Best ever chocolate cup cakes (seriously)

Don't they look yummy?  I used a recipe I found here.  Awesome.  It's called the only chocolate cake recipe you'll ever need and it's so true.  Ever since I found it, it's become my go-to chocolate cake recipe.  It's super moist and super fluffy.  It almost melts in your mouth.

I then used a recipe for chocolate icing I found here.  It's called 1-minute chocolate frosting.  It takes a bit more than a minute from start to finish to actually have usable icing, but it does cook in 1 minute.  This, too, is super awesome.  And, like the cake recipe, has become my go-to chocolate icing. It sort of turns out more like a donut icing than what most people think of as frosting.  My boyfriend says it tastes like the icing that tasty-kake puts on their cakes.  And ya know what, thinking back, it kinda does.

I chopped up some Rolo's and Reese's cups and threw a small handful into each cup after I poured the batter into the pan.  It didn't turn out so well.  This batter is sadly not sturdy enough for candy insertion :(  All the candy kinda fell to the bottom and melted into a puddle of gooey goodness.  It did taste really good tho, once you got the goo peeled off of the wrapper!

Then I topped each cake with a some of the peanut butter cups (for the ones with pb cups inside) and some caramel bits and chocolate chips (for the ones with rolo's inside).  Yum-o.

Anyway...here are the recipes:

Chocolate cake 

2 C. Flour
2 C. Sugar
1 tsp. Salt
2 tsp. Baking Soda
1 tsp. Baking Powder
¾ C. Cocoa Powder
1 C. Vegetable Oil
1 C. Hot water + 1 packet instant espresso powder
1 C. Milk
2 eggs
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

Preheat oven to 325°.

Combine hot water and espresso powder to dissolve. Set aside.

Place all dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix well to combine.

Add oil, coffee, and milk and mix until just combined. Scrape the bowl with a rubber spatula to make sure the dry ingredients aren't sticking to the bottom of the bowl.

In a small bowl combine eggs and vanilla extract and whisk together; add to batter and mix well.

The batter will be really wet. This is normal.

If you are making cupcakes, pour ¼ cup of batter into each cup, otherwise pour evenly into baking pans. Bake according to pan sizes below.

Standard Cupcake: 14 minutes
Two 9” Round: 30 minutes
9”x13”: 45 minutes

Chocolate Frosting

1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup cocoa
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix together the cocoa powder and sugar.  Melt the butter on med-low.  Once the butter is completely melted, add the sugar and cocoa.

Increase heat to med-high and bring to a boil.  Once it comes to a boil reduce heat to low.  Boil for 1 minute (set a timer...this is really important!!). 

**Now...during the minute DO NOT stir the icing.  I know...it's tough.  It looks so darn stir-able.  But if you cave and you stir you'll end up with grainy icing.  Nobody wants grainy icing.  You can swirl the pan but don't stir.

**Also...during this minute you don't want this to be at a full rolling boil the whole time so it might be necessary to remove it from the pan from time to time.  I take it off when it starts to boil, let the boiling chill out, put it back on and boil again, take it off and let the bubbles chill out, put it back on and boil again...etc. until the minute is up.  Look ma, no burning :)

Add vanilla and swirl the pan to combine.  Pour this mixture into a bowl and place the bowl in the freezer for a few minutes.  I usually go for 5-10.  If you go for 10 or more, stir it now and again so it cools evenly and doesn't start to set around the edges.

Now get a bowl that your icing bowl will fit snugly into. Pour some COLD water (preferably ice water) into it.  We're sort of doing an ice bath here.  Put your icing bowl into the water bowl.  Get our your electric mixers and beat the icing for a few minutes.  I usually end up mixing it for 10-15 minutes. When you're ready to ice those cuppy cakies, you might have to exchange the ice bath with a luke warm water bath to keep the icing nice and spreadable.  That's what I do.  Just sayin'.


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