It's been awhile since I did a cupcake post, I realized. I've had cupcakes on the brain recently as a friend of mine has asked me to bake cupcakes for her parent's anniversary party! I've done a little pre-baking and testing recipes (any excuse to bake some cupcakes, right?) just to try out various flavors and to make sure everything was in shape for the event since I had some advance notice of the party. I wanted to share this recipe for Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting as they were definitely one of my favorite flavor combinations. If you're going to go for chocolate cupcakes, you might as well go all out for chocolate and make them triple chocolate cupcakes! I love the dense chocolaty cake studded with chocolate chips and the chocolate buttercream frosting on top is the perfect accompaniment. I cannot say enough good things about this chocolate frosting recipe either. It is my new favorite recipe. It's the consistency of buttercream, but it tastes like fudge due to the immense amount of melted chocolate and cocoa and that's whipped into the buttercream.
The cupcakes are made from a favorite chocolate sheet cake recipe from America's Test Kitchen. I like this recipe for several reasons, but definitely at the top of the list is because this recipe doesn't require a mixer. The ingredients are easily mixed together with only a whisk, which is nice if you don't have a stand mixer or don't feel like fooling with yours. :) The cake is rich and chocolaty too, as it combines both melted semi-sweet or bittersweet (I like to use semi-sweet chocolate for a slightly sweeter cake) and Dutch Process cocoa powder.
What is Dutch process cocoa powder, you ask? I didn't really know the difference between Dutch process and regular cocoa powder until recently. Dutch process cocoa is cocoa powder that has been treated with an alkalizing agent to neutralize the acids which makes the cocoa less bitter-- making this ideal for use in hot chocolate and other rich chocolate baked goods. Dutch process is milder than regular cocoa powder but allows the rich chocolate flavor to shine through. Depending on where you live, it can be hard to find, as it's been my experience that the grocery stores closest to me don't carry it and I have to stock up when I go near a Whole Foods or Wegman's. You can always buy it online from somewhere like Penzey's or Amazon (thank goodness for online shopping for hard to find ingredients). I really enjoy baking with Dutch process and like how it creates a deep chocolate flavor without the bitterness of regular cocoa.
Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cupcakes
16 Tbs. (2 sticks) unsalted butter
4 ounces bittersweet (or semi-sweet) chocolate, chopped
1 cup (3 ounces) Dutch-processed cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups (7 1/2 ounces) all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
4 large eggs, room temperature
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups (10 1/2 ounces) sugar
1 cup sour cream
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup flour
1. Adjust oven racks to the upper-middle and lower-middle position and heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 12-cup muffin tins with cupcake liners.
2. Melt the butter, chocolate, and cocoa together in the microwave, stirring often, 1 to 3 minutes; let the mixture cool slightly. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together.
3. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and vanilla together by hand until uniform. Slowly whisk in the sugar until combined. Slowly whisk in the cooled chocolate mixture until combined.
4. Sift about a third of the flour mixture over the batter and whisk in. Whisk in the sour cream. Sift in the remaining flour mixture over the batter and whisk until completely incorporated (the batter will be thick). In a small bowl, mix together the chocolate chips with the 1/4 cup of flour and then fold into the batter. The flour will keep the chocolate chips from sinking to the bottom of the cupcakes.
5. Give the batter a final stir with a rubber spatula to make sure it is thoroughly combined. Using a 1/4 cup measure to fill each cup of the muffin tin about 3/4 full.
6. Bake the cupcakes until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out with a few crumbs attached, 15 to 20 minutes, switching and rotating the tins halfway through baking. Let the cupcakes cool in the tins for about 10 minutes, then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely. Frost and serve.
Recipe from The America's Test Kitchen Family Baking Book
For the Chocolate Frosting I used this recipe from Annie's Eats. It. is. Incredible. I will definitely be using this as my go-to chocolate frosting recipe from now on!