Small Batch Chocolate Cupcakes

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These Small Batch Chocolate Cupcakes make 6 perfectly moist and fluffy cupcakes along with a small batch of chocolate buttercream!

Small Batch Chocolate Cupcakes with chocolate buttercream

These Small Batch Chocolate Cupcakes are perfect for Valentine’s Day, a small party or whenever you have a chocolate craving! This recipe comes together in just 30 minutes and yields six perfectly moist and fluffy cupcakes along with a small batch of chocolate buttercream to decorate them with. For more small batch cupcakes try my Small Batch Funfetti Cupcakes or Small Batch Red Velvet Cupcakes!

Ingredient Breakdown

All-purpose flour – this gives the cupcakes structure.

Granulated & brown sugar – sweetens and tenderizes cupcakes. Either light or dark brown sugar will work.

Cocoa powder – gives the cupcakes their chocolate flavor! I always use natural unsweetened cocoa powder.

Baking soda & baking powder – both leaveners are needed to help the cupcakes rise.

Buttermilk – adds flavor and moisture.

Vegetable oil – adds moisture and tenderizes cupcakes. Also allows more chocolate flavor to shine through versus butter!

Egg – binds the ingredients and provides structure.

Vanilla extract and salt – enhances flavor. Always use pure vanilla extract instead of imitation for best flavor.

Hot water – enhances chocolate flavor

Small Batch Chocolate Cupcakes with chocolate buttercream

How To Make Small Batch Chocolate Cupcakes

1. Make the Chocolate Cupcakes: in a large bowl combine all-purpose flour, cocoa powder, granulated sugar, brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

2. In a medium bowl whisk buttermilk, vegetable oil, egg and vanilla extract.

3. Mix wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Once combined, slowly mix in the hot water.

Chocolate Cupcake batter

4. Evenly divide the cupcake batter between 6 cupcake liners then bake at 350°F for 15 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Small Batch Chocolate Cupcakes in a cupcake pan

5. Make the Chocolate Buttercream: using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until light and fluffy.

6. Add the confectioners’ sugar and cocoa powder then mix on low until combined.

7. Add vanilla extract and heavy cream or milk then beat until fluffy. Add salt to taste. Decorate cooled cupcakes as desired. Store Small Batch Chocolate cupcakes in an airtight container for up to 4 days at room temperature or up to 5 days in the fridge.

Pro Tips For Small Batch Chocolate Cupcakes

  • Weigh your ingredients using a kitchen scale! Measuring ingredients by volume is not accurate.
  • Don’t over mix the cupcake batter otherwise it will develop too much gluten and be dense/gummy!
  • Make sure your water is hot NOT boiling and slowly add it to the batter while stirring so you don’t accidentally cook the egg.
  • Do not over fill your cupcake liners. Only fill them 3/4 full. I love this cookie scoop because it fills them with the perfect amount of batter!
  • Wait until the cupcakes are COMPLETELY COOLED before frosting otherwise the buttercream will melt and slide off.

My Favorite Cupcake Tools

More small Batch Recipes You’ll Love

Small Batch Chocolate Cupcake with a bite in it

If you try this recipe then please leave a rating/comment below to let me know how you liked it and feel free to ask any recipe questions you may have! 🙂

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5 from 3 votes

Small Batch Chocolate Cupcakes

These Small Batch Chocolate Cupcakes make 6 perfectly moist and fluffy cupcakes along with a small batch of chocolate buttercream!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 6 cupcakes
Calories 315kcal
Author Maria Azzarelli

Equipment

  • Cupcake pan
  • Stand mixer or hand mixer

Ingredients

Chocolate Cupcakes

  • 60 g (1/2 cup) all-purpose flour
  • 20 g (1/4 cup) cocoa powder
  • 66 g (1/3 cup) granulated sugar
  • 25 g (2 tbsp) brown sugar
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • tsp baking soda
  • 60 g (1/4 cup) buttermilk
  • 30 g (2 tbsp) vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 15 g (1 tbsp) hot water

Chocolate Buttercream

  • 56 g (4 tbsp) unsalted butter, softened
  • 120 g (1 cup) confectioners' sugar
  • 10 g (2 tbsp) cocoa powder
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 tsp heavy cream or milk
  • salt, to taste

Instructions

Chocolate Cupcakes

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a cupcake pan with six paper liners.
  • In a large bowl combine all-purpose flour, cocoa powder, granulated sugar, brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  • In a medium bowl whisk buttermilk, vegetable oil, egg and vanilla extract.
  • Mix wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Once combined, slowly mix in the hot water.
  • Evenly divide the cupcake batter between 6 cupcake liners then bake at 350°F for 15 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Chocolate Buttercream

  • Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until light and fluffy.
  • Add the confectioners' sugar and cocoa powder then mix on low until combined.
  • Add vanilla extract and heavy cream or milk then beat until fluffy. Add salt to taste. Decorate cooled cupcakes as desired.

Notes

  • Weigh your ingredients using a kitchen scale! Measuring ingredients by volume is not accurate.
 
  • Store Small Batch Chocolate cupcakes in an airtight container for up to 4 days at room temperature or up to 5 days in the fridge.
 
  • Nutrition: the provided nutritional information is an estimate per serving. Please read my Nutrition Disclaimer for more information.

Nutrition

Calories: 315kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 49mg | Sodium: 181mg | Potassium: 124mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 35g | Vitamin A: 294IU | Calcium: 52mg | Iron: 1mg

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