Kirbie's Cravings

Chocolate Cupcakes

These chocolate cupcakes are perfect for anyone who loves chocolate desserts. The cupcakes are made with bittersweet chocolate and topped with a rich chocolate ganache. If you want a go-to chocolate cupcake recipe, you have to give this one a try.

overhead photo of a chocolate cupcake

It might seem basic, but having a go-to chocolate cupcake recipe is a good idea because I think we all have people in our lives that love chocolate. I’ve been trying out recipes and the one I’m sharing today is definitely a keeper and one I’ll make again if I need a batch of cupcakes for a party.

I adapted a popular recipe from Cook’s Illustrated but I made several changes because I didn’t want anything complicated. So, instead of doing the chocolate ganache center like the original recipe instructed, I just used the recipe to make a basic chocolate cupcake and frosted them with ganache.

These cupcakes are perfect for anyone who loves chocolate. The cupcakes on their own are very rich and chocolatey and the ganache frosting just takes them over the top.

photo of a cupcake frosted with ganache

Tips for Making the Chocolate Cupcakes

  • The cupcakes are made with a combination of chopped bittersweet chocolate and Dutch-process cocoa powder. This is what makes them so rich and chocolatey.
  • There’s also some coffee mixed into the chocolate. Don’t skip this ingredient because the coffee really brings out the chocolate flavor.
  • Making the cupcake batter is pretty standard. Mix the dry and wet ingredients separately before combining them together. This really helps create a tender crumb because you don’t risk overmixing the batter.
  • This recipe makes 12 cupcakes. You can line your cupcake pan with liners or spray it with cooking spray.
  • Be sure to fully cool the cupcakes before frosting them.

How to Make Chocolate Ganache Frosting

What I love about ganache frosting is that it’s very easy to make. You only need a few ingredients and a few minutes to make it. I like to make it while the cupcakes are in the oven because the frosting needs to chill for at least an hour. So, by the time the cupcakes are cooled the frosting is chilled, too.

  • Heat cream in a saucepan until it comes to a boil.
  • Place your chopped chocolate in a bowl and pour the hot cream over it.
  • Stir until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth.
  • Chill the frosting for at least an hour so it can thicken and set.
  • Once set, pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes.

If you’re making these for a party you can make them up to a day in advance. Just keep the cupcakes in an airtight container.

If you love cupcakes you might like my Nutella Cupcakes and Cookie Butter Muffins, too.

overhead photo of cupcakes

overhead photo of a chocolate cupcake

Chocolate Cupcakes

Servings: 12 cupcakes
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
These chocolate cupcakes are topped with a rich chocolate ganache.


  • 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup Dutch-processed cocoa
  • 3/4 cup hot strong-brewed coffee
  • 3/4 cup bread flour
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp table salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 6 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


  • Preheat oven to 350°F and line a muffin pan with cupcake liners.
  • Place chocolate and cocoa in a medium bowl and pour the hot coffee over the mixture. Whisk until smooth and transfer to the refrigerator to cool completely, 20-30 minutes.
  • Whisk flour, sugar, salt, and baking soda together in a medium bowl; set aside. Whisk oil, eggs, vanilla, and vinegar into the cooled chocolate mixture until smooth. Add flour mixture and whisk until batter is smooth.
  • Divide batter evenly among muffin pan cups, filling each 3/4 full. Bake until cupcakes are set and firm to the touch, 17-20 minutes. Allow to cool in pans before frosting.
  • For the frosting: Heat cream in small saucepan until it comes to a boil. Remove from stove and pour over chopped chocolate. Whisk until a smooth chocolate ganache forms. Refrigerate bowl for an hour or more until ganache becomes solid. Then pipe and frost cupcakes.


Recipe adapted from Cook's Illustrated

The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.

Did you make this recipe?I'd love to see it! Mention @KirbieCravings and tag #kirbiecravings!

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7 comments on “Chocolate Cupcakes”

  1. I’m always interested in a new recipe, I’m especially intrigued by this layer of ganache in the middle!

    Its a bit finicky but my favourite is a whipped chocolate ganache, 2 parts cream to 1 part chocolate, heat the cream, melt chocolate in then chill and whip.

    • I still need to try the recipe with the ganache in the middle to get the full effect. Haven’t had time. Hmm, whipped ganache sounds really good. I’m going to have to try it soon.

  2. I think they look beautiful! And most importantly, delicious!

  3. Ganache frosting is amazing!! Your cupcakes seriously look mouth-watering! Great job!!

  4. These look perfect! The ganache is so easy, with a pure taste! thanks.

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