Chocolate Cupcakes with Neapolitan Frosting

Total Time:
2 hr 5 min
Prep:
45 min
Inactive:
1 hr
Cook:
20 min

Yield:
22 to 24 cupcakes
Level:
Intermediate

Ingredients
  • Cupcakes:
  • 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • Frosting:
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 5 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • A few drops red food coloring
  • 3 tablespoons strawberry preserves
Directions
  • For the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line two 12-cup muffin tins with paper liners.

  • Whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. In another bowl, whisk together 1 cup water and the oil, eggs and vanilla until well blended. Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and stir until just incorporated.

  • Divide the batter evenly between the prepared muffin cups. Bake until a wooden pick inserted into the center of the cupcakes comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes. Cool the cupcakes in the tins for 5 minutes, then remove from the tins and cool completely on a wire cooling rack.

  • For the frosting: In the bowl of stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter until soft and fluffy. Gradually add the confectioners' sugar, beating until smooth. Beat in the vanilla. Add 1 tablespoon water; beat to the desired consistency. Remove half of the frosting to a bowl. To the remaining half, add the red food coloring and strawberry preserves; beat until incorporated.

  • Fit a piping bag with a star tip. Set the bag, tip-side down, in a large cup and fill with both frostings, keeping each color separate in one half of the bag. Pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes.

  • Special equipment: two 12-cup muffin tins; a piping bag fitted with a star tip


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