Totally from scratch “Funfetti” cupcakes (gluten and dairy free, of course)

I don’t remember how it came up, but a few days ago I was talking to a friend and I mentioned Funfetti cake. He had absolutely no idea what it was. I then told this story to another friend, who also had no idea what it was. What kind of depressing childhoods did they have!? You mean some kids eat cake without rainbow sprinkles scattered throughout? I guess that makes sense… but why would they want to!?!

Many of my happy childhood memories are tied to Funfetti cake. It has been many years since I have had it, for obvious dietary reasons, but I’ve been feeling a bit down this week and decided I needed bake up some happiness-inducing cupcakes. You know. For my mental health, or whatever. And since Saturday is my half-birthday, that’s another great reason.

So I needed rainbow sprinkles… but hmmm… I didn’t have any sprinkles in the pantry. The ingredients on sprinkles tend to be a bit weird, so I decided to see if there was a way I could make them from scratch. It would be fun, and I wouldn’t have to buy anything! I found many many recipes online, but most of them called for ingredients I didn’t have in the house (and if I was going to go grocery shopping, it would probably be cheaper to just… you know… buy pre-made sprinkles). Also, this was an urgent matter I needed to begin working on immediately!

I was surprised to find that I had a bottle of corn syrup in the back of the top shelf of the pantry. I have no idea why I have it, and I normally don’t eat corn syrup, but it was a life saver and I went with this recipe for rainbow sprinkles, except I used a tablespoon of my homemade hazelnut milk instead of the liquor (because I had no liquor on hand). And I make my own vanilla extract out of vodka, so there was already liquor in them.

Shhh… I know my kitchen was messy. And it looks like I was fingerpainting 🙂


Piping them doesn’t need to be pretty, because you’re just going to hack them up into little bits anyway.




Making those sprinkles was a huge pain in the butt. Piping them and cutting them up took much longer than I anticipated, and my hands hurt just looking back at the photos. I have no regrets, though. I’m super stoked that I made them myself. Sprinkles, check!

While searching for a good cake recipe, I found that I am far from alone in my love of Funfetti, particularly in the gluten-free community. In fact, I discovered that apparently Pillsbury actually makes a gluten-free version now, but I was already so invested emotionally that I knew I had to make it completely from scratch.

I read a lot of white cake recipes, and the one I decided to go with actually was a Funfetti clone recipe! You can find that recipe here. I liked the blend of flours they used, and the only change I made was that I used 1 cup of coconut milk in place of the water (mostly because I had leftover cup of coconut milk in the fridge, and was looking for a way to use it up). So cake, check.



Lastly, these suckers need some frosting. I remembered that when I made some macarons for the 4th of July last summer the buttercream filling I made was fantastic, so I decided to go with that. I know that Funfetti frosting wasn’t buttercream, but who cares? That recipe is:

  • 1/2 cup shortening (I don’t like to use it much, but when I do, I opt for Spectrum organic all-vegetable shortening)
  • 1/4 cup Earth Balance (I prefer soy-free)
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 Tbsp dairy-free milk (I used homemade hazelnut milk, because it’s what I had on hand)

Mix it all together in your stand mixer on a high speed until its good and creamy, and voila! Delicious dairy-free buttercream frosting!

And holy moly, this was a resounding success.




2 Comments Add yours

  1. amw62 says:

    That’s so cool that you made your own sprinkles!! I never even thought of doing that. I haven’t had Funfetti cake in soo long, I definitely want to make some now! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Janine says:

      If you do/did try it, I’d love to hear how it worked for you! The sprinkles on the cupcakes melted a little after a day on the counter, so I recommend refrigerating them, and probably adding sprinkles right before serving — although some friends reported liking the “tie-dye” look the melted sprinkles added 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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