Chocolate and Dulce de Leche Cupcakes

Rich chocolate cupcakes with Dulce de Leche frosting and a sea salt sprinkle. Does it get any better than that? These are not the healthiest cupcakes, but they sure are delicious.

One Bowl Chocolate Cupcakes:
(adapted from Martha Stewart's cupcakes)
Makes 48 mini cupcakes

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup buttermilk
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup warm water

Preheat oven to 350° F. Line mini muffin tins with paper liners. With an electric mixer, whisk together flour, cocoa, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt on medium speed. Reduce speed to low. Add eggs, buttermilk, oil, extract, and the water, beat until smooth and combined.

Fill lined cups 2/3 full with batter. Rotate tins halfway through baking time. Bake until a toothpick comes out clean, about 10-15 minutes. Since these are mini cupcakes keep an eye on them closely. Every oven is different. When toothpick comes out clean, transfer muffin tins to wire racks for cooling. Cool completely. Cupcakes can be stored overnight at room temperature.

Dulce de Leche Frosting:
1 cup Crisco all-vegetable shortening
3 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (I used pure bourbon vanilla extract)
2-5 tablespoons plain almond milk
1 can Nestles Dulce de Leche 

Usually I use a healthy fat, such as coconut oil. However since this was a hot summer day party and there would be no air conditioning, I decided to use Crisco shortening to avoid the frosting melting all over the place.

Using a mixer beat the shortening until smooth. With the mixer running on low, add the powdered sugar, vanilla and 1-2 tablespoon of milk. Add half of the Dulce de Leche, then another 1-2 tablespoon of milk. Now add the other half of the Dulce de Leche and 1-2 tablespoons of milk as needed. Mix until frosting reaches desired consistency.

Frost cupcakes and sprinkle with a touch of sea salt. 


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