Monday, May 16, 2011

Chocolate Cupcakes with Vanilla Caramel Frosting

Mmmm, cupcakes. They are the perfect ratio of moist cake to frosting all wrapped up in a pretty paper liner so that you can eat it on the go. It's the perfect solution for those of us that will never eat a whole cake in sheet cake form. I don't know why it's different but it is. I know, one of those things that makes you go hmmm.

I'm a big fan of cake mixes because I'm kind of a sketchy baker from scratch but I decided that it was silly to be afraid of the scratch cake and jumped right in to a recipe I found in "The Joy of Baking". It's a book that I've had a long time and have made very little out of because the recipes appear to have 7 trillion ingredients and I always mentally check out about half way through the recipe.

The cupcake batter came together quickly and easily. I baked the cupcakes for 17 min so that they didn't dry out, the liners peeled off without pulling the cake all to pieces and the frosting was delightful so I'm calling this one a "WIN". Oh, the frosting is just your basic vanilla butter cream drizzled with caramel. You could either make your own caramel or use ice cream topping if you have one that you prefer. I did sprinkle just a very light sprinkle of sea salt on the caramel...I love salted caramel. :) Definitely a do again.

Chocolate Cupcakes
16 cupcakes

1/2 c. cocoa powder
1 c. boiling water
1 1/3 c. flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 c. butter, room temperature
1 c. white sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly butter or line 16 muffin cups with paper liners.

In a small bowl stir together the cocoa powder and the boiling water until smooth. Let cool to room temp. (I just stuck it in the fridge while I finished everything else up)

In your mixer beat the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time beating until smooth. Scrape the sides of the bowl as needed. Add vanilla.

Add the flour mixture and beat only until flour is incorporated. Then add the cocoa mixture and stir until smooth.

Fill each muffin cup with approx. 1/3 c. bake batter. Bake for 16-20 minutes or until the cake springs back when touched or a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool completely on a wire rack.

Caramel Vanilla Frosting

1/2 c. caramel cut (I used the Kraft caramel bits)
1/2 c. heavy cream.
1/2 c. butter softened
4 c. powdered sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
4 T. milk or cream

Stir the caramel and cream together over med heat until melted and mixed together. Set aside to cool to room temp.

Beat the butter until fluffy in your mixer. Carefully add the powdered sugar, vanilla and milk and beat until fluffy and spreading texture.

Frost cupcake with a knife or with a pastry bag and large tip. Drizzle caramel over the tops. If desired sprinkle a tiny bit of sea salt on the caramel.

 Post linked to:
Themed Baker's Sunday 


Kim McCallie said...

I was just thinking today as I saw a bag of caramels in my pantry that I needed to find a recipe to use them in. Thanks for the inspiration. Your cupcakes are gorgeous! I would love for you to stop by and share your recipe at A Well-Seasoned Life's Sweet Indulgences Sunday.

Katie @ This Chick Cooks said...

I agree with you on being afraid to venture away from the box mixes for cakes, but it looks like your cupcakes turned out wonderfully. They look so moist and delicious. Yummy photos :) I'd like to invite you over to share your muffins or any of your other favorite recipes at These Chicks Cooked Recipe Spotlight. Have a blessed day :)

Katie @ This Chick Cooks said...

Thanks for stopping in to show off your cupcakes at These Chicks Cook. Hope you can come back by and share another recipe Wednesday. Enjoy your weekend :)

ryobious said...

This looks amazing. Yum! I'm hosting a link party and would love for you to pop in and share a recipe or two.