This is not the first time I blogged about chocolate and salted caramel. I made similar ones three years ago for my boyfriend’s lab party.  Because I didn’t get to eat one back then, this cupcake has been on my baking list for a long time. Looking back at that salted caramel cupcake…I seriously needed to step up my frosting game! I am pretty happy with my piping skills this time. I used Wilton 1B to make these big wavy swirls. I guess I could’ve drizzled the caramel sauce in a more civilized manner. Artistic drizzling is a skill I still need to master.

I used a different combination of recipe this time. I made my homemade salted caramel using this recipe. It’s a great recipe with step-by-step pictures. I  even got a candy thermometer this time to avoid burning it.

For the cupcake I used my favourite chocolate cupcake recipe from Add a pinch. Of all the chocolate cake recipes I’ve tried, this one is the best! It’s moist, fluffy but not over fluffy, super chocolaty, basically just the right texture and density for a cupcake base. Sometimes I add a little bit more espresso powder for a little something extra ;). For the frosting I’ve adapted from Cooking Classy. I used about 1/2 cup to 3/4 cup of salted caramel sauce for the buttercream. The more caramel sauce you add the thinner the icing. I wanted my frosting to hold its shape so I added a bit less than 3/4 cup.


Here is a bonus photo of one these chocolaty babies with a lemon cupcake with strawberry buttercream. Both made for a recent cupcake order 🙂


Chocolate cupcakes with salted caramel buttercream frosting

(Adapted from Add a Pinch and Cooking Classy)
Yields 12-14 cupcakes

For the cupcake:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup cocoa
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon espresso powder
½ cup milk (2% or 3.25% room temperature)
¼ cup vegetable oil
1 egg (room temperature)
½ teaspoon vanilla
½ cup boiling water


  1. Preheat oven to 325º F.
  2. Place cupcake liners in muffin tin. Spray lightly with cooking spray.
  3. Don’t forget to BOIL WATER!
  4. Add flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, salt and espresso powder to a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Whisk through to combine or, using your paddle attachment, stir through flour mixture until combined well.
  5. Add milk, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla to flour mixture and mix together on medium speed until well combined (Very important to use a hand mixer here or cupcake won’t rise as nice). Reduce speed and carefully add boiling water to the cake batter. Beat on high speed for about 1 minute to add air to the batter.
  6. Evenly distribute cake batter. Each cupcake liner should be about ¾ full.
  7. Place in the oven and bake 12-15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  8. Remove from the oven and allow the cupcakes to cool completely.

For the buttercream:
1/2 cup salted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
3-4 cups powdered sugar
1/2 to 3/4 cup Caramel Sauce, at room temperature.
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp coarse sea salt, for sprinkling


  1. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, whip butter on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 – 4 minutes.
  2. Add powdered sugar and blend on low speed until mixture comes together.
  3. Add caramel sauce and vanilla and whip on medium-high speed until light and fluffy about 2 minutes.
  4. Pipe onto cooled cupcakes with your favourite pipping tip. I used Wilton 1B.

Don’t forget to drizzle with more caramel sauce and sprinkle with sea salt! Or top it off with some salty pretzels!


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