It’s good to be back in the kitchen!! Martha Stewart’s Buttermilk Cupcakes with Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream

It was a very exciting night in our house. We came home to a fully functioning kitchen AND I got some belated birthday gifts in the mail (thanks Dad!). Included in the package from my dad was Martha Stewart’s new cupcake book. I knew it was a sign that I needed to make cupcakes to break in my new stove.

I decided to go with the buttermilk cupcakes since I had buttermilk in the fridge. These cupcakes might become my go-to non-chocolate cupcake. They are very tender and have a great flavor.

I topped them with the chocolate Swiss meringue buttercream. I’m a huge fan of SMBC, and have never tried the chocolate variation before. This frosting has a very subtle chocolate flavor that paired nicely with the cupcake (this frosting would also be great on chocolate cupcakes).

I decided to use some of my colored cupcake liners to brighten things up a bit. I ended up getting 3 dozen cupcakes from this recipe. I made a half batch of the frosting and it frosted 31 of my cupcakes. That’s ok though because we just “taste tested” the naked ones.

I also wanted to share my new cupcake container. I used to have the Wilton one which is somewhat big and awkward and it only holds 12 cupcakes. The bigger problem is that it wouldn’t fit into our new cabinets (before the renovation, I just kept it on top of the cabinets). But I found this double decker one at Container Store and it’s perfect. Not only does it fit in our cabinets, it also holds two dozen cupcakes. And since the layers snap together, if you only had 1 dozen cupcakes, it would work great for that too. We both agree this cupcake carrier is much better than the old one.

Yellow Buttermilk Cupcakes – from (the same recipe is in the cookbook) – makes 36 cupcakes
3 cups cake flour (not self-rising)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (2 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 1/4 cups sugar
5 large whole eggs plus 3 egg yolks, room temperature
2 cups buttermilk, room temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners. Sift together both flours, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, cream butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Reduce speed to medium. Add whole eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Add yolks, and beat until thoroughly combined. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of buttermilk, and beating until combined after each. Beat in vanilla.

Divide batter evenly among lined cups, filling each three-quarters full. Bake, rotating tins halfway through, until cupcakes spring back when lightly touched and a cake tester inserted in centers comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Transfer tins to wire racks to cool 10 minutes; turn out cupcakes onto racks and let cool completely. Cupcakes can be stored overnight at room temperature, or frozen up to 2 months, in airtight containers.

Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream – from – I made a 1/2 batch of this since I had 3 egg yolks left from the cupcakes. Here is the full batch recipe which makes 4 cups
5 large egg whites
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 1/2 oz semisweet chocolate, melted and cooled
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt

Combine egg whites, and sugar in the heatproof bowl of an electric mixer. Set bowl over a pan of simmering water. Whisk constantly until sugar has dissolved and whites are hot to the touch, 5 to 7 minutes.

Transfer bowl to the electric mixer. Using the whisk attachment, mix on low speed, gradually increasing to high speed, until stiff, glossy peaks form, about 10 minutes.

At low speed, add butter to egg whites, and beat until smooth. Add vanilla, chocolate, and salt, and continue mixing until incorporated.

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36 Responses to “Dark Chocolate Frosting Recipe”

  1. #
    Party Box Design — June 14, 2010 at 11:47 am

    loving the baileys idea! mmmmm

  2. #
    Jenni @ Project Cookie 365 — June 14, 2010 at 3:54 pm

    I use the same recipe (I think, I’ve had it for years; a standby. I think it was called “Chocolate Fudge Frosting”)
    Best thing EVER to do? add a bit of mint extract – it’s very easily my most popular cake filling.. and my favourite icing to eat by the spoonful lol.

  3. #
    Erin — June 14, 2010 at 3:57 pm

    I haven’t found the perfect chocolate frosting yet, so I’ll definitely have to try this one!

  4. #
    hannah! — June 14, 2010 at 3:59 pm

    i definitely, definitely have to try this soon. i can’t get enough of chocolate!

  5. #
    Lollicake Bakeshop — June 14, 2010 at 4:03 pm

    It’s funny about the no milk thing…I was making a new martini recipe that was super strong, so I thought cream would help it become drinkable – but I had no cream, but I did have Vanilla Caramel Coffeemate…it was great!

  6. #
    Joanne — June 14, 2010 at 5:31 pm

    Ironically, I almost never have milk and always have Bailey’s. Go figure.

    Sometimes you really do need a seriously dark chocolatey frosting. This looks absolutely ideal.

  7. #
    Justin — June 14, 2010 at 6:02 pm

    you really got into the food styling there — cute pic with the cupcake in the sprinkles.

  8. #
    Pegster — June 14, 2010 at 7:32 pm

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  9. #
    Pegster — June 14, 2010 at 7:33 pm

    This sounds nice – I’ll have to try it one day! Jen, have you tried King Arthur Flour’s Supersimple Chocolate Frosting recipe? It is my favourite recipe (so far) for chocolate frosting – I’d definitely recommend it!

    (Sheesh! deleted to fix a typo! Wish there was an edit function :))

  10. #
    Jen — June 14, 2010 at 7:40 pm

    Pegster – I have not tried the KA recipe. It looks similar to this chocolate frosting recipe which is delicious!

    The think I love about this frosting is the stiffness and the fudgeness.

  11. #
    Memรณria — June 14, 2010 at 11:30 pm

    I like this frosting for when I want something quick. Otherwise, I like to use frosting that involves melted, good chocolate for those special occasions. YUM! I would gobble up your cupcakes in a second.

  12. #
    steph — June 15, 2010 at 3:14 pm

    Great call on the Bailey’s – my mom would love that icing. I am going to try this next time I make cupcakes.

  13. #
    Elina — June 15, 2010 at 6:49 pm

    I would never think to sub bailey’s for milk. Brilliant. I love my chocolate desserts to be super chocolaty – this looks great!
    LOVE the super pink sprinkles too. So pretty ๐Ÿ˜€

  14. #
    Elina — June 15, 2010 at 6:50 pm

    Oh, I forgot to mention that I’m hosting a giveaway. I wonder if it would come handy in this baking project…

  15. #
    ajcabuang04 — June 15, 2010 at 9:07 pm

    These look great!! I love your photos!! I’ve been searching for a good chocolate-y frosting and I think I might try this!!
    Would you mind checking out my blog? ๐Ÿ˜€

  16. #
    Samantha Angela — June 22, 2010 at 2:02 pm

    I could have definitely used this recipe for my sourdough chocolate cake this week

  17. #
    Kris — June 28, 2010 at 1:24 am

    i just made this frosting today to go inside some cupcakes using your cone method. and i topped with vanilla buttercream, at my hubby’s request.

    let me just say this was so delicious i had to take my whitening strips out early so i could lick my fingers, and then the bowl. then my 15 month old attacked me to lick the spatula. we were all sugar high and happy before dinner.

    my hubby said “every day i am happier i married you because of things like this”

    Thanks for sharing this recipe!!!

  18. #
    Jen — June 29, 2010 at 2:16 am

    Kris – I love hearing comments like that! Thanks for trusting my recipes enough to try on your hubby!

  19. #
    Xiaolu — September 19, 2010 at 4:00 pm

    Mmm this looks fantastic, though the ingredients look similar to another delicious recipe I’ve used before that is pretty soft. I’m guessing it’s the butter temperature. Should it be room temperature here? Thanks!

  20. #
    Jen — September 19, 2010 at 5:32 pm

    You definitely want your butter at room temperature so it creams nicely.

  21. #
    Jenn — October 18, 2010 at 5:13 pm

    I have the Bailey’ but I’m out of cocoa powder. Have you ever tried subbing it with melted chocolate? And if so how much do you use?

  22. #
    Anonymous — January 15, 2012 at 2:58 am

    Best frosting ever. Perfect taste, texture and color. It was divine. I will never use another chocolate frosting recipe ever again. Thank you very, very much! It is truly a gift. ๐Ÿ™‚

  23. #
    dncnqeen — March 17, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    I am a person who has been cooking from the age of 5 ….lol now i have certin likes loves and disliks lol however i found a revepie i wanted to make and it called for a fudge type frosting…. knowing i didnt have one i liked for this so i started looking friday night and didnt come across your recepie until saturday morning so i got out my ingreadience.. but i didnt have Balies or white milk i had some Cream de Mint and Choc. Milk so i straied a tad from ur recepie …. i used 1/2 stick of butter, and to get 1/3 cup of liquid i used aprox 1/4 cup of Cream de Mint and the rest Choc. Milk. Plus the res of ur ingreadience …..omg this is the best dark choc fudge frosting ive ever had!!!! And i used the best dk. Cocoa i know of !!!!!! Thankyou thankyou THANKYOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  24. #
    Neida — February 4, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    I’m a baker and for the life of me I can’t find a thick chocolate fudge frosting. Is this frosting thick? I don’t want anything too creamy, like ganache when you let it sit. Help please!

    • beantownbaker — February 4th, 2013 @ 9:45 pm

      This frosting is definitely thick. You can see in the pictures that it held up nicely to piping. It’s not as creamy as a ganache.

  25. #
    Neida — February 4, 2013 at 9:57 pm

    Thank you for responding! ๐Ÿ™‚ I see that some people use melted chocolate instead of cocoa powder. Doesn’t it really matter?

    • beantownbaker — February 5th, 2013 @ 10:13 am

      For this recipe, I always use cocoa powder.

  26. #
    Teri — October 30, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    If I make these the day before do I have to refrigerate them(since the recipe calls for milk)or can I leave them on the counter covered?

    • beantownbaker — October 30th, 2013 @ 8:21 pm

      You can leave them on the counter. The milk in the frosting stabilizes so it won’t go bad. I’d put them in a covered container though.

  27. #
    neeti — December 21, 2013 at 11:42 am

    Hi. Is the butter you use salted or unsalted?

    • beantownbaker — December 26th, 2013 @ 11:01 am

      I always use unsalted butter unless specified as salted butter.

  28. #
    Corinne — December 29, 2013 at 11:33 am

    This is absolutely THE BEST chocolate frosting recipe I have EVER tried. I used it to frost some homemade vanilla mint cupcakes and topped them with an Andes mint for my daughters sweet 16 party. I had complete strangers tell me I need to open up a bakery and sell nothing but those cupcakes! Thank you so much for posting this. It is truly amazing.

    • beantownbaker — January 2nd, 2014 @ 1:32 pm

      SO glad you enjoy this recipe! Nothing beats a great chocolate frosting.

  29. #
    Christina — April 25, 2014 at 1:38 pm

    I can’t wait to try this! I LOVE the flavor of the hersey’s dark choc frosting recipe but its so thin that i can’t use it for cupcakes, only for a cake. I even tried refrigeration overnight to see if that would thicken it up and it didn’t. so i can not wait try to this one for my cupcakes!

    • beantownbaker — April 27th, 2014 @ 2:53 pm

      I agree. The Hershey’s one is just too thin for cupcakes.

  30. #
    tess — December 26, 2014 at 6:24 pm

    I made a variation on this recipe for my daughter’s birthday cake yesterday and it was fabulous!

    I’m still trying to figure out how 6T butter is enough though–I ended up putting in two whole sticks of butter and adding in the milk after the first addition (I added it slowly) of powdered sugar/cocoa combo–it was so thick and dry that my mixer was making new, horrible noises and I was sure it was going to die! LOL

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