After a lot of trial and error I think I’ve found what for me is the best possible gluten free basic cupcake.
I took the basic recipe from my favorite non gluten free yellow cake from Smitten Kitchen. One of the main issues was finding gluten free cake flour. So I took to google to see if I could possibly make cake flour. Thankfully Joy the Baker had a tutorial! I used King Arthur Gluten Free Flour which is my go to flour and gave it a try. They were a hit even with the people who were able to eat the regular cupcakes!
Yield: Two 9-inch round, 2-inch tall cake layers, 24 cupcakes, two 8-inch squares or a 9×13 single-layer cake
4 cups of flour/cornstarch mixture plus 2 tablespoons of gluten free flour (see below for flour recipe)
2 teaspoons xanthan gum (1/2 tsp per cup of flour)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon table salt
2 sticks (1 cup, 1/2 pound) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
4 large eggs, at room temperature
2 cups buttermilk, well-shaken
To Make Gluten Free Cake Flour (this can be done with regular flour if you don’t need gfree)
4 Cups of Gluten Free All Purpose Flour (I use King Arthur)
8 Tablespoons of Cornstarch.
1. Place 4 cups of flour in a bowl.
2. REMOVE 8 Tablespoons of flour (or two tbsp per cup if you are making a different recipe)
3. ADD 8 Tablespoons of cornstarch (or two tbsp per cup if you are making a different recipe)
Mix this in with the ingredients above
Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter two 9-inch round cake pans and line with circles of parchment paper, then butter parchment. (Alternately, you can use a cooking spray, either with just butter or butter and flour to speed this process up.)
Mix together flour (with cornstarch), baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium speed until fluffy, then beat in vanilla. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well and scraping down the bowl after each addition. At low speed, beat in buttermilk until just combined (mixture will look curdled). Add flour mixture in three batches, mixing until each addition is just incorporated. The last step is to add the xanthan gum. Do not over mix! Let batter sit for 5-10 minutes to allow xanthan gun to react.
Spread batter evenly in cake pan, then tap pan on counter several times to eliminate air bubbles. Bake until golden and a wooden pick inserted in center of cake comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool in pan on a rack 10 minutes, then run a knife around edge of pan. Invert onto rack and discard parchment, then cool completely, about 1 hour.
Place paper cupcake liners into pan and fill with batter till about 3/4 full.