Chocolate Aztec Cupcakes

12 cupcakes
  • Chocolate Cupcakes:
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened Dutch-processed cocoa
  • 1/3 cup freshly brewed coffee
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground ancho chile powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Bittersweet Glaze:
  • 1 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 2 ounces chopped bittersweet chocolate
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • Large pinch ancho chile powder
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • Whole dried chiles and edible gold dragees, for garnish, optional
  • For the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and position a rack in the middle of the oven. Line one 12-cup standard muffin tin with cupcake liners.

  • Combine the butter, cocoa, coffee and 1/3 cup water in a microwave-safe bowl, cover with plastic wrap and microwave on high until the butter melts, about 1 minute. Whisk to combine.

  • Meanwhile, whisk the flour, light brown sugar, cinnamon, ancho powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cayenne in a large bowl. Beat the sour cream with the eggs and vanilla in a small bowl. Whisk the hot cocoa mixture into the dry ingredients. Stir in the sour cream mixture just to combine; don't overmix.

  • Fill each cupcake liner about two-thirds of the way full with batter. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes.

  • Cool the cupcakes on a rack in the tin for 10 minutes, and then remove from the tin. Cool on the rack completely.

  • For the glaze: Combine the butter, chocolate, honey, ancho powder and salt in a small microwave-safe bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Microwave on high until the butter and most of the chocolate is melted, about 1 minute. Whisk until smooth and let sit to cool, 15 to 20 minutes. Dip the top of each cupcake in the glaze. Garnish with chiles and dragees if desired.

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    This recipe is featured in:

    Ultimate Baking Guide