Chocolate Mint Cupcakes

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Chocolate Mint Cupcakes
The classic flavors of chocolate and Mint flavors perfectly complement each other. Pure peppermint extract subtly flavors both the moist and chocolaty cakes and the meringue Buttercream without being overpowering. Chopped dark chocolate and mint leaves are added for a finishing garnish.
Recipe type: Cupcakes, Chocolate
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Recipe Notes
Ingredients
Batter:
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • 1½ teaspoons baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup buttermilk, room temperature
  • ¾ cup warm water
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1½ cup granulated sugar
Mint Meringue Buttercream:
  • 5 large egg whites
  • 1¼ cups granulated sugar
  • 1/16 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
  • ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Garnish:
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped dark chocolate
  • Small mint leaves
Instructions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare two standard 12-cup muffin pans; line with paper cupcake liners.
Batter:
  1. In a medium mixing bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt; sift or whisk together to mix. Set aside.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, stir the buttermilk, water, vegetable oil, peppermint extract, and vanilla extract together. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl of an electric mixer, add the eggs and beat on low speed about 1 minute or until blended, and then increase the mixer speed to high and beat for 5 to 8 minutes or until the mixture is very thick and drops in ribbons when the beater is lifted. Lower the speed to medium and slowly add the sugar, continuing to beat another 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. With the mixer on low speed, add about one third of the flour mixture, mix just until the flour is almost completely blended. Scrape the bowl down, and add about one half of the buttermilk mixture, blending just until mixed. Scrape the bowl down again and continue alternating with the flour mixture and buttermilk mixture, ending with the last portion of the flour, and stirring just until blended.
  5. Spoon the batter into the cupcake liners. Fill ⅔ full, using about ¼ cup of batter per cup. Tip: Avoid over-filling the liners which may cause the batter to run-over the sides when baking. It is better to bake any remaining batter separately after the first pan of cupcakes has finished baking.
  6. Bake: Bake, rotating pan halfway through, 18 to 20 minutes, or until the cakes are just firm and spring back when gently pressed, and a toothpick, wooden skewer, or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool slightly in cupcake pan, and turn out of pan when cool enough to handle. Repeat process with any remaining batter. Cool cupcakes completely on a wire cooling rack before frosting.
Mint Meringue Buttercream:
  1. In a large bowl of an electric stand mixer combine egg whites, sugar, and salt; place the bowl over a pan of simmering water. Using a wire whisk, whisk constantly by hand until the mixture is hot, about 3 to 5 minutes. Tip: the mixture should reach about 130 degrees on an instant read thermometer, or feel completely smooth when rubbed between your fingertips. Remove from heat.
  2. Attach the bowl to the electric stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk on medium high speed for 5 to 7 minutes or until the mixture forms a thick fluffy meringue and is cool. Tip: Touch the meringue and make sure it has cooled to room temperature. Also the outside of the bowl should feel cool to the touch.
  3. Stop the mixer, remove the whisk and attach the paddle. With the mixer on medium speed add the butter, about 2 tablespoons at a time and mixing 20 to 30 seconds after each addition. While adding the butter, stop the mixer occasionally to scrape the mixture off the paddle and scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula so the mixture blends evenly. Add the peppermint extract and vanilla extract and continue beating until the Buttercream is thick and smooth, about another 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Buttercream should be used immediately, or refrigerate or freeze until needed.
  5. Use a small offset spatula to frost the top of each cupcake, or use a pastry bag and decorating tip to pipe the frosting. Tip: If frosting seems too soft for piping, refrigerate 30 minutes or longer for the desired consistency.
Garnish:
  1. Sprinkle chopped chocolate on top of frosting. Just before serving add a small mint leaf. Tip: Add the mint leaves just before serving; the moisture from the cupcakes and frosting will make the leaves wilt and turn brown if added too far in advance of serving.
  2. Refrigerate frosted cupcakes until ready to serve. Refrigerate leftovers.

Chocolate Mint Cupcakes

Chocolate Mint Cupcakes

Chocolate Mint Cupcakes recipe