Gluten-Free Shirley Temple Cupcakes (Mupcakes)

Excuse the low-quality of this pic as it was taken on my phone.

Excuse the low-quality of this pic as it was taken on my phone.

I found this recipe on Pinterest and really wanted to try it. This being my first baking experiment with gluten-free flour (and my first time making cupcakes), I definitely learned a lot. This is the site where I got the recipe and where the glorious pictures of the cupcakes reside.

My version was not as pretty, but they tasted pretty good. Here’s the recipe and the description of the issues I dealt with in my house with no central heating…



1½ cups plus 1 tablespoon all purpose gluten free flour blend – use divided (I used Bob’s Red Mill All-Purpose Gluten-Free Flour)

1 teaspoon baking powder (Clabber Girl)

½ teaspoon kosher or fine sea salt

½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature (I used salted because that’s what I had, omitting the above salt)

1 cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs, at room temperature (lol…)

½ cup 7-Up, at room temperature (I used Sierra Mist Natural to avoid the high fructose corn syrup)

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 tablespoon maraschino cherry juice

Several drops of gluten-free red food coloring gel (I didn’t even do this. They looked fine!)


½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature (It got melty…)

1 large pinch of Kosher or fine sea salt

2½ cups confectioners’ sugar

½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 tablespoon maraschino cherry juice

12 maraschino cherries, patted dry with paper toweling



Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 12 standard muffin cups with paper… .

In a large mixing bowl whisk together 1½ cups of the gluten-free flour blend, baking powder and salt.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium high speed for two minutes or until light and fluffy.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well and scraping down the bowl after each addition.  Turn the mixer to low and add half of the flour mixture, then the 7-Up and finally the rest of the flour mixture.  Add the vanilla extract and mix.  Scrape the sides and bottom of the mixing bowl well to ensure all the ingredients are fully incorporated.  Do not be concerned if the batter looks a little curdled.

Take a ½ cup of the batter and put in a small bowl.  Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of flour, the maraschino cherry juice and enough red food coloring to turn the batter red. Stir well.  Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans (about 1 big teaspoon per cup).  Gently spoon the remaining batter on top of the red batter trying not to mix the two colors but to keep in layers.

Bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until the tops of the cupcakes are slightly springy and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes then remove to a wire rack to finish cooling. (The cupcakes will puff up a bit while cooking because of the 7-Up.)

While the cupcakes are cooling, prepare the frosting.


In a mixing bowl of an electric mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and salt on high speed until creamy.  Sift in the confectioners’ sugar and mix on low until fully combined.  Add the vanilla, lemon juice and maraschino cherry juice.  Mix to combine.

Pipe on or frost the cupcakes with the frosting and top each cupcake with a maraschino cherry.


Makes 12 gluten free cupcakes.

Soooo… I didn’t have the ideal situation for making these. I couldn’t find my handheld mixer or measuring spoons. Stabbing the butter and sugar with a spatula until it got “fluffy” seemed to work, though!

The eggs and butter never got to be “room temperature” unless you mean the actual temperature of the room (no central heating = pretty cold in the winter!). I left the butter on the top of the stove to get to “room temp” and the second stick for the frosting got pretty melty! It was pretty hilarious. I was grateful to have dogs to help clean the floor…

Also, with the lack of real measuring spoons, I put in too much xanthan gum which made my cupcakes muffiny. That was okay, though! They still were moist and loved by all and I called them “mupcakes.” But they definitely didn’t come out as moist and crumbly like they were supposed to. Watch that xanthan gum measurement!

On a side note, coconut butter could be used in replacement of the butter. These were made before I had to go off of dairy.


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