Saturday, January 5, 2013

Healthier Matcha Cupcakes

I first decided to bake these cupcakes when my friend tweeted the link to the recipe to me. Actually I didn't even have any intention to bake matcha cupcakes until that happened. My focus was on more unconventional ingredients (hehe Dill :D watch out for a super interesting and original tart coming up!) this month. But since she asked, I thought I'd give it a shot.

I replaced the butter with applesauce, as I really didn't need a fatty fatty cupcake after days and days of pigging out (just had a super filling meal of Japanese Curry with my 1 hour dinner rolls yesterday). And I reduced the sugar, simply because I always find recipes too sweet.

The result was a super moist and fluffy cupcake. The applesauce, while reducing the fat content and calories, keeps the cupcake really moist, just like melted butter. Not to mention that the subtle fruity apple fragrance complements the matcha flavour very well. 

Amy's technique of beating both the egg yolks and the whites till they're puffed up with air also comtributed to the rise and fluffy texture of the cupcakes. I must say, before this I have never thought to beat egg yolks. Although they can hold air, they hold a lot less than egg whites. But I gave it a try and it was so nice to see the deep orange yolk turn into a pale yellow and double in volume. Also, a valuable lesson I learnt today: how to whisk with both arms :P That kept me from having only one sore arm haha

Instead of using just matcha buttercream frosting, I split the frosting into 2 and only flavoured one half with matcha. That got me two very contrasting colours of white and green, which were simply beautiful to pipe onto the cupcakes. Trying to fit two piping bags into one piping tip was really challenging though. I got such a mess of spilled frosting everywhere on the kitchen countertop. I wonder what my parents will say when they get back >< See this page on how to pipe frosting like this.

My personal opinion is that these cupcakes are really pretty. I mean, how often do I have two colours of frosting and a vibrant green? But then my friend said it looks like bird shit when I asked him to help me pick between the picture above and the first picture. Haha perhaps a more vibrant green would help to avoid that. But seriously, it doesn't look like bird shit, right? I think it's quite pretty.

What do you think? Give it a try =)

Recipe adapted from Amy's Food Adventures' Matcha Green Tea Cupcakes with Matcha Buttercream Frosting
(makes 4)
Matcha Cupcake
28g plain flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
1 tsp matcha powder

1 tbsp skim milk
1/4 tsp vanilla essence
25g apple sauce

1 egg yolk
1 tbsp sugar

1 egg white
1 tbsp sugar

1. Whisk together plain flour, baking powder, salt and matcha powder.

2. In a separate bowl, whisk together milk, vanilla essence and apple sauce.

3. In another bowl, whisk together the egg yolk and 1 tbsp sugar until it's pale and has doubled in volume.
Assuming you had a deep orange yolk at first, it should turn into a pale yellow when it''s done.

4. In one last bowl, whisk the egg white until the ribbon stage. Then add 1 tbsp of sugar and whisk till stiff peaks form.

5. Fold in the egg yolk mixture, then the applesauce and milk mixture. Lastly, fold in the flour mixture in 3 additions until just combined. Do not overmix or the egg white will collapse.

6. Spoon batter into prepared cupcake liners or muffin tin till 3/4 full, then bake at 180 degrees Celsius for 10 minutes, until a skewer poke in comes out clean.

Matcha Buttercream Frosting
120g butter
3/4 cup icing sugar
3 tsp matcha
1. In a stand mix, 
cream the butter till soft.
2. Gradually add in the icing sugar and cream till smooth, soft and fluffy.
3. Add in the matcha and beat till completely smooth and well combined.
4. Pipe onto cooled cupcakes


I'm submitting this to Calendar Cakes hosted by Laura Loves Cakes (this month's host) and Dolly Bakes 


  1. Wow...I'm really impressed with your cupcakes...and to me matcha is an unusually ingredient! ;-) I love the fact that you've substituted in the apple sauce and reduced the sugar...definitely a healthy bake!! Thanks for entering them into Calendar Cakes...and I agree with you and not your friend, they are very pretty with the two tone icing! :-)

  2. Thanks Laura =) matcha is really fun to work with, and there's so many health benefits associated with it too! Haha I only realised it wasn't that healthy because of the frosting but they're good enough to eat alone ^^

  3. Haha, your friend is so funny.. that never crossed my mind. I think they do indeed look very pretty!

    1. Indeed haha wild imagination. Yours are really pretty too! I love the pearls :D

  4. Seems great,

    Did you try adding your links to ?
    or using Cherry Share service to increase the traffic ?

  5. Wow! I just love how great these cupcakes look! Thank you for sharing this wonderful recipe with us!

  6. Hi Joey! May I ask what brand applesauce you used? Was it homemade? I've never substituted applesauce for butter before and am not sure whether to make my own or buy it. What ingredients are in the applesauce?

    1. I usually buy apple sauce, so I've never baked with homemade before :D any brand of applesauce will do, preferably, all natural



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