Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Bake up some low-carb love for your Valentine

Just in time for Valentine's Day, Atkins has shared some amazing sounding cupcake recipes that are low in carbohydrates. Which flavor will you be baking for your sweetheart this year?

TIRAMISU CUPCAKES 
Ingredients 
  • 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened 
  • 3 large eggs 
  • 1/4 Cup granular sugar substitute (Sucralose
  • 4 Teaspoons vanilla extract, divided 
  • 1/4 Cup coconut flour 
  • 1/4 Teaspoon baking powder 
  • 1/4 Teaspoon salt 
  • 4 Ounces mascarpone cheese 
  • 5 Tablespoons granular sugar substitute (Xylitol **), divided 
  • 1 1/4 Teaspoons instant espresso powder, divided 
  • 1/2 Cup heavy cream 
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons water 
** Xylitol is used in combination with sucralose in this recipe to provide a more rounded sweetness. Xylitol usually comes granulated but is better incorporated if it is powdered before use. Please measure first then powder in a blender. 

Directions
Cupcakes: Preheat oven to 375°F. Prepare a muffin tin with paper or foil cups. Using an electric mixer blend together the butter and sucralose until light and fluffy; about 2 minutes. Add eggs, 1 tsp vanilla, coconut flour, baking powder and salt. Blend until smooth then fill 6 muffin cups and bake for 15 minutes or until cooked through. Allow to sit for 5 minutes in the tin then place on a cooling rack.
Soaking syrup: combine 2 tsp vanilla, 2 Tbsp xylitol, 1 tsp espresso powder and 1 1/2 Tbsp water. Prick cupcakes with a tooth pick and pour 1 tsp soaking syrup per cupcake over the top.
Mascarpone Frosting: Beat together the mascarpone cheese, 3 Tbsp xylitol, 1 tsp vanilla and 1/4 tsp espresso powder until smooth. In a separate bowl whip the heavy creamy until stiff peaks form. Fold the whipped cream into the mascarpone mixture until combined. Place mixture in a pastry bag fitted with a fancy tip or simply use a plastic sandwich bag with a corner cut off. Pipe the frosting onto the cooled cupcakes. Best if served the same day or they may be refrigerated overnight in an airtight container. Serve at room temperature dusted with cocoa powder and topped with crushed espresso beans if desired.

CLASSIC CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES 
Ingredients
  • 1 Cup unsalted butter, softened and divided 
  • 9 Tablespoons granular sugar substitute (Xylitol**), divided 
  • 3 large eggs 
  • 4 Teaspoons vanilla extract, divided 
  • 5 Fluid ounces heavy cream, divided 
  • 3 Tablespoons water 
  • 2 Tablespoons coconut flour 
  • 1 Cup almond flour 
  • 1/3 Cup unsweetened cocoa powder 
  • 1/2 Teaspoon baking powder 
  • 1/4 Teaspoon baking soda 
  • 1/4 Teaspoon salt 
  • 2 Ounces unsweetened baking chocolate 
  • 1 Teaspoon instant coffee 
**Xylitol usually comes in granular form and is the preferred sweetener for taste when using chocolate. Please measure first and then powder the xylitol in a blender before using in this recipe.

Directions
Cupcakes: Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a muffin tin with 12 paper or foil liners. Beat 1/2 cup softened butter with 5 tablespoons xylitol until light and fluffy; about 3 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time until fully incorporated, then add 3 tsp vanilla, 2oz (about 1/4 cup) heavy cream, water and coconut flour. Blend thoroughly. In a sepatate bowl whisk to combine the almond flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add to the wet ingredients and beat until smooth and thick. Divide into the muffin liners and bake for 20-25 minutes or until fully cooked, be careful not to over bake or they will be bitter. Allow to cool in the muffin tin for 5 minutes then transfer to a baking rack to cool.
Frosting: Melt the chocolate with 3oz (about 1/3 cup) heavy cream in the microwave at 20 second intervals. Stir and allow to cool completely. Once cooled whisk in 4 tablespoons xylitol. Set aside. In a very small bowl stir to combine the 1 tsp vanilla, 1 tsp cocoa powder (optional) and 1 tsp instant coffee. Set aside. Transfer cooled chocolate to a medium bowl and beat with the remaining 1/2 cup butter on medium speed until lighter in color and fluffy. Add the reserved vanilla mixture and beat to combine. Using a piping bag and fancy tip or simply a quart-sized plastic bag with a corner cut off, pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes. Garnish with an Atkins Endulge Chocolate Peanut Candy if desired.

SNICKERDOODLE CUPCAKES 
Ingredients 

  • 3/4 Cup unsalted butter, softened and divided 
  • 1/4 Cup granular sugar substitute (sucralose) 
  • 2 large eggs 
  • 2 Teaspoons vanilla extract, divided 
  • 3 Tablespoons heavy cream 
  • 2 Tablespoons water 
  • 1/4 Cup coconut flour 
  • 3/4 Cup almond flour 
  • 3/4 Teaspoon baking powder 
  • 1/8 Teaspoon salt 
  • 2 Teaspoons ground cinnamon 
  • 2 egg whites 
  • 1/3 Cup granular sugar substitute (Xylitol**) 
**This recipe used xylitol for the frosting. Be sure to measure it first and then powder it in a blender before use.

Directions
Cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare a muffin tin with 8 foil or paper liners. Beat 1/4 cup softened butter and sucralose until light and fluffy. Add 2 whole eggs, 1 tsp vanilla, heavy cream, 2 Tbsp water and coconut flour. In a separate bowl whisk to combine the almond flour, baking powder, salt and 2 tsp cinnamon. Combine the almond mixture with the egg mixture and blend until smooth. Fill the muffin wells and bake for 20-25 minutes until cooked through. Allow to sit in the muffin tin for 5 minutes then remove to a baking rack to cool. Frost once cooled.
Buttercream Frosting: Prepare a pan with simmering water fitted with another pan over the top (Bain Marie). Do not allow the surface of the water to touch the bottom of the top pan. To the top pan (a metal mixing bowl works great for this purpose) add 2 egg whites (be sure there are no yolks), a dash of cream of tartar, 1 tsp water and 1/3 cup xylitol (it is not necessary to powder it). Whisk this mixture continuously for 5-10 minutes over the water bath until all the xylitol has dissolved. Pour this mixture into a separate bowl and whip with a blender until stiff fluffy peaks form. Add 1 tsp vanilla, blend to incorporate. The frosting may be used, as is, immediately (it does not store well) as a marshmallow frosting - dust the cupcakes with cinnamon as a garnish. For butter cream: to the marshmallow frosting, continue to beat on medium speed, begin adding about 1/2 cup butter 1 tablespoon at a time (allow to beat for 1 minute inbetween each addition of butter). The frosting may break down and get soupy looking, continue to add butter and beat until it comes together (more butter may be necessary, 1 tablespoon at a time). Add 1-2 tsp cinnamon (to taste, optional) and blend to combine. Buttercream should be used immediately by piping onto the cooled cupcake with a pastry bag and fancy tip or by simply cutting the corner of a plastic bag. Buttercream frosted cupcakes may be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Serve at room temperature dusted with cinnamon.

STRAWBERRIES AND CREAM CUPCAKES 
Ingredients 

  • 7 Ounces unsalted butter, softened and divided 
  • 1/4 Cup granular sugar substitute (Xylitol**) 
  • 3 large eggs 
  • 1 Teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • 1/3 Cup coconut flour 
  • 1/4 Cup heavy cream 
  • 3 Tablespoons water 
  • 1 Cup almond flour 
  • 1 Teaspoon baking powder 
  • 1/4 Teaspoon salt 
  • 8 Ounces cream cheese, at room temperature 
  • 1/2 Cup granular sugar substitute (sucralose) 
  • 2 Tablespoons sugar-free strawberry jam 
  • 10 small fresh strawberries 

**Xylitol usually comes in granular form. Please measure first and then powder in a blender before using in this recipe. You may substitute granular sucralose 1:1 for the xylitol in the cupcakes but please add 0.6g NC per serving to the total g NC. 

Directions
Cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a muffin tin with 10 paper or foil liners. Beat 1/3 cup (about 3oz) softened butter and the powdered xylitol until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add one egg at a time until incorporated, then the vanilla. Add the coconut flour and blend until incorporated. Add the heavy cream and water and continue to blend until smooth. Combine the almond flour, baking powder and 1/4 tsp salt. Add to the egg mixture forming a thickened batter. Divide equally into the 10 muffin liners and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown on top and baked through. Allow to cool.
Frosting: Beat 1/2 cup (about 4 oz) butter, cream cheese and a dash of salt for about 2 minutes. Add the sucralose and 2 tablespoons sugar-free strawberry jam. 2-3 drops of red food coloring may be added for a pinker color. Using a piping bag and fancy tip or simply a quart-sized plastic bag with a corner cut off, pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes and garnish with a strawberry. The cupcakes can be kept in an airtight container refrigerated for up to one week. Serve at room temperature.

ALMOND RASPBERRY CUPCAKES 

Ingredients 

  • 2 large eggs, separated 
  • 1/4 Cup unsalted butter, softened 
  • 1/3 Cup granular sugar substitute (sucralose) 
  • 2 Tablespoons heavy cream 
  • 2 Tablespoons water 
  • 1/2 Teaspoon lemon juice 
  • 1 Teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • 2 Teaspoons almond extract 
  • 2 1/2 Cups almond flour 
  • 1/2 Teaspoon baking powder 
  • 1/2 Teaspoon salt 
  • 10 Teaspoons sugar-free raspberry jam 


Directions 
Preheat oven to 350°F. Place 10 paper cups in a muffin pan and set aside. In a small bowl beat the egg yolks with 1/4 cup sucralose, butter, cream, water, lemon juice or vinegar and extracts until fully combined. Set aside. In another bowl beat the egg whites until frothy, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of sucralose and continue to beat until stiff peaks form. Gently fold the egg whites into the egg yolk mixture. In a separate bowl, combine the almond meal, baking powder and salt. Gently fold into the egg mixture. Divide this batter equally between the muffin cups then drop 1 teaspoon of raspberry jam into the center. Bake for 20-30 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan for 20 minutes. Enjoy warm or at room temperature. Refrigerate remaining cupcakes in an airtight container for up t0 one week and serve at room temperature. These may also be frozen for up to 1 month.

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