Irish Cream Cupcakes

St. Patrick's day is nearly upon us. It's a holiday I look forward to every year and I hope to be in Ireland for St. Patrick's day at some point in my life. Ireland is a country I have longed to visit for it's beauty, castles, and landscapes. I usually prepare Guinness beef stew for dinner and a Shamrock Shake makes an appearance or two throughout the month of March. These cupcakes make the perfect dessert...

Consider this your warning: there are three layers of booziness in this cupcake. I chose not to let my kids have a go at these, I said they were a "grown up" dessert. They got oatmeal cookies instead. An adequate substitution according to them. These cupcakes are super, super rich. If you're not a big fan of frosting, go light while piping.

To my Irish friends in Cork, Ireland and Columbus, Ohio--I wish you a fabulous St. Patrick's day, 2015, with your friends and family. Cheers!!

Irish Cream Cupcakes

approximately 8 cupcakes


For the cakes:

  • 1/2 cup (120 mL) Irish cream liqueur [I use Bailey's]
  • 3 Tablespoons egg, well beaten (use two eggs, you'll spill some!)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup (85 g) all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup + 2 Tablespoons (177 g) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons (45 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda [bicarbonate]
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 6 Tablespoons (84 g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) strongly brewed coffee

For the chocolate ganache filling:

  • 1/3 cup + 2 Tablespoons (89 mL) heavy cream
  • 1 cup (175 g) milk chocolate chips
  • 2 Tablespoons (28 g) butter
  • 2 Tablespoons (30 mL) Irish cream liqueur

For the Irish cream frosting:

  • 1 stick (113 g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups (240 g) powdered sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons (45 mL) Irish cream liqueur
  • 1 Tablespoon (15 mL) heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt, optional but cuts the sweetness if needed


For the cakes: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C). Line a muffin tin with paper liners.

In a small mixing bowl, vigorously combine the Irish liqueur, egg, and vanilla extract with a fork.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder baking soda and salt. Add butter and egg mixture. Using an electric mixer, combine the ingredients until the dry ingredients are moistened. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the coffee and continue mixing until all ingredients are well incorporated.

Divide the batter among the liners (about 3/4 full). Bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack.

For the chocolate ganache: In a medium saucepan, combine the heavy cream and chocolate chips over medium low heat, stirring continuously until the chocolate is melted and smooth (this can also be done in the microwave using 30 second intervals). Add the butter and stir until melted, then add the Irish liqueur. Stir well, then chill until the ganache is thickened but still soft.

For the frosting: Using an electric mixer, combine the butter and powdered sugar on low speed until combined. Scrape down the bowl and add the Irish cream. Finally, add the vanilla and heavy cream. Beat on high speed until thick and fluffy. If the frosting is too sweet, add a pinch of salt.

To assemble the cupcakes: Cut a large divot out of each (completely) cooled cupcake. Eat that part; it's too good to throw away. Fill each hole with the chilled ganache, reserving the leftover ganache as topping. Spread or transfer the frosting to a piping bag and frost each cupcake. Dust the cupcakes with cocoa powder (optional) and drizzle over reserved ganache before serving.

Adapted from

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