I found these chocolate cupcakes in the Barefoot Contessa At Home cookbook and just fell for it right away. Keep in mind, all these pictures are originals from The Male Baker kitchen! Enjoy!

Makes 12 chocolate cupcakes


12 tbsp              Unsalted butter at room temperature
2/3 cup             Granulated sugar
2/3 cup             Light brown sugar
2                          Large eggs at room temperature
2 tsp                  Pure vanilla extract
1 cup                 Buttermilk stirred at room temperature
½ cup               Sour Cream at room temperature
2 tbsp                Freshly Brewed coffee
1¾ cups          All-purpose flour
1 cup                 Cocoa powder
1½ tsp              Baking soda
½ tsp                Kosher salt


First you want to heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Then spray the cupcake pans with oil or line them with simple paper liners (black or clear). I used some blue liners with stars, which I wasn’t really a fan of.

The next step is to cream together the butter and the two sugars on a high speed until light and fluffy, around 5 minutes. An electric mixer or a beater will do the trick. Follow this by adding the eggs one at a time until incorporated, then by adding your vanilla, mix well. Next, mix together the buttermilk, sour cream and coffee in another bowl. In a third bowl, mix together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and kosher salt. On a low speed with the mixer add the buttermilk mixture and the flour mixture in thirds to the original butter mix, beginning with the buttermilk mix and ending with the flour mix. It is important here to only mix until blended! Scrape the sides of the mixer with a spatula and fold in whatever was not mixed in.

Fill the ready cupcake pans with the batter until the batter is level with the tray. This will ensure a great muffin top, everyone’s most favourite part! Bake in the middle of the oven for 20-25 minutes until the toothpick comes out clean. When ready, take out the cupcakes and let cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Take them out of the pan and wait until completely cool to coat with frosting.

Peanut Butter Icing


1 cup                Confectioners sugar
1 cup                Creamy peanut butter (Jif works great)
5 tbsp               Unsalted butter, at room temperature
¾ tsp                Pure vanilla extract
1/3 cup            Heavy cream

Mix first 4 ingredients in a mixer until creamy. Make sure to scrape the sides while it mixes. Once the mixture is nice and creamy, add the cream and beat on high until the mixture is light and smooth.

To top off the entire experience with these chocolate cupcakes you MUST try putting some ground sea salt of the tops of these muffins to give it that sweet and salty mix that just melts in your mouth!