Chocolate Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Frosting

February 4, 2013

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Chocolate Cupcakes topped with a rich Salted Caramel Frosting – it’s a match made in heaven! This will likely be one of the tastiest cupcakes you ever have sunk your teeth into! Rich chocolate paired with creamy luscious caramel with hints of salt – you just can’t go wrong here.


Chocolate Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Frosting

Is it just me, or does butter seem to disappear almost as quickly as you get it home? I’m always opening my fridge to find that last stick of butter or sometimes worse, the last 2 Tbsp of butter – ahhh. That’s not going to get me far. I bought over six, one pound packages of butter last week. Already gone. Don’t worry, of course I didn’t eat all of what I make with that myself. Most of it I give to neighbors or friends.

I cook a lot and bake a ton. A lot of that butter went to experimenting to create a delicious chocolate cupcake. I just recently posted a chocolate cupcake  – just yesterday actually (the Almond Joy cupcakes) but I figured with all of that hard work in recipe testing I was going to get two recipes out of such a delicious chocolate cupcake =). Really you could frost the chocolate cupcakes with any frosting you wanted.

You can use the fluffy vanilla buttercream I have posted,  the chocolate cream cheese frosting, the chocolate buttercream frosting, or the cookies and cream frosting. But this time around, I wanted this to be a wow factor cupcake.

An indulgent, melt away with each chocolaty bite cupcake. These are basically chocolate velvet cupcakes crowned with the most luscious caramel frosting. Their texture is so soft and so tender, and they are perfectly moist. I hate dry cupcakes and I hate spongy cupcakes so most likely you will never find any of the two here (unless it’s angel food cake).

chocolate cupcakes with salted caramel frosting

I tried different piping and frosting methods on these cupcakes. First I did the basic dome like frosting  by hand and smoothed it with an icing spatula. I decided it definitely was not fitting enough for these cupcakes, as I think these require a fancy decoration to showcase such an intensely delicious cupcake.

The second time around I piped the frosting with the 2D tip (my favorite) and didn’t know what to do with the caramel. I drizzled it over the top and it just turned it into a sloppy looking mess. Finally my favorite method was to pipe the frosting on, then drizzle the caramel along the edges of the lacy frosting.

It may seem a little time consuming so if you don’t care about the look then simply frost them how ever you like. A quicker method would be to use the tip that I used on the Salted Caramel Apple Cupcakes I posted then drizzle the caramel over the top.

How ever you decorate them, please just be sure you try these cupcakes. You wont regret it. Enjoy!

Wanna bite?? Make them. Now =).


Chocolate Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Frosting

5 from 1 vote

it's a match made in heaven! This will likely be one of the tastiest cupcakes you ever have sunk your teeth into! Rich chocolate paired with creamy luscious caramel with hints of salt - you just can't go wrong here.

Servings: 24
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour


  • 2/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1/2 cup butter , melted
  • 1/3 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 recipe Caramel Frosting , recipe follows

Salted Caramel Frosting

  • 1 cup salted butter , at room temperature
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 3/4 cup Caramel Sauce , recipe follows (cooled completely)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp coarse sea salt , for sprinkling

Caramel Sauce

  • 1 1 /2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp water
  • 6 Tbsp salted butter
  • 1 cup heavy cream


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In large heat proof mixing bowl, whisk together cocoa powder and baking soda. Carefully pour in boiling water and whisk until bubbling subsides and mixture is well blended, allow to cool for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, in a separate large mixing bowl, using an electric hand mixer set on low speed, blend together melted butter, vegetable oil, granulated sugar, vanilla and salt until well combined, about 30 seconds. Stir in eggs and eggs yolks, mixing just until combined after each addition. Blend in cocoa mixture then blend in heavy cream. Slowly mix in flour and blend until combined, while scraping down sides and bottom of bowl.
  2. Divide batter among 24 paper lined muffin cups, filling each cup about 2/3 full. Bake in preheated oven until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, about 18 - 20 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool in muffin tin several minutes before transferring to wire rack to cool. Cool completely then frost with caramel frosting, drizzle with room temperature caramel sauce (I poured the caramel sauce in a small Ziploc bag and cut a very small tip off end to drizzle) and sprinkle with coarse sea salt. Store in an airtight container.
  3. For the salted caramel frosting:
  4. 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. Add powdered sugar and blend on low speed until mixture comes together. Add caramel sauce and vanilla and whip on medium-high speed until light and fluffy about 2 minutes.
  5. For the caramel sauce:
  6. Gather all of your ingredients and have them nearby ready to add to the mixture as needed. In a heavy-bottomed 3 quart saucepan, heat sugar and water over moderately high heat whisking constantly to dissolve sugar. Once mixture reaches a boil, stop whisking and allow mixture to boil until it reaches a dark amber color, carefully swirling pan occasionally. Once mixture reaches a dark amber color, immediately add butter and whisk until butter has melted then immediately remove from heat. Wait 3 seconds then carefully pour in cream and immediately whisk to combine (it will bubble vigorously). Whisk until mixture is smooth. Allow caramel to cool several minutes then pour into a glass jar to cool completely and refrigerate.
  7. Recipe Source: Cooking Classy
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Caramel Frosting, Chocolate Cupcakes
Author: Jaclyn

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  • Muffet

    Loved them as cupcakes. Can I use this as a cake recipe and bake in a 13×9 pan? If so, how long should it be baked?

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      I haven’t tested myself but it should work well in a 13 by 9. I’m guessing around 35 mins.

  • Mary Beth Pederson

    Love this recipe! I just made it and will be using the cupcakes a little over 24 hours from now. Do I need to refrigerate the cupcakes because of the frosting?

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      Yes I recommend refrigerating so the frosting doesn’t soften.

  • Kristina

    Is the caramel sauce more on the runny side? If not what did I do wrong?

  • Kat

    Absolutely delicious!!! Thanks so much for this recipe, I made these last night for a co-worker’s birthday…this is the best chocolate cake recipe I’ve ever tried and I’ve baked for years and years!! Love the salted caramel sauce….A co-worker described these perfectly, they are layers of flavor that just combine really well. You can taste the yummy chocolate cake, the buttercream with a hint of caramel then the caramel sauce with a hint of saltiness! Amazing!!!

  • Kristen

    Me again! I want to make these for a Halloween party tomorrow night but I want to make mini cupcakes this time. I’m not sure how long to cook them for without overbaking. Have you made these as mini’s? How long to cook?

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      I haven’t tried minis yet but I imagine it would be about 8 – 11 minutes. Sorry I wish I could say for sure.

    • Danni

      I made these as minis and the cooking time wasn’t much different. I baked mine for about 15 minutes and they were perfect. These are such YUMMY cupcakes.

  • Kristen

    I made these last night and they are A-MAZ-ING! The cupcakes themselves taste like the ones from the gourmet shop in town and the salted caramel came out perfectly. I tend to have very good luck with your recipes but this one was something really extra-special!!!

  • Shane

    I am excited to try these cupcakes. I need to make Heath Bar cupcakes so I was just going to make chocolate cupcakes with Heath pieces mixed in and then topped with Caramel Buttercream and chocolate ganache. I think I want to use this as my base. What do you think?