Homemade Moist Chocolate Cupcakes

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These Moist Chocolate Cupcakes are completely from scratch & full of chocolate flavor! The cupcake is so moist, it melts in your mouth and the frosting is made with real melted chocolate for a silky smooth, super chocolatey frosting you won’t want to stop eating!

Homemade Moist Chocolate Cupcakes sitting on burlap

Homemade Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting

Homemade Moist Chocolate Cupcakes with a bite taken

Sometimes all you really want is a little chocolate. Well these cupcakes are for when you want plenty of chocolate – no skimping. I’ve shared several different chocolate cake and cupcake recipes, including the ones used in these nutella chocolate cupcakes and this easy moist chocolate cake. And while I love them all, if I could only ever bake one chocolate cupcake ever again, it’d be this one.

How to Make Moist Chocolate Cupcakes

To start, the cupcake itself is maybe the most moist cupcake you’ll ever have. It’s ridiculously good. I never knew homemade chocolate cupcakes could be so good until I had these. Part of their secret is that they are baked at a lower temperature.

You’ll notice when you make the cupcakes that the batter is very thin. I mean like, very thin. It’s supposed to be that way. These are FULL of moisture. Baking at a lower temperature allows the cupcakes to bake more evenly and end up super fluffy and so moist. Unlike some cupcakes that end up dry on the outside and crack, these don’t do that and are moist throughout for DAYS. They might even be more moist on day 2 and 3. Ridiculously awesome.

moist chocolate cupcakes sitting on burlap with sprinkles
Homemade Moist Chocolate Cupcakes with chocolate sprinkles

How to Make An Awesome Chocolate Cupcake Frosting

And then there’s the frosting. The best chocolate cupcakes needed an awesome chocolate frosting. Something silky smooth and full of real chocolate. This frosting begins with butter and melted chocolate. So smooth and delicious on its own. The chocolate gives it a fudgy quality that I love. I used semi sweet chocolate. It’s my favorite to use in recipes like this. It lends a richer chocolate that isn’t bitter. SO good!

To make the frosting even more chocolatey and rich, I also added some cocoa powder. I used Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa blend in both the cupcake and the frosting. I love the rich chocolate flavor it gives, but you could also use regular cocoa and everything would bake up just fine.

The final ingredients in the frosting are the powdered sugar and some heavy cream. The powdered sugar will thicken up the frosting a bit so that it pipes well and holds it’s shape and the cream will thin it out a bit. If you need a little help with the frosting, check out my tutorial on how to the right frosting consistency.

Seriously, these moist chocolate cupcakes are super moist and wonderfully full of chocolate. The fluffy chocolate cupcake with the fudgy chocolate frosting is divine! You’ll hardly be able to take your fingers out of the frosting long enough to put in on the cupcakes but once you do – the cupcakes won’t stand a chance!

Favorite Chocolate Cupcakes with bundting in background
Chocolate Cupcakes with chocolate sprinkles on burlap


Read transcript

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close up of Moist Homemade Chocolate Cupcake
Recipe

Moist Homemade Chocolate Cupcakes

  • Author: Life, Love and Sugar
  • Prep Time: 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour, 5 minutes, plus cooling time
  • Yield: 14-16 Cupcakes 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These Moist Chocolate Cupcakes are made completely from scratch! The cupcake is made with oil and is so moist, it melts in your mouth with a fudgy frosting!


Scale

Ingredients

CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES

  • 1 cup (130g) all purpose flour
  • 1 cup (207g) sugar
  • 6 tbsp (43g) unsweetened cocoa powder*
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) vegetable oil
  • 3/4 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) hot water*

CHOCOLATE FROSTING

  • 1 1/4 cups (280g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 12 oz semi sweet chocolate chips, melted
  • 3 tbsp (22g) Hershey’s dark cocoa powder
  • 5 cups (575g) powdered sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 45 tbsp (60-75ml) heavy whipping cream

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 300°F (148°C) and prepare a cupcake pan with liners.
2. Add the dry ingredients to a large bowl and whisk together. Set aside.
3. Combine the egg, buttermilk, vegetable oil and vanilla in another medium sized bowl.
4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until well combined.
5. Add the water to the batter and mix until well combined. Batter will be thin.
6. Fill the cupcake liners about half way and bake for 18-23 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with a few moist crumbs.
7. Remove the cupcakes from oven and allow to cool for 2 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack to finish cooling.
8. To make the frosting, beat the butter in a large mixer bowl and mix until smooth.
9. Add the melted chocolate and mix until well combined.
10. Add the cocoa powder and mix until well combined.
11. Add about half of powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons of heavy cream and mix until well combined.
12. Add remaining powdered sugar and salt and mix until smooth.
13. Add remaining heavy cream as needed to get the right consistency of frosting.
14. Pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes. I used Ateco tip 844.

*You can also use regular unsweetened cocoa powder

Notes

I have previously used Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa powder for these cupcakes, but Hershey’s has changed it and it no longer works as well in these. I recommend regular unsweetened cocoa powder.

This recipe calls for hot water. You don’t have to use hot water – the cake will still bake fine – but the hot water allows the cocoa to “bloom”, which brings out a richer chocolate flavor in the cake.

Keywords: chocolate cupcakes recipe, chocolate dessert recipe, best chocolate cupcakes, easy chocolate cupcakes, moist chocolate cupcakes, best chocolate frosting

Enjoy!

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Homemade Moist Chocolate Cupcakes pinterest collage
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Recipe rating

464 Comments
    1. Katie

      You can make buttermilk. If you have sugar milk take 2 tablespoons out per cup and replace with vinegar. Let sit for like 5 minutes don’t stir.

  1. Cherie

    Hi, thanks for this recipe! I have made these, and realised the cupcakes taste much better the next day! However, they were a little greasy. Comparing this recipe to the moist vanilla cupcake, can I cut the oil here by half? Thanks!

    1. Lindsay

      This is definitely similar to the vanilla cupcake, but I haven’t tried just reducing the oil by half. If you want a version more like the vanilla cupcakes (as in reduced liquid), I’d suggest this recipe but made as cupcakes with instructions like the vanilla cupcakes. I personally prefer these chocolate cupcakes because I find they are really the moistest ever. 🙂 But both are great options.

      1. Daimy Camille Batutay

        Hi! Its my sisters birthday this coming January 24. I just want to ask if I can use regular milk instead of buttermilk?

      2. Adison

        These cupcakes were very good, but were sticky and fell apart. I’m not sure if I added too much of something. I would definitely make again. 

  2. Ann

    Hi Lindsay, I made your cupcakes and it was insanely delicious and super moist! Gosh! I could eat a dozen of these cupcakes! Very irresistible! Thank you very much for sharing this. And I have a question. How could u turn the recipe into 2 6×3inches round cake pan? Or 2 8×3inches round cake pan? Please help me. Im dying with your recipe.

      1. Susie

        Hi, if I reduce the sugar quantity will it impact the consistency or quality of the cake. I don’t want it to be too sweet 

      2. Lindsay

        Sugar not only adds sweetness but moisture, so yes, reducing it by too much could adversely affect the texture of the cupcakes.

  3. Janis Reed

    Thank you for this delicious recipe. i made these for a friends birthday yesterday and they were a huge hit. Definitely the best chocolate cupcake and frosting recipe that I have ever made. Do you also have an equally moist vanilla cupcake recipe? My grandson prefers vanilla and I would like to make him some.

Lindsay
About Lindsay

I'm a wife and mom to twin boys, a baby girl and a sweet black lab with a serious sweets addiction! Bring on the sugar!

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“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12:12