Monday, April 16, 2012

Nutella for the Win

First, a confession.  I have not yet eaten one of these cupcakes.  I have, however, tasted every component on its own, and I fail to see how they could not be spectacular together.

There are three parts to this cupcake:  chocolate cake, Nutella, and Nutella buttercream frosting.  I love the combination of chocolate and hazelnut, therefore I love Nutella, therefor I love Nutella cupcakes (the law of syllogisms at work!).  I actually want to kick myself for all the time I spent not eating Nutella.  I think I first tried it when we moved to Germany.  I must have been about six, and for a long time I didn't like nuts or things that were too sweet.  I've outgrown both those phases, thankfully.  I just didn't take to the chocolate-hazelnut spread, and avoided it until last year.  I purchased it on a whim, and thank goodness I did.  It is back in my life where it belongs.

Another confession.  The cake part is not completely made from scratch.  We had a busy weekend; pulling ivy, pressure washing our driveway to remove the paint the bank put on it, and general running around.  So I kind of cheated.  I used a Devil's Food cake mix as the base and doctored it up.  It's still delicious.  Moist and flavorful, and does not taste at all like a box mix.  Sometimes you've got to use shortcuts when they are available to you.
My assistant

A few lessons learned:  Nutella does not pipe well into cupcakes.  I tried to use the piping tip from the decorating set my sister got me.  I ended up with a very large mess.  The apple corer technique works much better.  I also tried using a round decorator's tip to pipe the icing, but let's just say the result was not appetizing.  I've only gotten as far as star tips.  Oh, I'm a big believer in different music to cook different things by, and Supreme Being's of Leisure's Never the Same is perfect music to pipe frosting to.  That smooth, jazzy thing they do just helps get you into the groove.  After that song I listened to David Byrne's Look into the Eye-Ball because, well, I can always listen to that.

These will be garnished with a piece of a chocolate-hazelnut candy bar

Here is where I got my inspiration and the recipe for Nutella Buttercream Frosting.  The recipe I used for the cake is below:


1 pkg devil's food cake mix (with pudding in the mix)
1 cup sour cream
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
4 large eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line two muffin pans with cupcake liners.

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients.  Either with an electric mixer or a wire whisk, slowly combine all ingredients.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl, and then mix vigorously until batter looks well combined.

Divide batter among cupcake liners and bake for 20-23 minutes, or until tops look firm and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Allow to cool completely before filling.


  1. My daughter is always asking me to send her Nutella at college. I'll have to send her this recipe as well next time :)

  2. You know i'm grinning about this whole post....and you know which part made me especially happy too!!!

  3. First, your assistant looks cool. Syllogistic to infer you are too.
    I have never tasted Nutella, never; and now I am scared to start because I will become miserable knowing all the years I have missed eating it. I don't know when it first appeared, but that is too long.

  4. A friend of mine, who lives in Belgium, came to visit me and was telling me about a chocolate spread that she eats on toast for breakfast every day. We went grocery shopping one day and decided to see if we could find something similar. She saw the jars of Nutella and said, "That's it! That's the spread!" I had forgotten about the yumminess of Nutella. I took it home and introduced it to my husband who thought it would be good on a peanut butter sandwich.
    Now, I'll have to try this cupcake! Thanks for sharing!!

    1. Where in Belgium does your friend live? I grew up in a little town called Leefdal. It's about 30 minutes outside of Brussels, near Leuven.

  5. I can not have Nutella in the house! It always screams from the kitchen. Truly! It says, get a spoon and finish this jar!

  6. I also love chocolate and hazelnuts. These cupcakes look delicious!

  7. Dropping by from a to z.
    Your blog is kind of dangerous for me; we mostly don't eat sugar at our house.

  8. You had me at Nutella Buttercream Frosting. Nutella is a staple in our house. I never ate it as a child, but it is devine. I dare not keep my children from it. Printed the recipe, making these bad boys this weekend.;)

  9. they look scrumptious! i wish i had a bit of baker in me. i feel like i deprive my boys because my mom was an awesome baker...ah well, they get other good things =)