Chocolate Cupcakes From Scratch

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Easy chocolate cupcakes from scratch! You’ll love the soft, buttery chocolate flavor in this easy chocolate cupcake recipe. Top with homemade sour cream frosting for a double chocolate delight.


Chocolate Cupcakes From Scratch = Love

6 houses. 7 jobs. 3 children. 2 dogs. Countless times of joyous laughter.  Various times of plentiful tears.

This is only a sampling of what 18 years has brought us through.

Matt and I celebrated our 18th wedding anniversary this week. I count it such a blessing to be able to say I am married to my best friend. He’s the one I can be completely comfortable around. The one I can complain to, share my worries with, brag to, confess failures to. And he loves me just the same. I pray daily that Maddie, Braden and Kinslee would find as much happiness in marriage as we have.


Celebrations call for….cupcakes! Chocolate cupcakes from scratch, of course. Because I want to bring you only the best, I tested this recipe 4 times. Which meant chocolate cupcakes coming out of my ears. Literally…my freezer will not hold another batch of homemade chocolate cupcakes.


Many of you love our chocolate chip cupcake recipe and have asked for a chocolate cupcake recipe. So today I’m sharing with you my favorite chocolate cupcake recipe from scratch! 100% homemade. 100% moist and delicious. Extra chocolatey and full of buttery flavor.

You’re going to fall head over heels for this from scratch cupcake recipe. Just as I did for my husband over 18 years ago.

OK…I’ll stop with the mushiness. 🙂

But seriously, here’s what to love about these chocolate cupcakes from scratch:

  1. One bowl. No need to fuss with ingredients. Just add them to the bowl in the order listed and use a hand mixer to mix them well. Scrape down the bowl, mix for another 20 seconds or so and you’re done!
  2. Large batch. Or a small batch. The original recipes makes 32 cupcakes, but you can easily halve the recipe for a smaller batch of 16.
  3. Adaptable. The recipe calls for 1 cup of butter. I believe they have the best flavor this way. Out of butter? Use shortening. Or you can use half butter and half canola oil. We’ve made them all ways successfully, but the flavor of the butter version won the taste test.
  4. Buttermilk. Buttermilk helps the cupcakes be light and fluffy. The perfect texture.
  5. Coffee. Many of you will not want to use coffee in your cupcakes. That’s fine. Use water. But coffee enhances the chocolate flavor and this is 100% what I suggest to do.

My favorite part of a cupcake is always the frosting. We showcase these chocolate cupcakes from scratch with a homemade sour cream frosting. It’s simple to make, has a soft, creamy texture and a rich chocolate flavor. Use a double boiler to melt 2 ounces of unsweetened chocolate and ¼ cup butter, let it cool for 5 minutes, stir in ½ cup sour cream, then whip it together with powdered sugar and vanilla.

You can use a knife to spread this soft frosting. Or you can cut a 1″ tip off a disposable decorating bag, fill the bag with frosting and squeeze the smooth frosting on top of the cupcake. You’ll get this look here:


Next try our whole wheat chocolate cupcakes!


Chocolate Cupcakes From Scratch

5 from 6 votes
Easy chocolate cupcakes from scratch! You’ll love the soft, buttery chocolate flavor in this easy chocolate cupcake recipe. Top with homemade sour cream frosting for a double chocolate delight.
Servings 32 cupcakes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 16 minutes
Total Time 36 minutes

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For the cupcakes:

Sour Cream Frosting



  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Measure all of the ingredients into a large bowl in the order that they are listed. Beat the mixture until smooth (about 30 seconds to no more than one minute), scraping the sides as needed.
  • Line a cupcake pan with cupcake wrappers. Fill the cupcake wrappers ¾ full.
  • Bake for 16-17 minutes, or until the cupcake bounces back when you touch the top.
  • Remove the cupcakes to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.

Sour Cream Frosting

  • Melt the unsweetened chocolate and butter in a double boiler. (Place 1 inch of water in the bottom pan and the butter/chocolate in the top pan. Heat the water on low and stir the butter/chocolate mixture until smooth.)
  • Set the chocolate aside for 5 minutes to allow it to cool slightly.
  • Once the chocolate has cooled slightly, use a whisk to stir the sour cream and vanilla into the chocolate.
  • Add the powdered sugar and use a hand mixer to mix the frosting until it is well combined and smooth.
  • Cut 1″ of the tip off of a disposable decorating bag.
  • Fill the decorating bag with frosting.
  • Hold the decorating bag perpendicular to the cupcake, not quite touching the top.
  • Squeeze the bag firmly and gently make a circle to fill the top of the cupcake with frosting.
  • (You can also just spread the cupcake with a knife.)
  • Repeat with the remaining cupcakes.
  • Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container.



*You can replace the coffee with water but I HIGHLY recommend using coffee. It simply enhances the chocolate flavor. **If you use square baking chocolate, use two 1-ounce squares.


Calories: 171kcal
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Calories 171
About JulieJulie Clark

About Julie Clark

I'm Julie Clark, CEO and recipe developer of Tastes of Lizzy T. With my B.A. in Education and over 30 years of cooking and baking, I want to teach YOU the best of our family recipes.

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5 from 6 votes (4 ratings without comment)
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Aurora Avanzado
4 years ago

Hello! Can I use cream cheese instead of sour cream for frosting? If so, how much cream cheese would I use?
Thank you!

5 years ago

5 stars
I don’t think I’ll ever use another cupcake recipe again! These are moist and rich and not too sweet. I love the addition of the sour cream to the frosting. They were a huge hit with kids and adults alike!

5 years ago

5 stars
If I were to use espresso powder instead of coffee, how much powder should I use?

Rayana McGuire
5 years ago

Hello!! Do you know how the taste of the cupcake would be effected if I omit the coffee?

7 years ago

Hi, cool recipe! Just a query, since we don’t eat eggs what can I add instead of eggs?