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four chocolate cherry cupcakes in liners with vanilla speckled frosting and a red cherry on top of each cupcake

Vegan Chocolate Cherry Cupcakes

Soft & Fluffy Chocolate Cherry Cupcakes filled with a homemade cherry purée, topped with a vegan vanilla frosting, & finished with a cherry on top!
5 from 4 votes
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Course: Vegan Cakes + Cupcakes
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 8 cupcakes


Cherry Purée Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups dark red cherries pitted and halved, measure after pitting and slicing
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste optional but recommended
  • 2 tablespoon water

Chocolate Cherry Cupcake Batter

  • ¾ cup all purpose flour
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder sifted, sift after measuring
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup almond milk or any plant-based milk such as oat, rice, soy
  • ½ cup cherry purée made above
  • cup organic sugar
  • ¼ cup olive oil

Vegan Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

  • ½ cup vegan butter
  • cup shortening can be subbed 1:1 for more vegan butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • 1 - 1 ½ cups powdered sugar measured then sifted, use more if needed


First make the cherry purée

  • Add the sliced and pitted cherries, sugar, vanilla bean paste, and water to a small saucepan and stir over low heat. Bring to a simmer and continue cooking for 5-10 minutes until most of the cherry juice has been released, the cherries have softened, and the mixture is bubbling.
  • Remove from the heat. Then, add the mixture to a small blender and blend for 10-15 seconds until well-combined with some chunks remaining. Pour into a bowl and let sit to thicken and cool.

Make the Chocolate Cherry Cupcakes

  • Preheat the oven to 350F and fill a muffin tin with 8-10 cupcake liners.
  • Next, add all of the dry ingredients to a small mixing bowl including the all-purpose flour, sifted cocoa powder, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Then, sift together with a fork until well-mixed and set aside.
  • In a separate larger mixing bowl add in the wet ingredients including the almond milk, blended and cooled cherry purée, sugar, and olive oil. Gently mix together.
  • Next, add in the sifted dry ingredients and mix together JUST until a thick batter forms and no large streaks of flour remain. It's important not to overmix cupcake batter or too much gluten will form and cupcakes will not be as fluffy.
  • Pour the cupcake batter into the cupcake liners and tap the pan on the table to remove any large air bubbles. Then, add to the oven and bake for 20-22 minutes until cooked through.
  • Remove the muffins from the tin and let cool on a wire rack. Once cooled, cut a small hole out of the top of each cupcake (do not cut the hole all the way through to the bottom) and add in a little bit of cherry purée. This step is completely optional so only do so if you like filled cupcakes.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

  • Once the cupcakes have cooled completely, make the frosting. First add the vegan butter and shortening to a mixing bowl and whip together with an electric mixer until no clumps remain. Then, add in the vanilla bean and whip together for another 30 seconds.
  • Gradually add in the powdered sugar ¼ cup at a time until the desired sweetness is reached. I prefer 1 cup of powdered sugar for this recipe, but feel free to add more or less to your liking. Once all the powdered sugar has been mixed in, whip the frosting another 1-2 minutes until fluffy.
  • Add the frosting to a piping bag. If the frosting seems too soft, add the piping bag full of frosting to the fridge for 5 minutes to help it firm up. Then, pipe the frosting onto the cherry-filled cupcakes. Serve with a cherry on top and enjoy!


  • Extra cherry purée can be stored in a closed container in the fridge and will keep for 2-3 days.
  • Since these cupcakes are so moist, they will keep in the fridge for 1-2 days in a closed container. However, they do store best in the freezer and will keep for 1 month in a closed container.
  • In the US Shortening is typically called Palm Oil. It is softer than vegan butter and solid at room temperature, leading to a softer lighter frosting. However, it can be subbed 1:1 for vegan butter in any of my frosting recipes.


Serving: 1cupcake | Calories: 496kcal | Carbohydrates: 68g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12g | Trans Fat: 1g | Sodium: 354mg | Potassium: 116mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 55g | Vitamin A: 556IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 43mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @shortgirltallorder or tag #sgtoeats!