Chocolate and Caramel Cupcakes, Creation # 8

Back to the basics, cupcake style! So, I know people poke fun at Ina Garten’s use of “good” ingredients, however, I never really noticed the difference until I used “good” cocoa powder then switching backing to Hershey definitely made a difference. By no means am I a chocolate snob, it was just something I noticed.

I may have added a little flavor by filling the cupcake with caramel sauce.

Recipe courtesy of Joy of Baking.

Chocolate Cupcake:


  • 1/2 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • 1 cup boiling hot water
  • 1-1/3 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated white sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract


  1. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F, line 16 muffin cups with paper liners.
  2. In a small bowl stir until smooth the boiling hot water and the cocoa powder. Let cool to room temperature.
  3. In another bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  4. Then in the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture and beat only until incorporated. Then add the cooled cocoa mixture and stir until smooth.
  5. Fill each muffin cup about two-thirds full with batter and bake for about 16-20 minutes or until risen, springy to the touch, and a toothpick inserted into a cupcake comes out clean. (Do not over bake or cupcakes will be dry.) Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Once the cupcakes have completely cooled, frost with icing. You can either spread the frosting on the cupcakes with a small spatula or if piping, use a large Wilton 1M open star tip to make lovely swirls. These cupcakes are best the day they are made, but can be covered and stored for a few days.

Caramel Sauce:

See this post!

Chocolate Buttercream:


  • 2 ounces (1/4 cup) semi sweet chocolate, melted and cool
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 4 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 8 oz (2 sticks) butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 Tablespoons heavy cream


  1. Melt chocolate in heat safe bowl over warm water and let cool.
  2. Sift cocoa, confectioner’s sugar and salt together. 
  3. In a mixer fitted with paddle attachments, cream butter.
  4. Add cool melted chocolate, mix well to combine.
  5. Add vanilla, mix to combine.
  6. Gradually add sugar mixture to butter mixture and mix for about 3 minutes.
  7. Add heavy cream, mix to combine.

Assemble Cupcakes:

  1. Cut center out of cupcakes with apple corer or 1 inch circle cutter.
  2. Fill squeeze bottle with caramel sauce and fill centers of cupcakes.
  3. With desired tip or spatula, ice cupcakes.




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