Hot chocolate cupcakes with an amazing rich chocolate flavor and a festive snow cap top with a fluffy white frosting center. One bowl, vegan and gluten-free and with hidden veggies, but anyone who eats any diet will love these.
Hot chocolate cupcakes are basically a mug of hot chocolate in the form of a cupcake. The recipe is healthier than traditional cupcakes because of pumpkin puree instead of eggs and oil. Yet the flavor tastes amazingly like a hot chocolate thanks especially to two ordinary ingredients, one is certainly in your pantry right now. And add my fluffy white frosting as the filling, and it's a dream cupcake.
Table of Contents
Creating Hot Chocolate Flavor
There are two ingredients to make hot chocolate cupcakes taste like a rich hot chocolate.
2. Use triple the vanilla, and a quality brand that that. Rodelle or Nielsen-Massey are both incredibly strong in flavor. Admittedly both are more expensive, than main stream brands but they last for years so you can use them sporadically to make them last.
Both of these ingredients turn these ordinary chocolate cupcakes into hot chocolate cupcakes.
Flour: I used all-purpose flour or a GF baking flour. Oat flour would also work, but use more, 1 ¾ cups.
Cocoa: The hot chocolate flavor depends heavily on the cocoa you choose. Choose the best quality you have access to, I highly recommend using dutch process. Do not use cocoa mix which has many other ingredients and will ruin the cupcake texture.
Sugar: Organic cane sugar tastes much better than refined white sugar because it is much less processed, and is without exposure to pesticides. Being less processed, the sugar retains more nutrients, including essential amino acids, minerals and vitamins.
Pumpkin Puree & Apple Sauce: These two ingredients basically replace eggs and oil, although you can replace the apple sauce with more pumpkin puree.
Leaveners: baking powder and baking soda
Milk & Lemon Juice: My favorite way to provide lift to cakes
Other Essentials: salt and quality vanilla extract
Steps To Bake
1. Preheat your oven to 350 F, Line a cupcake pan with 12 paper liners, and activate your milk by adding lemon juice to it and let it sit for 5 minutes.
2. To the large mixing bowl, add the wet ingredients and mix until smooth. Add the dry ingredients through a strainer. Add the dry to the wet mixture, and mix until combined, but don't overmix.
3. Add the batter about ¾ full to each cupcake liner using a medium cookie scoop.
4. Bake cupcakes for 18 minutes. Or until tester comes out clean.
5. Let cool for ten minutes, then put cupcakes on a cooling rack and allow to cool.
6. Make vanilla frosting while the cupcakes cool.
7. Cut a cone out of the center of each cooled cupcakes using the tip of knife held at an angle. Fill the space with frosting and allow a pillow to form on top, and top with the removed cone of cake.
8. Dust with powdered sugar and serve.
How to Store
Once frosted, the cupcakes are fine at room temperature for about 3 days and then they begin to dry out. You freeze them once assembled and frosted, they seem to last about a month in a sealed container before developing freezer burn but that probably varies with each freezer.
1. Start with all ingredients at room temperature
2. Use the highest quality cocoa powder you can afford, and make sure it is dutch processed which is sweeter.
3. Use a medium-sized scoop to add batter to cupcake pans to be sure all cupcakes are of uniform size.
Hot chocolate cupcakes are elicit tons of questions by people on google. Here are some answers.
Can you use hot chocolate powder instead of cocoa powder for cupcakes?
No, not for this recipe because cocoa powder contains sugar and other additives that could change the flavor and render the cupcakes not vegan or gluten-free.
What Is The Price of Chocolate Cupcake?
This recipes costs about 35 cents to make using mainstream brands. Commercial cupcakes from a bakery cost in the range of $3-$4 each. This one costs about 0.85 cents to make.
Other Cupcake Recipes
- Hostess Cupcakes
- Chocolate Cupcakes
- Chocolate Dipped Cupcakes (Hi Tops)
- Lemon Cupcakes (with lemon curd)
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Hot Chocolate Cupcakes
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour or a GF baking flour
- ½ cup dutch process cocoa or unsweetened cocoa
- 1 cup organic cane sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup dairy-free milk
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- ⅓ cup pumpkin puree (Or sweet potato puree, I used canned)
- 3 tablespoon unsweetened apple sauce (or more pumpkin or sweet potato puree)
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Fluffy White Frosting:
- Preheat your oven to 350 F.
- Line cupcake pan with 12 paper liners.
- Activate your milk by adding lemon juice to it and let it sit for 5 minutes.
- To the large mixing bowl, add the wet ingredients and mix until smooth.1 cup dairy-free milk, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, ⅓ cup pumpkin puree, 3 tablespoon unsweetened apple sauce, 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- Add the dry ingredients through a strainer.1 ½ cups all-purpose flour, ½ cup dutch process cocoa, 1 cup organic cane sugar, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon baking soda, ½ teaspoon salt
- Add the dry to the wet mixture, and mix until combined, but don't overmix.
- Add the batter about ¾ full to each cupcake liner using a medium cookie scoop.
- Bake cupcakes for 18 minutes. Or until tester comes out clean.
- Let cool for ten minutes, then put cupcakes on a cooling rack and allow to cool before assembling (see instructions on how to cut out the center and cap below)
- Add sugar, butter and vanilla and just 1 tablespoon of the milk to a large mixing bowl.2 cups powdered sugar, ½ stick butter, 3-5 tablespoon dairy free milk, 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Use a hand-mixer or an electric mixer to combine. Add the remaining 2 tablespoon of milk gradually until you have a creamy consistency. You can add more or less milk, but be careful, it can turn too liquidy very fast.
- Add frosting to a frosting bag, cut the tip so the opening is about 1 inch wide or use a round tip.
Assemble the Cupcakes
- Cut a cone out of the center of each cooled cupcakes using the tip of knife held at an angle. Fill the space with frosting and allow a pillow to form on top, and top with the removed cone of cake.
- Dust with powdered sugar and serve.
- Once frosted, the cupcakes are fine at room temperature for about 3 days and then they begin to dry out.
- To store cupcakes long term, assemble them and then pack them in an air-tight container and freezer for a month.