Kahlua Chocolate Cupcakes

Coffee lovers will go CRAZY over these Kahlua Chocolate Cupcakes! Rich, decadent, and a little boozy.

Hi! Sorry to do this to you so early in the morning… but I made us cocktailcupcakes!!! They have coffee and kahlua and tons of real chocolate flavor in every bite. They are EVERYTHING.

I haven’t baked anything this over-the-top in a while, so I felt like it was about time we got a little crazy in the kitchen again. And what better way to do that than with ridiculously decadent cupcakes?! So bust out the chocolate and butter and booze, my friend. Let’s get baking!
There are 3 parts to these Kahlua Chocolate Cupcakes: the chocolate coffee cupcake base, the kahlua spiked chocolate buttercream, and the kahlua chocolate ganache drizzle. Suffice it to say, these cupcakes are truly a chocolate and coffee lovers paradise. ← And this is coming from a diehard fan of both!!!


  • For the Kahlua Chocolate Cupcakes:
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil OR coconut oil
  • 1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter
  • 3 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, not packed
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 large eggs + 1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons Kahlua
  • 1/2 cup full-fat sour cream, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup hot coffee
  • For the Kahlua Buttercream:
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 3 cups confectioners sugar, sifted
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons Kahlua
  • 3 tablespoons whole milk or half and half, more if needed
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • For the Kahlua Ganache:
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 teaspoons Kahlua


  1. For the Kahlua Chocolate Cupcakes:
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F). Line a 12-cup cupcake/muffin tin with cupcake liners and lightly spray the liners with non-stick spray (optional, but it helps them peel right off).
  3. Combine the the oil, butter, chocolate, and espresso powder in a large microwave safe bowl; melt in the microwave, heating in 30 second increments, stirring between each increment, until chocolate is completely melted. You can also do this on the stove top using a double boiler, but I find the microwave to be much easier. Whisk mixture completely smooth and set aside to cool.
  4. In a medium-sized bowl combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cocoa powder, salt, and cinnamon; whisk together until thoroughly combined and set aside.
  5. In a large bowl combine the granulated sugar, brown sugar, eggs, egg yolk, vanilla. and kahlua; whisk smooth. Stir in the cooled chocolate mixture and whisk until smooth. Add half of the flour mixture, then half of the sour cream. Repeat the process until everything is added, and be sure to mix until JUST combined - then quickly stir in the hot coffee. It's important not to over mix, here! Just stir until evenly combined.
  6. Fill the prepared tins 3/4 of the way full (you'll have enough leftover batter to bake 6 more cupcakes). Bake for 16-18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely before frosting.
  7. For the Kahlua Buttercream:
  8. Sift together the confectioners sugar and cocoa powder, whisking well to ensure it's bump free; set aside.
  9. Using a handheld mixer OR a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-high speed until creamy; about 2 minutes. Reduce speed to low and slowly add the sifted sugar/cocoa powder, alternating with the Kahlua and milk, then add the salt and vanilla. Once all of the ingredients have been added, beat on medium-high speed until light and creamy; beat for at least 2 minutes on medium-high.
  10. Frost cooled cupcakes and top with Kahlua ganache.
  11. Cupcakes stay fresh, stored in an airtight container in the fridge, for up to 3 days.
  12. For the Kahlua Ganache:
  13. Place chocolate in a medium-sized heat-proof bowl; set aside.
  14. In a small saucepan over medium heat, warm the heavy cream until very hot, but not boiling. Pour the hot cream over the chopped chocolate and set it aside for 2-3 minutes. Whisk the cream and chocolate completely smooth; whisk in Kahlua. Allow the chocolate to cool for about 5 minutes before spooning the on the top of each frosted cupcake.

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