Guinness Cupcakes with Whiskey Ganache and Baileys Frosting
From the kitchen of Smitten Kitchen.
This is also just a great chocolate cake recipe. The cake is moist and delicious!
Makes 20 to 24 cupcakes
You can bake the cupcakes a week or two in advance and store them, well wrapped, in the freezer. You can also fill them before you freeze them. They also keep filled — or filled and frosted — in the fridge for a day. (Longer, they will start to get stale.)
For the Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes
- 1 cup stout (such as Guinness)
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
- ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder (preferably Dutch-process)
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- 2/3 cup sour cream
- 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate
- 2/3 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
- 1 to 2 teaspoons Irish whiskey (optional)
- 2 ½ to 4 cups confections sugar; enough to reach desired consistency
- 1 stick (½ cup or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3 to 4 tablespoons Baileys (or milk, or heavy cream, or a combination thereof)
Make the cupcakes:
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 24 cupcake cups with liners.
- Put the butter with the beer in a sauce pan over medium heat and bring to a simmer.
- Whisk in cocoa powder until smooth.
- Cool slightly.
- In a large bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt.
- In a mixer bowl, beat the eggs and the sour cream together.
- Add the beer/butter/cocoa mixture and beat to combine.
- Add the flour mixture and beat briefly just to combine.
- Using a rubber spatula, fold the batter until completely combined, making sure to incorporate little pockets of flour on the bottom so that the batter is of equal consistency everywhere.
- Fill the cupcake liners about 2/3 of the way if you want flatter cupcakes and ¾ if you want domed.
- Bake for about 17 minutes, or until a toothpick or a slim knife inserted into the middle of a cupcake comes out clean.
- Cool completely to room temperature.
Make the filling:
- Chop the chocolate and transfer it to a heatproof bowl.
- Heat the cream until simmering and pour it over the chocolate.
- Let it sit for one minute and then stir until smooth.
- Add the butter and whiskey (if you’re using it) and stir until combined.
Fill the cupcakes:
- Let the ganache cool until thick but still soft enough to be piped.
- Using your 1-inch round cookie cutter or an apple corer, cut the centers out of the cooled cupcakes. (I went about half to 2/3 of the way down and used a small knife to help me extract the centers.)
- Put the ganache into a piping bag with a wide tip and fill the holes in each cupcake to the top.
Make the frosting:
- In a large mixer bowl, whip the butter for several minutes until very light and fluffy.
- Slowly add the powdered sugar, letting it incorporate, until the butter becomes thicker and stiff (you will know when this happens).
- Slowly drizzle the Bailey’s (or milk or cream or a combination thereof) and whip until combined.
- Ice and decorate the cupcakes. (It was difficult to spread the frosting with the opening for the ganache. It was easier to pipe little stars of frosting with a piping bag.)