Perfect Party Cupcakes

Two years back, we moved into the home we’re living in now.
Our old home was a teensy tri-level on a road lined with leafy trees.
They simultaneously turned yellow in the autumntime,
a rank of golden guards welcoming you home from an afternoon of errand running.
I loved that home. It was warm and inviting.
But, it was teensy.
And we had a pack of growing children who desperatley needed room to run.
And friends up the street.
And more space from which they could not.clean.up.their.messes.
But, I digress.
This isn’t about the old house.
This is about the new one.
The home that we have now.
When I first walked into it, I admired the roomy living room, and the fingerprint-free walls.
Hubby and I imagined with excitement a clean wooden floor stretched beneath our feet and a piano tucked in the corner of the dining room, waiting to entertain dinner guests and such.
It was exciting, the idea of living in a place twice the size as our old bungalow.
We were thrilled and awed and inspired.
But, it was the kitchen that sealed the deal.
It was when I walked into the kitchen and cried that my husband said, “Let’s buy it.”
The ceilings were tall, the floor space ample, there was a glass door that opened to a welcoming deck.
It was big enough to host a party. A big party. LOTS of big parties.
I sort of live for parties.
Warm bodies standing at your side as final touches are put on special treats;
the lyrical music of beloved voices spinning stories of their daily happenings,
clock moving itself minute-by-minute around your lives,
weaving them into memories with food and laughter and friendship.
I sort of live for parties.
{Don’t You?!}

What a pleasure then, to virtually reunite with two old friends from high school.
(Don’t you just LOVE reuniting with friends from high school as much as you love parties?!)
When I learned that fellow twin classmates, Coley & Crista, aka The Twin Stitchers
were oozing talent from their very pores, creating adorable patterns that amaze & delight,
I begged them to create one for my CwaC readers, and promised them we’d make a party out of it.
They agreed and got right to work. Sketching, illustrating, sewing, framing.
And now, the unveiling of
The Twin Stitchers Cupcake Pattern
Aren’t they lovelycute?! And, so easy too.
As in, simple. As in, I might actually be able to pull them off.
Well, hold onto your muffins, because you ain’t seen nothing yet.
Look at what you can do with their patterns…

Even better yet, you could make this…

(then send it along to me. Teehee.)

To purchase the TwinStitchers Cupcake Pattern, GO HERE.
But wait! That’s not all!
The TwinStitchers want to giveaway one of their patterns for FREE.
Just think of all the Christmas possibilities.
To win, simply visit the TwinStitchers website by clicking HERE.
Peruse their plethora of patterns and pick your favorite one.
(and there are a LOT of to-die-for patterns. Did you SEE the Family Tree?!)
Then come on back here and leave a comment, mentioning your favorite TwinStitchers product.
On Monday, the winner will be announced.

Perfect Party Cupcakes
Created for my favorite new neighbor, Suzie, these cupcakes took a boatload of batch attempts before getting them just.right. Anticipating her daughters upcoming birthday, Suzie (a self-declared ‘cake snob’) asked if I could come up with chocolate cupcakes that were moist, soft, and wildly delicious. You’d think that would be an easy task, but chocolate cupcakes are just an egg and a splash of milk away from a cupful of brownies and too many attempts tasted too much like brownie and not enough like cake. Until this attempt. The batter is held together with ample amounts of butter and just enough flour to make the finished cake gloriously moist, yet fluffy. Because of it’s carefully crafted ratio of prescision measurments, be sure to follow this recipe to a T. Low altitude bakers, don’t forget to add 1/4 c. of flour and 1/4 tsp. more baking powder.
2 sticks butter
1 ½ c. brown sugar
3 eggs
2 squares unsweetened baking chocolate
1/2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 c. milk
½ tsp. baking powder
½ c. cocoa powder
1 c. flour
1 tsp. pure vanilla
In a large bowl, cream butter, sugar and eggs until extremely fluffy (this step is CRUCIAL. Don’t skip it!). In a small bowl, microwave baking chocolate and olive oil just until melted (about 1 minute), stir, add to batter. Add remaining ingredients and whip until evenly incorporated but DO NOT MIX. Fill cupcake wrappers 2/3 full with batter, then bake in an oven preheated to 350 degrees for 18-20 minutes.

Light Chocolate Buttercream
2 sticks butter
1 pounds powdered sugar
2-3 Tbsp. cocoa powder
2-4 Tbsp. milk
1 tsp. pure vanilla
Beat all ingredients together until light and fluffy. Add an additional 1-2 cups of powdered sugar, if desired.

64 Responses to “Perfect Party Cupcakes”

  1. Julie says:

    Just found you through The Farm Chicks–LOVE your site–your title really grabbed me! Love all the recipes, wonderful photos, etc. I'll be back often! Thanks!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Love, love, love your blog! Since my youngest of five children is a Senior this year, and will not only graduate from high school, but Young Women…where she has been Laurel President for two years…I would have to choose the "Growing With Values". She would love that as a birthday gift – when she turns 18 in January!

    thanks for all you do. and you have a very sweet hubby…read his comment earlier. what a great marriage you must have!

    thanks for everything,
    (aka: ldsdeb)

  3. clea says:

    I made these cupcakes last night. The most amazing chocolate cupcake ever! do you think you could use it for a regular cake recipe?

  4. Tongue-N-Cheeky says:


    Oh! delight! I am so glad the cupcakes worked for you. As a cake, the recipe should work just fine. Perhaps a quick addition of an extra 1 tsp. of cocoa powder and 1 Tbsp. of flour will help it better support the switch over.

    If you try it, let me know!

    Good luck! Happy Baking!

  5. Love Letters To China says:

    I just finished baking these cupcakes. I'm wondering if you could figure out why my cupcakes didn't rise very well. Once I took them out of the oven they started sinking fast. They taste great but they are going to need a lot of frosting to make them look like your picture. I followed the recipe exactly as written. Thanks for any help!

  6. Tongue-N-Cheeky says:

    Love Letters to China-

    I'm so sorry the recipe drooped. There is nothing worse than droppy cupcakes.

    The wonder behind this recipe is that it incorporates a tremendous amount of butter, and held together by the most miniscule amount of flour possible. Which is a joy. And, unfortunately a problem. It makes the batter extremely delicate and quite finicky.

    Are you baking below 5,000 feet? Did you add an extra 1/4 c. of flour, as indicated in the comments preceding the recipe. It's incredible what an extra tablespoon or two of flour will do. If you DID add the extra flour, increase it by another 2 T. If you didn't, it's quite possible the butter, sugar & eggs were EXTREMELY well creamed to begin with, and the remaining ingredients well mixed. (But, not over mixed. Beating it for several minutes will alter the consistency of the cake, and not it a good way.)

    It's a science, for sure, but a very delicious one. I hope it will work just.right next time.

    Happy Baking!

  7. Allen says:

    The cupcakes look to good to eat!

  8. Jacelyn says:

    Hi, can I check with you what is the weight (grams) for one square of chocolate?

  9. L.R. M-J says:

    Bonjour again!
    Just wanted to let you know I made these for Le Mr's bday & wow, it's officially an addition to the annual bday request (& that's saying a lot, I'm a chef/baker!) I used your cake recipe (& the below 5000ft additions-thanks for thinking of us low land people!) & inserted a special surprise for Le Mr- a Reece's peanut butter cup (specially brought over to France by a visitor) and then made peanut butter icing…result? Magnifique! For your international visitors wanting to try your recipes, if they need replacement ingredients to what you list (& measurements) Google is your friend! My cupcakes turned out divine w/several replacements/conversions. Bon Baking!

  10. Jen says:

    I love these cupcakes but am hoping to make the recipe into a cake for my son’s birthday (and then, sadly, cover it with brightly colored vanilla frosting rather than the yummy chocolate butter cream that is so good I consider bathing in it every time I make it). So two questions:

    1) Can this work as a cake (I read your comment to Clea about the extra 1 tsp. cocoa & 1 TB flour — just wondering if it worked)?

    2) Any great recipes for a good white frosting that I can color with food coloring?

    As always (since you seem to be my go-to for cooking advice these days), thanks a million!

  11. Dayna says:

    My favorite TwinStitchers pattern was Tidbit #OU845~So cute!
    Mr. John I really like your wifes blog! She seems like she is alot of fun! Love the way she writes and all the goodies she shares! Blessings to you both! I thought your comments about her were so sweet :)

  12. Lovely post! You write really well! Can I use your cupcake photo in our blog? I need to write about cupcake parties, and I love the idea of the ribbons on top. Lots of credit and raves, I assure you!

    All the best, and keep up the great writing!

  13. Miracle says:

    It’s posts like this that make surfing so much plerause

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