Chocolate Chai Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

I’ve got a new cupcake recipe to share with you today! These chocolate chai cupcakes with cinnamon cream cheese frosting are so good! I found the recipe in an old taste of home magazine I had laying around the house, but they presented it as a recipe for chocolate chai mini loaves. I tried that, ended up with a messy disaster, and decided to re-think the recipe as cupcakes. It’s definitely a cake recipe, not bread, and the cream cheese icing on top places these firmly in the dessert category. They are light and tender, and basically taste like a chocolate cupcake with a hint of spice. If you’re looking for more of a spicy kick, I would try increasing the spices, but I really liked these “as-is”. They make a great fall dessert, and they look fancy even though they’re fairly easy. I would even go so far as to say they would make a great addition to your Thanksgiving dessert table! :)

Chocolate Chai Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

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Chocolate Chai Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

Yield: Makes approximately 16-18 cupcakes

Ingredients:

Cupcakes
2 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp ground cardamom
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp cloves
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sour cream

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Icing
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
5 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
2 tsp. clear vanilla extract
2½ cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
Cinnamon, to taste

Directions:

In a microwave, melt chocolate with the water; stir until smooth. Cool slightly. In a large bowl, cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla, then chocolate mixture.

Combine the flour, spices, baking soda and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with sour cream.

Transfer to cupcake liners. Bake at 350° for 16-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in a center cupcake comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans to a wire rack to cool completely.

For the frosting, combine the cream cheese and butter in the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on medium-high speed until well combined and smooth, about 2-3 minutes. Mix in the vanilla extract then gradually beat in the confectioners’ sugar until totally incorporated. Sprinkle in some cinnamon. Unfortunately, I didn't measure it, I just kept adding and mixing until I could see flecks of cinnamon throughout and it tasted right. Just start small and work your way up. :) Increase the speed and beat until smooth. Frost cooled cupcakes as desired.

adapted from Taste of Home