Posts Tagged ‘chocolate’

Chocolate Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Buttercream Frosting

chocolate caramel cupcake

This is the second type of cupcake I made for the east bay vegan bake sale. Salted caramel is definitely a trend that I LOVE and often CRAVE! Though it sounds decadent, it’s actually fairly easy to make! Enjoy! 🙂

Servings: 12 cupcakes

Time from start to plate: 1.5 hours

Ingredients for chocolate cupcakes:
1.5 cups of flour

1 cup of sugar

1/4 cup of cocoa powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1/3 cup of canola oil

1 tsp of vanilla extract

1 tsp balsamic vinegar

1 cup of water

Ingredients for the frosting:
1/2 cup of Earth Balance (or 1 stick)

1 cup of brown sugar

1/4 cup of mimic creme (or almond/cashew milk but mimic creme is best as it’s like a substitute for heavy cream)

1 tsp of vanilla extract

1/2 cup of vegetable shortening

3-4 cups of confectioner’s sugar

Sea or Kosher salt

This is how we do:
Start by making the cupcakes! Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and line a cupcake pan with liners. In a bowl, add all of the dry ingredients and mix. Then add the rest of the ingredients (oil, vinegar, vanilla extract, water) and mix until there are no lumps and it’s smooth. Fill the cupcake liners about 2/3 to 3/4 of the way full and place them in the oven.  Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes and stick a toothpick down the center to see if they’re ready (if you can cleanly pull out the toothpick, then they’re ready). If they’re not yet ready, check on them every 2 minutes because nothing makes a cupcake drier than being overbaked! Once they’re ready, let them cool before icing.

While your cupcakes are baking & cooling, you can prepare your frosting. In a pan over medium-high heat, melt your butter with the brown sugar and stir. Continue to keep it over the heat until it start to boil. Once it starts to boil, continue to stir & cook for about a minute, until the color turns into a darker caramel color. Remove from heat and add the creme and vanilla extract and stir until nicely mixed together. Set aside.

In a bowl, beat the Earth Balance & shortening with 2 cups of the confectioner’s sugar. Add about half of the caramel sauce into the Earth Balance/shortening/sugar mixture and use a hand mixer to blend until ice & creamy. You can either add more confectioner’s sugar or caramel depending on how you want your frosting.

Once your cupcakes have cooled, frost them with your caramel buttercream. Take the remaining caramel sauce  & drizzle on top. Then add a few light sprinkles of sea salt (or kosher salt). ENJOY with a friend! 🙂



Mini Slider Cupcakes!

vegan slider cupcake

Last weekend, I volunteered to contribute baked goods for the east bay vegan bake sale! I thought it would be super cute to make mini slider cupcakes (get it, because vegans don’t usually eat sliders, get it???). These are super easy to make! I wasn’t super crazy about the yellow cupcake recipe I used, but I loved the chocolate one. If you have little to no time, you can try using boxed cake recipes – I heard you can take a boxed recipe and just add a can of soda to make cupcakes but I have yet to experiment and test out this myth (Sprite for yellow cake & Coke for chocolate cake).

Anyhoo, here is the how-to and the ingredients!

Servings: 12 sliders


A dozen yellow cupcakes – I used this recipe *

A dozen chocolate cupcakes – I used this recipe *

Ducan Hines Classic Vanilla Frosting (yes, this is vegan!!!)

Green, yellow and red food coloring

Shredded coconut


*When making your cupcakes, don’t use cupcake liners. Lightly coat your cupcake pan so you can pop them out once they’ve baked & cooled.

This is how we do:
Take your shredded coconut and place them in a bowl with some green food coloring & coat. This will be your lettuce. In two small bowls, place some frosting in each. Add red food coloring to one until it starts to have the coloring of ketchup. Add yellow food coloring to the other until it starts to look like mustard.

Take your yellow cupcake and slice them in half If you feel like your buns look too thick, you can shave off a bit. Then take your chocolate cupcake, and slice off about half to make your burger. Take the bottom bun, spread some ketchup frosting. Then add your burger, and layer on some mustard frosting on top. Sprinkle some green lettuce coconut shreds on top and then add the top bun. Slide the toothpick through the middle & you have yourself a vegan mini slider!


Banana Cupcakes With Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Frosting

Banana Cupcakes with Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter

Recently, my friend Jenn Palbusa introduced me to a product I now refer to as “crack” – Peanut Butter & Co.’s Dark Chocolate Dreams.
If you have not tried this yet, I would recommend that you do but only if you are willing to forever be addicted to a product that will make you eat spoonfuls of peanut butter throughout the day and dream of endless ways you might incorporate it into your food. My mouth is watering just talking about it now! Ok, so because a person can only eat so many spoonfuls of peanut butter daily without getting looked at funny, I decided I need to figure out some alternatives to eat this. After tons of ideas and more spoonfuls, I finally made this banana cupcake with peanut butter frosting. The cupcake recipe is a veganized & slightly adjusted version from THE MARTHA because you know, she does everything perfect. I hope you guys enjoy it but please be warned it is SUPER decadent & rich. Definitely not for the faint of heart!

Servings: about 11 cupcakes (I know almost a dozen!!!)

Time from start to plate: 50 minutes

Ingredients for the cupcakes:

1 1/2 cups of all purpose flour

3/4 cups of sugar

1 teaspoon of baking powder (make sure it’s a full teaspoon because vegan cupcakes can get all the rising help they can get)

1/2 teaspoon of baking soda (again, make sure it’s a full 1/2 teaspoon)

1/4 teaspoon of salt

1/2 cup of melted coconut oil

1 1/2 cups of pureed very ripe bananas (I took 4 super ripe bananas and gave them a party in my food processor until it was smooth and creamy)

Vegan egg replacer (the equivalent of 2 whole eggs)

1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract

Ingredients for frosting:

1 cup of Peanut Butter & Co. Dark Chcolate Dreams Peanut Butter

1/2 cup of vegetable shortening

1/2 cup of powdered sugar (or more depending on how much sweeter you want your frosting to be)

This is how we do:
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line your cupcake pan with cupcake liners.

In a medium mixing bowl, add all of your dry ingredients (everything in the ingredients list for cupcakes from flour through salt). Mix all of the dry ingredients together thoroughly. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients mixture and add the coconut oil, pureed bananas,  egg replacer and vanilla frosting. Mix everything together.

Fill your cupcake liners with the batter up to 2/3 or 3/4 full (your batter should allow you to fill up 11 cupcakes). Place in the oven and bake for about 25 minutes. Make sure to check on your cupcakes towards the last 5 minutes & do the toothpick test – if you can stick a toothpick in the center of the cupcake & pull it out without getting any cake or batter sticking to it, then it’s ready! Set aside to cool!

While your cupcakes are baking, make your frosting. In a medium bowl, add together all of the ingredients – the peanut butter, shortening and confectioner’s sugar. Using a hand mixer, mix everything thoroughly. Adjust your frosting by adding more of any of the ingredients.

Once your cupcakes have cooled down, frost those bad boys and then enjoy! Don’t forget to share though! Baked goods always make an awesome gift!

Smore Bites


The hubby and I have been on vacation (hence the long break in between posts) for the past two weeks. We started out our time off in Mendocino with our pups. Mendocino is a very dog-friendly and gorgeous place to visit. If you want lots of nature, beautiful oceans and to be able to bring your best friends, I highly recommend it! In Mendocino, we stayed at this very charming and cute lodge called The Andiron Inn. It’s extremely affordable and you can rent out individual cabin-like rooms. Each room is decorated in a very playful theme AND it’s dog friendly. 🙂 When we first arrived, we were greeted with a handwritten note welcoming us and two bite-sized smores. Of course, I had to recreate this treat and make it myself! This is very easy to make and is great to prepare when you have guests coming over or want to whip something up for a party (and again, it’s my favorite kind of desert – the kind that requires no baking :)). I made a ton and stored them in the freezer. They didn’t last very long though, when someone kept going back every 10 minutes to grab and eat one.

Servings: 1 dozen smore bites

Time from start to plate: 45 minutes


12 graham crackers

1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips

24 Dandies vegan marshmallows (these are SUPER awesome)

This is how we do:
In a microwave-safe bowl, place the semi-sweet chocolate chips. Microwave for about 1 to 2 minutes, checking and stirring a couples of times to ensure that the chips are melting and not overcooking. Once you’ve melted down the chocolate, dip a graham cracker in and cover it completely. Place the chocolate-covered graham cracker on a parchment lined baking sheet and place 1 to 2 marshmallows on top. Once you’ve done this with all 12, place in the freezer for about 5 to 10 minutes (until the chocolate hardens).

When you’ve confirmed that the chocolate has hardened, take a match or a lighter and hold it against the marshmallow to create those burnt edges. Beware of the hubby monster that will eat them before you’re done!smore

Kahlua Mousse in Chocolate Cup

For awhile now I’ve been wanting to make something in a chocolate cup and somewhere along the way, I just decided to make this (the flavoring of the mousse was decided on the fact that we ALWAYS have Kahlua on hand because the hubby is an addict). You can also choose to not add Kahlua as the coconut base offers plenty of flavor! This is super easy to make and requires no baking (my favorite kind of dessert). 🙂

Servings: 6 cups

Time from start to plate: 2 hours (most of this time is to refrigerate the cups). Please note, this requires some night-before prep (just refrigerating your coconut milk/cream & freezing your mixing bowl & beaters from your hand mixer).


1 and 1/4 cups of semi sweet chocolate

1 tsp of ground cinnamon

1 13.5-oz can of coconut cream or milk (please refrigerate this overnight)

4-oz of Toffuti cream cheese

1 cup of confectioner’s sugar

1 tsp of vanilla extract

4 tsp of cocoa powder

6 tsp of Kahula

This is how we do:
As I mentioned earlier, you will need to do some prep the night before. Place the can of coconut cream/milk in the refrigerator. Place your mixing bowl and beaters from your hand mixer in the freezer. You can choose to make the choco cups the night before too if you’d like.

To make the choco cups, in a double broiler, melt the semi-sweet chocolate & add the ground cinnamon and mix. If you don’t have a double broiler, you can easily create one at home. Take a pot & add about 1-2 inches of water, and place it over high heat on your stove. Then take a heat-safe glass bowl and put it on top. The bottom of the bowl should not touch the bottom of the pot or the water. When your water starts to boil, add you chocolate into the bowl. Whenever melting chocolate, you always want to do it in a double broiler as it will keep the chocolate melted longer and won’t dry out. Plus, if you melt it right in the pot, you can easily burn your mixture.

Once you’ve got you your cinnamon chocolate mixture together, line a cupcake baking sheet with paper cupcake holders. You want to use paper holders because tin ones will cause the cups to break once they are hard and you are trying to peel them when serving. Using a metal spoon, scoop some melted chocolate  into a paper cup and start to spread it along the inside. You’re basically using the paper liner as a mold for your cup. Make sure to make your walls somewhat thick, otherwise when you peel the paper liner later, your choco cup may break. Once you’re done lining the paper cups with chocolate, place in your freezer for at least 45 minutes. You should have enough to make 6 choco cups.

While you wait for your chocolate cups to harden, create your Kahlua mousse. Take your coconut cream/milk out of the fridge and open. You’ll notice that after refrigerating it, the thick fatty cream of the milk separates from the liquid. Scoop this cream out and leave the liquid (you should come out with about a cup of cream). Take your mixing bowl and beaters from the freezer and place the cream in the chilled bowl. On low speed, mix the coconut cream. You have now created vegan whipped cream!! Woo hoo for you! Scoop out half of the cream and set aside. Now add the confectioner’s sugar, Toffuti cream cheese, vanilla extract, cocoa powder and Kahlua. On low speed, mix everything together thoroughly.

Once our choco cups are hard, take them out of the freezer and scoop the Kahlua mixture into each cup. You should have enough to fill to the top of 6 cup. Refrigerate for at least one hour or more.

When ready to eat, remove the paper liner and scoop a dollop of your whipped cream (the other half that you previously set aside) and dust with some cocoa powder. Eat with a smile. 🙂