Perfect chocolate cupcakes topped with rich and creamy Nutella buttercream to celebrate a special little boy’s birthday.
I can’t believe my baby boy is two years old! Where has the time gone? He is no longer a baby, but a toddler in every way— running around playing make-believe, talking in phrases, and demanding that he do everything himself. It’s heartbreaking and exciting all at the same time.
I do miss my baby, but I love my toddler. He is so fun!
We kept his birthday celebration simple this year, since he’s young enough that we can get away with it. Lunch out with some family, presents, and then cupcakes. What more could you want in a birthday anyway?
I’ve been sitting on this recipe idea for months, knowing it would be the perfect birthday cupcake. I took my favorite chocolate cake recipe, scaled it down for cupcakes, and then topped them with an incredible Nutella buttercream frosting. And sprinkles, of course.
Simply put, they are fabulous. I may have even hidden the last few from the birthday boy so I could eat them all myself. It’s our little secret, okay?
The cupcakes are perfect, but the Nutella buttercream really steals the show. There’s a whole container of Nutella in the frosting, so the flavor really comes through. If you’re a Nutella fan, you’ve got to try this!
Turns out, he’s a fan.
Happy birthday, little man.
baking tip:Cupcake baking tips
- Use a measuring scoop to portion equal amounts of batter into each cup so they bake evenly. (This is the one I use.)
- Don’t fill more than 2/3 full. Cupcakes use the walls of the cupcake liners or muffin pan to help them rise. If you overfill the liners, there’s too much batter and not enough space to climb. The batter can spill over the sides and you’ll be left with flat cupcakes.
- Resist the urge to open the oven and peek during baking. The small cupcakes are more susceptible to sinking due to a drop in temperature.
- Using your oven light, look to see when the cupcakes are domed and appear to be set. Then open and touch lightly. If they spring back, they’re done.
- Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes, or until they’re cool enough to handle, then transfer them to a cooling rack. The heat from the pan will overcook and dry out the cupcakes if left in too long.
Chocolate Nutella Cupcakes
For the cupcakes:
- 2/3 cup (160 ml) hot coffee (see Note)
- 1/2 cup (42 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 1/4 cup (150 grams) all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2/3 cup (150 grams) sour cream
- 1/2 cup (120 ml) vegetable oil
For the frosting:
- 4 cups (908 grams) powdered sugar, sifted
- 1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 13 oz jar (370 grams) Nutella or chocolate hazelnut spread
- 1/3-1/2 cup (75-113 grams) sour cream
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a muffin pan with paper liners or grease with cooking spray.
- In a small bowl, combine the hot coffee and cocoa powder. Whisk until smooth. Set aside to cool. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt and baking soda.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, or in a bowl with a hand-held mixer, beat the sugar and eggs until pale and thick, about 3 minutes. Add the sour cream, and then add the vegetable oil. Add the dry ingredients in 3 additions, alternating with the cocoa mixture. Mix until smooth.
- Fill the muffin cups 2/3 full. Bake for 17-20 minutes, or until the tops of the cupcakes bounce back when touched. Let cool in the pan 5 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool cool completely.
- !To make the frosting: Beat the powdered sugar, butter, Nutella and 1/3 cup of the sour cream on medium speed until smooth. Add more sour cream if necessary to achieve a spreadable consistency. Increase speed to high and beat for an additional 1-2 minutes until light and fluffy. Frost cupcakes as desired.
- Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.