No-Bake Pecan Pie Cupcakes

Pecans aren't something I tried until my early 20s. Truth be told I don't think I even tried peanut butter until I delved into vegan eating 6 yea...



Pecans aren't something I tried until my early 20s. Truth be told I don't think I even tried peanut butter until I delved into vegan eating 6 years ago. Nut butters sounded too American and my diet was strictly beige, cheese-based and took 3 minutes to heat up in the microwave. Food wasn't exciting to me, it was a nuisance and something cheap to keep me full while I sustained my very busy life of partying
. Everyone assumes plant based eating is restrictive but my mind is now open to using a whole new world of ingredients that I wouldn't have known about if I wasn't forced to seek out new recipes. Although I still eat some processed treats, I would have never thought twice about making a 'healthy' dessert out of nut butters and dates in the past. I would have sniggered at anyone doing so and would have just not understood the concept of ruining good things like cupcakes with 'healthy' ingredients. Nowadays I get a buzz out of making something sweet and satisfying that is also full of nutrient dense ingredients. Hence my recipe below! 


I was tempted to call these cupcakes 'raw' but I do sort of feel that slightly undersells them for how tasty they are. 'No bake' is more appropriate but I like to think these are still healthier than your average no-bake cake. This recipe can easily be adapted into a regular cake recipe by using a circular cake mould instead of cupcake moulds (and it's probably easier!) but I like the way these looks. Please make sure to use a silicone mould though as these sorts of cakes have a tendency to stick!

This recipe might look a bit fiddly at first but it really only consists of two steps and then setting. I am super proud of the caramel icing, it's one of my favourite things I've ever made and if you have a sweet tooth you are going to love this! These cupcakes can be frozen although I'm not sure how long they take to defrost.

MAKES APPROX 12-14 mini cupcakes (depending on mould size)

 
What you need:

  • Food processor 
  • Icing bag
  • Silicone moulds

 
Ingredients:

BASE

  • 1 cup pecans
  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 300g dates
  • 1 tbs maple syrup
  • 1/3 vanilla pod


CARAMEL ICING 

  • 400g medjool dates
  • 1/4 cup almond butter
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 1/4 cup coconut butter or oil 
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp maca powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon

 
Method:

  1. Soak your medjool dates in warm water to soften and set aside. The longer you soak, the smoother the caramel will be
  2. Blend all the base ingredients in a food processor until a crumb like consistency forms. If the base is too dusty it won't stick together so if you need to add a little more dates or maple syrup until it's sticky enough.
  3. Remove blended base and press into your silicone cupcake moulds. It doesn't need to strictly be cupcake moulds, any small circular shapes will do. I find it's easier to do this part with my fingers as you can really press down.
  4. Start melting down the coconut oil or coconut butter. I prefer not to use oils but either or will work well. You can melt this over some hot water, in a dehydrator or maybe you're lucky enough to be in a hot country and you don't need to do this at all!
  5. Remove the skins and pits from the soaked medjool dates and add to food processor
  6. Blend all of the caramel ingredients in the food processor (minus the coconut butter/oil) until silky smooth. Add the coconut butter at the very end. 
  7. Add the caramel into a piping bag and ice your base the same way you would a regular cupcake! WARNING: This part is seriously messy and I hope you have a better piping bag than me. I'm assuming the better bags are less of a pain!
  8. Top with a pecan.
  9. Set in freezer for 1 hour minimum.

 

This recipe is vegan & gluten free.

 



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