Chocolate Strawberry Swirl Cupcakes

Chocolate Strawberry Swirl Cupcakes make a pretty dessert for Valentine’s Day. Homemade chocolate cupcakes with both chocolate and strawberry buttercream.

Cupcakes are a popular Valentine’s Day treat. They are easily portable to family, friends and for class parties. You can top them with sprinkles and they’ll look cute and festive.

We took our chocolate cake and chocolate buttercream and made a cute Chocolate Strawberry Swirl Cupcakes recipe that not only look festive, but taste amazing.

chocolate strawberry swirled cupcakes on a tray

Why you’ll love this recipe:

  • 100% from scratch. Although if you need a shortcut, use a box cake mix for the cupcakes.
  • Soft, moist chocolate cupcakes.
  • Chocolate buttercream swirled with strawberry buttercream that gets its flavor from freeze dried strawberries.
  • Top with your favorite Valentine’s Day sprinkles for your Valentine.

Homemade Chocolate Cupcakes

This cupcake recipe is the same as our best chocolate cake recipe. If you want a homemade cake that has the same fluffy and light texture as a box mix, this is it. And it’s easy to make too! Here are a few hints:

  • The recipe calls for coffee to enhance the chocolate flavor. Don’t like coffee? Don’t worry… you won’t taste it in this cake. However, if you are set against using coffee, just use water. I highly recommend the coffee, though.
  • Buttermilk keeps this cake soft and helps it to rise. If you don’t have buttermilk, simply add a tablespoon of vinegar into a measuring cup, then fill it the rest of the way with milk. Allow it to sit for a few minutes and voila…you have an easy substitute for buttermilk!
  • Mix the dry and wet ingredients separately. This will help ensure the ingredients are evenly distributed and then the cupcakes will bake evenly.

How to Make Swirl Frosting

The chocolate strawberry swirl cupcakes have a combination of both chocolate buttercream and strawberry buttercream. You can use only one flavor if you’d like (but double the frosting recipe if you choose that) or you can make both and have the cupcakes look super pretty.

Here’s how to do it:

  • Make the chocolate buttercream. It’s easiest to use a stand mixer (or a high powered hand mixer) so that the buttercream is smooth and light. This chocolate buttercream gets rave reviews. It will melt in your mouth!
  • Make the strawberry buttercream. This calls for freeze dried strawberries which give the frosting a nice color and great flavor. If you can’t get hold of freeze dried strawberries you can substitute for fresh strawberries. Puree ¼ cup of strawberries in a food processor, add to a saucepan and reduce the purée down by half (you’ll end up with just about 2 tablespoons of strawberry puree). Add the purée to the buttercream in place of freeze dried strawberries.
  • Place a large Wilton tip into a disposable piping bag. Wilton 1M works great for this. Hold the bag open and use a spatula to spread the chocolate buttercream on one side of the bag and the strawberry buttercream on the other. Twist the top and squeeze the frosting down to the tip.
  • Hold the bag perpendicular to the top of the cupcake. Squeeze and swirl the frosting around the top. Sprinkle with sprinkles before the frosting sets.
chocolate and strawberry frosting in a piping bag

Recipe Variations

a chocolate strawberry swirl cupcake on a plate
a chocolate strawberry swirl cupcake on a plate

Chocolate Strawberry Swirl Cupcakes

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Chocolate Strawberry Swirl Cupcakes make a pretty dessert for Valentine's Day. Homemade chocolate cupcakes with both chocolate and strawberry buttercream.
Servings 24
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes

Ingredients
 

For the cupcakes:

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup freshly brewed strong hot coffee

For the chocolate buttercream:

  • 1/2 cup salted butter room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2-4 tablespoons heavy cream

For the strawberry buttercream:

  • 3/4 cup freeze dried strawberries
  • 1/2 cup salted butter room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2-3 tablespoons heavy cream

Instructions
 

Make the cupcakes:

  • Prepare cupcake pans with 24 liners. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Put flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl and whisk well.
  • In a stand mixer, mix the buttermilk, oil, eggs, vanilla together. Slowly add in the mix of dry ingredients while the mixer is on low. Add the coffee and make sure everything is combined. The batter will be very thin.
  • Fill the cupcake cups about ½ to ⅔ full and bake for about 18-21 minutes or until the center of the cupcake springs back when you touch it.
  • Allow the cupcakes to cool on a cooling rack. While the cake is cooling, make the frostings.

Make the chocolate buttercream:

  • In a stand mixer with the beater blade, beat the butter for 1-2 minutes until it is smooth, creamy and nearly white in appearance.
  • Add in the salt and vanilla. Mix until incorporated.
  • With the mixer on low speed, slowly add in the powdered sugar and cocoa powder.
  • Add the heavy cream, a tablespoon at a time, mixing slowly until it is the consistency that you’d like.
  • Beat for 1 minute on medium speed until smooth and creamy.

Make the strawberry buttercream:

  • Place the freeze dried strawberries into a food processor and pulse until it makes a fine powder.
  • In a stand mixer bowl, with the mixer on medium speed, whip the butter for 2 minutes until it is almost white in color. Make sure the butter is at room temperature, but not melted.
  • Add in the powdered sugar, strawberry powder, vanilla and cream.
  • Beat on low speed for 3-5 minutes, adding in another tablespoon of milk if the buttercream needs to be thinner for piping.

Assemble the cupcakes:

  • To get the two tone effect, fit a piping bag with a Wilton 1M piping nozzle then hold the bag open and use a spatula to spread the chocolate buttercream on one side of the bag and the strawberry buttercream on the other.
  • Pipe swirls of strawberry and chocolate buttercream on top of the cupcakes.
  • Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 48 hours, then refrigerate or freeze.

Notes

If you can’t get hold of freeze dried strawberries you can substitute for fresh strawberries. Puree ¼ cup of strawberries in a food processor, add to a saucepan and reduce the puree down by half. Add to the buttercream in place of freeze dried.
Refer to the article above for more tips and tricks.
The calories shown are based on the recipe making 24 cupcakes, with 1 serving being 1 cupcake. Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the calories shown are just an estimate. **We are not dietitians and recommend you seek a nutritionist for exact nutritional information. The information in the nutrition box are calculated through a program and there is room for error. If you need an accurate count, I recommend running the ingredients through your favorite nutrition calculator.**

Nutrition

Calories: 331kcal | Carbohydrates: 50g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 40mg | Sodium: 299mg | Potassium: 209mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 38g | Vitamin A: 312IU | Vitamin C: 90mg | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 3mg
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Calories 331
Keyword chocolate cupcakes, strawberries, valentines day

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