Saturday, August 11, 2012

Cappuccino Cupcakes with Mocha Buttercream Frosting

This is one of my go-to cupcake recipes. It's rather simple and oh-so-good. My favorite part is the chocolate covered espresso bean on top! I say these are perfect for breakfast - pair with your favorite coffee (If you're me, it's the Old School Bagel caramel mocha).

Cappuccino Cupcakes with Mocha Buttercream Frosting
For the cupcakes…
1 package white cake mix
1 1/3 cups double-strength coffee
3 eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil (or canola oil)

For the mocha buttercream…
1 cup butter (2 sticks), softened
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 tablespoon instant coffee (I used 1 packet of Starbucks Via instant coffee)
1 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 cups powdered sugar (confectioners’ sugar)
1 teaspoon meringue powder*
2 tablespoons coffee (plus more if needed to thin the frosting a bit)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin pan with paper baking cups (this recipe should make 24 cupcakes).

In a large bowl, combine the cake mix, coffee, eggs, and oil. Beat with an electric mixer until combined. Divide batter into muffin pan, filling each cup about 3/4 full. Bake 18 minutes. Cool cupcakes for about 5 minutes in the pan, then remove from pan and cool completely on a wire rack.

While the cupcakes are baking, you can make the frosting…
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, cream the butter until light and fluffy. Add the cocoa powder, instant coffee, and vanilla extract. Beat until smooth. Add the powdered sugar and coffee, beating until smooth and fluffy (about 5 to 7 minutes). Scrape the sides of the bowl a few times throughout the mixing.

Use a pastry bag or spatula to frost each cupcake with the mocha buttercream. Top with a chocolate covered espresso bean if desired (my favorite come from Trader Joe’s).

* meringue powder can be found at baking supplier stores, cake decorating/craft stores (such as Micheals/Hobby Lobby/Jo-Ann's), and specialty markets

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