Coconut Cupcakes

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1 cup white sugar1/2 cup applesauce1/4 cup butter, softened2 eggs, separated1 tablespoon vanilla extract1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder1/2 teaspoon salt1/2 (13.5 ounce) can coconut milk1 1/4 cups unsweetened shredded coconut

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease 12 muffin cups or line with paper liners. Mix sugar, applesauce, and butter together in a bowl. Beat egg whites in a glass or metal bowl until medium peaks form. Lift your beater or whisk straight up: the tip of the peak formed by the egg whites should curl over slightly. Stir egg yolks and vanilla extract into applesauce mixture; fold in egg whites. Stir in flour, baking powder, and salt until just combined. Beat coconut milk into batter until smooth, about 1 minute. Beat in shredded coconut for about 30 seconds. Pour batter into the prepared muffin cups. Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean, about 20 minutes.

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