Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes

This week my husband asked if I could make some Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes for him to bring into work.   My husband’s co-workers are often the recipients of my baking trials and triumphs, and always seem more than happy to eat my “experiments”.   My husband doesn’t often put in special requests, so I was glad to cater to him and sent him to work today with a dozen Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes.  My husband’s work shift starts at 6am and he called me later in the morning to let me know the cupcake were gone by about 6:10am!  I guess that means they liked them  =)

The recipe is just a tiny variation of the Chocolate Cupcake and Cream Cheese Frosting recipes I’ve posted before, but I’ll add them here to save you a couple clicks.

Perfect Chocolate Cupcakes

(makes 24-27 standard sized cupcakes)

2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa (best quality available)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup whole milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract (best quality available)
1 cup boiling water

~ Directions ~
*Line muffin tin with paper liners. Heat oven to 350*F.
*In a large mixing bowl, stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
*Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla. Beat on medium speed for one minute.
*Stir in boiling water (the batter will be thin, don’t worry, this is right).
*Fill liners 2/3 full with batter. (I usually put the batter into a large measuring cup with a pour spout, and then pour the batter into the liners.)
*Bake cupcakes for approximately 22-24 minutes.
*Cool completely on wire rack before frosting.

Peppermint Cream Cheese Frosting

1/2 cup (1 stick, 8 Tablespoons) butter, at room temperature
6 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature (about 3/4 of a regular block of cream cheese)
4 cups powdered confectioners sugar
1 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 to 3 Tablespoons heavy cream, heavy whipping cream (or milk- although I do like the richness that cream adds)

~ Directions ~
*Place butter in a large mixing bowl and blend slightly. Add cream cheese and blend until combined, about 30 seconds.
*Add powdered sugar (a little at a time) and blend on low speed until combined. Increase to medium speed and beat until it begins to get fluffy.
*Add vanilla and peppermint extracts
*Slowly add the heavy cream, a little bit at a time until desired consistency is met. (Don’t add too much if you want the frosting to stay in place when piped on cupcakes.)
*Beat until fluffy, about 1 minute.
*Use at once or keep refrigerated. (This frosting will keep well in the refrigerator for several days, but you may need to re-beat it for the best texture.)

To achieve the red stripe in the frosting:  Before filling a large piping bag with frosting, add some red gel food coloring to a toothpick, and draw two (vertical) lines with the red dye on the inside of the piping bag. Then carefully fill the piping bag with frosting.  Squeeze some frosting into a bowl until you begin to see the red stripe, then frost the cupcakes.

Top cupcakes with some crushed candy canes (they will “melt” after a bit, so they need to be served right away) or a small piece of peppermint bark (I used a little peppermint Andes candy).

Bring some of these into work, or send them in with your spouse, and see how popular you quickly become!

Happy Baking!

73 comments

  1. Beautiful cupcakes, and that frosting looks to die for! Chocolate and peppermint are essential flavors to get me in the holiday spirit.

  2. I saw these peppermint cupcakes and they look amazing. I want to try them for my family and if they turn out to try t hem for work. I love new recipes especially for Christmas. Puntrest in a great place for cool cooking, baking and decorating ideas.

  3. The red stripe makes these looks so delightful. Very creative! Pinned to my “Christmas Cravings” board.

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