chocolate cupcakes with {awesome} chocolate frosting

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chocolate cupcakes with chocolate frosting | movita beaucoup

Three weeks of visiting with Haddy, Luke the Dog, Adopamop, Pumpkin and Turnip, have taught me an important lesson. I have learned that 4.5 million accumulated drops of happiness can be matched in sorrow the instant you have to say goodbye.

Now, don’t fret. I have also learned that: chocolate cupcakes slathered with a delightful chocolate frosting can do a lot to make one feel better.

And also: French kids do, indeed, like icing.

This was a theory put to the test when Pumpkin and Turnip arrived. Because their mother, Isa the French Mermaid, told us that: French kids don’t like icing. That she’d been an eye witness to children rejecting icing in her homeland. That French children would wave it away, saying, “non! Je déteste le icing! Také vous le icing away!”

When I heard that, I said: ALL kids like icing. It is law. And I set about proving myself right.

chocolate cupcakes with chocolate frosting | movita beaucoup

And guess what, France? French kids do like icing. Like, they’d bathe in it if they could. Pumpkin loved the classic buttercream icing I slathered all over a cake for her. And Turnip? She went totally bonkers for a test-version of this frosting. So now I can only assume that French people don’t know how to make proper icing, and that is why French kids reject it in their own country.

Anyhoo, these cupcakes are from the Joy of Baking website. You go to that site, right? Because you should. It’s a great site for tested, fool-proof recipes. I often use it for referencing – if something seems… not right in a recipe. I head right on over to the Joy of Baking site to see what they say. It’s like asking your mother. Except the Joy of Baking people won’t question your decision to wear boot-cut denim. (Hey… do you think the French government has blocked the Joy of Baking website from its people? So they won’t find out about buttercream?) Oh, and just so you know, these cupcakes are chocolatey and moist. Spot on tasty, if you ask me.

The frosting for these cupcakes is MONEY. Or perhaps I should say, EUROS. It is awesome. It isn’t a piping sort of frosting, so put your Wilton 1M tip away. This is a frosting for slathering. For licking off your fingers. It is sweet, but not cloying. And it’s smooth. Light, not heavy. I think it’s my favourite chocolate frosting ever. I adapted it from a recipe in Rosie Beaucoup‘s collection. I adjusted it so you’d have enough for about a dozen cupcakes – because that’s what you’ll have if you use the Joy of Baking cupcake recipe I am recommending. Also, the original frosting recipe had shortening in it. But I knew you would FREAK OUT, so I swapped it out for butter. I was tempted to leave the shortening in just to annoy you haters, but I resisted. Because frosting shouldn’t be used as a weapon. Nope, not ever. Frosting is for peace.

And also, I really like butter.

chocolate cupcakes with chocolate frosting | movita beaucoup

Oh, and you. I really like you.

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Chocolate Cupcakes – from Joy of Baking – print and bake

Yield 12-16 cupcakes – I get 12 lovely, floofy cupcakes, the original recipe states a yield of 16 – your yield will depend on the size of your muffin tins.

  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup boiling hot water
  • 1  1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated white sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Line 12-16 muffin cups with paper liners.

In a small bowl, combine the boiling hot water and the cocoa powder, whisking until smooth. Set aside and let cool to room temperature.

In another small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt, and set aside.

In the bowl of your stand mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy (3-5 minutes). Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla extract.

Add the flour mixture and beat only until just incorporated. Then mix in the cooled cocoa mixture, stirring until smooth and fully incorporated.

Fill each muffin cup about two-thirds full with batter and bake for about 15-20 minutes or until risen, springy to the touch, and a toothpick inserted into a cupcake comes out clean. (Do not over bake or cupcakes will be dry.) Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Once the cupcakes have completely cooled, frost/decorate.

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Chocolate Frosting – adapted from a recipe found in Rosie Beaucoup’s family collection, original source unknown – print and frost

Yields enough to frost about 12 cupcakes – this is a soft, spreadable frosting, not suitable for piping. Double the recipe to frost a small cake.

  • 1  1/2 cups sifted icing sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup heavy (whipping) cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 ounces unsweetened, dark or semi-sweet chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons butter

Place the sifted icing sugar, salt, heavy cream and vanilla in the bowl of your stand mixer.

Melt the butter and chocolate in a stainless steel bowl placed over a pot of simmering water, stirring until completely melted and smooth. Add the melted chocolate and butter to the ingredients waiting in the bowl of the stand mixer. Mix on low speed at first, and then increase speed to medium and beat until well combined.

Use an offset spatula to spread the frosting onto cupcakes.


  1. Joan on August 6, 2012 at 9:11 pm

    Well we are very lucky girls. We personally had the opportunity to taste these delicious chocolate cupcakes baked personally by Movita. I highly recommend these cupcakes. We woulld definitely give them a perfect ten. Absolutely fabulous!!!!!!!
    J and D (the very lucky neighbors)

    • The Neighbour on August 7, 2012 at 10:37 am

      I echo Joan’s sentiments, they were absolutley delish!!

      • movita beaucoup on August 8, 2012 at 9:20 am

        You see, people? Living next to movita has perks. Just wait until I show them my UNICORN!!

        • The Neighbour on August 8, 2012 at 7:17 pm

          WHAT?!?!?!?! You have a UNICORN?!?!?!?! How.did.I.not.know.this?

  2. annewoodman on August 6, 2012 at 9:16 pm

    Yummy yummy yum yum. I can’t imagine a world where kids don’t like icing. It would be like an upside-down world where people walked on the ceilings and stuff. Fun, but less fun without icing.

    I’m glad you had fun with your family. I bet they loved your baking.

  3. emmalina73 on August 6, 2012 at 9:22 pm

    Ok so there is so much going on here I don’t even know where to start but I’ll make a stab at it, GB Olympic style:

    1. ALL kids like icing. It is in the human child DNA to like it. Children who do not like icing are in fact cyborgs trying to infiltrate the human race.

    2. I highly suspect the french government of being up to all sorts of crazy stuff, most of all I suspect that they have one of those spooky warehouses filled with insanely good chocolate that should, by rights, be eaten by me.

    3. My tongue is a bit tingly and painful from licking my computer screen so hard, that will go away won’t it?

    4. Canada were robbed at the USA football team has been infiltrated by cyborgs. FRENCH cyborgs.

    5. My world is so much better with a hefty slice of Movita in it. Even better than icing. Ok, the same as icing.

    6. I think it is possible that I should stop watching shows with cyborgs in them. I’ll stick to vampires, much healthier.

    That’s all for now, I will continue to post long, involved and (possibly) a bit odd comments at my leisure. I need a break from licking my computer screen anyway.

    • movita beaucoup on August 9, 2012 at 6:25 am

      Today, Canada will take revenge on the Americans by beating the French in the bronze medal round of football. The Americans might not expect it – and might not even notice – but still, we will prevail. And when we win, we will celebrate with buttercream. And make the French athletes eat it by the bucket full. Their healthy bodies will probably cramp up. And then we will rob their spooky warehouses and eat their chocolate. Because they’ll be too weak to fight us off.

      Meet me at the warehouses tonight!

  4. juanitascocina on August 6, 2012 at 9:57 pm

    Everyone LOVES icing. Even me…who doesn’t like cake. I’ll just eat icing.

  5. Amy on August 6, 2012 at 10:31 pm

    Wow, your photos are amazing…and they’re making me drool. This post is equal parts sentimental and hilarious. I smiled at my computer 🙂 So glad you had a nice time with your family!

  6. Barb Robson on August 6, 2012 at 10:42 pm

    Great post! Looks like a wonderful recipe but inquiring minds want to know where you found those cute cupcake stands!

    • movita beaucoup on August 9, 2012 at 6:28 am

      I found them at a kitchen store here in Halifax – Cucina Moderna – but I’ve seen them at other shops as well. I love ’em!

  7. Stephanie Barnhart on August 6, 2012 at 11:56 pm

    I used to think all kids liked icing, too, but there are a few kids among my friends’ children who don’t like it and will scrape it off to eat the cake. Bunch of freaks. Of course, we also have the smarter kids in our group who understand that the icing is the best part. They’re gonna be Rhodes Scholars or something. They’re brilliant.

    • movita beaucoup on August 15, 2012 at 6:24 am

      I’m pretty sure ALL Rhodes Scholars are into icing. I mean, they’re smart and stuff…

  8. thekalechronicles on August 7, 2012 at 12:31 am

    Nice try, Movita — good call on leaving out the shortening so that I can eat all of this icing with a spoon (who needs cake anyway, except Miss B. on her birthday?)

    • movita beaucoup on August 8, 2012 at 9:05 am

      See? I did that just for you. Just so you could dive into a bowl of shortening-free icing! I loves ya…

  9. Juls on August 7, 2012 at 2:26 am

    Slathering icing is the best – I have no skill or patience for that piping malarky! I bet Adopamop and The French Mermaid might dislike you a little bit for introducing their precious Gallic offspring to the joys of butter, chocolate and sugar mixed together 😛 You should have seen my mother launch herself across the room in a vain effort to prevent the first time someone gave me a coca cola because she knew that I would always want it thereafter.
    Butter will be my downfall.

  10. Chocolate Chilli Mango® on August 7, 2012 at 5:54 am

    I love your soft, floofy cupcakes and that frosting sounds divine.
    Start printing Euros (aka making le frosting)!!!


  11. emma on August 7, 2012 at 8:58 am

    I love shortening. Givé moi le shortening.

    What’s wrong with boot-cut denim? I always figured it was the most innocent of denims. Not wild and crazy like flare, or pretentious like skinny. Or fatass like high-cut mom jeans. The jeans I’ll have to start wearing if you givé moi le shortening.

    Umm, I didn’t catch where you got that cake recipe from. Could you repeat it for me one more time? Thanks.

    • movita beaucoup on August 10, 2012 at 11:41 am

      JOY OF BAKING. That’s where I got that recipe from. It’s a great site. Maybe you’ve heard.

      Also, boot-cut denim is definitely the most innocent of denims. But this innocence is negated when paired with a denim jacket bedazzled with cornmeal.

      • emma on August 10, 2012 at 9:32 pm

        Denim jackets bedazzled with cornmeal speak of nothing but sleaze.

  12. Meenakshi on August 7, 2012 at 11:48 am

    Hey even non-French adults love icing! The ones who say they don’t just lie. I love Joy Of Baking- especially her videos! I love the tiny little cake stands you have for the individual cupcakes!

  13. frugalfeeding on August 7, 2012 at 1:59 pm

    Gorgeous, Movita… the icing does look SO good. It’s hard to beat chocolate cupcakes, especially when they’re done this well!

  14. texydeb on August 7, 2012 at 2:27 pm

    I will take it, chocolate with chocolate, mmmmm…

  15. Ann on August 7, 2012 at 8:43 pm

    that looks amazeballs. Whoever said French kids don’t like icing is trying to keep it all to themselves! 🙂

  16. DogsDontPurr on August 7, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    Wayyy back in the day, I was maybe 13 or 14. For my birthday party, I made profiteroles from a recipe in one of Maida Heatter’s cookbooks. (Yes, I was freakin’ way ahead of my time. I’m 45 now!)

    As I recall, I filled them with Haagen Daz chocolate ice cream and topped them with Michel Guerard’s recipe for chocolate sauce. Seriously.

    My friends protested that this was too rich and preferred to procure handfuls of M&M’s that my mom had put out as a side treat. WTF…losers! (And these were the same kids that would also scrape the icing off of Safeway brand cake. What the heck kind of friends did I have?!)

    So…I would totally, happily eat this icing/frosting with or without shortening or butter.

    I even love that frosting that used to come in a can. Do they still make that? Back in the day, I’d eat that with a spoon….no cake required!

    • movita beaucoup on August 9, 2012 at 6:34 am

      I wish I had been in your class at school. It would have been very tasty! I have been working to ensure that my own students have a clear understanding of the value of baked goods and their various toppings and fillings. It will be my legacy.

      And yes, you can still buy icing in cans. And, you can still eat that stuff with a spoon. I know because 2.0 and I have done it. And it was AWESOME.

  17. musingmar on August 7, 2012 at 11:46 pm

    These cupcakes look amazing, but I was dismayed to see your post because I was working on my own chocolate cupcakes with chocolate buttercream post when yours arrived. Honest! Please don’t sue me for idea infringement! I made mine a couple weeks ago for a birthday.

    Our cupcakes are so similar and yet so different (in a delicious way) at the same time. I love, love, love the look of your frosting and will definitely try that. I’ve been overusing the tower of frosting look. Although I must say, half the fun of using a piping bag is squirting some on your finger and then eating it (oh … doesn’t everyone do that?).

    And by the way, I just used one of your chocolate cake recipes for my granddaughter’s second birthday cake (that’s pretty high praise!). Party tomorrow, post later! And by the way again, Little Miss loves icing, and both her Mum and I speak some French, so I think that further supports your theory about the French and icing (sort of).

    • movita beaucoup on August 8, 2012 at 9:01 am

      Well, since I didn’t INVENT chocolate cupcakes, I guess it’s okay. (tee hee!) Obviously, great minds such as ours, think alike.

      I do love towers of icing. Adore them. But sometimes you just need something quick and easy and finger lickin’ good! Plus, the humidity here has been totally bonkers, so everything is melting. And slimy.

      I hope the birthday party is a total hit – I’m sure it will be!


  18. glutenfreezen on August 8, 2012 at 12:13 am

    I think maybe mom was hoping her French children wouldn’t like icing! No such luck. I don’t think there’s a kid on this planet who doesn’t.

    And who could possibly resist anything that you bake and ice? I’d be your fattest and most annoying neighbor for sure. 🙂

  19. The French mermaid on August 8, 2012 at 3:02 am

    The claim that French kids do not like icing comes from my American colleague, a great baker. Whenever she puts frosting on her cakes for her kids to bring to school or daycare, French kids eat around the icing and leave it on the side. She’s now given up on icing when baking for French people! I think she uses cream cheese icing, not butter and chocolate. Could this be the explanation?

    • movita beaucoup on August 8, 2012 at 8:57 am

      So… it’s an American conspiracy? I KNEW IT!

  20. spree on August 8, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    I have big family coming for the weekend, and we’ve even planned to celebrate a munchkin named Lala’s birthday so it looks as though I know what we’ll all be licking from our faces. I think a double batch is in oder. When they leave, I’ll be in need of a really powerful and unfailing cure!
    merci! xox

  21. Savory Simple on August 8, 2012 at 8:35 pm

    Beautiful photos and cupcakes!

  22. natalie on August 9, 2012 at 5:08 pm

    I’ve been looking for “the one” chocolate frosting recipe… i can’t wait to try yours! and the “floofy” cupcakes too! ^_^

  23. Eggton on August 13, 2012 at 1:18 am

    I believe you that French people are a wreck when it comes to buttercream icing. Also chocolate chip cookies and any kind of muffin that has ever existed in the history of the world. DISASTER. I guess it’s not surprising, given that they never took their skinny jeans off long enough to get on the boot-cut wagon, right?

  24. Barbara Bamber | justasmidgen on August 13, 2012 at 1:45 pm

    And we really really like you, Movita:D And butter.. and these cupcakes. Oh, and Joy of Baking too, that’s one of my favorite “go to” sites. And I like icing.. heaps and heaps of icing or icing by the spoonful. And I liked your post today.. I’m glad your cupcakes brought joy back into your life:) xx Smidge

  25. wendy@chezchloe on August 15, 2012 at 4:06 am

    Great minds think alike. All hail Joy of Baking. I did these chocolate cupcakes in the spring for a school function. Made them the day before and we ate so many at home (there are 3 of us) I had to make a whole new batch the morning of.
    I love your gift for food styling. These shots are just so pretty…

  26. cravingsofalunatic on August 15, 2012 at 8:19 pm

    Hold the phone…cancel the trip out west, I’m heading east to see the unicorn.

  27. Mama's Gotta Bake on August 16, 2012 at 1:46 pm

    If you say it’s awesome, then I will have to give it a try! Looks amazing!

  28. Jennie on August 18, 2012 at 8:05 am

    Chocolate on top of chocolate! Yes, please!

    I can’t believe that anyone would have the strength to reject buttercream frosting. Maybe it’s because I’m weak and there is no way i could ever turn away buttercream frosting, especially chocolate buttercream frosting. I think you’re right. I think they’re making it wrong. These little gems look scrumptious.

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  30. meli2983 on August 15, 2014 at 4:08 pm

    i just finished baking this, but turned it into a cake, i followed the recipe exactly but it did not rise, i put it into 2 round 9 inch cake pans, can anyone help me figure out why… the taste is amazing by the way

    • movita beaucoup on August 15, 2014 at 5:03 pm

      The recipe was written for cupcakes, and tested as such, so that might be part of the problem. I don’t know that the recipe would yield enough batter for a 2 layer, 9 inch cake. Glad you like the flavour though!!

      • meli2983 on August 15, 2014 at 5:16 pm

        thank you so much for your response, next time i make it i will be sure to double the recipe for a cake 😀

        • movita beaucoup on August 15, 2014 at 5:34 pm

          I’d love to hear how it turns out! Depending on how high your first attempt was, you might even find that 1.5 times the recipe would work. Good luck!

  31. movita beaucoup on December 27, 2015 at 6:36 pm

    Comments on this post are now closed as it was published in August 2012.