These soft and moist Black Forest Cupcakes are made with rich dark chocolate batter, sweet cherry filling and topped with homemade whipped cream. A decadent and delicious black forest cake but in miniature form!
When the sun shines through the window as soon as I wake up, I know summer has arrived. After the long and dark winter, now it’s time for the amazing gentle but never-ending light. You may not like the heatwave it brings but you will like the taste of summer, from blueberry, strawberry, to stone fruit like peach, apricot, mango, cherry.
Cherry is one of the seasonal fruits I’ve always wanted to try when it comes to summer. Unlike other fruits, I barely see it available on market shelves off their season; therefore, I’ll do my best to buy them as much as I can. With an abundance of cherries this year, I could not resist baking a cake with a twist of cherry flavor. Here are black forest cupcakes, a mini version of black forest cake I made last year, which is easy to make with just a few basic ingredients and of course, lots of cherries.
These Black Forest Cupcakes start with my favorite chocolate cake recipe which yields a soft, light and fluffy texture. They also stay moist for days. I love adding instant espresso powder to chocolate cupcakes because it helps deepen the chocolate flavor. Once these cupcakes are cool, you will cut out a hole in the center of each cupcake using a cupcake corer, a paring knife or a large Wilton piping tip, then fill one with cherry filling and frost with whipped cream.
Black Forest Cupcakes are all about the combination of chocolate and cherry, so the fresh homemade cherry filling is definitely a star of these cupcakes. It’s easy and simple to make and it can be made several days in advance. All you need is fresh cherries, granulated sugar, cornstarch and a little freshly squeezed lemon juice. Adding cherry liquor like Kirsch is recommended since it will give the best cherry flavor.
In a large saucepan, combine the cherries, granulated sugar, lemon juice and cornstarch and mix until well combined. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until the cherries begin to break down and the filling starts to simmer and thicken. Remove from the heat and stir in the Kirsch, or vanilla extract if you are not using liqueur. Allow to cool completely before filling the cupcakes.
HOW TO MAKE WHIPPED CREAM
To make whipped cream that is able to hold its shape, you will start with chilled heavy cream. There is one trick that I always do when it comes to making whipped cream, which is to put the heavy cream in the freezer for about 10-15 minutes before whipping it. Then, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment, combine the heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Beat the mixture until stiff peaks form which is when you lift up your beater and it holds its shape. Do not over beat.
More Cherry Recipes:
Black Forest Cupcakes
For Chocolate Cupcakes
- 1 cup (130g) all-purpose flour, sifted
- 1/3 cup (35g) unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
- 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup (50g) light brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon (5g) baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 large egg, room temperature
- 1/3 cup (80ml) vegetable oil or canola oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup (120ml) buttermilk
- 1/2 cup (120ml) boiling water
- 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
For Cherry Filling
- 2 cups sweet cherries, pitted and cut in halves
- 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons (15g) cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon (10ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon (15ml) Kirsch, substitute with 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract if prefer to
For Whipped Cream
- 2 cups (480ml) heavy cream, very cold
- 1/4 cup (30g) powdered sugar, sifted
- 1 teaspoon (5ml) vanilla extract
To Make Cherry Filling
- In a large saucepan, combine the cherries, granulated sugar, lemon juice and cornstarch and mix until well combined. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until the cherries begin to break down and the filling starts to simmer and thicken. Remove from the heat and stir in the Kirsch, or vanilla extract if you are not using liqueur. Allow to cool completely before filling the cupcakes.
- Cherry filling can be made in advance. Store in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to use.
To Make Chocolate Cupcakes
- Preheat an oven to 350°F/175°C. Line 12 muffin cups with liner papers.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, oil, buttermilk and vanilla extract until combined. Slowly add the wet mixture into the dry mixture and mix just until combined.
- In a different cup, add the instant espresso powder into the boiling water and mix until dissolved, then add to the mixing bowl and stir to combine. Keep whisking until the batter is fully combined and smooth.
- Evenly distribute your batter between the cupcake liners, filling no more than 3/4 full. Bake for 18-20 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let the cupcakes cool in the pan for about 10 minutes then transfer them to a cooling rack to cool completely.
To Make Whipped Cream
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment, combine the heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Beat the mixture until stiff peaks form. Do not overbeat.
To Assemble Black Forest Cupcakes
- Once cupcakes are completely cool, use a large piping tip, a cupcake corer or a paring knife to cut out a small hole in the center of each cupcake. Fill each hole with 1 tablespoon of cherry filling or until it reaches the top of the cupcake.
- Frost each cupcake with whipped cream using a piping bag fitted with a piping tip (I use Wilton 1M). Garnish with chocolate shavings and a fresh cherry on top. Enjoy!
- Store cupcakes in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.