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Chocolate Sponges, Chocolate Buttercream, Chocolate Drizzle and Sprinkles. AMAZING Chocolate Cupcakes!

This is the best chocolate cupcake recipe you will ever find. Ever.

Okay so maybe that is an exaggeration, everyone has their own favourite recipes but honestly, this is my go-to chocolate cupcake recipe that I use when selling cupcakes to customers for occasions, or just for a family gathering – honestly it is utterly delicious. The cupcakes are insanely light and fluffy, whilst also being moist. It means you can eat the whole cake and not feel guilty!

The buttercream isn’t made with real chocolate, its made with cocoa powder but I often find this easier and quicker and creates a lighter flavour! When I was younger I would simply decorate a chocolate cupcake with melted chocolate or a simple chocolate ganache – but I find the ganache is better for an indulgent cake, whereas this buttercream recipe is ideal for cakes, cupcakes, or celebration cakes!

This recipe always has a HUGE thumbs up from people who try it, and I am not exaggerating this time! They are ideal for afternoon tea, a treat in the evening, a party, or just a boost on a Monday Morning!

I bought these utterly gorgeous little Iced Jems Baking Cups as I am obsessed with them. They are amazing as you can put the cups onto a flat tray rather than in a muffin case, so if you do have a little mixture left over you can still fit them onto the same shelf in the oven! When you go to eat the cupcake, the case itself pulls out and ends up being almost its own little plate! I can’t get over them. They’re amazing and so cute. Buy them HERE!

This recipe makes 12 cupcakes


– 175g Unsalted Butter/Stork
– 175g Caster Sugar/Light Brown Sugar
– 3 Large Eggs
– 135g Self Raising Flour
– 40g Cocoa Powder
– 1-3tbsp Whole Milk

– 150g Unsalted Butter, room temperature
– 300g Icing Sugar
– 30-50g Cocoa Powder
– 1-2tbsp Boiling Water

– 50g White Chocolate
– Chocolate balls/Sprinkles


1) To make the Cupcakes – Heat your oven to 180C/160 Fan/350F and line a cupcake/muffin tin with 12 cases or put 12 Iced Jems Baking Cups onto a flat tray!

2) Beat the butter/margerine with the Sugar until fluffy, add in the eggs, self-raising flour and cocoa powder with the butter/sugar mix until well combined

3) If the mixture is too stiff you can add a little bit of milk at a time to get a smooth light consistency.

4) Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until a skewer poked into one of the cakes comes out clean and they are springy to touch.  Leave to cool fully on a cooling rack!

5) To make the Chocolate Buttercream – Beat the butter with an electric mixer for a couple of minutes to loosen it – gradually beat in the icing sugar until well combined, then add the cocoa powder and  beat for 5 minutes until a silky lovely buttercream texture is produced. If the mixture is a little stiff, add one tablespoon of boiling water at a time till you reach the consistency you want!

6) To decorate the Cupcakes – I used a 2D Closed Star Piping Tip to decorate my cakes but you can do whatever you like! I pipe my cupcakes like an ice-cream at the beach looks so its the perfect ratio of buttercream to cake.

7) Once iced, melt the chocolate in a heat proof bowl in the microwave in short bursts or over a pan of simmering water and drizzle over the top and then add a sprinkle of chocolate balls to boot!

Tips and Ideas

I nearly always prefer the all in one method of baking – if using a machine I would simply just bung all the cupcake ingredients together and mix well, but when mixing with good ol’ elbow grease I make sure that I cream the butter and sugar first so that there are no lumps. Be careful not to over bake the cakes or you might lose the light texture!

This recipe was one of the first I posted on this blog but I decided to repost it with a few tiny little additions!

I used a 2D Closed Star Piping Tip to decorate my cakes as they get the nice swirl!

These will last for 3 days in an airtight container!


Find my other Cupcake & Chocolate Recipes on my Recipes Page!

You can find me on:

J x

© Jane’s Patisserie. All images & content are copyright protected. Do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words and credit me, or link back to this post for the recipe.


  1. Elle on October 5, 2021 at 12:02 pm

    Heyy, i want to fill these with a cheesecake filling, because of that should they be stored in the fridge overnight?

  2. Emma on August 17, 2021 at 4:06 pm

    Hello, can I keep these in the fridge overnight? Will they still be fresh the following day?

    • Jane's Patisserie on August 18, 2021 at 9:06 pm

      Nooo – don’t store them in the fridge. They need to be room temp!

  3. Kate Taylor on July 21, 2021 at 10:04 am

    I accidentally bought the mini versions of the Iced Jems Baking Cups that you recommended, although given that they will be for my 1 year old’s birthday party, maybe that’s a good thing! My question is, if I am going to use the recipe above the make mini versions of these cupcakes, how long would you suggest cooking them for please? Many thanks!

    • Jane's Patisserie on July 21, 2021 at 8:48 pm

      I say usually 10-12 minutes for mini!! x

  4. Emma Cowperthwaite on April 27, 2021 at 7:37 pm

    Hi if I want to use this recipe for 2 8”cakes would you just double the recipe? X

    • Jane's Patisserie on April 29, 2021 at 10:24 am

      Yes!! Or you can look at my chocolate back to basics cake recipe x

  5. Flolly on April 25, 2021 at 2:11 pm

    Thank you sooooo much these cupcakes are delicious 😋 I will not be sharing!

    • Jane's Patisserie on April 26, 2021 at 1:26 pm

      Ahh thank you so much I am glad you enjoyed!xx

  6. Kathleen on February 19, 2021 at 4:39 pm

    Hi, your recipes are amazing. I have tried the chocolate cupcakes, mint aero cheesecake and Oreo cake. All have been delicious. Thank you so much for sharing your recipes.

  7. Lucy on January 18, 2021 at 2:09 pm

    Hi Jane ! I was just wondering if I wanted to make 6 instead of 12 should I just half everything in the recipe ? Thankyou x

    • Jane's Patisserie on January 18, 2021 at 8:09 pm

      Yes, but it’s hard to half an egg – so I recommend making 4 or 8 so you use either 1/3 or 2/3 of the recipe x

  8. Emily on December 31, 2020 at 8:01 am

    Hi can I ask can I use medium eggs? If so how many and how would I change the recipe? Thankyou!

    • Jane's Patisserie on December 31, 2020 at 6:58 pm

      Yes you can! Use 150g sugar/butter, 125g flour/25g cocoa and 3 medium eggs x

  9. Megan Mcgregor on December 15, 2020 at 11:16 pm

    Any tips for a smooth buttercream? Followed the recipe & added the boiling water etc a tbsp at a time but didn’t want to add too much – mixture wasn’t grainy to taste but just didn’t look as smooth as yours does, despite me beating the cocoa powder etc for 5 mins as advised.. any help would be much appreciated!

    • Jane's Patisserie on December 16, 2020 at 8:29 am

      What was the difference between mine and yours?

    • Megan Mcgregor on December 16, 2020 at 11:09 pm

      they just weren’t as smooth, i also made the vanilla ones and that buttercream turned out so nice & smooth & creamy but the chocolate one just seemed off – is there any way i could send a photo of it so you can see what i mean,

    • Amaani Rawji on April 10, 2021 at 10:38 am

      I’ve tried sieving the cocoa powder and icing sugar and it worked brilliantly. Hope it helps x

  10. Tam on December 13, 2020 at 11:55 am

    Hi, I’m looking at making this, but also making the Nutella cake: is the cake mixture basically the same but just less for the cupcakes? Thankyou 🙂

    • Tam on December 13, 2020 at 11:57 am

      Or Isit possible to tell me the amounts if I wanted to make this into a 3 layer cake? Thanks

    • Jane's Patisserie on December 13, 2020 at 1:19 pm

      Yes they are basically the same – if you want to do three layers just follow the Nutella Cake recipe x

  11. Daisy on November 2, 2020 at 12:26 pm

    Hi they taste fab but are peeling away from the cases when cooling?

    • Jane's Patisserie on November 2, 2020 at 12:28 pm

      This can often mean that they are under baked, but it can also depend on the cases! x

  12. Emma on October 27, 2020 at 10:55 am

    If I made this mixture of a Thursday. Would it be okay to only use that mixture the next day to cook the buns or am I best to cook the buns once mixture is made.

    • Jane's Patisserie on October 27, 2020 at 4:32 pm

      I always believe cake mix needs to be baked straight away because of the chemical reaction between the ingredients x

  13. Barbara Dismore on September 3, 2020 at 6:05 pm

    Hi Jane, I’ve made these today cant wait to eat them later 😛 When I did the buttercream I mistakenly added milk to loosen the mixture instead of hot boiling water. The buttercream seems to have worked out ok, slightly bitty with the cocoa powder. What is the difference using the hot boiling water as opposed to the milk? Thank you

    • Jane's Patisserie on September 3, 2020 at 8:50 pm

      Generally I find the boiling water is better, as sometimes milk can make it split a bit (and also doesn’t last as long due to the freshness of the milk) x

  14. emma on August 28, 2020 at 10:06 pm

    how many medium eggs would i use fr this recipe please excited to try!

    • Jane's Patisserie on August 30, 2020 at 10:51 am

      I would personally use 150g sugar/butter, 125g flour, 25g cocoa and three medium eggs!

  15. Sab on August 22, 2020 at 3:17 pm

    I followed the recipe and used those ice gem cup cases but I only filled out 10 of them and also they didnt rise to the top its asif there wasnt enough mixture?
    Are they supposed to rise above the cases?

    • Jane's Patisserie on August 22, 2020 at 8:48 pm

      They don’t rise above the cases – a few can be slightly differently sized, but I always get 12 out of mine x

  16. Eva Lee on August 6, 2020 at 9:17 pm

    Hi, does the case ever loosen from the cupcake? I’m not sure how to prevent this if you’ve any tips.

    • Jane's Patisserie on August 6, 2020 at 9:32 pm

      Not for me, no – if this happen it usually means the cake is cooling too quickly so moisture, or the cupcake needed a bit longer baking so the moisture causes a problem again. It can happen with any type of cupcake case! x

  17. Mussarrat Bashir on July 20, 2020 at 9:48 pm

    Hello, would it be possible to use the evaporated milk buttercream from your chocolate fudge cake recipe to pipe onto these cupcakes? I made that cake last week and the buttercream was divine!!

    • Jane's Patisserie on July 21, 2020 at 2:03 pm

      Have a look at my chocolate fudge cupcakes post x

  18. Elizabeth on June 26, 2020 at 9:46 am

    Hi Jane,
    Me again.
    I’m also wanting to make 15 of these. Again how would I adapt this recipe? Thank you 🙂 x

    • Jane's Patisserie on June 26, 2020 at 9:53 am

      I would use a four egg mix/200g dry (so add on 1/3 more!) and split between 15!

  19. Olivia on June 7, 2020 at 10:31 pm

    Hi Jane! What difference will using cater or vitamin sugar make? Just made your mint ones with the brown sugar and they were so moist!
    Thank you so much. Hoping to start a home baking business soon and living trying your recipes!!

    • Olivia on June 7, 2020 at 10:32 pm

      Wow autocorrect 😂😂😂 that was meant to say caster or brown sugar!!! 🤣🤣

    • Jane's Patisserie on June 8, 2020 at 9:19 am

      So for any cupcakes, you can use caster sugar or brown sugar – these are my old classic chocolate cupcakes (cakes do more commonly use caster sugar) but these days I use light brown as I love it with chocolate cupcakes!

  20. Roseanne on May 17, 2020 at 12:59 pm

    Cupcakes made and they are deeeeeelsih😁

  21. Charlotte linch on May 13, 2020 at 1:50 pm

    My new favourite chcolate cupcake recipe, so perfect! Thank you

  22. Danielle on May 11, 2020 at 8:12 pm

    Love this recipe and every other one i’ve tried (which is a lot😍) and I’m thinking of making mini cupcakes instead of large ones to take into work as there are a lot of people in the office. How would I adapt ingredients, cooking times and temperatures?
    Thank you X

    • Jane's Patisserie on May 12, 2020 at 12:58 pm

      Hiya! It depends on how many mini ones you make! I would say a normal batch of 12 could make about 36+ mini cupcakes – so if you want only 12, maybe make a third of the recipe?! Baking times is probably about 10 minutes! x

  23. Beckie on May 5, 2020 at 3:29 pm

    Hi! I was wondering if j could add choc chips into the mixture? Please could you let me know! Thank you ♥️

    • Jane's Patisserie on May 5, 2020 at 3:41 pm

      You definitely can do! Probably up to about 150g worth!

  24. Kathy on April 6, 2020 at 11:35 pm

    Hello I was just wondering is it the mini baking cups you use or the regular ones for these?

  25. Sam on January 29, 2020 at 10:13 am

    Hi Jane can’t wait to try this recipe, after I store them in airtight container do I put them in the fridge ?

  26. Tash on January 25, 2020 at 11:28 pm

    Thank you for such an amazing recipe. It’s just beautiful. Hubby was well impressed. I can see these being a permanent fixture in my banking future.

  27. Tiya Mbewe on November 20, 2019 at 12:30 pm

    What measurements of baking powder do I use if I’m not using self rising flour?

  28. Aóife on October 15, 2019 at 9:13 pm

    Hi…can’t wait to try these!!!! What suger do u use???is it caster suger and brown suger or just one of them??? Tia x

  29. Nimmi on July 31, 2019 at 6:34 pm

    I have a question. I’m making these cupcakes tomorrow. But I want 6 of the cupcakes to have chocolate flavoured buttercream and the other 6 to be vanilla flavoured buttercream. How do I split the ingredients so that I can have 2 different flavoured buttercream? Could you give me exact amounts to the ingredients please as I’m gifting these to a friend and I don’t want to go wrong 🙈
    Thank you x

    • Jane's Patisserie on August 1, 2019 at 5:30 pm

      You just need to split the mixture into two, and then add half the amount of cocoa powder to one of the halves! x

  30. Nimmi on July 15, 2019 at 10:21 am

    Hey. Do you have to use milk in this recipe or is it just based on consistency? I don’t have whole milk. I just have semi skimmed. Does that make a difference? Thank you

    • Jane's Patisserie on July 15, 2019 at 10:22 am

      Yes it is so you don’t have to use it – but I would always and only use whole milk in baking.

  31. manix on July 5, 2019 at 1:54 pm

    Hi Jane,
    Cupcakes turned out to be delicious – but the frosting was very light in colour. I’m wondering whether it might be the cocoa powder that I use? What brand do you use and recommend? Thanks

    • Jane's Patisserie on July 5, 2019 at 10:06 pm

      Yes it would be – I use 100% cocoa powder so it’s really dark!

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  33. Kerry on April 1, 2019 at 4:39 pm

    This cupcakes are delicious! Definitely on my daughters favourite cupcake recipe. Thank you jane your recipes are fantastic x

  34. Grace on July 10, 2018 at 8:50 pm

    Can you triple this recipe to make a 3 layered cake? x

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  37. Lynne on March 30, 2018 at 6:59 pm

    Hi. I usually use whatever I have in the fridge to make cakes etc and they come out ok (normally Flora Buttery). Would these come out ok with Flora Buttery do you think? Thanks

    • Jane's Patisserie on March 30, 2018 at 7:23 pm

      Cupcake mixtures can use flora buttery, but I always recommend actual unsalted butter for a good buttercream. x

  38. Paula Roberts on March 6, 2018 at 10:37 pm

    Hi Jane – I love these cupcakes and I wanted to ask if you have ever made a batch and frozen them? I have a lot to make for the weekend so I was hoping to try and get ahead and make a couple of batches and freeze them in advance. They need to be ok for Sunday so I thought tomorrow would be too soon to make them and leave them out. Have you got any tips you could give me? Thank you! Paula

    • Jane's Patisserie on March 7, 2018 at 9:51 am

      I personally always think fresh is best, but obviously if you are unable to bake them all last minute then they can be frozen. You just need to make sure that you wait for them to cool fully first, and use a sturdy cupcake case so the moisture from defrosting doesn’t make the cases peel! I store them in a plastic container and they freeze beautifully! x

  39. Rida on January 3, 2018 at 7:22 pm

    Recently stumbled upon your YouTube channel and your blog, made these today and your Oreo cheesecake the other day and they turned out AMAZING. Thanks so much for these recipes!

  40. Claire on December 6, 2017 at 2:18 pm

    I’ve been searching all morning for a good chocolate buttercream recipe that isn’t too faffy and makes the right amount for 12 cupcakes. Don’t know why I didn’t just come to your blog first as I ALWAYS end up here when I’m looking for something. Thanks!

  41. Nicola on November 10, 2017 at 10:10 am

    Hi, these taste fab, slight problem I keep having, I’d appreciate if you could help……when I make them they keep pulling away from the wrappers 😫 any ideas? Thanks

    • Jane's Patisserie on November 10, 2017 at 6:13 pm

      What brand of cupcake cases do you use? Sometimes it can be down to that. Also, do you store them in a completely airtight container? Sometimes it can be down to excess Moisture and the lack of air causing them to fall off.

    • Nicola on November 10, 2017 at 9:09 pm

      Hi, i used Sainsbury’s plain white wrappers, I’ll try them with another brand hopefully that’s it sorted. Thanks 😃

    • Jane's Patisserie on November 10, 2017 at 9:10 pm

      Hiya! Oh okay, yes it could be those. I would also make sure they are 100% cooled, and store them in a cake box type box rather than airtight if you’ve struggled with them coming off! Thanks.

  42. Noreen on September 29, 2017 at 10:18 pm

    Can I double
    This to make a cake?! It’s sooo goood!!!

  43. Helen Salmon on June 27, 2017 at 10:38 pm

    First successful choc cupcakes according to my very fussy husband!!

  44. Lauren on May 12, 2017 at 8:44 am

    Hi Jane
    Probably a very stupid question but I want to use your chocolate cupcake recipe, but just make 6. Do I literally halve the ingredients? x

    • Jane's Patisserie on May 12, 2017 at 3:16 pm

      Hiya! You do, but you can’t halve 3 eggs. You need the same weight of eggs as everything else, so maybe buy small eggs and use two?

  45. Sabrina on February 18, 2016 at 1:51 pm

    Nothing beats a great chocolate cupcake! These look amazing!

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  47. Garance on October 13, 2015 at 9:13 pm

    These were delicious and worked out really well! Thanks for the great recipe, I’ll definitely be posting about these 🙂

    • Jane's Patisserie on October 13, 2015 at 9:52 pm

      Yay! I’m so glad! 🙂 if you post on your blog about them or anywhere please link back to me! ❤️

    • Garance on October 14, 2015 at 8:16 am

      Of course I will, don’t worry ? ?

    • Jane's Patisserie on October 14, 2015 at 9:18 am

      thank you!! ❤️

  48. Glorious Food on September 22, 2015 at 8:17 am

    It looks yummy! I love cupcakes.
    Thnx for posting this recipe.

  49. Lisa Bailey on August 27, 2015 at 9:57 am

    Can I ask what size eggs please.

    • Jane's Patisserie on August 27, 2015 at 6:43 pm

      I use a free range box which doesn’t have specific sizes, but medium will be best!

  50. Jenna on April 9, 2015 at 5:10 pm

    I love the way you decorated these cupcakes! They look so pretty and delicious of course, I would not want to share!

    • Jane's Patisserie on April 9, 2015 at 5:40 pm

      Haha thank you so much, Jenna! I struggle with letting anyone else have one…

  51. Baked Reviews on April 9, 2015 at 2:07 pm

    Looks delicious! I’ve also been looking for a simple choc buttercream! This one sounds awesome too 🙂 Thanks!

    • Jane's Patisserie on April 9, 2015 at 2:23 pm

      Awwh thank you so much! I’m glad I could help! 🙂

  52. Ricki on April 9, 2015 at 1:59 pm

    Where can I buy these chocolate balls ?

    • Jane's Patisserie on April 9, 2015 at 2:22 pm

      I buy them from supermarkets near me such as Asda or Tesco 🙂 most places will probably stock them!

  53. Renee's Bistro on April 9, 2015 at 11:33 am

    loving the cupcakes!!!!!

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