The Easiest Chocolate cupcakes

filed under: Cupcakes on November 6, 2014

I was in a pinch.  Ever since our chickens started laying eggs, I vowed to never buy eggs again. (It’s not for vanity reasons or anything, it’s just that our eggs are so delicious and naturally organic and wonderful, all other eggs pale in comparison.  Literally.)


The Easiest Chocolate Cupcakes
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
26 mins
10 mins
Total Time
46 mins

I was in a pinch. Ever since our chickens started laying eggs, I vowed to never buy eggs again. (It’s not for vanity reasons or anything, it’s just that our eggs are so delicious and naturally organic and wonderful, all other eggs pale in comparison. Literally.)

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chocolate cupcakes, Cupcakes, The Easiest Chocolate Cupcakes
Servings: 24 cupcakes
Author: Amanda Rettke
  • 2 1/4 c all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp. clear vanilla extract
  • 2 c confectioners sugar
  • 1/4 c shortening
  • 1 c hot water
  • 1 c brewed coffee
  • 2 tsp. white vinegar
  • 2/3 c canola oil
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 c unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 c granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoons water or almond milk
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Place liners in 2 muffin pans for 24 cupcakes. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, sift the dry ingredients together. Make sure your salt measurement is accurate. Set aside. (Be sure there are no lumps)

  3. In a medium bowl, mix the vanilla extract, oil, vinegar, coffee and water.
  4. Slowly whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, being careful not to over mix. The mixture will be quite wet, but this is okay.

  5. Scoop the batter into the prepared pans (about 2 tablespoons per cupcake liner) and bake about 18 minutes. (The baking time is 24 to 26 minutes in a non-convection oven.)

  6. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then invert onto a wire rack to cool.
  1. Cream shortening and vanilla in bowl using a handheld mixer for 2-4 minutes.
  2. Add in powder sugar, one cup at a time. If you find your mixer struggling, slowing add in water.
  3. Use more water for a creamy consistency, use less water for a stiff consistency


The BEST Vegan Chocolate Cupcake!

I found myself without any eggs but needed to make a chocolate cake.  So I started googling and came upon a recipe from Epicurious for “The Easiest Chocolate Cake.

Not only was it easy, it was vegan.

Now, I am the farthest thing in the world from a vegan and would eat eggs in one form or another every single day for the rest of my life if I could. (I mean, technically I can, no one is telling me I can’t.  And quite honestly I already almost do!)

The BEST Vegan Chocolate Cupcake!

Back to the cake.  I couldn’t stop thinking about how moist and fabulous it was.

So I decided to make it into cupcakes.

With a few small adjustments to that recipe, I think I have found one heck of a delicious and easy cupcake.

It really truly does live up to the name, “Easiest Chocolate CakeCupcake”.

The EASIEST ever Chocolate Cupcake! (One bowl!)

In an effort to be consistent and useful, I decided to make the frosting vegan as well.  Little did I know I already had a recipe on my site that could be easily adapted to become vegan!

Did you happen to notice the VINEGAR in the recipe? I admit I was a little taken-aback when I first saw it, but you cannot taste it in the recipe at all. It seems to work wonderfully.

I scaled down the frosting recipe quite a bit, you can easily double or triple it.

The EASIEST Chocolate Cupcake! (that just happens to be vegan!)

These are good.  Moist.  Chocolatey.  Delicious.

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  • Liz says:

    My hubby doesn’t think I make nearly enough cupcakes, so I’m happy to have another recipe to test out. The recipe is quite similar to the base of some black bottom cupcakes I used to make…so I know he’ll be thrilled 🙂 Thanks for the inspiration!

    • Amanda says:

      Oh awesome! I should have known you would already have an awesome recipe on hand. 🙂 Next time I will check your site first!!

  • Renee @ Two in the Kitchen says:

    You have chickens?? That is so cool!! I live deep in the land of suburbia so no chickens here. Good thing I don’t need any chickens to make these moist yummy looking cupcakes! 🙂

  • Love CompassionateLee says:

    The easiest? O yea! Now, I have an excuse to indulge in more sweets. Enjoy a restful weekend, Amanda 🙂

  • Christina Heggins says:

    Love chocolate cake with coffee, they look delicious! P.S I really want a chicken but my city won’t allow me, or my hubby for that matter. 🙁

  • Pamela @ Brooklyn Farm Girl says:

    These look so fluffy, so perfect and so pretty! I haven’t had a good cupcake in my life in quite some time, looks like your recipe is making its way to my kitchen soon!

  • Julianne @ Beyond Frosting says:

    Who would have thought such a pretty little cupcake was vegan? I guess I think vegan and cupcakes don’t below in the same sentence, but my mind is blown!

    • Amanda says:

      lol I think I was the exact same way when I found it!! 🙂

  • Phi @ The Sweetphi Blog says:

    OMG these sound amazing! I’ve actually tried this method on a cake before and it was fantastic, don’t know why I never even thought to make cupcakes! You’re a genius!

  • Jocelyn@Brucrewlife says:

    I’m loving how moist these cupcakes look!! I’m totally not on the vegan wagon, but it’s nice to know such an awesome treat can be made without certain items! 🙂

  • ATasteOfMadness says:

    I love a good cupcake. And when it’s promised to be easy? I think I love it even more 🙂

  • Courtney says:

    This looks so simple to make, We have 6 chickens and a rooster and we have the same problem right now, NO eggs, its the light. They need over 20 hours to lay and with winter coming mine go into no egg mode. Its good to now I can make a cake without them. Thanks

    • Amanda says:

      Oh maaaann! Bummer!

  • Teddi says:

    Love the “look” of the frosting. What Wilton tube did you use to make it? . . .and how???
    It’s SO pretty!

    • Amanda says:

      I used an Ateco tip.

      • Kimm D says:

        Ms. Amanda,

        Please let us know what shape, and size the tip is. And what technique you used.


        • Amanda says:

          It is a tip that you use for petals, it is a long skinny tear drop shape. 🙂

  • Alice Clark says:

    In place of the one cup brewed coffee what can I use? Really want to try this but we do not drink coffee. Thanks

  • Radhiah Love says:

    Hi Amanda!

    Love your stuff but can’t take too sweet/much sugar but x stop me from admiring your beautiful delish art. My fave is your loosened ruffles decor, lovely!

    Anyway, I only use Dutch cocoa (van houten’s brand) so I’m wondering if I can just use self raising flour and omit the baking soda totally for these cupcakes? I read somewhere that if we use Dutch-processed cocoa, use baking powder instead.


    • Amanda says:

      I had not heard that Radhiah. I am sorry, I have not used that substitution in this recipe so wouldn’t be able to speak to it’s effectiveness. 🙁 If you make and it and works, please do let me know.

  • marilyn bino says:

    Are we going to use mixer to whisk the ingrdients or by wooden spatula?

  • Aparna says:

    Love this chocolate cake:)!
    Just a question incase I wanted to make this vegan cake without chocolate, am I to replace the cocoa powder with all purpose flour to get a similar moist plain cake? I’m trying to bake a birthday cake and want to accommodate some kids with allergies too. Thanks in advance for a reply!

  • Camille says:

    The cupcake itself is pretty good! It obviously isn’t as rich as a cake with dairy, but for what it is, it is quite good! The frosting, however did not work too great for me. It didn’t have good flavor and it was too dry, though I added a tablespoon of water (and it’s been 100% humidity here for a few days). I’ll see if I can find a different vegan frosting.

  • Alisha says:

    What kind of frosting tip did you use on these? They look great! Thanks!!

  • Janet says:

    Bless you! I have a little one with a Halloween birthday. They have only a half day of school on Halloween (parent teacher conferences) so I wanted to send cupcakes in for their after-school childcare program. When I mentioned it, I found out one kid is allergic to eggs. Of course they’ll already be high as kites on candy (truly, her birthday gets trumped by the holiday every year) but at least they can be dazzled by ghosts and mummies on their cupcakes and Emily will appreciate the effort, none-the-less.

  • Maia says:

    Would it be okay to half this recipe if I only needed about 12 cupcakes??

  • Theresa M says:

    I’m a little confused by the ingredient list as it is listed. It looks like all your frosting ingredients are mingled in with the cake ingredients so when the directions say to sift all the dry ingredients, exactly which dry ingredients are you referring to? Thanks!

    • Jan K says:

      Theresa M – I was having the same issue. If you scroll to the bottom for the frosting recipe, omit the following ingredients from the cake recipe -powdered sugar, shortening, water, 1/4 tsp. clear vanilla extract. The rest of the ingredients are for the actual cake. It is confusing when they are all intertwined.

  • Jenny says:

    I just wasted a bunch of ingredients. The ingredients for the frosting should be listed separately. I only needed the cupcake recipe and your instructions of mixing all dry ingredients together is very misleading when the list is not separated. Thanks for the waste!

    • Tamara says:

      I just did this too ????????

  • Candy says:

    It all looks scrumptious!

  • Mishkah says:

    What can i use in place of shortening and how much is 1stick of butter