Valentine's Day is here and I have a decadent, delicious, dessert that will impress your Valentine or your kids or the neighbors or anyone really! These Dark Chocolate Raspberry Cupcakes look like you got them from a high-end bakery but don't tell anyone that they really came from a boxed cake mix and are super easy to whip up.
The ingredients for the cupcakes are; Devil's Food Cake Mix, Milk, Butter, Vanilla, Eggs and Prepared Raspberry Jam (an inexpensive jar of raspberry jam will be fine). Mix all of the ingredients together in a stand mixer or a bowl with a hand mixer for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes.
The batter will be thicker than a normal boxed cake mix batter is. YUM!
Line a muffin pan with paper cupcake liners and fill the cups 1/2 full with batter. Bake for 18 minutes at 350 degrees. It will produce a flat top cupcake that will be the perfect vehicle for the decadent frosting your about to make. Cool cupcakes on a cooling rack for 30 minutes.
It is a good idea to set out the frozen raspberries, butter, and cream cheese out earlier in the day so that they can all come to room temperature. However, if you didn't think ahead, just use the microwave to defrost and soften them.
First, mash 1 cup of defrosted raspberries in a mesh strainer until all of the juice has been collected (throw away the seeds and pulp that remain in the strainer). Using a stand mixer or hand mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter together until smooth. Add a 2 lb bag of powdered sugar and raspberry juice. As the frosting comes together you may need a splash of milk to get the consistency you desire, it will depend on how much raspberry juice you got. (I got between 1/2-1/3 cup of raspberry juice from 1 cup of raspberries and I needed another 1-2 tablespoons of milk to make the frosting the right consistency.)
The last step is to make the raspberry garnish for the top of the cupcakes. Just melt 1/2 cup of dark chocolate chips (these are my favorite) with a 1/2 teaspoon of canola or vegetable oil in the microwave. Stir until smooth and drizzle over fresh raspberries that are on a parchment paper lined sheet pan. Refrigerate the berries for 5-10 minutes until the chocolate is set.
Now it's time to put it all together! I like to frost my cupcakes with a frosting bag and a big star tip because I think it is faster, cleaner and prettier but you can just frost them with a butter knife or frosting spatula too. Whatever you use, be sure to get a good amount of frosting on each cupcake (this stuff is to die for). Then place a dark chocolate raspberry on top of each cupcake and voila, you have a dessert that will win over the hearts of kids and grown-ups alike!
I admit I am a big fan of chocolate and raspberry together, but these are just divine. The cake has a hint of raspberry and a few raspberry seeds from the jam. I didn't mind the seeds because they remind your mouth that you are eating REAL raspberries and not some flavoring. The cream cheese frosting is smooth, rich and a beautiful pink color. You could leave the fresh raspberry off the top if that isn't in your grocery budget but biting down into that juicy raspberry with a bit of dark chocolate along with all the other textures in the cake and frosting is liking taking a bite of heaven. And no, I am not exaggerating! Happy Valentine's Day!
- 15.25 oz Devils Food Cake Mix
- 4 Eggs
- 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, melted
- 1 1/4 cups milk
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 2/3 cup raspberry jam
- 8 oz cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1 cup frozen raspberries, defrosted and strained for juice only
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1-2 Tbsp milk, optional
- 36 Fresh raspberries
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
- 1/2 tsp canola oil
- Mix the cake mix, eggs, milk, melted butter, vanilla and raspberry jam together in a stand mixer or a bowl with a hand mixer for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes.
- Line a muffin pan with paper cupcake liners and fill the cups 1/2 full with batter.
- Bake for 18 minutes at 350 degrees or until the top of the cake springs back when touched.
- Cool cupcakes on a cooling rack for 30 minutes.
- Mash 1 cup of defrosted raspberries in a mesh strainer until all of the juice has been collected (throw away the seeds and pulp that remain in the strainer).
- Using a stand mixer or hand mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter together until smooth.
- Mix in a 2 lb bag of powdered sugar and raspberry juice. (Start slow so you don't get powdered sugar all over.)
- As the frosting comes together you may need a splash of milk to get the consistency you desire.
- Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and arrange 36 fresh raspberries on it.
- Melt chocolate chips and oil for 30-60 seconds, stirring every 30 seconds until melted and smooth.
- Using the tongs of a fork, drizzle melted chocolate over the raspberries.
- Put pan in the refrigerator for 5-10 minutes until the chocolate is set.
- When the cupcakes are cool, frost the cupcakes with a generous amount of frosting and top with a chocolate drizzled, fresh raspberry.
- If it is a warm day, you may want to refrigerate frosting until you are ready to frost the cupcakes.
- You can use seedless jam in the cupcakes but the seeds didn't bother any of my taste testers because it reminded your mouth that you were eating real raspberries and not a raspberry flavoring. They also seemed to soften a little when baked in the cake.
- The cream cheese, butter and frozen raspberries for the frosting need to be room temperature. If you didn't plan ahead and set them out to soften, you can defrost and soften them in the microwave just be careful not to melt the butter or cream cheese.