I know, another cardamom recipe (more brown things…). But oh man, these spicy little babes. Let me tell you about them.
They’re sweet, they’re savory. They’re spicy, they’re zesty. And because I love you, and respect that people have different cake texture preferences, I made them two ways: one chewy and extra moist, one fluffy and melts in your mouth. Both are perfection in my opinion, but pick your favorite and go with that. You won’t be disappointed.
Top row is the egg variation, bottom is yogurt. They were truly the same color, but one was shot in the morning and the other evening. Blame my kitchen lighting for the misleading color difference.
Food Blogging tip: always shoot at the same time, in the same light for a post.
To tell the difference between in the two texture recipes, I piped the frosting on the chewier cakes and used a knife to smear the frosting on the fluffier cakes. Also, apologies in advance for my unskilled hand at frosting. I promise it tastes better than it looks.
The orange zest was a happy last minute addition to the cardamom frosting. I was actually munching on an orange while the cupcakes were baking, the aroma filling the air, the orange’s juice tangy on my tongue, and thought to myself “man, I bet a little orange zest in the frosting would be killer”. I was right.
I strongly encourage you to lick the beaters clean.
And oh those lovely spices. I feel like spice cake doesn’t get the credit it should. The funfetti’s, peanut butter cup, red velvet and devil’s food of the cake world seem to have the majority of the attention. But heck, I’m bringing spicy back.
This is a small batch recipe (yields about 6 cupcakes) because I cannot handle having a dozen or more of any sort of baked good in the house. Even with 6, I had to pawn some off on friends. A gals gotta fit in her yoga pants. That being said, you can easily double this recipe. And I won’t judge you at all. In fact, I’ll probably be jealous of all your lovely spice cakes.
You swap out 1 ingredient in this recipe to get either a more pound cake texture or traditional fluffy cake. For pound cake choose the yogurt, for fluffier cake choose the egg. Or if you’re thorough
crazy like me, you can bake up 2 batches, one of both to see which is tastier.
These spice cakes can also be easily made vegan – just opt for the chewy recipe ingredients and use a non diary yogurt (coconut tastes amazing!)
Spice Cakes with Cardamom & Orange Zest Frosting
For the cakes:
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
2 chai tea bags
1/8 cup melted coconut oil
1/4 cup plain yogurt OR 1 egg (***this is your ingredient option for different texture)
6 tablespoons coconut sugar (or cane)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp + 2 tsp all purpose flour (I know, that’s a weird one)
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cardamom
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/8 teaspoon cloves
for the frosting:
1/2 teaspoon cardamom
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon orange zest
1 cup powdered sugar (plus or minus depending on how thick you want your frosting)
a tiny splash of almond or coconut milk to get things moving (roughly 1 tsp give or take)
Preheat oven to 375°, line cupcake pan with 6 liners (I prefer parchment liners).
In a small sauce pan, bring almond milk to gentle boil. Remove from heat, add the 2 tea bags. Let soak for 10 minutes. Drain liquid from bags. Pour chai milk into small mixing bowl. Add to bowl sugar. If you are using coconut sugar, its best to let it sit for a few minutes to absorb. Add vanilla, coconut oil, yogurt OR egg. Beat on medium for a few minutes until all ingredients are smooth. Add in your spices: cinnamon, cardamom, ginger and cloves. Mix again. Add in flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Blend on medium-low until all ingredients are combined and no white flour residue is showing.
Pour batter into pan with liners. If you opted for the yogurt, bake for 11-14 minutes. If you opted for the egg, bake for 15-20 minutes. Let cool completely before frosting.
While your cakes are cooling, whip up that frosting! In a small mixing bowl, blend together all ingredients. You may have to add/subtract the amount of powdered sugar and milk used to get the consistency you want for frosting. My advice, if you’re piping, add more sugar less milk. If you’re like me, and your piping skills are wanting, add less sugar.
And voila. Spice cupcakes. Enjoy!
Thanks for baking with me! I hope you enjoy.