Monday, July 20, 2009

Monday Menu ~ Chocolate Cupcakes

(The following post is dedicated to Marlece, who made it very clear she was expecting this soon...and I hope you are happy with this recipe!)

I'm back on track with the Monday Menu! (Well, at least for this Monday...) And I'm coming back with a very spectacular treat. So spectacular that I made Brad take them to work this morning so I wouldn't eat them all myself. I would have eaten them just one at a time, but I'm pretty sure that a series of "just one" would have added up to like 5 or 12 by the end of the day.

So, after visiting this place, I have been on a mission to make a really good cupcake. I mean really good. I'm getting closer. This one is definitely a yummy cupcake. Perfect? Maybe not quite. But really, really good. Too good to wait for a special occasion to make them. Just make them and eat them. You'll be glad you did.

The cupcake recipe comes from The Barefoot Contessa. I happily stumbled upon her show, which I don't often watch, when she was comparing 2 chocolate cupcakes. She made one batch "plain", and one batch with her "secret ingredient". The secret? Instant coffee granules. The coffee flavor does not come through much at all, but it totally intensifies the flavor of the chocolate. These have a dense, fudgy yum. She topped hers with a ganache, but I'm more of a smooth buttercream girl, so I'm giving you my topping of choice. You're welcome.

Chocolate Cupcakes
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 (16 oz.) can Hershey's chocolate syrup (I KNOW!!)
1 TBSP pure vanilla extract
1 cup flour
1 tsp. instant coffee granules

Preheat oven to 325. Line a muffin pan with paper liners.

Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes or so. Add the eggs, 1 at a time. Mix in the chocolate syrup and vanilla. Add the flour and coffee granules and mix until just combined. Don't overbeat or the cupcakes will be tough.

Scoop the batter into the muffin pans, filling about 2/3 to 3/4 full. Bake for 30 minutes, or until just set in the middle. Don't overbake! Let cool thoroughly in the muffin pan.

Chocolate Frosting
1/2 cup butter, softened
2/3 cup Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa
3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 tsp. instant coffee granules
1 tsp. vanilla

Add the coffee granules to the milk and set aside for it to dissolve. Beat the butter until fluffy. Add the cocoa and beat together. Alternately add the powdered sugar and milk/coffee mix, beating continually. Add vanilla and beat well.

Spread generously onto cooled cupcakes.


  1. Hi Leanne, I have been reading all the posts that I have missed out on lately and I have come to the conclusion that you are like the perfect mom. Pulled pork? for a quick easy dinner. Give me a break! I need to talk to you about my versions of quick easy dinners. Than there you are sewing away for all these cheerleaders and cupcakes and parades. You need to share what vitamins you are on.
    I love you and hope you are having a great summer. We are. Grandkids come this weekend. Can hardly wait.

  2. Leanne,
    You are for sure an awesome Mom! I have learned so much from you! I am continually inspired by your love for life! I love all of your food ideas!
    You are for sure a Best Friend for Life!
    Love ya!
    Give the kids a hug from me....