My dad recently celebrated a birthday, so I had a reason to whip up a chocolate dessert in his honor that would taste decadent and have a reasonable nutritional profile. His favorite birthday dessert from childhood was angel food cake with chocolate buttercream frosting (Why was the cake even needed? It was clearly just a way to eat copious amounts of frosting!), but every year I attempt to top those sugar-filled memories of youth with a chocolate-laced alternative. Angel food cake with chocolate buttercream may still be his ultimate favorite, but not one of these layered Mississippi mud mini-cupcakes went to waste!
I adapted this recipe from Cupcakes! by Elinor Klivans, a beautiful book that lacks only one thing: photos of every recipe. Chocolate sour cream cupcake batter is layered over crushed chocolate sandwich cookies and mini semisweet chocolate chips. The remaining cookie pieces and chips are sprinkled over the batter, and once baked and cooled, the cupcakes receive a semisweet chocolate drizzle (I added edible glitter stars for a festive look!).
Mississippi Mud Mini-Cupcakes
Adapted from Cupcakes! by Elinor Klivans
1 1/2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 cup butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp sugar
1 large egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup low fat sour cream
1/4 cup water
1 cup plus 2 Tbsp crushed chocolate sandwich cookies, in 1/2- to 1/4-inch pieces (about 10 cookies)
1/2 cup (3 ounces) mini semisweet chocolate chips
1 1/2 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
Preheat oven to 350°F and line a 12-cup mini muffin pan with baking cups. Melt chopped unsweetened chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl for 1 minute at medium power, stirring until the chocolate is smooth. If necessary, microwave an additional 30 seconds and then stir. Set aside to cool slightly.
Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl and set aside. Place butter and sugar in a large bowl and use an electric mixer on medium speed to beat until blended and creamy, about 2 minutes. Stop the mixture and scrape the sides of the bowl as needed. On low speed, mix in the melted chocolate. On medium speed, add the egg, mixing until blended into the batter. Add the vanilla and beat until the mixture looks creamy and has lightened slightly, about 1 minute. Mix in the sour cream until no white streaks remain. On low speed, add half of the flour mixture, mixing just until blended. Mix in the water. Mix in the remaining flour mixture until just blended and the batter looks smooth.
Spoon 1/2 teaspoon of the cookie pieces into the bottom of each baking cup, then spoon 1/4 teaspoon of mini chocolate chips (about 6) over the cookie pieces in each liner. Fill each baking cup with a slightly rounded tablespoon of batter, to about 1/4 inch below the top of the liner. Sprinkle the remaining chocolate chips and cookie pieces over the tops, pressing them gently into the batter.
Bake just until the tops feel firm and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 12 minutes. Cool the cupcakes for 5 minutes in the pan on a wire rack. Holding an edge of each liner, carefully lift the cupcakes from the pan and place them on the wire rack to cool completely.
Melt chopped semisweet chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl for 1 minute at medium power, stirring until the chocolate is smooth. Drizzle thin lines of melted chocolate over the top of each cooled cupcake, and add edible glitter, sprinkles, or other decoration of your choice. The cupcakes can be covered and stored at room temperature for up to 3 days.
Yield – 30 mini-cupcakes (serving size: 1 cupcake)
Calories – 90
Carbs – 11