Dark Chocolate & Raspberry Buttercream Cupcakes with Chocolate Glaze

It’s a beautiful Canadian day! Last night I was attempting to compose this second part of  my favourite-cakes-into-cupcakes post, and I was literally falling asleep sitting up, so I decided to close the laptop and go to sleep (it was still light out!). After eight wonderful, beautiful, and, most importantly, uninterrupted hours of rest, I woke up this morning at 5:30am–before the kids! I decided to make some strong French press coffee and write this post in bed with windows open, early-morning sun, and country breeze (very French indeed). There are, however, a pair of little wee feet pressed up against my leg as I write, but at least they’re sleeping feet. I am, undoubtedly, a morning person: a morning baker and a morning writer, so now that I’m rejuvenated, caffeinated, and motivated, let’s talk cupcakes. If you read Wednesday’s post, Campfire Delight Cupcakes, you’ll recall that I’ve been recently pondering what some of my favourite layer cakes would be like in cupcake form. This is mostly because we spend a lot of summer weekends away, and I find cupcakes are quick easy-to-grab treats for the gang & co. at the lake.

The thing is, I still want to share some of my favourite cake flavours and combinations, as well as switch things up, so rather than pack up the towering cakes, I thought cupcakes would be a fun change (not to say I won’t be packing up some highly inappropriate and overly dramatic cakes to the cottage this summer). I also find that I’m often left with extra cake batter, fillings, and frostings when I make the layer cakes, so why not use up every bit and create some cupcakes as a fun and mini addition to serving the cake itself? That way, the cupcakes can either be served that same day alongside the cake, or, after freezing the separate cake components, I can pull the tupperware containers of frostings and cupcakes from the freezer and flavour/assemble for a really quick (and hopefully impressive) treat for another day. That being said, I’m sure I don’t have to sell you on all of the fabulous reasons to make cupcakes!

Here is the mama version of these particular cupcakes from my previous post Dark Chocolate & Raspberry Buttercream Cake with Ganache Drizzle, where I had fun creating this unusual rectangular dark chocolate layer cake covered and filled with Raspberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream and topped with Dark Chocolate Ganache. For the cupcake version, I used my Rich & Dark Chocolate Cake recipe and topped it with raspberry buttercream swirls, and then poured some dark chocolate glaze over top. I didn’t add sprinkles this time, but you definitely could! I can’t think of a single occasion that isn’t enhanced by a good handful of sprinkles.

When I look at this cake, I can’t help but have painful flashbacks from the week I made it–I was cutting out sugar, and I vowed (to myself) that I wouldn’t indulge. I actually managed to avoid it and, with much agony, gave it all away without so much as eating a piece. But . . . this week I made these and it was sweet justice. I love raspberry & chocolate combination, and the generous swirls of satiny buttercream and drizzles of dark chocolate glaze were the highlight. The deep chocolate cupcake portion didn’t hurt either.

These are really so simple to make, especially if you happen to have any extra cake batter from your chocolate cake batches, as you can just pour remaining batter into standard cupcake liners and bake after your cakes are baked. If you keep Swiss Meringue Buttercream in the freezer, you’re even further ahead of the game–you pop some fresh raspberries into your Vanilla Swiss Meringue Buttercream and mix for a moment or so to incorporate and add a bit of pink colour for punch (I got a bit pink-happy with these and next time I would use less for a softer pink, as I did in the cake version, so the raspberry bits stand out). The dark chocolate glaze  is very quick to whip up and adds a sort of ice-cream-sundae sort of feel and a nice hit of dark chocolate. The glaze is a quick process of melting the three ingredients (dark chocolate, butter, and corn syrup) over a pot of simmering water. It’s has such a great shine and deep chocolate flavour, but since it’s all about the chocolate in this type of recipe, I recommend you use a premium Belgian chocolate or similar. If you aren’t a fan of using corn syrup, you can definitely use ganache in place of the glaze; it creates an even more decadent treat with its heavy cream. These aren’t fussy, fancy, or difficult, but they pack some seriously decadent flavours and textures into such a little package. If you want to give these a try, here’s the recipe:

*Product notes: the Cacao Barry Extra Brute (my favourite) cocoa powder is what makes this chocolate cake recipe so incredible. You can purchase it here: Cacao Barry Cocoa Powder – Extra Dark

Dark Chocolate & Raspberry Buttercream Cupcakes with Chocolate Glaze

Yield: 24 standard cupcakes, or two 9-inch round cakes


    For the Cupcakes:
  • 1-1/2 cups (190 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 cups (300 g) white sugar
  • 1/2 cup (60 g) dark cocoa powder (I use Cacao Barry Extra Brute)
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons (7 g) baking soda
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons (7 g) baking powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons (7 g) cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon (8 g) salt
  • 2/3 cup (160 ml) buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup (120 mL) brewed coffee or espresso, hot
  • 1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon (95 ml) vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs, room temperature, lightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon (15 mL) pure vanilla extract
  • For the Raspberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream:
  • 5 large, fresh egg whites (150 g)
  • 1-1/4 cups (250 g) sugar
  • 1-1/2 cups (3 sticks)(340 g) butter, cut into cubes and cool, but not cold
  • 2 teaspoons (10 ml) pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup (59 ml)(or to taste) raspberry puree OR a handful (about 1 cup, or more to taste) of fresh, washed, and dried raspberries
  • pinch of salt
  • few drops pink food colouring (optional)
  • For the Glaze:
  • 4 oz (115 g) high quality bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped or callets
  • 1/3 cup (76 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature and cut into cubes


    For the Cupcakes:
  1. Preheat oven to 350° F and line a muffin/cupcake pan with your favourite cupcake liners.
  2. In the bowl of electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, sift flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, cornstarch and salt.
  3. In a medium bowl or measuring cup, combine the buttermilk, coffee, oil, egg and vanilla.
  4. Add liquid mixture to dry ingredients and mix for 2 minutes on medium speed (you may need the plastic splashguard that comes with mixer), Divide batter among (2/3 full or just less) liners. Batter will be liquidy, and cupcakes will rise.
  5. Bake for 15-17 minutes, or until toothpick or skewer comes out with a few crumbs. Try not to over-bake. Carefully remove cupcakes from the pan immediately (it's hot!), and place them on a wire rack until completely cool.
  6. For the Raspberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream:
  7. Wipe the bowl of an electric mixer with paper towel and lemon juice, to remove any trace of grease. Add egg whites and sugar, and simmer over a pot of water (not boiling), whisking constantly but gently, until temperature reaches 160°F, or if you don't have a candy thermometer, until the sugar has completely dissolved and the egg whites are hot.
  8. With whisk attachment of mixer, begin to whip until the meringue is thick, glossy, and the bottom of the bowl feels neutral to the touch (this can take up to 10 minutes or so). *Don't begin adding butter until the bottom of the bowl feels neutral, and not warm.
  9. Switch over to paddle attachment and, with mixer on low speed, add butter cubes, one at a time, until incorporated, and mix until it has reached a silky smooth texture (if curdles, keep mixing and it will come back to smooth). *If mixture is too runny, refrigerate for about 15 minutes and continue mixing with paddle attachment until it comes together. Add vanilla and salt, continuing to beat on low speed until well combined.
  10. Add raspberry puree to taste or the fresh raspberries in small increments, and blend until combined. Add small amount of pink food colouring, if desired.
  11. For the Glaze:
  12. Place the chocolate and butter in a medium heatproof bowl over a pot of simmering water. Stir the mixture using a rubber spatula until melted and smooth. *Be careful to not get even a droplet of water into your bowl of chocolate and butter.
  13. Assembly of the Dark Chocolate & Raspberry Cupcakes:
  14. . Fill a large pastry bag (18") fitted with Ateco #887 (or the decorative tip of your choice) about 2/3 full and swirl the buttercream in a circular motion, beginning on the outside rim of the cupcake and moving inward. Gently release pressure when you reach the top of your swirl.
  15. Drizzle the top of the cupcake with Dark Chocolate Glaze (~1 tablespoon each).
  16. Top with a fresh raspberry and chocolate sprinkles (optional).
  17. Cupcakes are best enjoyed the day they are made, but these keep particularly well in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days (however, I've been known to eat them up to a week later, and they taste great!). If you do refrigerate, serve at room temperature--particularly Swiss Meringue Buttercream cupcakes, otherwise the buttercream is too hard and butter-like.


*Essentially, this is vanilla Swiss Meringue Buttercream with some clean, dry, fresh raspberries into it. It doesn't require many raspberries to give it a nice flavour, but it's personal preference. You can also use seedless raspberry-puree for a smooth finish. Add a drop of pink food colouring for a touch more pink.

**Cupcakes are best enjoyed the day they are made, but these keep particularly well in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days (however, I've been known to eat them up to a week later, and they taste great!).

***If you do refrigerate, serve at room temperature--particularly Swiss Meringue Buttercream cupcakes, otherwise the buttercream is too hard and butter-like.

[Glaze recipe source: Baked Explorations: Classic American Desserts Reinvented]


Good luck & enjoy! I’ll see you soon with my 50th blog post!


Share the Sweetness!


  1. says

    Gorgeous! I was blown over by the original, but now you have me leaning towards the cupcake. So pretty and yummy looking :) Keep ’em coming!

  2. says

    First, you cause all kinds of trouble with the cake, and now you have to go and make it portable as cupcakes! And beautiful cupcakes too!! Lovely job, they sound irresistible!

  3. says

    I’m SO glad you are transferring the cake recipes into cupcake form. Your cakes are so insanely gorgeous as all of us know but a bit intimidating for novices like me! :) I feel the cupcakes are something I can have a go at without feeling scared. So lovely! Can’t wait to try this out, the raspberry looks gorgeous.

  4. says

    Hi! I just love your recipes but sometimes I have a hard time following them because I’m swedish. We have the metric system. I’ve bought cup measurements so that’s fine but when you weigh stuff, could you perhaps add what it is in grams aswell? That wound save me so much time!

    Thanks again for a lovely blog!

  5. says

    You are such an inspiration to all us bakers out here in the blogosphere (and I know I can speak for all of us!) Your cakes are stunning and your photography is beautiful! Raspberry and chocolate is a weakness of mine, so I have a feeling these will be made very soon :)

  6. Summer says

    Where do you buy your cocoa powder? I’d love to try that brand, but ouch, with shipping it’s pretty pricey to get online! Any suggestions?

      • Dusty says

        Ha. I was going to ask you the same question but I had a hunch that if I can’t find anything but Fry’s in my downtown Toronto neighbourhood, you probably can’t where you are and that you are buying it online.

        If I want to make the cupcakes for tomorrow, I am probably going to have to go with Fry’s.

        • Dusty says

          P.S. Just a tiny comment…I was putting together my shopping list and I noticed that the raspberries don’t show up on the ingredients. I can understand why, given the way your post is organized, but it might be helpful.

  7. Marina says

    You’re such a great cook ! I’d be so glad if I could make one of your cake to my boyfriend, unfortunately my kitchen happens to be my living room which happens to be my bedroom.. (French vision of “appartements” is kind of fun.)
    I’ll keep reading your wonderful blog !
    Just so you know, you have a huge fan from France from now and on ;).

  8. says

    I just found your blog and your cakes are so amazing! I’m getting really inspired to make a tall cake, which I’ve never tried before. Your photos makes everything look so delicious :) Hugs from Sweden!

  9. says

    Glad you had a good uninterrupted 8 hours of sleep, falling asleep at the laptop is a good indication that you really needed it LOL. What a lovely write-up to a beautiful cupcake. The only thing that gave me pause was when you stated *…and hopefully impressive treat for another day* Rosie, I truly cannot imagine anything coming out of your kitchen that wouldn’t be impressive.

  10. Karen Lawson says

    You are a fabulous cake genie and a genius on top of that. You my dear, are surely on your way to becoming the next gal we all shall clamor to see and have sign our books. Do you think you could make some of the pages scratch and sniff like your campfire cake & so many others, if only for the nostalgia of our youth. I loved that as a little girl. Why not have a grown up version debuting in your future book. Your artistry makes my very happy. Also thanks for sharing about how you do restrain yourself with sugar. I couldn’t figure out how you stay so stunning with all these wonderful sugar obsessions.

  11. Jenn says

    I just discovered your blog and I am completely blown away by your creations! I no longer desire to be Martha Stewart when I grow up–I want to be you. :)

    • says

      Beautiful Cupcakes ! And they look yummy ! I’ll cook them soon and publish in my blog. I’ll let you know ! Oh, and your blog is lelvoy, I suscribe right now! Greetings from France !

  12. Mae Joyce says

    Your cakes are amazing! I have a friend that loves red velvet cake and I can’t find a recipe that I like. Any ideas?

  13. Mama Wrench says


    First of all, love Love LOVE your cakes and creations! My husband is forever asking me why I insist on having parties, and I am forever telling him that it is for the desserts — by which I mean the cake!

    I do have a question, though. Maybe a challenge. Have you ever made, or tried making, a gluten-free cake? A lot of my friends’ kids have special foods needs and so many GF cake recipes are either impossible without a chemistry set, or just… boring and flavorless and dense. I’d like to be able to include the GF kids in the festivities without resorting to amaretti and meringue-shell chocolate pie every time!

    Hope you can help me out! Cheers!

  14. says

    Visiting your site is always so bittersweet. Sweet obviously because everything looks incredible–I mean downright, lip-smacking, I-wish-I-was-your-next-door-neighbor incredible. Bitter because I don’t ever get to try any of these delicious looking sweets.

    I am in awe at how delicious this recipe looks. And great shots, as always.

  15. says

    I am here to tell you how incredibly heartless it is to have a blog with this many fantastic, amazing, beyond-words confections on it when someone is in the midst of a lifestyle change (diet)!!! haha Man, does *everything on your blog look like I could eat the *photo* and get a taste of all that delicious sweetness. Yum. I just found your blog, but I can see that it is going to be one of my new favorites!

  16. says

    These look wonderful. I too love dark chocolate and raspberry, such a winning combination. I will be making these darlings some time this summer. Can’t wait!

  17. Whitney says


    I REALLY want to make these cupcakes… but I am not a coffee person. What should I add instead?

  18. Dusty says

    So I made the cupcakes over the weekend, and they are every bit as good as they look. Of course, yours look better than mine, ha ha, but they were amazing.

  19. jeannine says

    this cake is so inspiring! Tthe rectangular cake looks like a piece of art work. What size pan should I use to make the rectangular cake? when I have a hard day at work, I go to your website to relax by looking at the beautiful desserts. I wish you had a bakery in austin, texas!

  20. says

    I made this buttercream this weekend when I made a wedding cake and loved it!! I like that you add extra vanilla and less sugar than some buttercream recipes. I also made this chocolate cake recipe and filled it with a chocolate mousse, and toffee chips than topped it with this buttercream.Thanks for showing your tips, you helped my first decorated wedding cake to be a success!

  21. monique says


    wondering if you have a way to decorate buttercream to a wood grain like finish for a kids pirate cake? I’m trying to avoid buying an airbrush and haven’t decorated like this with anything but fondant but I think kids will prefer butter cream. Thanks for any help

  22. says

    Hi, I just made your raspberry swiss meringue buttercream and it curdled but came back and was great then I added the raspberries and it would NOT come back for me no matter how I whipped and whipped. Any ideas on why?

    • says

      Sorry to hear that about the buttercream! The curdling in the buttercream process before the addition of raspberries is nothing to worry about, but when you say that when you added the raspberries it wouldn’t come back, what did it look like? When you add the raspberries, you want to make sure that they are clean and dry–too much moisture added to the buttercream is going to definitely throw it off. You also want to make sure you don’t overmix once you add them. Beating on low until just combined is your best bet. The key is ensuring they are dry before adding. I hope this helps!

  23. says

    I just wanted to tell you how WONDERFUL all of your desserts look. I tried the Vanilla Buttermilk Cake and it was the best vanilla cake I’ve ever had. Thanks so much for sharing your recipes!

  24. Meaghan says

    I finally tried this recipe on the weekend and all I can say is WOW! I now have a new go-to Chocolate cupcake recipe and I had also always been too scared to try the swiss meringue buttercream, but after my success am now a convert! I love you blog and your photography – keep whipping it up :)

  25. Michelle says

    Hi! I love this whole recipe but it is the chocolate glaze i keep reusing on my cupcakes! I was wondering though how I can store the lefotver glaze. Right now i have it in a piping bottle and have a bunch left and want to use it again in two weeks. Can i refrigerate it and then warm it in the microwave or hot water? Will it solidify completely? Thanks for any wisdom you can provide!!!

    • says

      Hi Michelle! I often put the leftover glaze in the refrigerator and then just bring to room temp when I’m ready to use it again. I usually pop it into the microwave for a few seconds, then stir, to glaze again. I hope this helps!

  26. says

    I’ve had my eye on this recipe for a while & I’m going to make them this weekend! I was just wondering, is the buttercream recipe that you posted enough to frost JUST 18 cupcakes? Or did you triple it? I really don’t want to have any leftover butter cream! Thanks! :)

  27. Nattakan says

    WOW! That’s all i can say! These cupcakes are perfect! Soft, moist, and very very chocolateeyyyyy!! I’m not really a fan of chocolate, but i couldn’t stop eating these when they first came out of the oven! Although i made pretty near to 25 cupcakes… (not complaining) Havn’t had a chance to try the frosting yet, but iwll definatly give it a shot! they taste FAB without! 5* and truely reccommended xxxx

  28. ann says

    Hi ! Love all your posts & photos . Dhanks for sharing recipes & tips too. Do you have any tip how this buttercream frosting hold its shape for a longer hour in a humid & warm place like outdoor party? thanks.

  29. Jeffrey Doyle says

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! This just became the hit at a dinner party where I was responsible for dessert. I used raspberry puree instead of whole berries but found it wasn’t quite enough of a raspberry punch in the buttercream. I ended up adding whole berries to be mixed, too. I got the pinkness and a nice tart contrast to the cake with it. Definitely making these again.

  30. MARISSA says

    Hi there. I LOVE your blog, but I have a question. I made the cupcakes and they turned out fine but the Swiss meringue buttercream is a little runny, even after so adde the raspberries any suggestions?

    • MARISSA says

      Well I figured out my problem and I just ended up remakig the whole batch and it turned out 100 times better! But I wanted to go for a second batch as I’m out of unsealed butter but J have plenty of salted, is it ok to use salted butter? How will it affect the SMB?

        • MARISSA says

          I actually went and bought the candy thermometer because the first time I was just guessing at the temperature off the Merigune and I think they were still raw, and on top of that it curdled when I added the butter because I didn’t whisk the Merigune long enough after to let it cool, and I have just a hand mixer that only seems to have one setting and that’s high, so when I mixed just the meringune before adding the butter it was foaming so I switched to hand mixing it until I added te butter. I also did a google search for how to make SMB and Rosie’s blog showed up with a link to a this website

          • MARISSA says

            on how to make SMB. I couldnt it when searching on this blog, but when I did that goggle search I just clicked on that link.

  31. Bonnie says

    OMG!…I tried this recipe and i use it all the time!!!!…thank you for your wonderful gift of creativity….you are my SHERO!!!

  32. Luana says

    I just love your website, it’s so inspering! And this cupcakes, they’re just amazing…thanks! I always put two or three little raspberries inside the cupcakes before baking them, and it fits perfect with the dark choccolate!

    Have you ever condidered to publish a book with your receips and photos? I’d instantley buy it if there was any chance of getting it in Swizerland!

      • Luana says

        I’m so excited about the release of your Book, just what I wished for! I just hope it will be available in Switzerland soon!
        Andi just thanks fort this wonderful blog.

  33. Danielle says

    Hey !
    Loved the taste of the recipe but hade major problems with them bubbling over the top or not rising?
    I was making mini cupcakes and my oven does have a temperamental nature at times?
    Can u help?

  34. Marizza says

    Hi There!

    I just made the dark chocolate and raspberry buttercream cuppies and they are SUPER DELISH. This is the second recipe that I have made from your site and both has been a hit. The first one I made was the Lemon/Blueberry cake. These chocolate cupcakes turned out perfect. This is going to be my go to chocolate cuppies recipe from now on. Thank you so much for taking the time to post all your wonderful recipes and pictures. =)

  35. Barb says

    I just whipped these up for a baby shower tomorrow, they smell so wonderful! I couldn’t find dark chocolate, so I melted some unsweetened Baker’s chocolate into the coffee before using it. I “sampled” (possible drank) some of the extra batter and it was heavenly. I’m filling mine with a bit of raspberry preserves, as well. I love filled cupcakes. Thank you so much for a wonderful recipe!

  36. Pari says

    I made these cupcakes for family occasion once and it was a hit! Everybody loved it. It was a bit time consuming, in the end it was worth it when everybody coming back for seconds )). I am thinking to make a giant cake version this weekend for family gathering. Thank you very much for delicious recipe!

  37. leng says

    hi rosie! i was planning to use this cupcake and smbc recipe for my cupcake bouquet. is this cupcake recipe strong enough that it would not tear apart when i put toothpick on it?

    thanks so much for your help!

  38. Camille says

    I don’t know how many times I’ve made this dark chocolate cake and I’m considering making the cupcake version for a luau. Any thoughts on mixing in some white chocolate chips and macadamia nuts and making coconut Swiss meringue? Any advice would help! Also, I am torn between this and dark chocolate quinoa cupcakes: http://cakeonthebrain.blogspot.com/2012/02/best-ever-quinoa-chocolate-cupcakes-for.html?m=1 …I have also made these countless times and I get the equally positive response of “make more please!” Hope you try this recipe and blog about it! It’s scrumptious and *almost* guilt-free. ;) Have a good one!

    xo Camille

  39. Christine says

    I just made these cupcakes for a family Father’s Day get together, but topped them with espresso buttercream instead. HUGE hit! The cake is moist, decadent without being overwhelming and taste like a professional bakery’s. These are now my new standard chocolate cupcake! Thank you Rosie!

  40. Hayley says

    Hi! I am going to make this tomorrow for my boyfriends best friend birthday (I previously made your vanilla blackberry mascarpone cake and it was fabulous!). But I had a few quick questions, I plan on doing a crumb seal, but previously after I front the whole cake I had issues with the frosting dropping a bit and we have to travel probably 30 mins to get there, should I add a little meringue powder? And also when adding the chocolate glaze should it be chilled or should I add the frosting and add the glaze before it sets?
    Sorry a lot of questions! But I want to get it right:)
    You do a great job, very admirable!

  41. Danielle says

    Rosie, thanks for this recipe.. its my go-to chocolate cake recipe now!!

    Can i ask, i tried making these cupcakes but they bubbled over the top and went everywhere?
    Did i overfill them maybe?

  42. Hafsa says


    I tried this recipe and I am IN LOVE WITH IT!! It’s incredibly moist, soft and the flavour is so amazing that it just melts in your mouth. My new go to cupcake recipe!

    The only problem I had was this only made 10 cupcakes instead of 12, did same thing happened to you or is it just me? I want it able to yield 12, I had to make another batch and had leftover cupcakes – I’m not complaining ;) Please let me know I might be overfilling them! They did rise a bit too much.

  43. SykesA says

    Made these today for a cookout. I had some buttercream frosting left over that I put the raspberrys in. The cupcakes were so yummy and the raspberry frosting was such a grat combo! I highly recommend these!

  44. Minha says

    Hi Rosie, your cakes just left me drooling at this late night hour. Can’t wait to try them tomorrow.
    I have a quick question. At first, all your chocolate cakes seemed the same. but when i closely went through the recipes, i noticed that the 6 LAyered Cakes don’t call for cornstarch, and even the quantities are a little different. Could you please tell me, which one will last longer ( i have never added cornstarch to cake before!)

  45. Sheryl says

    I made these this morning to start off my birthday week. Amazing! I trust all of your recipes and have always had success. Another winner, without a doubt! I had to let the glaze cool a tad before topping the cupcakes as the first few I did started melting the buttercream.

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