Tag Archives: chocolate cupcakes

Guinness Stout-shake Cupcakes with Jameson’s Irish Whiskey Caramel Sauce

14 Mar

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St. Patrick’s Day is upon us once again, and I for one, couldn’t be happier. St. Paddy’s Day has always signaled the unofficial start of spring for me, with the promise of longer, warmer, sunnier days ahead. I always have fun trying to come up with an Irish-themed cupcake for St Patrick’s Day, looking for something  delicious and original. I was having a tough time this year, and was about to give up when I found inspiration in, of all places, Redbook magazine. In this month’s issue, Redbook included an article featuring several yummy-looking recipes using Guinness stout, including an amazing Guinness Milkshake.  This potent potable combines Guinness stout, ice-cream, shaved chocolate and caramel sauce, topped with whipped cream. Brilliant, right? (There was also a recipe for Guinness Candied Bacon, which I will definitely be trying soon…very soon.)

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Now the Guinness milkshake sounds awesome enough on its own, but I got to thinking, wouldn’t those ingredients make a fabulous St. Patrick’s Day cupcake? I definitely thought so and set out to prove myself right. I started with a chocolate stout cupcake, topped it with a fluffy marshmallow buttercream that calls to mind a delicious, creamy vanilla ice cream, sprinkled on a little shaved dark chocolate and topped it all off with a drizzle of Irish whiskey caramel sauce. Amazing! These cupcakes turned out so moist and  rich, so delicious and caramel-ly, with just a hint of that Irish spirit coming through. Perfect!

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Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes

Thanks to Brown eyed Baker for this wonderful recipe!

1 cup Guinness Stout

1 cup butter, room temperature

3/4 cup Dutch process cocoa powder

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 cups sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

2 eggs

2/3 cup sour cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Fill cupcake tins with 24 liners. Combine Guinness and butter in a heavy saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Add cocoa powder and whisk until the mixture is smooth. Let cool slightly.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer,  beat the eggs and sour cream on medium speed until combined. Add the Guinness-chocolate mixture to the egg mixture and beat just to combine. Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture, beating briefly. Using a rubber spatula, fold the batter until completely combined.

Divide the batter among the prepared cupcake tins. Bake for approximately 17 minutes, until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely on a rack.

Marshmallow Vodka Buttercream

1 cup butter

1 1/2 cups marshmallow Fluff

3 cups confectioners sugar

pinch salt

1-2 tablespoons marshmallow vodka, or to taste

Cream butter and marshmallow Fluff together in large bowl of electric mixer until well combined and fluffy. Add confectioners sugar, salt and vodka, mixing on low speed until combined, then on high speed until light and fluffy, approx. 5 minutes. One cupcakes are completely cool, frost as desired and drizzle with caramel sauce.

Jameson’s Irish Whiskey Caramel Sauce

This recipe makes a little more caramel sauce than you probably need for these cupcakes, but I suspect you’ll find a way to use it all up! Just store the leftovers covered in the fridge.

1 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup whipping cream

1/3 cup butter

1/4 cup light corn syrup

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup Jameson’s Irish Whiskey

Combine first 5 ingredients in a medium sauce pan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Reduce heat to medium and continue to boil 1 minute without stirring. Remove from heat. Stir in Irish whiskey. Cool completely, stirring every few minutes.

Drizzle over frosted cupcakes.

Enjoy!

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Almond Joy Cupcakes with Malibu Rum Buttercream Frosting

3 Apr

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Easter candy comes in all shapes, sizes and flavors, and everyone has his or her own favorite. I’m a huge Peeps fan myself, especially after they’re nice and stale. But the flavors I most associate with Easter are chocolate and coconut; chocolate bunnies (gotta eat the ears first) and chicks and eggs…coconut cake and cream eggs and macaroons. In fact, Easter seems to be the unofficial start of coconut season. Let’s face it, it’s not long after the last jelly bean is gone that we’re whipping up that first piña colada of the summer.

Chocolate and coconut are a classic combination, immortalized forever in the PeterPaul Mounds and Almond Joy candy bars. Although I’ve outgrown most popular candy bars as too sweet, I still love these two. Always chock full of scrumptious moist coconut and covered with just the right amount of milk or dark chocolate, one with the crunchy almonds, the other without, they never fail to satisfy the sweet tooth.

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I’ve been pondering for a while now how to transfer this yummy candy combo into a cupcake. Pinterest has a ton of Almond Joy cupcakes, but none that are b.u.i. worthy. So I simply deconstructed the candy bar and created my own cupcake interpretation of the Almond Joy: a rich amaretto chocolate cupcake topped with a coconut rum buttercream, garnished with toasted almonds and coconut. The result is simply amazing. Why not whip up a batch this Easter? They’ll be gone faster than you can say Easter Bunny.

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CHOCOLATE AMARETTO CUPCAKES

Makes one dozen cupcakes

1 cup almond milk

1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

3/4 cup sugar

1/3 cup canola oil

1 1/2 teaspoons amaretto

1 cup flour

1/3 cup cocoa powder

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake tin with paper liners.

In large mixing bowl, whisk together almond milk and vinegar and set aside to curdle.

In a separate bowl, sift together flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

Add the sugar, oil and Amaretto to the almond milk mixture and beat until foamy.

Add the dry ingredients in 2 batches and beat until no,large lumps remain.

Fill cupcake tins about 3/4 full. Bake 18 – 20 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Transfer to a rack to cool completely.

MALIBU RUM BUTTERCREAM FROSTING

This frosting has a secret ingredient – marshmallow Fluff! – that makes it just a tad more like the candy bars.

1 cup butter, at room temperature

1 cup marshmallow Fluff

3 cups powdered sugar

2 tablespoons Malibu coconut rum

pinch salt

1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes

1/4 cup sliced almonds

Cream together butter and Fluff until light and creamy. Add in powdered sugar, rum and salt and mix at low speed until combined, and then at high speed until light and fluffy.

Meanwhile, heat almonds and coconut in a small, non-stick frying pan over medium low heat until just lightly toasted. Remove from heat and combine together in a small bowl.

Frost cupcakes as desired, dipping the tops into the coconut almond mixture to garnish.

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Enjoy!

BIRTHDAY BEER CUPCAKES

21 Mar

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Serendipity – probably my most favorite word. It means a desirable chance discovery; karma, Kismet, happenstance (another good word). I think I would even go so far as to say it’s a delightful chance discovery. Because delighted was exactly how I felt a few weeks ago when I was out running my regular Saturday errands. A Saturday that also happened to be my birthday.

On this particular Saturday, after popping into the dry cleaners, the Target and Trader Joe’s, I had one extra stop: a local establishment called Total Wine & More. Total Wine is to package stores what BJ’s and Costco’s are to grocery stores. A big box store, filled with lots and lots and lots of bottles. I like to refer to it as a candy store for grown-ups. They are guaranteed to carry just about every potent potable imaginable….which comes in handy when your blog is all about cupcakes containing potent potables.

As I often do on my way to pick up the alcoholic ingredient du jour, I passed by the craft beer aisles, just to, you know, see what was new and interesting. It was while I was perusing these shelves, on that lucky birthday Saturday, that I saw it, just sitting there as pretty as could be: Shiner’s Birthday Beer! Birthday Beer! On my birthday! Serendipity indeed.

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As it turns out, Shiner’s was celebrating its 106th birthday and crafted a delicious limited-edition chocolate stout to commemorate the occasion. According to the bottle, the birthday beer is available for only a short time. Once it’s gone, we have to wait until next year for another birthday surprise. I wonder what it’ll be?

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Mixing beer into my cupcakes has turned out to be one of my most popular ideas, and this chocolate stout Birthday Beer was just crying out to be baked into something. Since it was a spontaneous idea, I took the quick and easy way out by using a chocolate cake mix. I topped it all off with the classic Hershey’s cocoa buttercream frosting from the recipe on the back of the can – truly a never-fail recipe.

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The end result? Well, just delightful!

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BIRTHDAY BEER CUPCAKES

For these cupcakes I just used the Betty Crocker Super Moist Devil’s Food cake mix and basically swapped out the water with the chocolate stout. If you use a different brand, I would recommend following the directions on the box, simply using the same amount of stout in place of the water called for in the directions.

1 box Betty Crocker chocolate cake mix

1 1/3 cups Shiner’s Birthday Beer

1/2 vegetable oil

3 eggs.

Heat over to 350 degrees. Line cupcake tins with paper liners (I usually get about 18 or so cupcakes with the boxed mixes).

Combined cake mix, beer, oil and eggs in large bowl of stand mixer, mixing on low for 30 seconds, then on medium speed for 1-2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally.

Fill cupcake tins about 2/3 full. Bake for approximately 18 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

Cool in pans for 5 minutes, then cool completely on wire racks.

HERSHEY’S CLASSIC CHOCOLATE FROSTING

1/2 cup butter

2/3 cup Hershey’s cocoa

3 cups powdered sugar

1/3 cup milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

(I always add just a pinch of salt)

In a large microwave-safe bowl, melt butter. Stir in cocoa. Add powdered sugar (and salt) and milk, alternating between the two, beating with an electric mixer at medium speed until desired consistency is reached. Add more milk if needed. Stir in the vanilla. Frost as desired.

Enjoy!

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