Well well well. What do we have here?
Did a huge scoop of Nutella fall into my buttercream? Oh yes it did.
And well, the result is far better than “tasty.” In fact, the word “delicious” won’t even do this Nutella frosting justice. It is, by far, the best frosting in the entire world. The creamiest, Nutellaiest (I invented a new word today), and the softest frosting ever.
You are in for a REAL treat today.
I’ve already introduced you to my homemade chocolate cupcake recipe. If you’re new around these parts, you don’t want to miss that post. The cupcakes are very simple to make with easy, convenient ingredients. They are moist with an intense chocolate flavor. Be careful not to overbake them; I described the cupcakes in great detail here and the drying effects of overbaking.
I used the same chocolate cupcake recipe for today’s cupcakes. Chocolate cupcake + Nutella frosting. Oh my heavens. And you know what I am going to try next? My homemade peanut butter cupcakes with today’s Nutella frosting.
But today, you’re getting chocolate on top of chocolate. Sorry, but I’m not sorry.
Doesn’t the frosting look like fluffy chocolate mousse? Well, that’s what it tastes like too. Let’s see how this incredibly easy frosting is made.
I basically took my homemade fluffy vanilla frosting and worked off of that. Start with 2 sticks of softened (room temperature) unsalted butter. I simply took the butter out of the refrigerator before I began making the cupcakes. By the time they were ready to frost, my butter was the correct temperature and consistency. You do NOT want the butter melted in the slightest.
Using a hand or stand mixer (I prefer a hand mixer for more control when I make frosting), beat the butter on medium speed for a few minutes (2-3 minutes). You want it extra creamy before you add anything else. This is a fabulous trick I’ve learned – beating the butter before adding anything else creates a creamy, thick base for frosting. Once the butter is creamed and smooth, add 2 cups of powdered sugar and beat it on medium speed. The mixture will be somewhat thick. Add 3/4 cup of Nutella. Continue to beat, beat, beat it on medium speed.
The next ingredient is heavily recommended for exceptional creaminess/fluffiness/softness. Use heavy cream as the liquid. Not milk or half-and-half. Heavy cream will truly take your frosting to the next level. Mix in 3 Tablespoons of heavy cream and 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract. Continue to beat at medium speed until everything is combined and creamy.
At this point, you’ll want to taste the frosting. Is it too sweet? Add a pinch of salt. I swear by adding a touch of salt to frosting recipes. Sometimes it is just too sweet for me because I like to add a lot of powdered sugar to make it thicker. Speaking of, if your frosting seems to be too thin, add more powdered sugar to thicken it up. Is it too thick? Add more heavy cream. Not Nutella-y enough? Add more Nutella.
This frosting is highly customizable to fit your taste.
What’s next? Frosting your cooled cupcakes of course! When I pipe my frosting onto cupcakes, I typically use a Wilton frosting tip #12. However, sometimes, I just plop it right on top of the cupcake. Case in point.
Frost the cupcakes however you’d like. I like to pile the frosting nice and high. I’ll take my frosting with a side of cupcake, not the other way around. And I think many of you agree with me.
Decorate with all sorts of goodies! I used M&Ms, but I have a feeling Reese’s Pieces, chopped hazelnuts, coconut, or peanut butter chips would be fabulous accessories for the cupcakes. I’m a sucker for fashionable cupcakes.
What is not to love here?
Easy-to-make, moist chocolate cupcakes piled high with creamy, fluffy Nutella frosting. You truly can’t go wrong! It is love at first bite, people. If you need a chocolate break (and don’t we all?), make these cupcakes- you will NOT be disappointed.
Makes 14 cupcakes. Cupcakes taste best the day of or 1 day after they are made. Store covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 and 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 3/4 cup Nutella
- 3-4 Tablespoons heavy cream*
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- salt to taste
- decorative candies (optional)
- Make the cupcakes: Preheat oven to 375F degrees. Line 14 muffin cups with liners.
- Over high heat, bowl the water in a small saucepan. Pour the unsweetened cocoa powder into a medium sized bowl and mix with boiling water until smooth. Allow to cool to room temperature by placing in the refrigerator as you prepare the other ingredients.
- Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium sized bowl. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, using an electric hand or stand mixer, cream the softened butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla extract. Slowly add the flour mixture and beat only until just combined. In a steady stream, add the cooled cocoa mixture and stir until smooth.
- Fill each muffin tin 3/4 of the way full with batter. Bake for 16-19 minutes, keeping an eye on them to avoid even the slightest burning (which will lend dry cupcakes). My cupcakes took 17 minutes and a toothpick inserted in the middle came out clean. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool before frosting.
- Make the frosting: Beat softened butter on medium speed with an electric or stand mixer. Beat for 2-3 minutes until smooth and creamy. You want a very creamy base before adding anything else. See my extensive notes about this in the post above. Add 2 cups of powdered sugar and continue to beat on medium speed. The mixture will be fairly thick. Add the Nutella and continue to beat on medium speed. Add 3 Tablespoons of heavy cream and the vanilla extract. If the frosting is too thick, add more heavy cream (1 Tablespoon measurements at a time). If the frosting is too thin, add more powdered sugar (1/4 cup measurements at a time). Taste the frosting and add salt to cut the sweetness. I added about 1/4 teaspoon of salt to mine.
- Frost cooled cupcakes with frosting and decorate with candies as desired.
*Replacing the heavy cream in the frosting with milk or half-and-half will result in a less creamy consistency.
© Sally’s Baking Addiction. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.
Today’s easy chocolate cupcake recipe is the same cupcake recipe I used for my Chocolate Cupcakes with Mint Chocolate Chip Frosting.
Ever since I had my first spoonful of Nutella in Italy 7 years ago, I haven’t stopped devouring it. My favorite way to eat it is… with a spoon. But here are a few other ways I enjoy it:
Salted Peanut Nutella Puppy Chow (I make this ALL the time – made it just last weekend!)
See all of my cupcake recipes.