes in full-fat frosting, then that would completely defeat the purpose making low-calorie cupcakes in the first place. But what could I top them with that wouldn’t top off the calories?
Answer: Jet-Puffed Mallow Bits.
These are my new obsession. They’re teeny tiny, itty bitty little marshmallows. They’re sweet and slightly crunchy, identical to the fantastically sugary marshmallows you find in cereal, except it’s all marshmallows’ no cereal. Best of all, you can have two tablespoons for a mere 20 calories.
These mini marshmallows are the perfect topper for these cupcakes. They add a little touch of sweetness, plus contrast in texture. The cupcakes are super moist and soft while the marshmallows have a little bit of bite. However, if you choose to include the marshmallows as well, the cupcakes are no longer vegan.
I’m not going to lie to you guys. These don’t taste exactly like a full-fat, non-vegan cupcake, but they are totally delicious. They’ve got intense chocolatey flavor that’s sure to satisfy your craving, they’re nice and moist, and they don’t have that fake-sugar taste since they’re made with real brown sugar, not a substitute. If you’re craving a chocolate cupcake but you’re trying to be “good,” don’t deprive yourself. These chocolatey little guys are tasty and extremely good for you, so you can have your cake and eat it too!
A Few Tips Before You Get Cooking:
- You can get creative with the toppings. Try mini semi-sweet chocolate chips, a teaspoon or two of Better N’ Peanut Butter, sliced strawberries, or a dollop of Cool Whip.
- You can substitute whole-wheat flour pastry flour and make these even healthier.
- You can find the Jet-Puffed Mallow Bites at your local grocery store and Target.
110-Calorie Chocolate Marshmallow Cupcakes
adapted from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World
- 1 cup nonfat milk or almond milk
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup all purpose flour –OR- whole wheat pastry flour
- 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons Jet Puffed Mallow Bits
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a standard 12 cup muffin tin with paper liners.
- In a small bowl, stir together milk and vinegar. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine brown sugar, applesauce, and vanilla. Pour in the now curdled milk and mix all ingredients well.
- Stir in dry ingredients until just combined. The batter will be thin and wet, similar to a runny pancake batter. Divide it evenly among the prepared muffin cups then sprinkle the marshmallows evenly over the cupcakes. Bake for about 18 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of one comes out clean. Let cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack before removing to cool completely.
Nutrition for 1 cupcake (unfrosted):
Calories: 110, Fat: 0.6g, Cholesterol: 1mg, Sodium: 15.4mg, Carb: 29.7g, Fiber: 1.2g, Sugars: 20.5g, Protein 2.2g