Special Mocha Cupcakes Recipe
Special Mocha Cupcakes Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Special Mocha Cupcakes Recipe

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4.5 30 51
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Topped with a fluffy frosting and chocolate sprinkles, these extra-rich, extra-delicious cupcakes smell wonderful while baking and taste even better! —Mary Bilyeu, Ann Arbor, Michigan
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. Bake: 20 min. + cooling
MAKES:12 servings
Contest Winning Test Kitchen Approved
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. Bake: 20 min. + cooling
MAKES: 12 servings


  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup cold brewed coffee
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup baking cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons milk chocolate chips
  • 3 tablespoons semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons brewed coffee
  • 1/2 cup chocolate sprinkles


  1. Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, beat sugar, coffee, oil, eggs, vinegar and vanilla until well blended. In a small bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt; gradually beat into coffee mixture until blended.
  2. Fill paper-lined muffin cups three-fourths full. Bake 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack to cool.
  3. For frosting, in a microwave, melt chips and butter; stir until smooth. Transfer to a large bowl. Gradually beat in confectioners' sugar and enough coffee to achieve desired consistency. Pipe frosting onto cupcakes. Top with sprinkles; gently press down. Yield: 1 dozen.
Originally published as Special Mocha Cupcakes in Taste of Home April/May 2007, p27

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Reviewed Apr. 26, 2016

"this recipe was incredible! it is awesome!!!!"

Reviewed Feb. 9, 2015

"The cupcakes as well as the frosting were dry and had very little chocolate flavor. Could not taste the coffee at all either. Won't bother with this recipe again."

Reviewed May. 11, 2014

"I've made these cupcakes about three times and the frosting dozens of times. It's my go-to chocolate frosting -- the coffee just adds that extra depth to the chocolate flavor without being overwhelming. Even my coffee-hating father-in-law was raving about the frosting and was surprised when I told him the "secret" ingredient.

Unfortunately I've found that every time I add coffee as an ingredient in cake, it tends to dry the cake out (and honestly, the coffee flavor doesn't come through well anyway). Couldn't get these cupcakes to be moist no matter how much I watched the bake time. The frosting, however, is to die for IF you make it as the magazine originally said, which is NOT to melt the butter in the microwave. Just melt the chips, let them cool, and blend them with the softened butter, powdered sugar, and cooled coffee. I also only use semi-sweet chocolate chips (replacing the milk chocolate chips with additional semi-sweet chips). It's sweet enough and there's no reason to buy two different kinds of chocolate chips."

Reviewed Aug. 25, 2013

"The mocha flavor is distinct without being overpowering. Excellent!"

Reviewed May. 31, 2013

"It made 17 cupcakes for me! I filled my standard sized cupcake pan 3/4 or almost more full (2 pampered chef medium sized scoops for each one). Don't know if anyone else had that issue or not. They're baking up nicely:)"

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