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  • Chocolate Turtle Cupcakes

    How to make Chocolate Turtle Cupcakes

    Yield: 16 cupcakes

    Prep Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the chocolate cupcakes:

    1 cup (127 grams) all purpose flour
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (30 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder
    3/4 teaspoon baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
    1/2 cup (100 grams) brown sugar
    1/3 cup oil
    1 large egg
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 cup buttermilk
    1/2 cup boiling water
    1 teaspoon instant espresso powder

    For the caramel frosting:

    1/2 cup (115 grams) unsalted butter
    1 cup (200 grams) brown sugar
    1/4 cup heavy cream
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    pinch of salt
    2 cups (240 grams) powdered sugar

    Toppings:

    Caramel sauce
    Chocolate
    Chopped Pecans

    Directions

    To make the chocolate cupcakes:

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two 12-count cupcake pans with 16 cupcake liners and set aside.

    In a large mixing bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Whisk in the granulated sugar and brown sugar until well combined. Using a whisk or an electric mixer, mix in the oil, egg, vanilla extract, and buttermilk until just combined.

    Add the instant espresso powder into the boiling water and mix until dissolved, then add to the mixing bowl. Mix with the rest of the ingredients until well combined, making sure not to over mix the batter. The batter will be thin, this is okay.

    Evenly distribute the batter between all 16 cupcakes liners, making sure to only fill them a little over halfway full. Bake at 350°F for 18-20 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted into the cupcakes comes out clean. Remove from the oven and carefully remove the cupcakes from the pan. Transfer the cupcakes to a wire rack to cool.

    To make the caramel frosting:

    Add the butter to a saucepan and heat over medium heat until the butter is melted. Add in the brown sugar and heavy cream and stir until fully combined. Allow to cook for a few minutes until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture starts bubbling, reduce heat to low and continue cooking and stirring for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract and salt until fully combined. Pour the caramel sauce into a mixing bowl and allow to cool for 15 minutes.

    After 15 minutes, add in the powdered sugar and mix with a handheld mixer (or in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment) until fully combined. Pipe the frosting on the cooled cupcakes as desired, top with additional caramel sauce (or chocolate) and chopped pecans.

    Chocolate cupcakes adapted from Hershey's

  • Easy Death By Chocolate Cake

    How to make Easy Death By Chocolate Cake

    Yield: Makes one 8 inch cake

    Prep Time: 45 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    Chocolate Cake

    3/4 cup (105 grams) plain flour
    1/2 cup (40 grams) cocoa powder
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1/2 cup (90 grams) brown sugar
    1/4 cup (50 grams) caster sugar
    1/2 cup or 1 stick (115 grams) unsalted butter
    2 large eggs
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 cup (120 ml) of buttermilk

    Chocolate frosting

    1/2 cup or 1 stick (115 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
    3 and 1/2 cups (435 grams) powdered or icing sugar
    4 tablespoons milk
    1/4 cup (20 grams) cocoa powder
    2/3 cup (100 grams) milk chocolate, pieces
    1/4 cup (40 grams) milk or dark chocolate chips

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 360 F (180 C). Grease and line a round 8 inch springform cake tin with baking or parchment paper. In a large mixing bowl, sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and then add the sugars. Pop the butter into the microwave for short bursts, 10 seconds or so at a time, until it is just melted. Give it a stir with a fork to eliminate any lumps. Whisk together the butter, eggs, vanilla and buttermilk until combined – don’t worry if it goes a little lumpy. Then add the wet mixture into the dry mixture and gently fold until just combined.

    Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and pop into the oven. Bake for 25 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middles comes out clean. Leave to cool for 10 minutes. Gently run a knife around the edge of the cake before turning out of the tin. Leave to cool completely on a wire rack.

    To make the chocolate  frosting, add the butter to a large mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer until pale and creamy. Gently sift in the icing sugar, one cup at a time. Add a tablespoon or two of milk to help loosen up the mixture.  Add  the cocoa powder and beat again. Add the final two tablespoons of milk until the frosting is nice and creamy.

    Frost the top of your cake with the chocolate buttercream. Then scatter over your pieces of chocolate and chocolate chips. Cut and serve.

  • Banana Bundt Cake With Nutella Ganache

    How to make Banana Bundt Cake With Nutella Ganache

    Yield: Serves 10-12

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 45 minutes

    Ingredients

    2 and 3/4 cups (385 grams) all-purpose or plain flour
    1 cup (200 grams ) granulated or caster sugar
    3/4 cup (135 grams ) brown sugar
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
    3 large over ripe bananas
    1 cup (230 grams / 2 sticks) unsalted butter
    3 large eggs
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    1 cup (240 ml) greek yogurt
    1/2 cup (120 ml) thickened or heavy cream
    1/2 cup (150 grams) Nutella

    Directions

    Grease a large bundt pan well with butter. Preheat the oven to 360 F (180 C). In a large mixing bowl, sift the flour, then add the sugars, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg. Whisk well.

    Peel your bananas and mash them well with a fork. In a separate bowl, add the butter and microwave for 20-40 seconds, until it is just melted. Then add the eggs, vanilla and greek yogurt and whisk together. Don’t worry if it goes a little lumpy.

    Finally, add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, along with mashed bananas and gently fold together. Pour the cake batter into the prepare cake tin.

    Bake for approximately 35 minutes, then cover with alfoil and bake for a further 5-10 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Leave to cool for at least 15 minutes. Then carefully run a knife around the edges of the pan and gently flip the cake upside down to remove it from the pan. Leave on a wire rack to cool completely.

    To make the Nutella ganache, add the cream and Nutella to a small saucepan and place on the stove on a low heat. Stir until the two combine to form a creamy chocolate ganache. Leave to cool for 10-15 minutes and it will thicken slightly.

    Pour the Nutella ganache over the cooled banana cake. Cut into slices and serve.

  • How to Make Halloween Cupcakes
  • Snickers Peanut Butter Chocolate Cupcakes

    How to make Snickers Peanut Butter Chocolate Cupcakes

    Yield: Makes 12 cupcakes

    Prep Time: 45 minutes

    Cook: 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    Chocolate cupcakes

    3/4 cup (105 grams) all-purpose or plain flour
    1/4 cup (20 grams) cocoa powder
    1/4 cup (20 grams) dutch processed cocoa powder
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated or caster sugar
    1/4 cup (45 grams) brown sugar
    1/2 cup (115 grams or 1 stick) unsalted butter
    2 large eggs
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 cup (120 ml) buttermilk

    Peanut butter frosting

    1/2 cup (115 grams or 1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
    3 and 1/2 cups (435 grams) icing or powdered sugar
    1/2 cup (125 grams) smooth peanut butter
    1/4 cup (60 ml) milk
    1 cup (125 grams) Snickers bars

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 360 F (180 C). Line a 12 hole muffin tin with patty cases. In a large mixing bowl, sift the flour, cocoa powders, baking soda, baking powder and then add the sugars – give it a stir. Pop the butter into the microwave for a short burst, 10 seconds or so at a time, until it is JUST melted. Give it a stir with a fork to eliminate any lumps.  In a separate mixing bowl, add the eggs, vanilla and butter and whisk together until smooth. Then add the wet mixture into the dry mixture, along with the buttermilk and gently fold until just combined.

    Spoon the mixture into the prepared patty cases and pop into the oven. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until just cooked through. Set cakes out onto a wire rack and leave to cool completely.

    To make the peanut butter frosting, place your butter and peanut butter in a large mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. Add in half of your icing or powdered sugar and the milk and beat until the frosting starts to come together. Then add the remaining icing or powdered sugar. The icing should be nice and creamy but thick enough to hold its shape. Pipe the icing onto the cupcakes using a piping bag and a large star tip.

    Cut your Snickers bars into bite sized pieces and add one on top of each cupcake. Enjoy!

  • My Favorite Piping Tip
  • Salted Caramel Apple Sheet Cake

    How to make Salted Caramel Apple Sheet Cake

    Yield: 36 servings

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook: 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the cake:

    2 cups (254 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
    1 cup (200 grams) lightly packed light brown sugar
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    2 sticks (227 grams) unsalted butter
    1/2 cup (120 ml) buttermilk
    2 large eggs
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    2 cups (200 grams) peeled and chopped Granny Smith apples (about 2 medium apples)

    For the glaze:

    1 stick (113 grams) unsalted butter
    1/4 cup (60 ml) milk
    3 cups (375 grams) powdered sugar, sifted
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/4 cup salted caramel sauce (homemade or store-bought)

    Directions

    Make the cake:

    Preheat the oven to 400°F. Butter or oil a 10-by-15-inch jellyroll pan or a 16-3/4 by 12-inch sheet pan.

    In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, salt, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon.

    In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the butter with 1 cup water and heat until the butter melts. Bring to a boil. Once the mixture is boiling, remove from heat and add in the flour mixture. Add in the buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla. Gently stir in the apples.

    Pour the batter into the prepared pan, spreading evenly. Bake for 20 minutes if using a jelly roll pan, and about 17 minutes if using a half sheet pan, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for about 10 to 15 minutes.

    Make the glaze:

    Meanwhile, combine the butter and milk in a large heat-proof bowl. Microwave until the butter is melted. Gradually stir in the powdered sugar until combined. Stir in the vanilla and caramel until combined. Pour evenly over the warm cake. Let set for about 15 minute before slicing and serving.

    Adapted from Chef in Training

  • Pumpkin Cupcakes with Nutella Frosting

    How to make Pumpkin Cupcakes with Nutella Frosting

    Yield: 12 cupcakes

    Prep Time: 40 minutes

    Cook: 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the pumpkin cupcakes:

    1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
    1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 cup pumpkin puree
    1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
    1/2 cup brown sugar
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    2 large eggs
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    For the nutella frosting:

    3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons Nutella
    3 cups powdered sugar
    2 tablespoons heavy cream
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    pinch of salt

    Directions

    To make the pumpkin cupcakes:

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 12-count muffin pan with cupcake liners and set aside.

    In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.

    In a separate mixing bowl, mix together the pumpkin puree, oil, brown sugar, granulated sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract until fully combined. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined, making sure not to over mix the batter.

    Evenly distribute the batter between all 12 cupcake liners, only filling them about 2/3 of the way full, and gently smooth out the batter on top. Bake at 350°F for 16-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cupcake comes out clean.

    Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes. Remove the cupcakes from the pan and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

    To make the nutella frosting:

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large mixing bowl using a hand-held mixer, beat the butter on medium speed for 1-2 minutes until smooth. Add in the Nutella and continue mixing for an additional minute until well combined. Add in the powdered sugar, heavy cream, vanilla, and salt and continue mixing on medium speed until fully combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

    Pipe the frosting on the cooled cupcakes as desired.

  • How to Make Sunflower Cupcakes
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