An Australian, a Scotsman and an Irishman all walk into a bar. The Irishman orders a pint of Guinness, the Scotsman orders a Lochan Ora and the Australian orders a cupcake.
I’ve been wanting to try my hand at making some Guinness cupcakes with Baileys frosting since coming across the recipe numerous times on various blogs a month or two ago, and my sister’s birthday celebration weekend was the perfect opportunity to bust them out! My sister is after all a fan of cupcakes (and quite a deft hand at making them, having turned out an impressive selection of 108 cupcakes for our cousin’s birthday a couple of weeks ago), chocolate, Guinness and Baileys. When looking for the cupcake recipe however, I hit the jackpot, coming across a variation of the cupcakes that I had seen before but forgotten about. Not only did these babies consist of a Guinness cupcake with a Baileys frosting, but they were filled with a whiskey ganache. Oh yes, the cupcake mother lode.
This particularly tempting cupcake recipe comes courtesy of smitten kitchen, and I can’t thank Deb enough for the deliciousness. I only wish that I had used her frosting recipe, as I tried out a cream cheese variation on nook & pantry that tasted absolutely delicious but I wasn’t happy with the consistency.
These cupcakes were an impressive, delicious, wonderful success with all who tried them, and I shall surely be making these lovelies again. I know for sure I will be making them for a friend who showed enormous resolve and self-control, not touching a single morsel in this her winter of discontent (actually, Jenny Craig), when she reaches her goal weight and can have the occasional naughty treat!
Chocolate Guinness Cupcakes with Baileys Frosting
Recipe from smitten kitchen
Makes 20 – 24 cupcakes
- 1 cup Guinness
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (preferably Dutch-process)
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- 2/3 cup sour cream
- 230 g (8 ounces) bittersweet chocolate
- 2/3 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
- 1 to 2 teaspoons Irish whiskey (Conor:I went a bit multicultural and actually used Lochan Ora instead of Irish whiskey. Oh and the whiskey is listed as optional in the original recipe but I think it’s necessary! Go on, it’s not like the cupcake is going to be any healthier without it)
- 3 to 4 cups icing (powdered) sugar
- 1/2 cup (1 stick or 115 g or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3 to 4 tablespoons Baileys (or milk, or heavy cream, or a combination thereof)
(The recipe states that this “makes a smallish amount of frosting — enough to just cover the cupcakes. Because they were so rich and this frosting so sweet, I felt it only needed a little. Double it if you want more of a towering effect.”)
1-inch round cookie cutter or an apple corer and a piping bag (though a plastic bag with the corner snipped off will also work).
- Whip the butter in the bowl of an electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, for several minutes. You want to get it very light and fluffy.
- Slowly add the powdered sugar, a few tablespoons at a time. (This is a fantastic trick I picked up while working on the cupcakes article for Martha Stewart Living; the test kitchen chefs had found that when they added the sugar slowly, quick buttercream frostings got less grainy, and tended to require less sugar to thicken them up.)
- When the frosting looks thick enough to spread, drizzle in the Baileys (or milk) and whip it until combined. If this has made the frosting too thin (it shouldn’t, but just in case) beat in another spoonful or two of powdered sugar.
Ice and decorate the cupcakes.
Do ahead: You can bake the cupcakes a week or two in advance and store them, well wrapped, in the freezer. You can also fill them before you freeze them. They also keep filled — or filled and frosted — in the fridge for a day. (Longer, they will start to get stale.)
The frosting recipe that I actually used is as follows:
Bailey’s Cream Cheese Frosting
Recipe from nook & pantry
- 340 g cream cheese, softened
- 170 g unsalted butter, softened
- 3 C icing (powdered) sugar
- 6 – 9 Tablespoons of Bailey’s Irish Cream
- In the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment or with a hand mixer, add the cream cheese, butter, and confectioner’s sugar and beat until light and fluffy.
- Slowly drizzle in the Bailey’s, more or less depending on how boozey you want the frosting, and beat until completely incorporated into the frosting.
Like I said, I wasn’t entirely happy with this frosting, as I ended up adding quite a lot of extra icing sugar and it was still too runny for my liking. So, while this frosting was indeed delicious I would recommend either tweaking the recipe to firm it up a bit, or going with the smitten kitchen frosting instead. (Of course, this frosting looks beautiful in the nook & pantry photos so it is entirely possible that I did something silly or just wasn’t having a frost-tastic day and it’s entirely my fault it doesn’t come out as I wanted.)