I figure we have a lot in common, you and I. And this means you’ve got a bookshelf… or FIVE… full of cookbooks. You may even have it alphabetically organized or arranged by color. You can clean out your closet like a champ, but would never even dream about going through your cookbook collection. (Gasp!) Your husband/loved one/concerned family member may ask if it’s really necessary you add “just one more” to your Amazon cart and the answer is always: Yes. Duh.
Seriously why do they even ask???
Truth is, we can never have too many cookbooks to sift through for inspiration. While regular people read novels on the beach, we read cookbooks for pleasure and inspiration.
Simply Beautiful Homemade Cakes. This is the most beautiful cookbook I own from the pastel pinks and blues to the magically towering cakes, stunning food styling, and endlessly tested recipes by Lindsay Conchar herself. Lindsay is the blogger over at Life, Love, and Sugar. If you ever need an inspiring (not to mention delicious) cake or cupcake idea– she’s your gal. Her cookbook was released yesterday and I had the pleasure of receiving an early copy. I giddily turned each page, my stomach grumbling louder and louder, and finally decided on a flavor combination that was too epic to pass up.
Friends, MOCHA NUTELLA CUPCAKES.
I feel like Lindsay was channeling us directly with this recipe.
I’ve never made a coffee flavored cupcake before. Have you? I was especially thrilled because I had all of the items on hand. Nothing too tricky here as far as ingredients go: butter, sugar, flour, eggs, milk, the usual gang. Lindsay uses only egg whites in a lot of her cupcake recipes, something I’ve picked up on in the past few years. They create a super fluffy cupcake while egg yolks typically weigh things down. You’ll need 3 egg whites for today’s recipe. One ingredient you may not have on hand, but is worth a trip to the store: instant espresso.
Instant espresso is what gives these coffee cupcakes their spot-on flavor; it’s typically in the coffee aisle of major grocery stores. Instant coffee– a dark roast– could be used, but keep in mind that it tends to taste a little sour. Instant espresso powder is your best bet and you can add a teaspoon or two to any batch of brownies, chocolate cake batter, or cupcake batter to intensify the chocolate flavor.
Mix the instant espresso powder with a little hot water to make an ultra concentrated liquid, which will go directly into the batter. And the batter is a beautiful coffee color (pictured above!). The aroma will remind you of your favorite cafe and bakery. Definitely taste test-worthy. You won’t regret it.
Lindsay’s nutella frosting looked incredible, but I used the last of my shortening in about 17 pie crusts I prepped for November. (Just you wait!!!) So I simply used butter instead. If you’re interested, I have a completely separate post for my beloved Nutella frosting. You can use it on anything and everything!
Sprinkles for good measure and a raspberry for color. These cupcakes are all set!
I’m a fan of this frosting to cupcake ratio. ↑
I’m also unbelievably excited to find a cupcake that is the perfect combination of fluffy + soft + moist + flavorful. Typically you sacrifice here and there, but these mocha nutella cupcakes are completely spot-on. And so is the rest of Lindsay’s book!Print
These easy mocha Nutella cupcakes have it all! They’re moist and fluffy topped with creamy Nutella frosting.
- 1 and 1/4 cups (160g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 6 Tablespoons (84g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar
- 3 large egg whites, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 6 Tablespoons (85g) full-fat sour cream, room temperature
- 3 Tablespoons (15g) instant espresso coffee powder
- 2 Tablespoons (30ml) hot water
- 6 Tablespoons (90ml) whole milk, room temperature
- 1 cup (230g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 4 cups (460g) confectioners’ sugar
- 3/4 cup (225g) Nutella
- 1/3 cup (80ml) heavy cream or whole milk
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- pinch salt
- optional: chocolate sprinkles and raspberries
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C). Line a 12-cup muffin pan with cupcake liners. Line a second pan with 2 liners – this recipe makes about 14 cupcakes. Set aside.
- Make the cupcakes: Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together. Set aside.
- Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on high speed until smooth and creamy – about 1 minute. Add the granulated sugar and beat on high speed for 2 minutes until creamed together. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Add the egg whites and vanilla extract. Beat on high speed until combined, then beat in the sour cream. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl as needed so everything is incorporated.
- Stir the espresso powder and hot water together until smooth, then stir this into the milk. Set aside for a second.
- With the mixer running on low speed, add the dry ingredients until just incorporated. With the mixer still running on low, slowly pour in the espresso/milk mixture until combined. Do not overmix. You may need to whisk it all by hand to make sure there are no lumps at the bottom of the bowl. The batter will be on the thin side.
- Pour/spoon the batter into the liners – fill only halfway with batter to avoid spilling over the sides. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool completely before frosting.
- Make the frosting: In a large bowl using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until smooth, about 2 minutes. Stop the mixer and add confectioners’ sugar, Nutella, heavy cream, and vanilla extract. Beat on low speed for 30 seconds, then increase to medium-high speed and beat for 2 full minutes. Add up to 1/2 cup more confectioners’ sugar if frosting is too thin or another Tablespoon of cream if frosting is too thick. Add a pinch of salt if frosting is too sweet. (I always add 1/8 teaspoon salt.)
- Frost and decorate cooled cupcakes. I used a Wilton 1M tip for these photos. (Another favorite is this Wilton #12 round tip.)
- Serve immediately. Store leftover cupcakes in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
- Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Plain cupcakes can be made ahead 1 day in advance, covered and stored in the refrigerator overnight. Frosting can also be made 1 day in advance, covered, and stored in the refrigerator until ready to use. Bring cupcakes and buttercream to room temperature before frosting. Freeze frosted or unfrosted cupcakes for up to 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
- Room Temperature Ingredients: It really makes a difference!
- Special Tools (affiliate links): KitchenAid Hand Mixer | KitchenAid Stand Mixer (aqua sky, my favorite!) | 5-qt Tilt Head Glass Measuring Bowl | Flex Edge Beater | Instant Espresso Coffee or King Arthur Flour Espresso Powder | 1M Swirl Frosting Tip | Piping Bag | Cupcake Liners | Cupcake Pan | Eat Cake for Breakfast Mug
- Excerpted from Simply Beautiful Homemade Cakes: Extraordinary Recipes and Easy Decorating Techniques by Lindsay Conchar. Copyright © 2016. Reprinted with permission from Page Street Publishing Co. All rights reserved.
Keywords: mocha cupcakes, mocha nutella cupcakes