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Sense & Edibility's Chocolate Stout-Pretzel Cupcakes with Bailey's Buttercream and Caramel Drizzle
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Chocolate Stout-Pretzel Cupcakes with Bailey's Buttercream and Caramel Drizzle

These luscious cupcakes are begging to be baked and quickly devoured. Don't disappoint them. 
Course Sweets
Cuisine Irish
Keyword Bailey's, caramel, chocolate, cupcakes, Guinness, pretzels
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 2 dozen

Ingredients

Chocolate Stout-Pretzel Cupcakes

  • 70 mini pretzels, divided
  • 4 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
  • 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup Dutch processed cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup whole milk, at room temperature
  • 1 cup Guinness (or stout beer), at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup packed, light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon chocolate extract, optional

Bailey's Buttercream

  • 1 pound (4 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup vegetable shortening
  • 2 pounds powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup Bailey's Irish Cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

To Garnish

  • 1 cup caramel sauce (link in post)

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line two cupcake tins with cupcake liners and set aside. 

Make the Pretzel Base

  • Crush the pretzels to crumbs in a sealed plastic bag using a rolling pin. 
    Reserve 1/2 a cup of the crumbs for garnishing the cupcakes later. 
  • Combine the remaining crumbs with the melted butter to create a crust that holds together when squeezed in the palm of your hand. 
    Add a tablespoon of the pretzel mixture to each cupcake liner, pressing down a bit to pack them. 
  • Bake for 5 minutes. Once the time is up, remove the pans from the oven and allow the pretzel crusts to cool while you make the cake batter.

Prepare the Chocolate Stout-Pretzel Cake

  • Sift the dry ingredients together, then set this bowl to the side.
  • In a large measuring cup, combine the milk and the Guinness. Set this aside as well. 
  • In a large mixing bowl, use an electric hand mixer to beat both sugars, the butter, and both extracts together. 
  • Add the eggs to the bowl, one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down the bowl prior to adding the next egg. 
    Mix on medium-high speed, for 6-7 minutes, or until the mixture looks fluffy. Scrape down the bowl at least twice while you're creaming the butter, sugars, and eggs.
  • Add the sifted dry ingredients, alternating with the milk mixture, as follows: add 1/3 of the dry, mix just until blended in. Add 1/2 of the milk, mix just until blended in. 
    Repeat until all of the ingredients have been added to the bowl. Scrape down the bowl's sides occasionally for an evenly mixed batter. 
  • Use a number 16 scoop to scoop the batter into the lined cupcake tins. 
    Bake for 20 minutes at 375°F, or until a thermometer reads 210°F. After the cupcakes have finished baking, remove them from the oven and transfer them to a cooling rack to cool completely.

Make the Bailey's Buttercream

  • In a stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the shortening and butter until smooth. 
  • Add the salt, then gradually add the powdered sugar. Scrape down the bowl a few times as you're mixing. Once the sugar has been incorporated, increase the speed to medium-high and beat for one minute. 
  • Switch to the whip attachment and add the Bailey's Irish Cream and the vanilla extract to the mixture.
    Gradually increase the speed back to medium-high and whip for 3 or 4 minutes, or until light and airy. Scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally during mixing. 

Decorate the Cupcakes

  • Once the buttercream is prepared, and the cupcakes are completely cool fill a piping bag- fitted with a 1M tip- halfway with the buttercream. 
  • Pipe a dot of frosting on the top each cupcake, dead center. This dollop of frosting helps create a dome of frosting for your cupcakes. 
    Pipe a swirl of frosting around and on top of the dollop. 
  • Sprinkle a generous pinch of the reserved pretzel crumbs on top of the frosting. 
  • Fill a separate piping bag with caramel sauce and drizzle a good amount over each cupcake. 
  • Top each cupcake's frosting with a whole mini pretzel. 
  • Enjoy these cupcakes within 3 days of preparation. 

Notes

Alcohol-Free Version:

Replace the Guinness with room temperature- brewed- coffee. Omit the Bailey's Irish Cream in the buttercream, as well. Thin the icing, as needed, with whole milk (up to 1/4 cup).
  • These cupcakes should not be frozen after frosting. If you would like to freeze them, do so after baking and cooling. The cupcakes are okay to freeze for two months when stored in a freezer storage bag.
  • The buttercream can also be frozen (for up to two months). Fill a plastic freezer bag with the buttercream and freeze. When ready to use, thaw in the refrigerator and re-whip until smooth.