Samoa Cupcakes

Published September 5, 2013. Updated December 23, 2018

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What would the world do without Samoas? For me, there would definitely be a void I’d have a hard time filling. The infamous Samoa Girl Scout cookies are definitely my favorite of the varieties they offer.

I have a huge weakness for the Samoa ice cream at the grocery store too, and I may or may not pick out the Samoa cookie pieces when I’m dishing my family’s ice cream up and eat them myself. Let’s keep that a secret.

They are probably feeling totally ripped off when they only find 1 cookie piece in their bowl :). I make up for it in other ways though, like making these cupcakes for them. I can manage to share these, I guess.

Samoa Cupcakes | Cooking Classy

These are my idea of a Samoa cookie in cupcakes form. This begins with a moist vanilla cupcake which is dunked into a thick chocolate ganache, then it’s piped with an unbelievably delicious caramel buttercream frosting which consists of a fair amount of homemade caramel sauce.

Then it’s sprinkled with perfectly toasted coconut and lastly it’s finished of with a dainty drizzling of the remaining chocolate ganache and caramel sauce (word to the wise, don’t take the caramel sauce off too early or you’ll be missing out on the deep caramel flavor, also careful not to burn it or it will become slightly bitter. Push it to the limit without getting it burned).

Cupcakes are one of my favorite things to make and share here. I love that they are in individual servings, they seem much easier to decorate than a whole cake, they cool quicker than a full cake, and really who doesn’t love a good cupcake?

If you like Samoa cookies (if you haven’t tried Samoa cookies, just think chocolate, toasted coconut and caramel over vanilla shortbread) then you’ll love these decadent cupcakes! Enjoy!

Samoa Cupcakes | Cooking ClassySamoa Cupcakes | Cooking Classy

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4.50 from 2 votes

Samoa Cupcakes

All the flavors of those crave-able samoa cookies in soft and fluffy cupcake form! Two of the best desserts in one!
Servings: 12
Prep45 minutes
Cook35 minutes
Ready in: 2 hours


Caramel Sauce

Caramel Buttercream Frosting


  • 1 cup chocolate chips (I used 1/2 cup semi-sweet and 1/2 cup milk chocolate)
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut, toasted, cooled and slightly crushed into smaller pieces


  • FOR THE CUPCAKES: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda and salt for 30 seconds, set aside.
  • In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, whip together 1/3 cup butter and 3/4 granulated sugar until pale and fluffy, occasionally scrapping down the sides and bottom of bowl. Blend in vegetable oil.
  • Add in eggs one at a time mixing just until blended after each addition and adding in vanilla with second egg. Whisk together milk and buttermilk in liquid measuring cup.
  • Working in three separate batches and beginning and ending with flour mixture, add 1/3 of the flour mixture followed by 1/2 of the milk mixture and mix just until combined after each addition. Spoon batter into paper lined muffin cups filling each cup nearly 2/3 full (about 1/4 cup batter in each).
  • Bake in preheated oven 16 - 19 minutes until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool in muffin tin several minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • FOR THE CARAMEL SAUCE: Gather all of your ingredients and have them nearby ready to add to the mixture as needed. In a heavy-bottomed 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.
  • FOR THE FROSTING: In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, whip butter on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy. Add powdered sugar and blend on low speed until mixture comes together.
  • Add 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp completely cooled caramel sauce and vanilla and whip on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy (you can add another 1 Tbsp caramel sauce as needed to thin if desired).
  • To assemble the cupcakes:
  • Add chocolate chips and heavy cream to a small microwave safe bowl and heat mixture on 50% power in 20 second intervals, stirring after each interval until melted and smooth and stirring well once it's fully melted (about 30 seconds) to cool slightly.
  • Dip tops of cupcakes in melted chocolate mixture and allow excess to run off, the return upright to wire rack and allow chocolate to cool, about 10 - 20 minutes. Pipe caramel frosting over tops then sprinkle with a spoonful of toasted coconut.
  • Drizzle tops with remaining chocolate and caramel sauce. Serve while chocolate is melty or allow to set at room temperature. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
Nutrition Facts
Samoa Cupcakes
Amount Per Serving
Calories 586 Calories from Fat 297
% Daily Value*
Fat 33g51%
Saturated Fat 23g144%
Cholesterol 89mg30%
Sodium 192mg8%
Potassium 133mg4%
Carbohydrates 70g23%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 55g61%
Protein 4g8%
Vitamin A 757IU15%
Vitamin C 1mg1%
Calcium 68mg7%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Nutrition values are estimates only. See full disclaimer here.


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  • Bill Smith

    A couple of things:
    – I find that the buttercream is too sweet, but others might find it fine
    – The cupcake itself is really good, flavorful but doesn’t mingle with other flavors, moist (despite me not using buttermilk and substituting regular milk instead)
    – Overall, I love this recipe! Would make it again, and can bring it to parties (maybe without coconut for tree-nut allergies) with no doubt of people not liking it!

  • Shannan

    Just curious if you’ve ever tried dulce de leche from a can in these in place of the caramel sauce?

  • Julia K

    I just made these for a friend’s birthday! They turned out great but I used up all the frosting and I think it ended up overpowering the cupcake. Still delicious though! And you had great directions. I’ll possibly add some toasted coconut to the batter next time just for kicks.

  • Tracy

    I made these yesterday and my goodness they are incredible!! They really do taste like the cookie!!! Thank you for sharing the recipe! Could this recipe be doubled or tripled and yield the same results? ????Your recipes are the best I’ve tried and I’ve tried lots! I’ll be trying the vanilla bean next! ????

  • Tracy

    What kind of coconut is used for these? I can’t wait to try them!

  • Patty P

    Was happy to find the recipe, as I am not much of a baker. Must have messed something up though because the cupcakes were sort of dense and bland, and the frosting grainy. Took a really long time to get these done, but fairly pretty in the end. Had to snip the corner off a Ziploc to do the piping and it worked reasonably well if you are in a pinch. Next time, I would buy a boxed cake mix and also try to figure out just what went wrong with my grainy caramel. Thanks for posting!

    • eli

      spoon your flour instead of scooping. that changes the density. check of your recipe as you go and make sure your cold ingredients are room temp (matters more than you think). caramel is hit or miss. its very delicate and seconds matter. take your time with it. it took me quite a few tries to get it just right.(I still mess it up sometimes) you can let your heavy cream get to room temp to keep it from shocking the sugar and making it grainy (nobody tells you that one). I usually sift my powdered sugar to attempt to prevent clumps. beat in your powdered sugar slowly then when it looks pretty well mixed in turn up the speed thats just to prevent powdered sugar lung. beat it for a while, the longer you beat it the fluffier it will be and if you feel like its to dry, I actually keep a medicine dropper in my baking supplies and use that to add milk/heavy cream so I can control it better. baking from scratch is on a whole other level. I used to use boxed mixes and now I can’t. I can taste all the artificial chemicals they put in it. if anyone is ever discouraged just keep trying. you’ll get there and you’ll never look back