Easter Cupcakes

By Tessa Arias
  |  
March 22nd, 2022

Crowd-pleasing Easter Cupcakes feature a moist chocolate cupcake base, coconut buttercream frosting, toasted coconut, and Easter egg candies on top! Can be made ahead of time.

Yield: 12 cupcakes

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook: 20 minutes

Tessa's Recipe Rundown...

Taste: Chocolate and coconut is truly an underrated flavor combination. You have to try these out.
Texture: These Easter cupcakes are texture heaven with the tender, moist chocolate cupcakes, creamy coconut frosting, and a hint of crunch from the toasted coconut and egg candies.
Ease: SO easy to make.
Pros: These cupcakes will look absolutely adorable on your Easter dessert table.
Cons: None.
Would I make this again? I make these cupcakes every year for Easter!

These Easter Cupcakes will be the showstopper of your Easter celebration.

Super tender and moist chocolate cupcake base. Easy coconut buttercream. An adorable topping of toasted coconut and Easter egg candies.

It doesn’t get much cuter than these easy Easter cupcakes!

Frosting chocolate cupcakes with coconut buttercream

These cupcakes are absolutely perfect for springtime. Plus, they’re ridiculously easy to bake so you can get the kids involved too!

Warning: they won’t last long on your Easter dessert table.

Row of three chocolate coconut cupcakes with Easter candies on top

easter cupcakes

How to Make Easter Cupcakes

Ingredients for Easter Cupcakes:

  • Bittersweet chocolate – the cupcakes use bittersweet chocolate AND Dutch-process cocoa powder for as much chocolate flavor as possible. Use freshly chopped baking chocolate and not chocolate chips, which don’t melt down as smoothly.
  • Dutch-process cocoa – more detail on this right below.
  • Boiling water – the heat of the water will help ‘bloom’ the cocoa powder, allowing it to impart big chocolate flavor into these cupcakes!
  • All-purpose flourmeasured correctly so you don’t end up with dense cupcakes!
  • Sugar – you’ll be using a mix of granulated sugar and brown sugar, which adds more complex sweetness and also more moisture.
  • Salt – fine or regular table salt can be used.
  • Baking soda – learn about the differences between baking soda vs. baking powder here.
  • Full-fat canned coconut milk – be sure to use canned full-fat coconut milk for best results. Anything else will create cupcakes that are less rich and more dry.
  • Virgin coconut oil – coconut oil is best in these cupcakes, but you can use vegetable or canola oil instead. Just make sure it’s fresh and has no off aroma.
  • Eggs – 2 eggs plus an additional egg yolk adds even more richness, chewiness, and structure so the cupcakes can stand up to a generous amount of frosting.
  • White vinegar – this helps activate the baking soda in the recipe since we’re using Dutch cocoa which doesn’t contain acidity.
  • Vanilla extract – always!

    Do I have to use Dutch-Process Cocoa Powder?

    For best results, I find Dutch-Process Cocoa Powder creates more moist and tender cupcakes with a deeper color. Dutch-process tends to have more fat content and is less starchy than most grocery store natural cocoa powder products. Basically, you’re less likely to have dry cupcakes when using Dutch-process.

    However, because I understand not everyone can easily find Dutch-process, especially these days, here’s how you can swap in Natural Cocoa Powder:

    Use the same amount of natural unsweetened cocoa powder in place of the Dutch-Process and omit the vinegar.

    If you’re curious about the differences between Dutch-Process vs. Natural Cocoa powder, check out this article.

    comparison of dutch process vs natural cocoa powder

    How to melt coconut oil for these cupcakes:

    Place a glass container of coconut oil in the microwave without the metal lid and nuke until the top layer melts.

    Tips for baking with coconut milk:

    Since canned coconut milk tends to separate, vigorously shake the can before opening. If it’s still very separated, whisk until somewhat smooth before adding into the batter.

    Can this recipe be made into an Easter cake?

    Absolutely! Check out my full article on how to convert cupcakes into cake (and vice versa!).

    How to Decorate Easter Cupcakes

    1. Use an offset spatula to spread the frosting onto each cupcake. You could even experiment with adding food coloring to your frosting, if you’d like.
    2. Sprinkle cupcakes with the cooled toasted coconut.
    3. Place 3 Easter egg candies on top of each cupcake.

    How to Make Easter Cupcakes Ahead of Time

    Room temperature:

    Store unfrosted cupcakes in an airtight container at a cool room temperature (about 67°F) for up to 2 days. Airtight plastic or glass containers work better than resealable bags to prevent the tops from getting all sticky.

    Store frosted cupcakes in an airtight container for up to 8 hours at room temperature. Refrigerate for up to 2 days. Let come to room temperature before serving.

    Freezer:

    If storing unfrosted cupcakes for longer, wrap cupcakes individually in plastic wrap (this prevents freezer burn and taste transference). Place wrapped cupcakes inside a freezer bag on a shelf in your freezer where they won’t get smashed, or in an airtight container. Freeze for up to 3 months.

    Unwrap the cupcakes and allow to defrost at room temperature for about 1 to 2 hours. I don’t recommend defrosting in the fridge overnight in plastic as it tends to create a more sticky top where the frosting slides off.

    Freeze the buttercream in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Defrost in the fridge overnight and re-whip in the stand mixer until light and fluffy again. Add a tablespoon or 2 of powdered sugar if it needs to thicken.

    Row of three chocolate coconut Easter cupcakes

    More Easter Recipes

    Looking for more Easter Desserts? Check out my full collection of Easter recipes (sweet and savory!) HERE.

     

    How to make
    Easter Cupcakes

    Yield: 12 cupcakes
    Prep Time: 30 minutes
    Cook Time: 20 minutes
    Total Time: 50 minutes
    Crowd-pleasing Easter Cupcakes feature a moist chocolate cupcake base, coconut buttercream frosting, toasted coconut, and Easter egg candies on top! Can be made ahead of time.

    Ingredients

    For the chocolate cupcakes:

    • 5 ounces (142 grams) bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
    • 1/3 cup (28 grams) Dutch-process cocoa
    • 1/2 cup boiling water
    • 3/4 cup (95 grams) all-purpose flour
    • 1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
    • 1/4 cup (50 grams) packed light brown sugar
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/2 cup full-fat canned coconut milk, shaken well or whisked until somewhat smooth
    • 1/4 cup melted virgin coconut oil
    • 2 large eggs plus one egg yolk, at room temperature
    • 2 teaspoons white vinegar
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    For the coconut buttercream:

    • 3 cups (375 grams) powdered sugar, sifted
    • 8 ounces (227 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
    • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon coconut extract
    • 2 tablespoons full-fat canned coconut milk

    For the toppings:

    • 1 cup (85 grams) shredded sweetened coconut
    • Easter egg candies

    Directions

    Make the cupcakes:

    1. In a medium heatproof bowl, add the chocolate and cocoa powder. Pour hot water over mixture. Cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Whisk mixture gently until thick and smooth, then set aside to cool completely.

    2. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a standard 12-cup muffin tin with liners.
    3. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, brown sugar, salt, and baking soda.
    4. Whisk the coconut milk, coconut oil, eggs, egg yolk, vinegar, and vanilla into the cooled chocolate mixture until smooth. Stir in the flour mixture until smooth, being careful not to overmix.
    5. Using a spring-loaded scoop, divide the batter evenly among prepared muffin cups until 3/4 full. Bake until cupcakes are set and firm to the touch, about 17 to 20 minutes.

    6. Let cupcakes cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes before removing from pan to cool completely, about 1 hour. Cupcakes can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 day.

    Make the frosting:

    1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix together the sugar and butter. Mix on low speed until well blended and then increase the speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes. Add the salt, coconut extract, and coconut milk and beat on medium speed for 1 minute, adding more cream if needed or more powdered sugar to thicken.

    Toast the coconut:

    1. Place the coconut in a medium skillet set over medium heat. Stirring constantly, toast until golden brown. Remove and let cool.

    To assemble:

    1. Use an offset spatula to spread the frosting onto each cupcake. Sprinkle with the cooled toasted coconut. Place 3 Easter egg candies on top of each cupcake. Serve or store for 1 day at room temperature or up to 2 days covered in the fridge.
    Course: Dessert
    Cuisine: American
    Keyword: easter cupcakes

    Photos by Ashley McLaughlin.

     

    Tessa Arias
    Author: Tessa Arias

    I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)

    Tessa Arias

    About Tessa...

    I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)

    Find Tessa on  

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    1. #
      Cathy — March 27, 2022 at 4:15 pm

      I couldn’t find bittersweet chocolate. May I use baking chocolate or unsweetened chocolate?

      • #
        Emily — March 31, 2022 at 10:06 am

        Hi Cathy! We haven’t tried either of those, but just keep in mind that using unsweetened chocolate would result in a less sweet cupcake as bittersweet chocolate contains more sugar. That will have to be something you experiment with. Good luck!

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