Gluten-Free Chocolate Pumpkin Marble Cupcakes Recipe

Elizabeth Barbone

Thanks to the combination of white rice flour and potato starch, this recipe makes incredibly light gluten-free cupcakes. Brown rice can be substituted, however, the finished cupcakes will be denser. In addition to being gluten-free, the recipe is also dairy, corn, nut, and soy*-free.

*be sure to select a soy-free oil.

Recipe Facts

Active: About 25 mins
Total: 0 mins
Makes: 24 cupcakes

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  • 2 1/2 cups (10 ounces) white rice flour
  • 1 1/2 cups (10.5 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (3 ounces) potato starch
  • 4 teaspoons ground pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 5 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
  • 4 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup (5 1/2 ounces) canola or vegetable oil
  • 1 (15-ounce) can pure pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) water
  • For the Icing
  • 1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, softened or dairy-free butter replacement
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened or dairy-free cream cheese
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon milk or milk replacement


  1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Line 24 standard muffin cavities with paper liners.

  2. In large bowl or bowl of stand mixer, whisk together white rice flour, granulated sugar, potato starch, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, salt, and xanthan gum.

  3. In microwave-safe bowl or on top of a double boiler, melt chocolate. (If using the microwave, heat on high for 30 seconds. Remove bowl and stir. Repeat until chocolate is fully melted. If using double boiler, bring water to a simmer, set bowl on top of double boiler. Stir until chocolate melts.) Set chocolate aside.

  4. Add eggs, oil, pumpkin, and water to dry ingredients. Whisk or mix on medium speed until batter forms. Spoon half of batter into a separate bowl. Add melted chocolate to half of the batter. Stir to combine. Batter will be thick.

  5. Spoon an equal amount of pumpkin and chocolate batter into each prepared muffin cavity. Batter should not fill the cavity more than halfway. Don't worry about swirling the batters. They mix during baking.

  6. Bake until a cake tester inserted into the center of each cupcake comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Remove pan(s) from oven. Allow cupcakes to cool in pan for five minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

  7. For the icing: In large bowl, cream together butter and cream cheese with an electric beater until smooth. Add powdered sugar and milk. Mix until smooth. If icing is thick, add an additional teaspoon of milk. Spread on cooled cupcakes.

Special equipment

Cupcake pan; paper liners