These easy one bowl chocolate cupcakes are rich, moist and delicious topped with swirls of rich, fudgy dark chocolate buttercream frosting.
Full recipe with amounts can be found in the recipe card below.
- Sugar. I use caster sugar but granulated can also be used. Caster sugar dissolves into the batter easier and is more delicate.
- Flour. I use cake flour but all purpose can also be used.
- Baking powder.
- Cocoa powder. Unsweetened.
- Oil. You can use melted butter too. Oil is just less faff and results in super moist cupcakes.
- Boiling water. I use hot coffee but boiling water can also be used. Coffee really allows the flavor of chocolate to shine.
- Butter. Room temperature, for buttercream.
- Icing sugar / Powdered sugar. Sifted.
- Dark chocolate.
How to make chocolate cupcakes
- Make the batter: These easy chocolate cupcakes can be made in one bowl. Whisk together all the dry ingredients then pour in the wet. Whisk until a smooth batter forms.
- Bake: Line a 12-hole muffin or cupcake pan with paper liners. Divide the batter between the cups then place in a preheated oven and allow to bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.
- Make the dark chocolate buttercream frosting: Whip the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer until pale and fluffy. Add the sifted icing sugar and cocoa powder and continue beating. Add the melted chocolate, hot coffee and milk. Beat until the frosting is smooth and creamy.
- Top tip: When I have the time, I transfer the buttercream to a food processor and allow to blend until ultra smooth.
How to decorate cupcakes
Decorating cupcakes by piping swirls of buttercream on top is simple and beautiful. Fit a piping bag with a nozzle then fill with the buttercream. If you’re new to piping, practicing on a piece of parchment paper is a good idea to get the swirls right. Apply even pressure to the piping bag and swirl the frosting onto the cupcake. Add shaved chocolate, a cherry or sprinkles to further decorate the piped cupcakes.
How long do cupcakes last
Frosted cupcakes will last for up to 3 days if kept covered at room temperature. Unfrosted cupcakes can be kept for 3 days in an airtight container in the fridge. Allow to come to room temperature before frosting. Cupcakes only need to be refrigerated if it’s very hot outside to prevent he buttercream from melting.
Can you freeze cupcakes?
Yes, absolutely! Allow baked cupcakes to cool completely then transfer to a freezer-safe container or Ziploc bags. If you need to stack the cupcakes, separate them with a layer of parchment paper. Freeze for up to 3 months. Allow to thaw completely before frosting.
Chocolate cake recipes
Easy one-bowl chocolate cupcakes
- 200 g (1 cup) caster sugar
- 175 g (1½ cups) flour
- 50 g (½ cup) unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1½ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 extra-large egg
- 125 ml (½ cup) milk
- 75 ml (¼ cup) canola oil / melted butter
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 125 ml (½ cup) boiling water (you can also use coffee)
For the chocolate buttercream frosting
- 125 g (1 stick) Butter, softened
- 400 g (5-6 cups) icing/powdered sugar sifted
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder sifted
- 100 g (3.05oz) dark chocolate melted
- 1 tbsp cold, strong coffee
- 2-3 tbsp milk
- Pre-heat the oven to 180ºC/350°F. Grease and line a 12-hole muffin tray with cupcake liners.
- Sift all the dry ingredients into a large bowl.
- Add the egg, milk, oil/melted butter and vanilla extract and combine with the dry ingredients. Beat until the mixture is smooth.
- Slowly add the boiling water and mix until combined.
- Distribute the batter between the cupcake liners and place in the oven.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes until a skewer inserted comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before decorating.
- To make the frosting, beat the butter until light and fluffy then add the icing sugar and cocoa powder and beat until well incorporated. Add the coffee, melted chocolate and 1 tbsp of milk and beat until light and fluffy. You might need more milk to reach the desired consistency.
- Transfer the frosting to a piping bag and pipe onto the cooled cupcakes.
- Decorate and serve.