Protein Cupcakes


5 from 160 votes
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These high-protein cupcakes are light, fluffy, and perfectly sweetened. With no flour, no eggs, and over 20 grams of protein per serving, they’re the perfect guilt-free dessert to satisfy your sweet tooth!

protein cupcakes.

I have a raging sweet tooth, so when I can satisfy my cravings and pack in my daily protein, I consider it a win-win. 

This is why I love to make high-protein sweet treats like brownies, rice krispies, and these protein cupcakes. These cupcakes turn out light and fluffy, just like traditional cupcakes, but with added protein, thanks to the combination of protein powder and almond butter. 

When we’re in the baking mood and need a healthy but satisfying treat, nothing beats these cupcakes. 

Table of Contents
  1. Why this recipe works
  2. Ingredients needed 
  3. How to make protein cupcakes
  4. Recipe tips and variations
  5. Storage instructions
  6. Frequently asked questions
  7. More high-protein desserts to try
  8. Protein Cupcakes (Recipe Card)

Why this recipe works

  • Just 5 ingredients. You’ll only need 5 ingredients to make these moist and fluffy cupcakes, and one of them is optional!
  • Naturally vegan and gluten-free. There’s no flour, dairy, or eggs in this recipe, so long as you use a vegan protein powder. 
  • Packed with protein. Between the protein powder and almond butter, you’re looking at a whopping 20 grams of protein per cupcake.
  • Customizable. Almost all the ingredients you’ll need can be customized to suit your preferences or save you a trip to the store. Plus, you can add whatever frosting you want, and I’ll be sure to leave a few suggestions later on.

What we love most about these cupcakes is how versatile they are. Since they’re made with only wholesome ingredients, I see no reason we shouldn’t have them as breakfast alongside some protein coffee.

Ingredients needed 

You’ll only need five ingredients, including optional sugar, to make these healthy cupcakes. Here’s exactly what you’ll need:

  • Mashed banana. Instead of eggs, mashed bananas can help bind the batter and make it smooth and creamy. Not a fan of bananas in your baking? Swap it for canned pumpkin, mashed sweet potatoes, or applesauce for the same creamy texture and natural sweetness.
  • Almond butter. To thicken the batter and add richness. Make your own or opt for the storebought kind. 
  • Cocoa powder. For the chocolate flavor. I prefer dark chocolate cocoa powder, but any kind will work. 
  • Protein powder. For protein and as a flour substitute. Use your favorite brand in either vanilla or chocolate. 
  • Coconut sugar. Optional for extra sweetness. This can be swapped for any sweetener of your choice or omitted.

How to make protein cupcakes

Step 1- Prep work: Preheat the oven to 350F/175C and line a 6-count muffin tin with muffin liners. 

Step 2- Combine ingredients: Using a high-speed blender or mixing bowl, combine all of your ingredients and blend until smooth. Pour the cupcake batter into each muffin tin, filling until almost full.

Step 3- Bake and serve: Bake for 12-15 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Allow the cupcakes to cool completely in the muffin tin, then frost if desired and serve. 

protein powder cupcakes.

Recipe tips and variations

  • Choose the protein powder wisely. I prefer casein, brown rice, or pea protein for baking as they blend well and don’t dry out baked goods as much as whey protein powder does.
  • Avoid overbaking the cupcakes. Remove them from the oven as soon as a toothpick inserted comes out clean since they’ll continue to cook as they’re cooling. 
  • Make mini cupcakes. Use a smaller muffin tin and make double the cupcakes. Just remember to cut the baking time in half, as smaller cupcakes will bake faster.
  • Don’t forget the frosting. All good cupcakes require frosting, of course! Try this healthy frosting or this easy 2-ingredient chocolate frosting.
  • Add some mix-ins. Toss in some chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, or chopped nuts to level up the flavor.
  • Swap the almond butter. Use peanut butter, cashew butter, sunflower seed butter, homemade Nutella, or any nut butter you prefer.

Storage instructions

To store: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. If you want to keep the cupcakes fresher for longer, refrigerate them in an airtight container for up to one week. 

To freeze: Store cooled, unfrosted cupcakes in a freezer-safe bag and freeze them for up to 6 months. Allow the leftover cupcakes to thaw overnight in the fridge.

protein cupcake recipe.

Frequently asked questions

Are protein cupcakes healthy?

Compared to regular cupcakes, these protein cupcakes are a far healthier alternative since they contain very little added sugar, they’re gluten-free and high in protein and healthy fats.

What’s the best protein powder to use?

Ideally, casein, pea, or brown rice protein are the best options for baking since they thicken the batter and won’t dry out the cupcakes when they’re baked. 

More high-protein desserts to try

  • Cheesecake– Rich and creamy cheesecake with over 30 grams of protein per serving.
  • Donuts– Fluffy, cakey, low-calorie donuts that taste just as decadent as regular donuts.
  • Chocolate chip cookies– Chewy and chocolatey cookies made with only 4 ingredients.
  • Pudding– Smooth and creamy pudding you can enjoy in a wide variety of flavors.
  • Pumpkin balls– Satisfy your pumpkin spice craving while sneaking in your daily dose of protein and fiber. 
protein cupcakes recipe.

Protein Cupcakes

5 from 160 votes
These high-protein cupcakes are light, fluffy, and perfectly sweetened. With no flour, no eggs, and over 20 grams of protein per serving, they’re the perfect guilt-free dessert to satisfy your sweet tooth!
Servings: 6 cupcakes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 25 minutes


  • 1 cup banana mashed
  • 1/2 cup almond butter I prefer almond butter
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup protein powder see above content for tested recommendations
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar optional*


  • Preheat the oven to 180C/350F and line a 6 count muffin tin with muffin liners.
  • In a high speed blender (or mixing bowl), combine all your ingredients and blend until smooth.
  • Pour the mixture into each muffin tin, filling until just full.
  • Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a oothpick comes out just clean. Allow to cool in the muffin tin completely.


Serving: 1cupcakeCalories: 183kcalCarbohydrates: 14gProtein: 20gFat: 12gSodium: 13mgPotassium: 313mgFiber: 4gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 28IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 93mgIron: 2mgNET CARBS: 10g
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Arman Liew
Tried this recipe?Give us a shout at @thebigmansworld or tag #thebigmansworld!

Arman Liew

I’m a two time cookbook author, photographer, and writer, and passionate about creating easy and healthier recipes. I believe you don’t need to be experienced in the kitchen to make good food using simple ingredients that most importantly, taste delicious.

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