Chocolate orange flavour cupcakes with a chocolate orange buttercream and decorated with a piece of Terry's Chocolate Orange!
No artificial orange flavouring is needed for these naturally flavoured intensely citrussy cupcakes. The sponge is so chocolatey and the addition of orange zest and orange juice makes the cupcakes seriously moist and decadent.
Can we all just agree that Terry's chocolate orange is one of the best inventions ever?
Obviously, the chocolate and orange combination is a match made in heaven but there's something about the Terry's version in the shape of an orange that makes it totally irresistible.
And if I don't have one to eat all to myself on Christmas morning I get mad, haha!!
Looking for a cake version of this recipe? Check out my Easy Chocolate Orange Cake. A two-tiered cake filled and topped with an incredible chocolate orange ganache.
The cupcake part of this recipe is really good because I've based it on a Devil's food cake. This yields a lovely dark coloured cupcake with an intense chocolate flavour.
The resulting sponge is very light and moist - perfect to sink your teeth into!
I've avoided using artificial orange flavouring in this recipe and instead experimented with getting the citrus kick from orange zest and juice. This gives a much better tasting cupcake in my opinion.
Chocolate Orange Buttercream
The chocolate orange buttercream is made from very soft butter, icing sugar, cocoa powder, melted dark chocolate orange and a little bit of milk.
I use the dark chocolate orange because the regular milk version doesn't work very well and might make your buttercream split.
You will also get a much more intense orange flavour from using the dark one and that's what we're all after, isn't it?
For decoration, I, of course, used segments of Terry's chocolate orange as well as some freshly grated orange zest.
Don't they look deliciously dark and decadent?
How to make Chocolate Orange Cupcakes
Step One: Add the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking powder, salt and butter into a large bowl. Use a handheld electric whisk to beat the ingredients together until you have the consistency of sand. Add the orange zest and mix it in.
Step Two: Add the orange juice, milk and eggs to a separate bowl or jug and whisk together.
Step Three: Add half of the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and beat well.
Add the remaining wet ingredients to the mixing bowl and beat for a couple of minutes until the ingredients are fully combined and the batter looks smooth.
Step Four: Divide the cupcake batter between 12 cupcake cases. Bake in the centre of the oven for 20-25 minutes or until the sponge bounces back when touched.
Step Five: To make the chocolate orange buttercream, add the very soft butter to a mixing bowl and beat until smooth. Next, add the icing sugar and beat until you have a mixture the consistency of sand.
Step Six: Add the cocoa powder and (cooled) melted chocolate orange and beat together.
Note: At this stage, the mixture will look like lumpy wet sand and will not yet resemble smooth buttercream. Have faith!
Step Seven: Add the milk and continue to beat until the buttercream is smooth and creamy. This may take a few minutes, if the buttercream is still very thick you can add milk a teaspoon at a time until it reaches pipeable consistency.
Step Eight: Transfer the chocolate orange buttercream to a piping bag fitted with a piping nozzle. When the chocolate orange cupcakes are completely cool, pipe swirls of buttercream on top then decorate with a piece of Terry's chocolate orange and a sprinkling of fresh orange zest.
Amy's tip: I used a Wilton 1M piping nozzle to get the swirl effect icing.
These cupcakes are absolutely divine, and you can't go wrong with this super easy recipe. I hope you love the Chocolate Orange Cupcakes as much as we did!
More Chocolate Orange Recipes You'll Enjoy
- Easy Chocolate Orange Cake
- Microwave Chocolate Orange Fudge
- Chocolate Orange Cookies
- Chocolate Orange Hot Cross Buns
For the cupcakes
- 150g (¾ cup + 3 tbsp) plain flour
- 30g (¼ cup) cocoa powder
- 210g (1 cup) caster sugar
- 2 tsps baking powder
- pinch of salt
- zest of 1 orange
- 60g (¼ cup) unsalted butter
- Juice of 1 orange (about 75ml/1/4 cup)
- 100ml (¼ cup + 3 tbsp) milk
- 2 medium eggs
For the buttercream
- 1 dark Terry's chocolate orange (157g)
- 110g (½ cup) unsalted butter, softned
- 340g (2 ¼ cups) icing sugar
- 50g (¼ cup + 3 tbsp) cocoa powder
- 4 tbsp milk
- Terry's chocolate orange to decorate
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC/160ºC Fan/ Gas 4/350ºF. Line a cupcake tray with 12 cupcake cases.
- Add the flour, cocoa powder, caster sugar, baking powder, salt and butter to a large mixing bowl. Use a handheld electric whisk to beat the ingredients together until they are the consistency of sand. Add the orange zest and thoroughly mix it in.
- In a separate bowl add the orange juice, milk and eggs and whisk together.
- Pour half of the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and beat well. Pour the remaining wet ingredients into the mixing bowl and beat for a couple of minutes until the mixture is fully combined and smooth.
- Divide the cupcake batter between the 12 cupcake cases. Bake in the centre of the oven for 20-25 minutes or until the sponge bounces back when touched.
- To make the buttercream chop the Terry's chocolate orange into small pieces and put it into a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water to melt it (bain-marie). When it has melted set it aside to cool.
- Put the softened butter into a mixing bowl and beat it with a handheld electric whisk until it is creamy. Add the icing sugar and beat until the mixture is the consistency of sand. Add the cocoa powder and (cooled) melted chocolate orange and beat again. The mixture will look like lumpy sand. Add the milk and continue to beat until the buttercream becomes smooth and fluffy. You can add a little more milk if it looks too thick.
- Transfer the buttercream to a piping bag fitted with a piping nozzle. When the cupcakes are completely cool, pipe swirls of buttercream on top and decorate with a piece of Terry's chocolate orange and a sprinkling of freshly grated orange zest.
- You can substitute the fresh orange flavourings with 1 tsp of orange extract if you wish.
- If you don't want to use a Terry's chocolate orange in the buttercream you can use any orange flavoured chocolate - just make sure it's dark and not milk.
- The buttercream will look terrible until you add the milk so please don't panic! The milk will bring it together into a perfectly smooth and beautiful buttercream :-)
- I used a Wilton 1M piping nozzle for the swirl effect.
- Storage: Store in an airtight container at room temperature. The cupcakes will stay fresh for 3-4 days but are always best eaten on the day they are made. You can freeze undecorated cupcakes for up to 3 months.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 417Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 34mgSodium: 136mgCarbohydrates: 17gFiber: 1gSugar: 8gProtein: 3g
Nutrition is an estimate only.