These chocolate cupcakes are ultra moist and sooo chocolatey! They’re also super easy to make and topped with a velvety chocolate buttercream.
These chocolate cupcakes are really the easiest ever! They don’t require an electric mixer for the batter, they are made in just one bowl and they make a perfect 12 cupcakes.
Twelve cupcakes is what I consider to be the perfect amount for a batch, but it’s also extremely easy to increase the recipe to make a double batch if you need to.
And in addition to the ease of this recipe, these cupcakes are absolutely divine!
They will have you shouting from the rooftops about how good they are. Not to mention popping over to the neighbors to give them a few to try so they can marvel at what a great baker you are. They are divinely moist, with mega chocolate flavor and a light and tender crumb.
How To Make Chocolate Cupcakes
Full instructions and measurements can always be found in the recipe card at the bottom of the post. This is a summary of the process to go along with the process photos.
- It’s so easy to make these cupcakes!
- Preheat your oven to 350°F and line your cupcake tray with 12 cupcake liners.
- Sift all purpose flour and cocoa powder into a mixing bowl.
- Add sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and a little instant espresso powder (optional).
- Make up a half cup of homemade buttermilk by adding ½ tablespoon of lemon juice to a measuring jug and then adding milk (room temperature) up to the ½ cup line. Let it curdle into buttermilk.
- Add buttermilk, canola oil, an egg and a teaspoon of vanilla extract to the mixing bowl and mix it into a thick batter.
- Then add a half cup of hot water to the batter and whisk it in so that you now have a fairly thin batter.
- Divide the batter amongst your cupcake liners and bake for 25 minutes.
- After 25 minutes check that your cupcakes are cooked with the toothpick method. Insert a toothpick into the center of one of the cupcakes and if it comes out clean then your cupcakes are cooked.
- Transfer your cupcakes to a wire cooling rack to cool completely before frosting.
The frosting is a delicious chocolate buttercream frosting that pipes on beautifully! The frosting makes enough to very generously pipe frosting onto these cupcakes and we used the Wilton 1M frosting tip.
Grated dark chocolate flakes are ideal to decorate the top!
How Long Do These Cupcakes Last?
They last perfectly at room temperature for 3 days or up to 7 days covered in the fridge.
Can you Freeze Them?
You sure can! You can freeze them with or without frosting and they freeze very well. Let them thaw in the fridge overnight.
Can You Make Them Egg-Free?
Yes! It’s actually very easy to adapt this recipe to egg-free. All you need to do is replace the egg with 3 tablespoons of applesauce OR make a flax egg by mixing 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseeds with 3 tablespoons of hot water from the kettle and letting it sit for a minute until it becomes gloopy. Either of these options is a tried and tested method that works great with this recipe.
Can You Make Them Dairy Free?
Yes you can. All you have to do is use soy milk or almond milk when you make the homemade buttermilk. That works perfectly well in baking and you will not know the difference!
More Cakes and Cupcakes
- The Most Divine Chocolate Cake
- The Best Vanilla Cake
- Red Velvet Cake
- Carrot Cake Cupcakes
- Small Chocolate Cake
- Espresso Cupcakes
For the Frosting
- 1 Recipe Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C) and line a cupcake tray with 12 cupcake liners.
- Sift the all purpose flour and cocoa powder into a mixing bowl and add the sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and instant espresso powder and mix together.
- Prepare the homemade buttermilk by adding ½ tablespoon of lemon juice to a measuring jug and then adding milk (room temperature) up to the ½ cup (120ml) line. Let it sit for a minute to curdle.
- Add the homemade buttermilk, oil, egg and vanilla to the mixing bowl and mix in to a thick batter.
- Add the hot water and use a hand whisk to whisk it in until well mixed. Your batter will now be thin and this is perfect.
- Divide the batter between the 12 cupcake liners.
- Place into the oven to bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of one of the cupcakes comes out clean (no wet batter).
- Transfer to a wire cooling rack to cool completely before frosting.
- The instant espresso powder is optional. It doesn’t lead to any coffee flavor in the final result though and is there to enhance the chocolate flavor. You can also use any instant coffee and it doesn’t specifically need to be espresso powder, though I like the flavor this gives.
- If you happen to have real buttermilk on hand, you can use that in this recipe instead of the homemade buttermilk. But since most people don’t have buttermilk on hand any day of the week, the homemade version (lemon juice + milk) is perfect in this recipe.
- We used canola oil in this recipe but you can switch this for vegetable oil if you prefer.
- Nutritional information is for the cupcakes only and does not include the chocolate buttercream frosting. Nutritional info for the chocolate buttercream can be found on that separate recipe.