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Riesling Cupcakes with Pear Mascarpone Frosting (Gluten-Free Cupcakes)

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The flavor of this cupcake is hard to place.  It’s different and unexpected.  Once I tell you that it’s a Riesling cupcake, it all makes sense.  You notice the familiar floral notes and mild sweetness that met you that last time that you sipped a glass of Riesling wine.  The Riesling cupcake is finished with a pear mascarpone frosting and heavily dusted with finely chopped walnuts, creating a wine and cheese plate experience.

I’ve made cupcakes containing wine before – mulled wine cupcakes, wine and cheese cupcakes, malva pudding cupcakes made from a dessert wine, and charoset cupcakes that contain a sweet Kosher for Passover wine.  But, I’ve never before achieved a cupcake that tasted just like a glass of wine.

There’s a trick.

How Did I Create Cupcakes That Taste Just Like Riesling Wine?

Photo courtesy of AprèsVin

To make a cupcake that tastes just like Riesling wine, I didn’t just use Riesling wine in the batter. Although I did use quite a bit of wine, I also used grape seed flour made from Riesling grapes and grape seed oil made from Riesling grapes.  The combination of all three gives these cupcakes a triple Riesling punch.

Unfortunately,  Riesling flour and Riesling oil are not products that are readily available.  I was sent some free product samples from AprèsVin that I used to develop this recipe, and all of the unique products that you need to make these cupcakes can be found there.  Even if you do not intend to buy their products, I highly recommend viewing the presentation on their site about how grape flour and grape oil is made – it’s fascinating!  Their flours and oils also come in several other wine flavors and my recipe can easily be adapted for your favorite wine.

Riesling Cupcake Recipe

I made these Riesling cupcakes gluten-free.  If this is not important to you, I have included substitutions to use regular all-purpose flour in the recipe below.  Also note that the frosting is not supposed to be stiff and pipeable.  It is meant to be spread on the cupcakes.

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Riesling Cupcakes with Pear Mascarpone Frosting (Gluten-Free Cupcakes)

Servings 8 cupcakes (the recipe can be doubled)


Cupcake Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup gluten-free all-purpose flour I use King Arthur brand or regular all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon xantham gum this is only needed if you use gluten-free flour
  • 1 tablespoon Riesling grape seed flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup Riesling oil you can also use another grape oil or any vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup Riesling wine
  • 1/4 cup whole milk

Frosting Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 4 ounces mascarpone cheese room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 ripe pear
  • Finely chopped walnuts to taste


Cupcake Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together sugar, all-purpose flour, xantham gum, grape seed flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda.
  3. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together egg, oil, sour cream, and vanilla.
  4. Mix wet ingredients into dry ingredients until just combined.
  5. Mix in Riesling wine and milk a little bit at a time until just combined.
  6. Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full.
  7. Bake for twenty minutes or until a toothpick comes out dry. The cupcakes may have some cracks on the top - this is normal.

Frosting Directions

  1. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, mix butter on high speed with an electric mixer for two minutes.
  2. Add mascarpone and mix until just combined.
  3. Add powdered sugar a little bit at a time until just combined.
  4. Peel and slice the pear.
  5. Puree the pear slices in a food processor.
  6. Use a sieve to remove any excess liquid from the pear puree.
  7. Mix two tablespoons of pear puree into the frosting.
  8. Spread frosting over cooled cupcakes.
  9. Top with walnuts.


Facebook Shout Outs

A couple of weeks ago, I posted on Facebook that I had discovered a new type of flour and asked you to see if you could guess what it was.  Two of you got it right!  Huge props to Monica Andersen and Free Range Cookies!!

I also got some help yesterday afternoon on Facebook coming up with the perfect frosting pairing for these cupcakes.  Thanks to Rachel Forrest for suggesting pear and Cara Ingenito for recommending mascarpone.

If you aren’t already part of the Cupcake Project Facebook community, come join us so you don’t miss out on the fun!

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7 comments on “Riesling Cupcakes with Pear Mascarpone Frosting (Gluten-Free Cupcakes)”

  1. Ericsays:

    Hi Stef Eric again. Last week i made chocolate and wine cupcakes. Pretty ordinary. But check the wine i used…http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commandaria Another product from my country. It’s the most delicious wine i ever tasted and the only wine i enjoy. It’s sweet and perfect for winter as you can feel it warming your throat even after one gulp

  2. Donnasays:

    Looks like you could take a stab at cupcake wars… if you haven’t already. :-)

  3. Hey, I see cupcakes with wine for the first time! I must try them once.

  4. Acesays:

    I was curious if it would be worth a try to take 1 cup Riesling and boil it down to 1/3 to make up for the lack of Riesling flour and oil. Have you tried this at all? Very excited to make these!

  5. Angiesays:

    Hey there this is somewhat of off topic but I was wanting to know if blogs use WYSIWYG editors
    or if you have to manually code with HTML. I’m starting
    a blog soon but have no coding experience so I wanted to get guidance from someone with experience.
    Any help would be enormously appreciated!

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