Gluten Free Lime Agave Cupcakes

One-bowl gluten-free cupcakes made with lots of lime zest, sweetened with agave and topped off with the brightest fresh strawberry-basil buttercream!
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Lime Agave Cupcakes With Fresh Strawberry Basil Buttercream

The first thing I thought about when baking with Organic Agave In The Raw Nectar was making these Gluten Free Lime Agave Cupcakes With Fresh Strawberry Basil Buttercream. And I knew, from the start, I wanted them to be gluten free. Not for the sake of being gluten free (although that’s a perk) but because the idea of a moist, almond-flour-based cupcake paired with the light, honey-like flavor of Agave sounded positively spine-tingling. For the buttercream I turned to two of my favorite flavors: strawberries and basil.

Gluten Free Lime Agave Cupcake +
Strawberry Basil Buttercream Ingredients

  • Eggs
  • Agave
  • Confectioners’ Sugar
  • Sour Cream
  • Unsalted Butter
  • Sunflower Seed Oil (or other neutral-flavored veggie oil)
  • Fresh Strawberries
  • Fresh Lime juice + Zest
  • Fresh Basil
  • Real Vanilla Extract
  • Almond Extract
  • Super Fine, Blanched Almond Flour (the same kind you use for macarons)
  • Arrowroot Starch/Flour
  • Coconut Flour
  • Baking Powder
  • Baking Soda
  • Sea Salt
An other head shot of gluten free lime agave cupcakes with some fresh strawberries, a random ribbon and lime. Oh, and some pretty pink  frosting in a pastry bag

One-Bowl Cupcakes

Did I mention these gluten free lime-agave cupcakes are a one-bowl cupcake recipe? Accidentally? That’s one of the perks of baking gluten free is that you don’t have to stress about over-working your flour and ending up with a rubbery cupcake. Did I also mention this batter performs beautifully (better, I might even say) if it’s whipped up the night before and allowed to rest in the fridge overnight. This is a great tip for baking gluten free as it allows time for the fake flours (as I lovingly call them) time to absorb some much-needed moisture.

Three mini gluten free lime agave cupcakes on mini cake pedestals and it's cuteness overload

How To Substitute Agave for Sugar in Baking

This recipe is adapted to be gluten free + use Agave from my Margarita Cupcakes (one of my favorite recipes). This gluten free adaptation was a bit tricky (getting the balance of ingredients takes a bit more finesse than just subbing in other gluten-loving flours), but the agave addition was super simple. A quick search through the Internet found that 2/3 cup Agave substitutes 1 cup of granulated sugar. You can extrapolate from there if your recipe needs more or less depending on the recipe’s sugar requirements. Additionally, you’ll want to reduce your liquid by ¼…so I omitted the milk that’s in my original recipe. This is a great article for more tips on baking with Agave.

Agave nectar is fun to play with as it blends well, keeps baked goods moist, has a very subtle flavor AND it’s lower on the glycemic index than traditional sugars if that’s something you’re looking to keep in check.

One single gluten free lime agave cupcake on a mini cake pedestal. It's  cute, trust me

Bake Notes for Gluten Free Lime Agave Cupcakes with Strawberry Basil Buttercream

  • Almond Flour. Make sure you purchase super fine, blanched almond flour. If it’s not blanched or super fine you’ll end up with almond chunks in your cupcake + the cupcake’s appearance will be darker.
  • Rest Time. You’re going to want to let your batter rest at least 30 minutes, ideally overnight for the best results. After it’s rested, make sure you give it a good mix with a whisk so that the agave nectar is suspended in the batter and hasn’t settled to the bottom.
  • Another Rest. When you get the cupcakes out of the oven let them rest a good 20 minutes in the muffin tins. They have a delicate structure that needs to set whilst cooling.
  • Substitutions. You could totally futz with the flavor profile of these. Add in lemon instead of lime. Use blackberries instead of strawberries. Omit the basil, add some thyme. These are seriously the best summer cupcake.
  • Storing. Because of the high moisture content from the agave nectar and the almond flour, these nuggets will stay fresh for several days. Although I always think that buttercream is best when fresh.

Let’s make some Gluten Free Lime Agave Cupcakes With Fresh Strawberry Basil Buttercream, shall we?

Lime Agave Cupcakes With Fresh Strawberry Basil Buttercream
Lime Agave Cupcakes With Fresh Strawberry Basil Buttercream

Lime-Agave Cupcakes With Fresh Strawberry Basil Buttercream

One-bowl gluten-free cupcakes made with lots of lime zest, sweetened with agave and topped off with the brightest fresh strawberry-basil buttercream!
5 from 1 review
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Cupcakes
Keyword: Lime, Agave, Cupcakes, Gluten Free, Strawberry, Basil, Buttercream, Dessert, One-bowl
Servings: 15 Cupcakes


For the Lime-Agave Cupcakes

  • 3 large eggs (room temperature)
  • 2/3 cup Organic Agave In The Raw Nectar
  • 1 cup (8 oz) sour cream (room temperature)
  • 1/3 cup (80 ml) sunflower seed oil (or other neutral veggie oil )
  • 1 tablespoon lime zest (about 1 1/2 limes)
  • 2 teaspoons real vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 1/2 cups (145 g) super fine, blanched almond flour
  • 1/2 cup (65 g) arrowroot starch/flour
  • 1/2 cup  (52 g) coconut flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

For the Fresh Strawberry-Basil Buttercream

  • 1 cup (137 g/4.8 oz) fresh strawberries, (cleaned, hulled and chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon Organic Agave In The Raw Nectar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 5-6 fresh basil leaves
  • 16 tablespoons (226 g/8 oz) unsalted butter, (room temperature)
  • 3 cups (390 g) confectioners' sugar


For the Lime-Agave Cupcakes

  • In a large bowl whisk together the eggs, agave, sour cream, oil, lime zest, vanilla and almond extract until completely smooth and blended. Add in the almond flour, arrowroot starch, coconut flour, baking powder, baking soda and sea salt and whisk until smooth. Cover and let sit for at least 30 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 F (177 C) and place a rack is in the center of the oven. Line a standard cupcake pan with muffin liners. Fill the muffin cups until just 3/4 full. Gently tap the tin on the counter several times to release any trapped air bubbles.
  • Bake for 18 minutes on the center rack of the oven. The cupcakes are done when gently pressed on the top and they spring back. Allow the cupcakes to cool in the tin for 20 minutes and then transfer to a rack to finish cooling.

For the Strawberry-Basil Buttercream

  • To make the buttercream add the strawberries and agave to a small saucepan over medium heat and cook until the berries release their liquid, smashing the berries with a wooden spoon. This should take about 3-4 minutes. Turn off the heat, add in the basil and let the mixture cool completely. Strain the juice from the agave-strawberry mixture and discard the remaining pulp.
  • In an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment add the butter and sugar and mix on low until a paste forms. Drizzled in the cooled berry liquid, turn the mixer to medium speed and continue to beat until the buttercream is well combined and smooth, about 3 minutes more. Smear the frosting over the tops of the cooled cupcakes. I used a star tip for mine.
Thanks for baking with me! Please rate + comment this recipe and tag me on social @displacedhousewife #displacedhousewife so I can see your beautiful treats! xo
An overhead shop of five lime agave cupcakes

These gluten-free lime agave cupcakes with fresh strawberry-basil buttercream were created in collaboration with In The Raw. A big thank you to them + you for supporting the brands I work with! xo


Leave a Comment & Rate this Recipe

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Rebecca xox

Recipe Rating


  • Morgan May 26, 2019 at 3:35 PM

    I love Agave and i love this recipe!!! I can’t wait to make these for my kids!! They look absolutely perfect for summer!! Xoxoxo

    • Rebecca Firth May 26, 2019 at 4:14 PM

      Hi Morgan! My kids love these — I hope yours do too!! Have fun!! xoxo

  • Suzy May 26, 2019 at 3:13 PM

    I’m so happy you made something gluten free, I can’t wait to try these!

    • Rebecca Firth May 26, 2019 at 3:16 PM

      Hi Suzy! I hope you do! I will try to do more — it was actually a really fun recipe to play around with!! xox