Mocha Coconut Cupcakes

I go to Starbucks a lot.  I do my studying for school there, its the only coffee shop in the mall that I work at, and I would pick it any day over Dunkin’ Donuts.  While I love to support local coffee shops, I find that where I typically end up during the day there aren’t many around so Starbucks is the next best choice.

I love lattes, cappuccinos, and iced coffees. And luckily, there are many ways to make these drinks more “ass” friendly by using skim milk or soy and sugar-free syrups.  However, my one true love at Starbucks is the beloved frappucino.  Now prior to my weight loss, I probably would get these once to twice a week because they’re so delicious.  Now, I rarely order them honestly.  I don’t consider myself on a diet, because that would mean I am restricted, but there are things I have chosen to cut out of my daily eats for the most part and frappucinos are one of these items.

However, at the beginning of the summer, I saw a combination I knew I would not be able to resist: Mocha Coconut Frappucinos.  My mouth practically watered when I first saw it on the menu, and then all of the commercials on TV made it even more tempting.  I finally decided about a month ago to treat myself to one, especially because you got 10 free iTunes songs if you bought one 🙂 And it was just as delicious as I imagined it would be.

Since then, I’ve been trying to think of a great cupcake recipe to incorporate all of these wonderful flavors.  Over the past week, I investigated all over the internet, and finally came up with this delicious recipe.  It might be the best cupcake I’ve ever made, the chocolate chip cookie dough cupcakes have some serious competition.

These are a little time consuming, but 100% worth making 🙂

Mocha Coconut Cupcakes
makes 18 to 20 cupcakes


for cupcakes
1-½ cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1-½ cups sugar
1-½ teaspoons baking soda
¾ teaspoon baking powder
¾ teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
¾ cup buttermilk
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
¾ cup of warm brewed coconut coffee
½ teaspoon of espresso powder

for coconut cream
1 cup full fat coconut milk (make sure it is cold and has been in the fridge for a few hours)
1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
¼ cup powdered sugar

for espresso buttercream
2-¾ sticks of unsalted butter, at room temperature
3-½ cups powdered sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 teaspoons of espresso powder


for cupcakes
Preheat oven to 350° F.  Line cupcake pan with paper liners.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. In another bowl, whisk together eggs, buttermilk, vegetable oil, vanilla, coffee, and espresso powder.  Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and with an electric mixer, beat together until fully incorporated and smooth.  Make sure to scrape down sides of bowl so all of the ingredients are fully combined.

Divide the batter evenly among the lined cups, about two-thirds of the way full. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into center of cupcake. Let cool for 5 minutes in the tin, and then let completely cool on baking rack.  Once completely cool, cut a small cone shaped hole in the center of cupcake that doesn’t go all the way to the bottom.

for coconut cream
With a standing mixer, beat the coconut milk for about 5 minutes, scraping down sides as needed until fluffy.  Add vanilla and powdered sugar and beat for another two to three minutes until light and fluffy.  Put in pastry bag and fill center of cupcakes.

for espresso buttercream
Whisk together the espresso powder and vanilla in a small bowl.  Set aside.

It a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, whip the butter at a medium-high speed for five minutes, scraping down the side as needed. Add the powdered sugar a half cup at a time on a low speed until all of it is just combined.  Once all of the powdered sugar is incorporated, beat a medium to high speed until light and fluffy.  Scrape down the sides and add espresso and vanilla mixture.  Beat at high speed for about another minute until light and fluffy.

*Decorate cupcakes as desired.

recipe adapted from:
cupcakes – Martha Stewart’s One Bowl Chocolate Cupcakes
coconut cream – Vegan Coconut Whipped Cream
espresso buttercream – Brown Eyed Baker’s Espresso Buttercream

*Note – I used a large cake tip to frost the cupcakes and then made a mocha sauce to decorate on top of it.  The mocha sauce came out great, but I couldn’t tell you the exact measurements.  I based it off of this recipe, but multiplied all the measurements by about 6 to make a large batch of the sauce.  I also added a lot more cornstarch than they suggested, because I wanted a thick sauce.  I would suggest at least a tablespoon and a half.  Make sure when you make the mocha sauce you let it cool completely before putting it on buttercream or it will melt the frosting.  I would definitely suggest making it or buying it to decorate the cupcakes because it really completes the flavor of the cupcake 🙂

Are you a Dunkin Donuts or Starbucks person? What is your favorite fancy coffee drink? Would you eat a mocha coconut cupcake?


About Emily

musings of a twenty-something.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Mocha Coconut Cupcakes

  1. You know, I’m not normally a big coconut fan, but I think I’ll eat anything if it’s in cupcake form 🙂 These look great!

    I don’t normally study in coffee shops. I get so easily distracted, because I usually go with friends! Then again, I get easily distracted at home too 🙂

  2. Michelle says:

    I agree with Allison. Coconut is my favorite. Seriously. Where can I get some?

  3. Emily! These look so amazing. Seriously, will you ship to VB? 😉 I totally agree with you re: coffee shops- I like to support local ones (er, I don’t think they have those here in VB, wtf) but I would choose starbucks over DD any day. Ew DD. Dude, 10 free itunes for getting the frap- what a steal! I would have had to try it too 🙂

  4. Um, yes, please. Coconut is currently one of my favorite things, and though I don’t drink coffee, I love the flavor (if that makes sense). These may happen soon in my life. THANK YOU!

    I used to love Dunkin’ Donuts in college, but since removing coffee from my life, it’s kind of lame. Their tea sucks. I prefer local establishments, generally, but only if they have good tea. As much as I try to avoid Starbucks trips, those tea lattes are awesome. Luckily, its also a half hour drive to S-bux for me, so I manage to generally stay away.

  5. Ann says:

    Not baking lately? Missing your posts!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s