Fluffy and moist chocolate cupcakes pretending to be Snickers bars.
Let’s discuss what makes these cupcakes ultimate:
- From-scratch chocolate cupcakes
- Creamy, rich peanut butter frosting
- Homemade caramel sauce
- Chopped Snickers bars
Are those not the 4 most incredible bullet points you’ve ever read?
So, I’ve made these chocolate cupcakes before for you. Not in a snickers-esque way, but a more classic variety. Here they are with vanilla frosting and sprinkles, and again with raspberry frosting. I love these chocolate cupcakes so much because their flavor is spot on. Cocoa powder tends to dry cupcakes and cakes out, so I make up for it every way I can. Buttermilk, eggs, oil, and a touch of brown sugar leave the cupcakes super-moist.
And I know Snickers aren’t super peanut butter-y, but they have peanuts. And if there’s an excuse for peanut butter frosting, I’m doing it.
Glorious, glorious caramel comes next. You can make it from scratch or use store-bought. Chopped Snickers are the finishing touch. Without a doubt my favorite candy bar!
Here’s how to turn fan-favorite Snickers bars and homemade chocolate cupcakes into ultimate Snickers cupcakes!
- 1/2 cup (41g) unsweetened natural cocoa powder*
- 3/4 cup (94g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature*
- 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup (100g) packed light brown sugar
- 1/3 cup (80ml) vegetable oil (melted coconut oil works too)
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup (120ml) buttermilk*
- 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: In a large bowl, whisk the cocoa powder, flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together until thoroughly combined. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, sugar, brown sugar, oil, and vanilla together until completely smooth. Pour half of the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Then half of the buttermilk. Gently stir – about 5 stirs. Repeat with the remaining wet ingredients and buttermilk. Stir until *just* combined; do not overmix. The batter won’t be very thick.
- Pour/spoon the batter into the liners – fill only halfway to avoid spilling over the sides. Bake in batches for 18-19 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. For around 30 mini cupcakes, bake for about 10 minutes, same oven temperature. Allow to cool completely before frosting.
- Make the frosting: Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the softened butter on medium speed for 1 minute until completely smooth and creamy. Add the peanut butter and beat on medium-high speed until the two are combined. Add the confectioners’ sugar, cream, vanilla extract, and salt. Beat on low speed for about 20 seconds, then gradually increase to high speed. Beat on high for 1 minute.
- Frost cooled cupcakes. I used a Wilton #12 round tip. Top with caramel sauce and chopped Snickers.
- Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Cupcakes can be made ahead 1 day in advance, covered, and stored at room temperature. Frosting can also be made 1 day in advance, covered, and stored in the refrigerator until ready to use. Decorate/assemble cupcakes immediately before serving. Leftover cupcakes keep well covered tightly at room temperature or in the refrigerator for 3 days. Frosted or unfrosted cupcakes can be frozen up to 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
- As a Cake: Use a 9 inch cake pan. Fill only halfway – there will be extra batter to make some cupcakes. I am unsure of the exact bake time for the cake. Around the 30 minute mark at 350°F (177°C).
- Cocoa Powder: Do not use dutch-process cocoa. Dutch-process is treated with an alkali to neutralize its acids and therefore will not react with the alkaline baking soda in the batter. Natural unsweetened is paired with the brown sugar and buttermilk to react with baking soda and maintain the proper balance of acid and alkaline as the cupcakes bake.
- Buttermilk: Buttermilk is required for this recipe. You can make your own DIY version of buttermilk if needed. Add 1 teaspoon of white vinegar or lemon juice to a liquid measuring cup. Then add enough whole milk to the same measuring cup until it reaches 1/2 cup. (In a pinch, lower fat or nondairy milks work for this soured milk, but the cupcakes won’t taste as moist or rich.) Stir it around and let sit for 5 minutes. The homemade “buttermilk” will be somewhat curdled and ready to use in the recipe.
- Caramel Sauce: If using my homemade caramel sauce, keep in mind this is a salted caramel. For a sweeter caramel, reduce salt to 1/2 teaspoon. You can make the caramel sauce in advance– see make ahead tip in the caramel recipe.
- Special Tools (affiliate links): KitchenAid Stand Mixer | KitchenAid Hand Mixer | Mixing Bowls | Rainbow Whisk | Unsweetened Cocoa Powder | Cupcake Liners | Cupcake Pan | Reusable Piping Bags or Disposable Piping Bags | Wilton #12 Round Frosting Tip | Snickers Bars
Keywords: snickers cupcakes, cupcakes