Love chocolate cake? How about cookie dough? Chocolate frosting too? If you’ve answered yes to all of these questions, then you are definitely in the right place. Let’s talk about these chocolate cookie dough cupcakes.
Chocolate Cookie Dough Cupcakes
This is quite a mashup of a cupcake. From the outside, the chocolate cupcakes seem pretty unassuming. Rich and moist chocolate cake topped with a Swiss meringue buttercream, which is pretty delicious on its own. However, it only gets better when you bite into the cupcake and realize there is a thick layer of cookie dough sitting right on the bottom. It’s the best of both worlds and a great way to have two desserts wrapped into one.
So, how does the cookie dough get there? It’s pretty simple actually and requires a typical batch of cupcakes and some cookie dough. The secret comes in right before the cupcakes go into the oven. They get a small ball of cookie dough placed right into the middle of the cupcake. The dough spreads out in the oven, allowing for it to get gooey, like a perfectly cooked cookie in the bottom of your chocolate cupcake.
Box Cake Tricks
Over the years, I’ve used this recipe in both sheet cakes and cupcakes. I first found this recipe on the back of some box cake, want to say a Betty Crocker mix, or something like that. When I was younger, I always made cookie dough from scratch or used the slice and bake. I never used a mix, so I was skeptical about it coming out well, but let me tell you there is something to be said for shortcut desserts.
The whole recipe was pretty simple. You made the boxed cookie dough and then the boxed cake. Once the cake was ready to go in the sheet pan, you dropped dollops of the cookie dough around the cake batter, just a few inches apart. In the oven, the cookie layer evens out to form a smooth layer of chocolate chip cookies on the bottom. The trick was easy, tasted delicious, and truly wowed everyone when they cut into it.
Cookies, Cupcakes, and Frosting
This little trick works just as well in cupcakes. Since it’s right around Valentine’s Day, chocolate cupcakes with chocolate frosting seemed like a good idea. I had some Valentine’s Day-themed sprinkles from a mystery grab bag purchase from Fancy Sprinkles, so everything came together pretty fast.
For the frosting, I used Swiss meringue buttercream, which has easily become my new favorite frosting. It is a bit more time-consuming and detailed process compared to making American buttercream, but it’s worth in my opinion. The frosting doesn’t have that overly sweet quality that American buttercream does. The sweetness is subtle and really carries the chocolate flavor.
Classic Recipe With A Twist
The rest of the recipe really sticks to the classics. For the cookie dough, I used Nestle Toll House cookie recipe. The recipe yields much more cookie dough than is needed, so you can either just make the extra cookies (like that would be a question) or freeze the extra dough in pre-rolled out balls (this way you can have a freshly baked cookie pretty much whenever you want). The cupcake and frosting recipe comes from Sally’s Baking Addiction. I swapped out the AP flour for cake flour in my recipe to give the cupcakes a moister flavor. I kept the base of the frosting recipe pretty much the same and added in some dark chocolate baking chips to give it a deep chocolate flavor.
This recipe can easily be made with whatever kind of cake you want. My favorite is basic yellow cake with chocolate frosting. The chocolate on chocolate combination is perfect for Valentine’s Day, or truly any other day of the year that you are craving chocolate.
Check out the recipe below and have a very chocolatey Valentine’s Day Celebration.
Chocolate Cookie Dough Cupcakes
Super moist chocolate cupcakes filled with cookie dough and topped with fluffy chocolate frosting. The recipe yields around 12 cupcakes with a standard muffin tin.
- Cookie Dough
2 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
2 cups chocolate chips
- Chocolate Cupcakes
3/4 cup cake flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup canola oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
- Swiss Meringue Buttercream
6 large egg whites
2 cups granulated sugar
1 and 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
6 oz melted chocolate of your choice
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a muffin tin with cupcake liners. Set aside.
- Make the cookie dough. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and salt. Whisk together and set aside. In a medium-sized bowl with a hand mixer or in a bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat together the butter, sugars, and vanilla until smooth and creamy, about 2-3 minutes. When the butter mixture is creamy, add in the eggs, one at a time making sure they are fully combined after each addition. Once combined, slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture (do this slowly if using a stand mixer to not get flour all over the place). Place cookie dough in the fridge to cool while you make the cupcakes.
- Make the cupcakes. In a medium-sized bowl whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside. In a medium-sized bowl, mix together the eggs, sugars, oil, and vanilla with a whisk. Mix together until fully combined. Add the milk and dry ingredients, alternating after each mix. Whisk the mixture together, but don’t over mix the batter. It will be a little loose and that’s fine.
- Grab the cookie dough from the fridge and let is sit out while you pour the batter in the tin. Fill each tin with the chocolate batter about halfway, don’t add more of the cupcakes will overflow. Add in 1 small ball of cookie dough in the middle of each cupcake tin, the cookie dough balls should be about 1 tsp each. Bake for about 16-19 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean and the cake springs back at you when you touch it. Let cupcakes cool completely in the tin before take out of the molds.
- While the cupcakes are cooling, make the frosting. Prepare a double boiler with a small saucepan and heatproof bowl. Then separate the eggs, making sure to get no egg yolks into the bowl. If you do, the eggs will not whip properly. Whisk the sugar into the eggs until it looks pretty much dissolved. Place the egg mixture over the small saucepan and continue to whisk for about 4 minutes. The mixture will look thick and kinda congealed at first, but keep mixing! It will turn to be frosty and thin over time. Use a sugar thermometer or an instant-read thermometer to keep an eye on the temp. When it reaches 160°F the sugar mixture is ready. Pour the mixture directly into the stand mixer or hand mixer and get mixing! Whip the egg mixture just like you would to get stiff peaks. This will take about 10-15 minutes. Keep mixing until you get stiff peaks too! Don’t stop when they look almost ready. If they start being stubborn, or your mixture needs a break, stick the mixture in the fridge for a few minutes and give everything a rest. This should result in stiff peaks from the next mix. With the stiff peaks ready to go, stick over to your paddle attachment if you are using a stand mixer. Then slowly add in the butter one tablespoon at a time. You want the butter to be soft, but not melty. If it starts to get too soft, stick it in the fridge for a few minutes. Once all of the butter is mixed in, add the vanilla, melted chocolate, and salt. If you want to use a different flavor than chocolate, add it in here as well.
- With the cupcakes cooled, frost the cupcakes however you would like. I used a giant piping tip but feel free to spread it on with just a spoon. The cupcakes should last about a week in an air-tight container. If you have any extra frosting that can be frozen for about 2-3 months.
- If you don’t have cake flour, just use AP flour
- If the frosting starts to get soupy while mixing in the butter, place it in the fridge for a few minutes.
Did you make this recipe?! Let me know and share it on Instagram. Tag @crispcrumble and use the hashtag #crispandcrumble.
This recipe was inspired and adapted by Perfect Swiss Meringue Buttercream and Super Moist Chocolate Cupcakes from Sally’s Baking Addiction and Original NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® Chocolate Chip Cookies.