November 26, 2009

Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes

This week was filled with celebrations for us - In addition to Thanksgiving, it was also my husband's birthday.

He's not a dessert-guy (which works out well when we order fixed-price meals and I get to have 2 desserts!), but I think every birthday (especially a milestone one) deserves a cake.

So I decided to make cupcakes with one of his favorite ingredients:  Guinness beer!

I used Nigella Lawson's Guinness Chocolate cake recipe and poured the batter into muffin tins to make cupcakes.

They came out rich and dark, like the stout, with cream cheese frosting acting as the foam or beer head. 

For the cake:
1 cup Guinness ( I used the Extra Stout)
¾ cup sour cream
1 stick plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 eggs
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa   
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar (Nigella's recipe calls for superfine sugar, but I just used regular sugar)
2 ½ teaspoons baking soda

For the Frosting:
8oz Philadelphia cream cheese
½ cup heavy cream
1 ¼ cups confectioners' sugar

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F
2. Line muffin tins with cupcake liners.  (If making a cake, butter a 9-inch springform pan instead)
3. Pour the Guinness into a large wide saucepan.
4. Add the butter – in spoons or slices – and heat until the butter's melted
5.  When butter is melted, you should whisk in the cocoa and sugar.
6.  In a bowl, beat the sour cream with the eggs and vanilla.
7. Pour into the brown, buttery, beery pan.
8. Finally whisk in the flour and baking soda.
9. Pour the cake batter into the muffin tins (or greased and lined pan).
10. Bake for 45 minutes to an hour.
11.  Leave to cool completely in the pan on a cooling rack.
12.  When the cake's cold, sit it on a flat platter or cake stand and get on with the frosting.
13.  Lightly whip the cream cheese until smooth, sift over the confectioners' sugar and then beat them both together. Add the cream and beat again until it makes a spreadable consistency. 
14.   Ice the top of the black cake so that it resembles the frothy top of the famous pint.

My husband loved the cupcakes - especially paired with his Guinness and other stout beers.  The cupcake was rich, chocolatey, with only a hint of Guinness taste.  I think the cake instead of the cupcakes would have been even more moist, but the cupcakes were fun and easy to share with his family. I'll definitely make these again - I think they'd be perfect for St. Patrick's Day with a Guinness milk shake or ice cream float!


  1. those look amazing so chocolately and rich. nice job!

  2. oh wow these are so cool love it i bet he did as well!!!!

  3. Jeff is a lucky guy! Might have to make some of these for Neil for Valentine's day....

  4. @lk: Thanks! He likes dark chocolate so it tasted just the way he likes it!

    @Chow and Chatter: Thanks so much! He really liked them - it might have to be an annual tradition!

    @Mardi: Great idea! He'll love them!

  5. That is one amazing recipe, thank you for sharing!!

  6. Hmmm.... these might just be what I am looking for~

  7. Congrats on making the top nine on foodbuzz yesterday. These cupcakes have an excellent flavor profile with the addition of Guinness Extra Stout. Well done.

  8. @Ma Rebeca: Thank you!

    @Crazy Jay: Give them a try - so easy!

    @Daniel: Thank you very much! I went with the stout over the draught just for that reason...definitely think they were richer in flavor because of that choice.

  9. Just tried this recipe - was fun and easy to make.

    I had to substitute stout with draught and Philadelphia cream cheese with a similar local (Hungarian) cheese variety - next time I'm definitely making it exactly as you did, as draught lacks in taste, and the local cheese failed in frosting leaving it too liquid...

    Thanks for sharing this!

  10. Thanks Companero - It's always nice to hear from people who have tried our posted recipes! Definitely use the stout for richer flavor...I wonder if more sugar would also help thicken the icing.

  11. I have tried those exact cupcakes posted, and they were yummy. Just like her husband (my brother) I am not a huge desert person - makes me look forward to celebrating his birthday again next year! Too bad she didn't make as many cupcakes as years old he is.......

  12. @NYer in MD: Thanks so much! We might have to make some more when we visit you in the Spring!

  13. Beer and two most favorite things! Thanks for the post.

  14. Oh my... I think I have to make these... soon!


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