Chocolate Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Buttercream

Chocolate Cupcake
If ever I were to succumb to death by chocolate, I would want it to be from these cupcakes. Keep your brownies, biscotti, cookies and cakes. These cupcakes will be waiting for me in heaven… I just know it.

But instead of death, let’s talk about life, here and now. “Here” is a decadent little cupcake to celebrate the one-year anniversary of The Comfort of Cooking, happening “now”! Hooray, let’s celebrate! Cupcakes for all!

Chocolate Cupcake Recipe

I’m feeling good about the year that’s passed, and looking forward to many more. On January 6, 2010, the day that I started my first entry, I wasn’t sure why I was writing, what I would write about, or who would read it besides my mom. However, since then I have come to find the answers to all of those questions. I’ve also been blessed with sweet and supportive readers, gained the confidence to take more risks in the kitchen, and learned a heck of a lot about cooking, baking and everything in between!

So, while I would like to but can’t hand-deliver cupcakes to every reader who has been kind enough to stop by and leave their two cents (sense? cents? I’ve never known), I hope you know how much I appreciate all of your support. Now, let’s get drooling over some chocolate…

Chocolate Cupcakes

Soft, crumbly and moist, these cupcakes were a cinch to whip up and absolutely divine to devour. With the Valrhona cocoa powder and vanilla bean paste that I received as Christmas gifts from my mother-in-law, these cupcakes were little a slice of luxury in under half an hour.

If you have the occasion to make these cupcakes, or if you’re just a chocoholic like me, I can’t recommend this recipe enough. Gulp ‘em down with a glass of milk, and you’ll think you’ve died and gone to scrumptious, sinful chocolatey heaven.

Chocolate Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Buttercream

Chocolate Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Buttercream

Yield: 16 cupcakes / 3 cups frosting


  • Chocolate Cupcakes
  • 1/2 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • 1 cup boiling hot water
  • 1 1/3 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated white sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • Vanilla Bean Buttercream
  • 2½ sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 vanilla bean, halved lengthwise, or 1 Tablespoon vanilla bean paste
  • 2½ cups confectioners’ sugar, 10 ounces
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 Tablespoons heavy cream


  1. Chocolate Cupcakes
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly butter or line 16 muffin cups with paper liners.
  3. In a small bowl, stir until smooth the boiling hot water and the cocoa powder. Let cool to room temperature. In another bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  4. Then, in the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating until smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla extract.
  5. Add the flour mixture and beat only until incorporated. Then add the cooled cocoa mixture and stir until smooth.
  6. Fill each muffin cup about two-thirds full with batter and bake for about 18-20 minutes or until risen, springy to the touch, and a toothpick inserted into a cupcake comes out clean. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool.
  7. Once the cupcakes have completely cooled, frost with icing. You can either spread the frosting on the cupcakes with a small spatula or if piping, use a large Wilton 1M open star tip to make lovely swirls.
  8. Vanilla Bean Buttercream
  9. In a standing mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the butter at medium-high speed until smooth, about 20 seconds. If using a vanilla bean, using a paring knife, scrape seeds from vanilla bean into butter. If using vanilla bean paste, add instead. Beat mixture at medium-high speed to combine, about 15 seconds.
  10. Add confectioners’ sugar and salt; beat at medium-low speed until most of the sugar is moistened, about 1 minute. Scrape down the bowl and beat at medium speed until mixture is fully incorporated, about 30 seconds; scrape bowl, add vanilla and heavy cream, and beat at medium speed until incorporated, about 20 seconds, then increase speed to medium-high and beat until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes, scraping down bowl once or twice.
  11. Use to frost cupcakes or cakes.
  12. Enjoy!

Did you make this recipe?

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Join the Conversation

  1. So cute and tasty too!

  2. Happy Blogoversary Georgia! I sure hope these cupcakes are waiting for me in heaven too. All of your recipes are amazing. I can’t wait for another year.

  3. Georgia, these cupcakes are gorgeous. The frosting especially looks good.

    Have a nice weekend!


  4. Happy Blogiversary Georgia! I love stopping by to see what’s new on your gorgeous blog. These cupcakes are making me hungry for a few! Lovely photos. I hope you have a fabulous weekend!

  5. Oh my goodness…I’m so sorry Georgia! I completely spaced that you had changed your domain so I didn’t update my reader. I’ve been missing you, and I just realized my mistake tonight. I’m so glad to have you and your sweet words and delicious treats back in my life. These cupcakes look amazing. Happy Anniversary, my dear. I’ll be visiting you now like I use to :-)

  6. They look so cute and lovely.. :)

  7. The speckles of vanilla bean in the frosting make me happy. What a pretty cupcake :)

  8. These look so beautiful! I love those swirls…just sexy!

  9. I can’t believe you’ve only been around for a year! I also started blogging in January, 2010, and began following you right away. You are most definitely one of my favorite bloggers, and I always look forward to your posts.

    These cupcakes look awesome. Can’t wait to try them!

  10. That frosting looks divine!

  11. What pretty cupcakes! Happy anniversary.

  12. Oh my…those cupcakes look like heaven! :)

  13. Butter cream is my favorite frosting, but adding vanilla bean is brilliant. Will remember that for next time..

  14. That first photo is awesome!
    Happy birthday to your blog!!!

  15. Happy Birthday! Your blog looks amazing and you always offer quality recipes. Just might request these cupcakes for my real birthday which is next week.

  16. Happy Anniversary! What a way to celebrate with a chocoholic’s dream cupcake! Wishing you another great year!

  17. Happy Blogoversary! These cupcakes look divine, especially that vanilla buttercream!

  18. These cupcakes look fantastic! Congrats on one year of blogging…I can’t wait to see what new recipes you come up with this year :)

  19. Oh Georgia, what a divine way to celebrate your blog’s first anniversary! I just love the candles on such simple but totally sweet and elegant little cakes. Congratulations sweetie!

  20. The cupcakes look incredible!! Congratulations on your one year mark! I for one am so glad you started this blog! I look forward to seeing what you have posted every day!

  21. Happy Birthday to your beautiful blog, Georgia! Your Vanilla Bean Buttercream looks perfectly piped on these decadent chocolate cupcakes. I luv the bits of precious vanilla bean in the buttercream frosting. :)

  22. I love love love the pretty vanilla bean specs on the frosting. :) thank you for sharing this.. i cant wait to try this out.

  23. Wow, these look amazing! I just bought some vanilla bean paste and can’t wait to try it. Thanks for posting this!

  24. These are stunning. Chocolate cupcakes with vanilla frosting are my favorite!

  25. Happy Anniversary Georgia! Here’s to many more fabulous recipes!

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