CHOCOLATE COLLAGEN PROTEIN CUPCAKES (SUGAR FREE)
I DARE YOU to make these Chocolate Collagen Protein Cupcakes and test if anyone realizes they’re “healthy” cupcakes. I know that’s a bold challenge, but I was mind-blown when I took my first bite! I literally ran into the bedroom and told my husband, “BABE. Oh my gosh. You HAVE to try this.” He was just as smitten as I was! These cupcakes are so moist, rich and chocolatey, I literally can’t tell the difference between these and bakery cupcakes (and I’ve had some pretty legit bakery cupcakes). Did I mention these have ZERO sugar and 12 grams of protein per cupcake? If you’re looking for a healthy Valentine’s Day treat that tastes “not-healthy-at-all,” you gotta make these 😉
Did you know? Studies show that taking as little as 5 grams of collagen per day can significantly reduce the depth of facial wrinkles, skin elasticity and hydration in as little as 8 weeks (source).
For this recipe, I used LIV Body’s Marine Collagen, which is perfect for making protein-packed treats without ruining the taste or texture. Use my code NOEXCUSES for 20% off all LIV Body products! It’s rich in highly bioavailable type I collagen which is the most necessary collagen found in the body.
If you wish, you can substitute the collagen peptides for an additional quarter cup of flour (30 grams). You can also *try* substituting the collagen protein for 30 grams of another type of protein powder (whey concentrate, whey blends, or vegan proteins), but doing so will change the taste and texture. If you add too much of these other protein powders (without modifications), your cupcakes could turn out too mushy, dense, spongey, or dry.
I used gluten-free baking flour to keep these gluten-free, but you can substitute one-quarter cup of tapioca flour with half a cup of cassava flour, all-purpose flour, brown rice flour, cake flour, sweet white sorghum flour, or any fine flour. Though I haven’t tried it in this specific recipe, you might be able to substitute half as much coconut flour (six tablespoons) for a lower carb version. The texture will likely be less tender and more crumbly, however! You may also need more egg to hold everything together.
To sweeten these decadent cupcakes without adding any sugar, I used my favorite stevia blend that’s twice as sweet as sugar with no bitter aftertaste! Feel free to substitute twice as much granulated monk fruit, granulated erythritol, baking stevia, or granulated sugar if that’s all you have. Keep in mind, if you use coconut sugar or another granulated sugar, this will significantly increase the calories, carbs, and sugar per cupcake.
This recipe also calls for egg whites, unsweetened dairy-free yogurt, coconut oil, and vinegar. You could probably sub one-quarter cup water for the egg whites in a pinch (the original recipe doesn’t call for egg white). You can also use unsweetened applesauce in place of the dairy-free yogurt. The coconut oil can be substituted for any neutral-flavored oil such as avocado oil, canola oil, or even melted vegan buttery spread. The vinegar helps “tenderize” the cupcakes – but it’s optional.
Oh, and be sure to use a high-quality unsweetened cocoa powder! I used regular, not Dutch cocoa.
Chocolate buttercream frosting
The frosting is a rich chocolate buttercream frosting with zero sugar! To achieve this, I used a powdered monk fruit and erythritol blend, which is an all-natural, sugar-free, and calorie-free alternative to powdered sugar. You can substitute regular powdered sugar, or use your calorie-free powdered sweetener of choice. DO NOT sub baking stevia or any type of granulated stevia here or your frosting will be bitter and disgusting!
In the frosting, I also added a little more LIV Body’s Marine Collagen (optional), unsweetened cocoa powder, unsweetened almond milk (any milk will do), vegan buttery spread (can use dairy butter, coconut butter, or any solid coconut oil), and vanilla extract (optional).
Just look at that bite! YUMM. Now, here’s the printable recipe for these Chocolate Collagen Protein Cupcakes! I’d love for you to rate this recipe and comment below if you try it 🙂
This post contains affiliate links and is sponsored by LIV Body.
Chocolate Collagen Protein Cupcakes (Sugar Free)
- 3/4 cup (90g) gluten-free baking flour* or 1/2 cup cassava, 1/4 cup tapioca flour
- 1/2 cup (60g) unflavored collagen protein powder* I used LIV Body marine collagen, code "NOEXCUSES" for 20% off
- 1/3 cup calorie-free sweetener* I used one that's twice as sweet as sugar
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. salt optional
- 1/4 cup (2 large) egg whites*
- 1/4 cup dairy-free yogurt* or unsweetened applesauce
- 3 tbsp. coconut oil* melted
- 2 tsp. vinegar* apple cider or white vinegar
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 cup powdered calorie-free sweetener* I used a monk fruit blend that measures like sugar
- 1/3 cup (40g) unflavored collagen protein* optional
- 3 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3-4 tbsp. unsweetened almond milk*
- 2 tbsp. vegan buttery spread*
- 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract optional
*See blog post above for substitutions.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Whisk together dry ingredients (through salt) in a medium mixing bowl.
- Add wet cupcake ingredients (through vanilla) and mix until just combined.
- Line nine wells of a muffin pan with cupcake liners and lightly spray insides with cooking spray (or use silicone liners like I did).
- Divide batter between wells, about two-thirds of the way full.
- Bake cupcakes for 20-22 minutes until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- While cupcakes bake, mix frosting ingredients until glossy and smooth.
- Spoon frosting into a piping bag (or a sealed baggie with one corner cut off) and store in the fridge for 15-20 minutes as the cupcakes cool completely.
- Frost your cupcakes with chilled frosting once completely cooled.
- Enjoy cupcakes immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge up to one week.
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