Chocolate Stout Cupcakes

January 28, 2010
4 Ratings
  • Prep time 20 minutes
  • Cook time 20 minutes
  • Serves 24
Author Notes

A year ago, we ventured into NYC for our annual trek to one of the many museums. On that trip, we went to The Guggenheim. Honestly, I thought it was bizarre. Looking back, I realize I am so not into the artsy-fartsy scene (apologies to my artsy-fartsy friends.)

Last year's exhibit was Tino Sehgal’s art of human interaction. The museum was overwhelmingly bare. The man and woman in the lobby making out in slow motion (part of the exhibit) was fun to look at for maybe 5 minutes, but that got old real fast. Strange children kept approaching me, trying to start up conversations, as I'm hoofing it up the ramp trying desperately to find some art work.

By the time we got up to the top floors (finally, some artwork), I was tired and annoyed, speedily hopped into the elevator and exited the building. A few short blocks away, as if sent by the heavens, we stumbled upon the Cupcake Stop truck. I ran. I ordered. I wolfed one down - something chocolatey - I told the servers I follow them on twitter and how excited I was to find them - and immediately went back for a second. Turning to my family to share my second cupcake, they said "Mom you've got chocolate all over your face." Ah well. At least the day wasn't a total disaster.

Adapted from a Bon Appetit recipe for Chocolate Stout Cake, I first made these mini cakes to celebrate Guinness' 250th birthday. It's an awesome cake. I like to top off these beautiful little cakes with a simple mocha icing, since this recipe is all about the cake. To dress it up, plop a nice fat berry on top, or a shiny whole coffee bean.

If the Cupcake Stop served these, I'd go back for seconds again, but now I'll remember to wipe my mouth. —mrslarkin

What You'll Need
  • for the cupcakes
  • 1/2 cup Guinness Stout
  • 1/2 cup espresso, or strong black coffee
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup light brown sugar (press out any lumps)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda (press out any lumps)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • for the mocha glaze
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons hot water
  • 24 perfect berries, washed and air dried, or 24 perfect whole coffee beans
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Set oven rack to middle. Lightly grease cupcake pan(s) with cooking spray. Line cupcake pan(s) with 24 paper liners.
  2. Warm the stout and coffee. I do this in the microwave for about 2 minutes. Remove from heat, then add butter and stir until melted. Add cocoa powder and vanilla, and stir till combined.
  3. In large bowl, combine flour, sugars, baking soda and salt.
  4. In mixer fitted with paddle attachment, mix together the eggs and sour cream. Pour in chocolate mixture and mix slowly. Gradually add flour mixture and gently mix until it is all combined. Fill each liner ¾ full.
  5. Bake for 18 – 20 minutes, turning pan(s) from back to front and top to bottom half-way through cooking time. Check with a cake tester to be sure – it should come out clean. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes, then remove cakes from pan(s) and set on cooling rack to cool completely.
  6. For glaze, mix together dry ingredients in a medium-sized bowl. Add hot water by tablespoon-ful. Mix with a spoon until a loose icing is achieved. Alternatively, you can use fresh-brewed espresso in place of the water and espresso powder. Dip tops of cakes into glaze and set on wax or parchment-lined pans to catch drips. Top with berries or coffee beans and let cakes dry for about 20 minutes.
  7. Serve with a lovely espresso, caffe latte, glass of milk, or the remaining stout if you haven't guzzled it down already.
  8. Alternatively, bake in two 8 1/2" or 9" round cake pans, greased and lined with parchment, for 30 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • lorigoldsby
  • wssmom
  • mrso
  • mrslarkin
  • TheWimpyVegetarian

20 Reviews

Mithu January 31, 2018
Is there anyway I can make these cupcakes as flavourful WITHOUT adding any espresso/coffee? My RHR jumps from 48bpm to ~90+ and it leaves me nauseated for 2 days before I crash because of the caffeine. I love Guinness and chocolate together, so I am hoping for a positive answer!
mrslarkin January 31, 2018
Yes! Just substitute with water. U
Gustave February 23, 2013
Recipe doesnt work: cupcakes sunk and didnt hold together. The method was off
mrslarkin February 23, 2013
sorry it didn't work out for you Gustave. This recipe works perfectly for me, and for others on the site. It's one of our favorite cupcakes!
lorigoldsby June 7, 2011
How could i forget about cupcakes as street food? Yes, yes! yes!
mrslarkin June 7, 2011
I know! I couldn't resist.
hazeddazed April 15, 2011
oh my do these look delicious!!
mrslarkin April 15, 2011
thank you hazeddazed!
wssmom April 15, 2011
How did I let this slip through the cracks? Heading to to IMMEDIATELY makes these!!
mrslarkin April 15, 2011
thanks wssmom! This is one of my favorite cakes.
wssmom April 20, 2011
They were a HUGE hit. HUGE!!!! Thanks so much!!!
mrslarkin April 21, 2011
Yay!! So very glad.
mrso December 17, 2010
Making these for friends tonight, a big HIT every time, love love love!
mrslarkin February 9, 2011
Wow! Just saw this now! So glad you enjoy these!
mrslarkin March 19, 2010
Made this cake again tonight. Batter fits in three 6" pans. Butter pans very well and line with parchment. Butter parchment as well. Bake for about 30 - 35 minutes. Makes a very tall 3-layer cake. Use wooden dowels for extra support! (or freeze one layer for later.)
mrslarkin February 13, 2010
Note on baking in cake pans: Grease two 6" round pans with butter, line with parchment. Fill pans 1/2 to 2/3 with batter. Don't over-fill! There will be extra batter - about 4+ jumbo cupcakes worth. Might work with 3 pans - will try next time.
TheWimpyVegetarian January 30, 2010
I saw that recipe and tore it out - in fact I still have it since it sounded so interesting with the stout. You've motivated me to try this and your version. I love the mocha icing and berry on top you've done. Beautiful.
mrslarkin January 30, 2010
Thanks ChezSuzanne! It's an awesome recipe. When I made it the very first time using only stout, I felt the cake had way too much of a yeasty taste, so since then I've cut back on the stout.
mrslarkin January 28, 2010
Thank you so much, Jennifer Ann! They're also dangerous - you can't eat just one!
Jennifer A. January 28, 2010
These look beautiful and sound delicious!