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Chocolate Cupcakes – Ultimate recipe for the best chocolate cupcakes that are so moist and fluffy. Frost with butterbeer buttercream frosting for the most decadent dessert!
These chocolate cupcakes really should be called death by chocolate cupcakes because that's how I felt after taking just one bite. They're so light, fluffy, and moist, it's really easy to chow down on 2 or 3 before you even realize it.
Cupcakes are so easy to make, but I'm going to share a few tips with you for how to make a cake moist, fluffy, and soft. In fact, these cupcakes will likely be the softest cupcakes you've ever made.
Top them off with a butterbeer buttercream frosting, and you've got the makings of a most decadent dessert.
I've loved cupcakes since I was a little girl; every year my mom would make a batch of cupcakes for me to take to school and share with my friends on my birthday.
This chocolate cupcake recipe is perfect for a child's birthday, for the holidays, or even for a fun after school treat for your kids.
I JUST WANT THE RECIPE! TAKE ME TO THE RECIPE FOR CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES!
If you’d rather skip all of my cooking tips, important cooking info for this recipe, and similar recipe ideas – and get straight to the scrumptious chocolate cupcake recipe – just scroll down to the bottom, where you’ll find a printable recipe card.
HOW TO MAKE CAKE MOIST (OR IN THIS CASE CUPCAKES)
I've had a love/hate relationship with homemade cake recipes in the past; sometimes I've gotten them right and sometimes they've been total flops. Thankfully, these cupcakes turned out perfect!
There are a few steps I took to ensure that our chocolate cupcakes would be very light, fluffy, and moist, just like my favorite yellow cake. And the steps I took to make moist chocolate cake actually worked.
- Use a mixture of butter and oil to make a moist cake.
- When you cream the butter and sugar (or mix the butter and sugar), do so for a good 5 to 8 minutes.
- When mixing the other wet ingredients in with your creamed mixture, only add the yolks of the eggs. Wait to fold the egg whites in after all the other ingredients have been added and mixed.
- Use buttermilk instead of regular milk. In fact, you can make your own buttermilk; I'll show you how below. What buttermilk does is break down the gluten, which makes your cake softer.
- Use cake flour to make a lighter, softer cake. It really does make a difference.
- Sift your flour and dry ingredients together at least 3 times. My grandma would've said 7; she was a real stickler about sifting.
- Don't mix the cake batter too long after adding the flour. Mix it just until it's mixed. You can even alternate the flour mixture with the milk to be more aware of how long you're mixing. Over mixing can make a cake more dense.
SugarEd Productions has all sorts of tips for how to make your cake fluffy and moist.
HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN BUTTERMILK SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO BUY IT
We almost never buy buttermilk. We just never use it because I know I can make my own when I’m baking.
My mom taught me this little trick when I was younger.
Just add about a tablespoon of distilled white vinegar to a cup or two of milk; I usually use a tablespoon for every 1 to 2 cups of milk. Stir and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes.
Before you know it, you have sour milk or buttermilk. Works like a charm!
CAN I MAKE THESE CUPCAKES AHEAD OF TIME AND FREEZE THEM?
You can! In fact, Life as a Strawberry has a really helpful tutorial for How to Store and Freeze Cupcakes.
TIPS FOR HOW TO MAKE CUPCAKES
Start by making your buttermilk and setting it aside so it can do its thing.
Then cream (or mix) the butter, oil, and sugar together for a good 5 to 8 minutes. You can also cream the egg yolks and vanilla extract in with the sugar mixture if you want.
Sift your dry ingredients together at least 3 times.
Then alternate adding the dry ingredients with the buttermilk to your creamed mixture, mixing after each addition.
Finally, when everything is mixed together, fold in the egg whites and mix together just until the batter is mixed.
Let the cupcakes cool in the pan for about 10 minutes, then remove to a wire rack. You can use a table knife to go around the edges of the cupcakes if they stick to the pan at all.
Allow them to fully cool before attempting to ice the cupcakes.
MORE CUPCAKE RECIPES YOU WILL LOVE:
KITCHEN TOOLS YOU'LL NEED TO MAKE CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES
Egg Yolky Separator – Who doesn't love a cute egg yolk separator?
Batter Dispenser – This makes it really easy to fill the cupcake liners.
Cake Decorating Kit with Tips and Pastry Bags – If you decide to decorate your cupcakes or even just want to swirl the icing on.
CHOCOLATE CUPCAKE RECIPE
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- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 1 1/2 cups pure cane sugar
- 2 large eggs, separated*
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
- 2 cups cake flour
- 1/2 cup dark cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Pre-heat the oven to 350°.
- If you're making buttermilk, make it first and set aside.**
- Cream (or mix) the butter, oil, and sugar together for a good 5 to 8 minutes.
- You can also cream the egg yolks and vanilla extract in with the sugar mixture if you want, or you can add them in after the butter and sugar mixture is creamed.
- Meanwhile, sift the dry ingredients together at least 3 times.
- Then alternate adding the dry ingredients with the buttermilk to your creamed mixture, mixing after each addition.
- Finally, when everything is mixed together, fold in the egg whites and mix together just until the batter is blended.
- Add cupcake liners to 2 large muffin tins, and pour or dispense the batter into each cup, filling each cup 3/4 of the way full.
- Bake at 350° for about 20 minutes, or until a toothpick or cake tester comes out clean.
- Let the cupcakes cool in the pan for about 10 minutes, then remove to a wire rack.***
- Allow the cupcakes to fully cool before attempting to ice them. Then top with this deliciously creamy butterbeer buttercream frosting.****
*When mixing the other wet ingredients in with your creamed mixture, only add the yolks of the eggs. Wait to fold the egg whites in after all the other ingredients have been added and mixed.
**You can make your own buttermilk or sour milk. Just add about a tablespoon of distilled white vinegar to a cup or two of milk; I usually use a tablespoon for every 1 to 2 cups of milk. Stir and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes.
***You can use a table knife to go around the edges of the cupcakes if they stick to the pan at all.
****Icing not included in nutritional facts. See nutritional info for the butterbeer buttercream frosting at the link above.
Serving Size:24 servings
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 180 Saturated Fat: 3g Cholesterol: 27mg Sodium: 206mg Carbohydrates: 21g Sugar: 13g Protein: 2g