So, I was walking in the produce section of the grocery store last week and there they were – big, beautiful strawberries resting comfortably between a bazillion bags of glorious angel food cake. It was at that very moment, I vowed to create low-carb Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes my family and I could love on ALL. SUMMER. LONG (minus the sugar and grains and less than 2 net carbs-woooooot!).
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BISCUITS OR ANGEL FOOD CAKE?
I’m not sure how you do it, but in my world, strawberry shortcake has always consisted of angel food cake, strawberries, and cool whip. I have also had it with a biscuit-style base and loved that too. But, if I had my choice, I’d probably stick with those little angel food cake cups you can buy at the grocery store.
Since angel food cake was always my fave growing up, I wanted to go that route with these strawberry shortcake cupcakes. The challenge with creating a keto friendly version was ensuring a healthy fat content (something completely lacking in angel food cake) while maintaining that light, spongy vibe you get from the store-bought shortcakes.
POUND CAKE FOR THE WIN!
I had just created these keto pound cake muffins and knew right away, they’d make the perfect base for some delicious strawberry shortcake cupcakes.
My pound cake muffins were already low in calories, protein and only 1.6 net carbs with a nice fat ratio, so I figured they’d work really well with some buttery frosting and a heaping spoonful of fresh strawberries.
HELLO SALTED BUTTERCREAM!
If you follow my recipes you know I use salted butter in ALL my baking. I legit never deviate and I find it adds a nice balance to the sweetness I’m adding to the desserts I make.
I have an incredible sweet tooth, but in saying that too much sweet hurts my belly. Since my pound cake muffins are on the sweeter side, and since buttercream is also sweet (sooooo are the berries), I wanted to add some salt to balance it all out. I won’t lie. I’m pretty obsessed with how it came out.
MAKE SURE YOU COOL THE CUPCAKES!
I noted this in the pound cake recipe post so, I’ll reiterate here too – it’s SO important to cool these cupcakes and then chill them in the fridge. Grain-free and sugar-free baked goods always taste better day 2 in my opinion and chilling them after they are baked makes them set up and taste even better. Once they come out of the oven, immediately remove them from the baking tin. I use a large spoon and transfer them to a cooling rack.
They will feel kinda mushy and undercooked. As long as they are golden on top and you can stick a toothpick in the center (removing it clean), they are done. Promise. Just get them on the cooling rack and let them sit there for about 20 minutes or so. Then, put them on a baking tray or airtight container and stick them in the fridge for at least 1 hour before frosting them.
Again, this is not mandatory, but it really does give them the structure they need (they are super moist inside and need a little time to set).
WHEN TO FROST THEM
You can frost them straight off the cooling rack if you want to, but I found it best to frost them after they sat in the fridge for about an hour. Right before I was ready to pull them out, I whipped up the buttercream and got my piping bag ready. I use these Russian piping tips (easy, peasy).
Once frosted, you can stick them back in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 1 week! This is the preferred method if you are making them for an event – since keto baked goods taste best the next day, you can do everything (including frosting) the night before, stick em’ in the fridge and serve them at your event day 2. The buttercream is structured so it won’t get mushy or flatten. It will stay exactly as you piped it on!
DON’T FORGET THE STRAWBERRIES!
I chopped up a bunch of strawberries and put them in an airtight container, so we could add a spoonful each time we pulled out a pre-frosted cupcake. I don’t want to brag, but these strawberry shortcake cupcakes taste JUST like the real thing. They are a cross between the angel food cake and biscuit versions and definitely satisfy your summer dessert cravings!
STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE CUPCAKES RECIPE
The full strawberry shortcake cupcakes recipe is below (including the cupcakes and the salted buttercream frosting). I’ve got some additional baking tips in the original pound cake muffin post here if you’re interested. Feel free to pop any questions below!
The hubs and I have been enjoying them at night after dinner straight out of the refrigerator, but you can easily set them on the counter for 10 minutes or so before eating so they are at room temp 🙂 Enjoy!
CHECK OUT THESE RECIPES BEFORE YA’ GO!
Sugar-free, grain-free Chocolate Chip Snickerdoodle Magic Bars
Low carb, keto friendly Ham & Cheese Roll-ups
Quick and easy Sugar(less) Cookie Dough Fat bombs
*DISCLAIMER: This post is a combination of my personal insights, opinions and thoughts on various topics and products and may contain affiliate or referral links. I earn a small commission if you make a purchase through my links, which helps me continue on this fabulous journey of blogging! Full disclaimers avail. here.