Dark Chocolate Cupcakes

October 30, 2011


I had the baking itch while doing homework this weekend. I skipped out on celebrating Halloween this year because of school. It has officially taken over my life. It’s pretty sad…

Until you bake these cupcakes. ..

Lets just say my baking itch has been scratched.

Because everyone knows you need to take a study break to bake. And these cupcakes were the perfect combination of procrastination and dark chocolate. They are not tooth-hurtingly sweet, they are more of a bitter-sweet combination, with the addition of 80% dark chocolate to the semi-sweet chocolate in the frosting. The frosting is silky-run-through-your-teeth smooth.

Dark Chocolate Cupcakes

Makes a dozen cupcakes
Adapted from here


3/4 cup + 2 heaping tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup + 1 Tbs. good cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup almond milk (or other milk)
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 egg at room temperature
1 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 to a 1/2 cup freshly brewed hot coffee (begin with a 1/4, add more depending on consistency)

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners; set aside.

2. Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder  into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed until combined. In another bowl, combine the almond milk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry. With mixer still on low, add the coffee and stir just to combine, scraping the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula.

3. Distribute the batter, filling each well 2/3 full. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean.

Dark Chocolate Frosting

Adapted From Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes


  • 1/4 cup plus 1/2 tablespoon unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp. espresso powder
  • 1/4 cup plus 1/2 tablespoon boiling water
  • 1 cups unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1 cup best-quality semisweet/dark chocolate chips mix, melted and cooled


  1. Combine cocoa and the boiling water, stirring until cocoa has dissolved, add espresso powder. With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat butter, and confectioners’ sugar until pale and fluffy. Reduce speed to low. Add melted and cooled chocolate, beating until combined and scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Beat in the cocoa mixture.
Using a pastry bag, pipe frosting onto cooled cupcakes.
The frosting is silky smooth, and holds its shape well. It is not overly sweet, but more bitter-sweet with the addition of 80% dark chocolate chips.
Happy procrasti-baking. Hope you all have a good Halloween =)

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  • Reply Hinna October 31, 2011 at 6:00 PM

    These look delicious! I may just make these for Eid this weekend!

  • Reply Jean November 1, 2011 at 5:08 AM

    -wipes drool off keyboard-

    Your frosting technique is great! I use a chocolate cake recipe very similar to this, but it uses buttermilk and more baking soda. I think you’ll agree when I say that these recipes are so wonderfully easy and quick 🙂

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  • Reply Alexandra January 13, 2012 at 5:57 PM

    I tried this recipe and I have no idea what I did, but the cupcakes came out really strange…they are nowhere near as dark as the cake that you took a picture of. However, the frosting was dang perfect 🙂 Thanks for the post

    • Reply Alicia January 14, 2012 at 11:15 AM

      Alexandra – Oh no! Maybe the cocoa?? If you don’t add enough it can end up as a sorta milk-chocolatey colour, and not as rich. The trick is to also have hot coffee as well to make the cocoa turn into that rich dark syrup. Hope you will give it a try again! Glad the frosting turned out! It is definitely the best part… 🙂

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  • Reply Nicole February 18, 2012 at 12:19 PM

    Just made this batter. It looked great before adding the coffee, but the coffee made it turn into a watery mess! I’m a pretty avid baker, and I know I got the measurements right. Any ideas?

    • Reply Alicia February 18, 2012 at 1:13 PM

      Just sent you an email Nicole! Hopefully it works out on the second try 🙂

  • Reply Milena March 10, 2012 at 12:03 PM

    Just made the batter, a bit watery but still promising. Kitchen smells awesome, can’t wait to try them!

  • Reply Milena March 11, 2012 at 1:17 PM

    cupcakes are VERY moist. However, there is not enough chocolate flavour in them, maybe next time i will try adding some dark chocolate chunks to it. thanks anyway : )

  • Reply Alicia March 13, 2012 at 9:15 PM

    Glad they were good!!! I did not change the original recipe for the cake itself except less sugar, so this may have been a contribution to the less chocolate flavour, so you can definitely try altering it 🙂

  • Reply Alicia March 13, 2012 at 9:16 PM

    Also, I only made half the recipe =) check out the link to the full post with the original recipe as well

  • Reply Kayla March 21, 2012 at 6:30 AM

    I just made these, they are in the oven now. The batter was VERY runny. Is this correct?

  • Reply Kayla March 21, 2012 at 6:34 AM

    *update* They look wonderful. LOL Haven’t tasted them yet. The runny batter just threw me!

    • Reply Alicia March 21, 2012 at 7:42 AM

      Haha I have heard that! I can’t remember now when I made them how the batter looked, but I hope they taste delicious !!

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  • Reply Vera Zecevic-Cupcakes Garden December 17, 2012 at 2:32 PM

    These cupcakes seem so flavorful and rich,like a real chocolaty pleasure.I’ve featured this recipe on my blog, hoping that you don’t mind, but if you do, please contact me and I’ll remove it. All the best.

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