The Ultimate Chocolate Cupcakes.

So I'd been seeing this recipe around everywhere, but it looked like a lot of trouble. Especially since no one in my family drinks coffee and it asks for hot coffee into the batter... It also asks for white vinegar?! But it's been hailed as the "ultimate" chocolate cake. The recipe comes from Cook's Illustrated and after someone told me they really just wanted a chocolate cupcake, I decided I'd try it out...

They did NOT disappoint. Apparently, the addition of coffee is meant to enhance the chocolate better, and boy, does it! The batter was so good, it's one of the rare times I wanted to lick the bowl clean. Actually, I've never wanted to do that... this was that good!

Also, before baking, you drop a dollop of chocolate ganache into each cup, and that tastes amazing when you bite into it later. The frosting of course, was also amazing... it melts in your mouth! This may be the only chocolate frosting I ever make again. I'm serious.

Click here for the recipe

Since I already had milk chocolate peanut butter ganache in a jar from another baking event, I decided to drop that into the cupcakes instead of what the recipe asked. I also made the frosting with semi-sweet chocolate instead of bittersweet. The recipe generally asks for a bittersweet cake, bittersweet ganache, and bittersweet frosting, but I prefer varying degrees of chocolate flavor :)
I also can't find Dutch-processed cocoa so I just stuck with my usual favorite, Trader Joe's.

I was reading an article today by someone complaining that cupcakes are everywhere and that people need to stop making them. It's apparently something "you made for your 4th grade class". Hm. I disagree. The reason why I like cupcakes, is because they're individually portioned... though I don't like how some places put a disproportionate amount of frosting on top. I actually love mini cupcakes the most, they're the perfect size! But there's nothing wrong with cupcakes, and you definitely can't drop a dollop of ganache in the middle of one big cake (well you might but it sounds like a hassle) so hmph.

As for the ultimate chocolate cupcake... i think they're great for special occasions. And definitely for the choco-holic in your life :)

I made them again more recently for some family friends and they were a huge hit! This time I used the original chocolate ganache filling. 14 cupcakes gone in one night :)


  1. Ooh, I'll have to try this someday. =) I'm not a fan of chocolate frosting on chocolate cake though, but maybe I just haven't had the right chocolate frosting on the right chocolate cake.

    Cupcakes are everywhere because cupcakes are awesome! (and we seem to be a very nostalgic generation and we refuse to leave behind the things in our childhood that we loved the most).

  2. How does your frosting turn out soooo well?? im completely jealous! my frosting always fall so flat, its liquid that i just avoid recipes with them! waah. help!

  3. The thing with frosting is, you just have to beat it for a REALLY long time, and you can't use melted butter, it has to be perfectly at room temp. Pretty much everything should be at room temp when combining...
    Also, you can refrigerate it a little before putting it on the cupcake! if you do all those things, there's no reason it shouldn't work :)

  4. im going to try and frost a cake soon! which frosting do you suggest? the icing sugar ones turn out really bad. you dont get very nice icing sugar in india! do you think i should try chocolate and cream?

  5. hm. i would say you could make the frosting in this post easily, and just put in more granulated sugar with the egg whites so you don't need icing sugar at all! then there's the cream cheese frosting recipe i've put on the blog that requires no icing sugar either...
    even the flour frosting (the recipes for all these are all over the blog if you search) uses only regular sugar. hope this helps! :)

    the simplest would just be boiling some heavy cream and pouring it over some chocolate and then stirring till it sets (chill for a bit). it's my favorite kind of frosting, although it doesn't hold up very long in hot conditions :)

  6. thank :)! i have been reading. just found your blog the other day, now an ardent fan. will search, am sure ill find something.

  7. oh! and i do have a recipe for my favorite chocolate frosting ever that i haven't gotten around to posting... it has powdered sugar in it but i'm sure you can just add regular sugar and maybe a little cornstarch to it to hold it up (since that's apparently what's in icing sugar) :)


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