Mocha Cupcakes with Espresso Buttercream

My parents no longer ask, “Are you baking tonight?” Now it’s, “What flavor tonight?”

At work, my coworkers say, “What’d you bring today?”

I’m becoming known as “The Cupcake Lady.” I like it.

Tonight, I wanted something chocolate-y. I also wanted something coffee-y. (Yeah, I make up words. You can do that when you have your own blog. Don’t believe me? Google it.) I found these, from the Brown-Eyed Baker (SO wish I’d thought of that name first).

I knew they’d be good. I mean, they have actual coffee in them. And espresso. And chocolate. Whaaa? Awesomeness.

These cupcakes are truly amazing. For reals. The cake part is light and airy (not really moist, just…airy) and absolutely amazing. The frosting is whipped like crazy and the result is fluffy, creamy, espresso-y, melt-in-your-mouth goodness. I can’t wait to share these with people tomorrow. (My family doesn’t count anymore. I rarely get more than a “‘spretty good.” I no longer base the goodness of my confections on their reactions.)

Make them. Love them. Try not to eat them all. Your life will be forever changed.Just don’t say “expresso,” because that drives me nuts.

Mocha Cupcakes with Espresso Buttercream Frosting
makes 18 cupcakes

Cupcake Ingredients:
1 1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup whole milk (I used unsweetened almond milk- I don’t keep whole milk on-hand. Bleh.)
1/2 cup strong-brewed coffee
1 1/2 teaspoons espresso powder (instant espresso)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 egg, room temperature

Frosting Ingredients:
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/2 teaspoons espresso powder (instant espresso)

Directions:
To make the cupcakes: Mix the espresso powder into the coffee until dissolved. Set aside to cool to room temperature (or place in the fridge for 10 minutes or so).
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin tin with cupcake liners. Set aside.
Whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Make sure to break up all lumps. Set aside.
Cream together the butter and both sugars on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Add the egg and beat until combined. In a measuring cup, combine the milk, coffee mixture, and vanilla.
Alternate adding the flour mixture and the coffee mixture to the butter mixture, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Pour the batter into the cupcake liners, and bake for 17-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Cool for a few minutes in the pan before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. When completely cooled, frost them.
To make the frosting: Stir the espresso powder into the vanilla until totally dissolved. Set aside.
Using the whisk attachment of a standard mixer, whip the butter on medium-high speed for 5 minutes, stopping once to scrape the sides of the bowl. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the powdered sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, beating after each addition until mostly incorporated. Once all the powdered sugar has been added, scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl and again increase the speed to medium-high, whipping until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the espresso-vanilla mixture and continue to beat on medium-high until completely incorporated, scraping the bowl as needed. Pipe onto cooled cupcakes.

These are all mine. I'm not sharing.

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2 Responses to Mocha Cupcakes with Espresso Buttercream

  1. Deborah Hays says:

    These just might be my favorite I would love to try them.

    • Lauren says:

      They are SO good!! I had to give some away to my coworkers today and I honestly debated whether or not they were worth it. 🙂 They were.

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