Super moist air fryer chocolate cupcakes that are full of flavor made from melted chocolate, cacao, and buttermilk. They turn out amazing every time, and you always will regret that you didn’t make more of them. A perfect dessert for any occasion.
Remember those days when you want a little chocolate? Well, these air fryer chocolate cupcakes are for those days when you want a dessert that is full of chocolate.
No kidding. We used melted chocolate in the cupcake mix and also natural cacao and melted chocolate for the frosting.
Yes, I know. But this recipe is for those cheat days when you didn’t think about calories.
It is a perfect dessert for any occasion. Also, you can make your own frosting and decorate these chocolate cupcakes as you want.
Everyone who tried these cupcakes remained speechless and asked me the recipe. So good they are.
Pro Tip: Part of the secret is that we will bake them in the air fryer at a low temperature. Baking them at a lower temperature, allows them to bake evenly and to become moist and fluffy.
Secret Behind a Perfect Chocolate Cupcake Frosting
I prefer to use cream cheese instead of buttercream because it is lighter and keeps it just as well-formed. If the cream cheese is too thick, mix it with a little whipped cream.
If you want to get a more homogeneous consistency, mix the cream cheese with powdered sugar instead of the regular sugar.
Don’t be afraid to experiment with frosting flavors. Besides chocolate and cocoa, try to use spices such as vanilla or cinnamon. Or you can go in the direction of citrus fruits and use orange peel, lemon, or tangerines.
🥰 Why You Will Love This Recipe?
- The cupcakes themselves are very fluffy.
- This recipe is perfect for true chocolate lovers because both the cupcakes and frosting have a rich taste of chocolate.
- Because the frosting of the cupcakes is based on cream cheese it is lighter than the buttermilk. Also, the light acidity of the cream cheese balances the overall taste.
- Even if visually you may think that this is a complicated recipe with a lot of ingredients, this recipe is very simple and easy to follow. All you have to do is gradually mix all the ingredients in a large bowl.
- You can get a perfect dessert even for a special occasion with little effort.
- If you follow the recipe step by step, you can’t go wrong. Just mix well the ingredients and be with an eye on the cupcakes.
🏆 Expert Tips and What to Pay Attention on?
- Bring all the ingredients to the same temperature. For that, take all the ingredients out of the fridge two-three hours before you plan to start the recipe, and leave them on the table.
- Pre heat the air fryer well to avoid drying the cupcakes.
- Fill the cupcake molds only on half because the cupcakes need room to grow during baking.
🥘 Ingredients and Substitutes
Ingredients for the Chocolate Cupcake Mix
- ¾ cups of all purpose flour. For the best results, use high quality flour.
- ½ cup of natural cocoa (unsweetened).
- ¾ teaspoon baking powder.
- ½ teaspoon baking soda.
- ¼ teaspoon of salt.
- 2 medium eggs.
- ½ cup of regular sugar and ½ cup of brown sugar. I used a mix between those two, but you could only use one type of sugar (1 cup in total).
- ⅓ cup of vegetable oil. Use any vegetable oil that you prefer. As a recommandation, avoid oils that have an intense aroma, because they could cover the taste of chocolate.
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract.
- ½ cup of buttermilk. You can replace it with yogurt in the same amount.
- ½ cup of melted chocolate. I decided to add melted chocolate to the cupcake composition. I used a mix between two types of white and brown chocolate. Pick whatever chocolate you prefer. Also, if you’re a fan of chocolate particles in cakes, you can replace melted chocolate with chocolate chips.
How to Make a Delicious Homemade Cupcake Mix?
Take a large bowl and pour in it the all-purpose flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, and baking soda.
Mix all ingredients well. This way you will avoid the formation of lumps in the cupcake mix.
Take another bowl and mix in it the buttermilk, with two eggs, and vanilla extract.
Pour the composition over the dry ingredients and mix well all the ingredients.
Quick Note: At this stage, you have two options: To use melted chocolate and as a result, you will get a richer chocolate taste or to use chocolate chips that will give you the texture of the chocolate but the taste will be lighter. It all depends on the texture and taste you want to get into the end.
Mix well until you get a uniform composition.
Preheat the air fryer to 320°F (160°C) and in the meantime, pour the composition into cupcake liners.
Pro Tip: Fill the forms only on half because, during baking, the cupcake mix will double in size. If you will pour too much of the cupcake mix, you risk that the cupcakes will grow too much and will flow out of the cupcake liners.
After the air fryer warmed to 320°F (160°C). Put the cupcake liners filled with the cake mix in the air fryer basket.
Pro Tip: If you have cupcake liners that have hard edges, you can use only them. If you have regular silicone forms or metal cupcake molds then you will need also to use paper cupcake liners inside of them.
Bake the cupcakes at 320°F (160°C) for 15-20 minutes. In my case, it took 20 minutes because I used the Cosori Air Fryer 5.8QT. If your air fryer is smaller, the baking time will be shorter.
Quick note: Baking time may vary depending on air fryer size, model, and the quantity of the cupcakes that you will bake. Because of that check the chocolate cupcakes with a toothpick after 15 minutes if the cakes are ready. If not, adjust the timing accordingly.
In the end, you will get delicious cupcakes that will have an intense chocolate taste and a slightly cracked surface that will remind you of brownies. These are so delicious that you can enjoy them without frosting on top.
Actually, I really suggest you try a cupcake as is without the frosting.
Got impressed? Let’s make our cupcakes even more delicious. Let’s make for them an easy and delicious chocolate frosting.
How to Make a Homemade Chocolate Cupcake Frosting?
After all the ingredients have reached room temperature, we can start making the cream mix.
First of all, you should melt the chocolate.
Quick Note: You can melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water. In a microwave for 30 seconds. Then take off the plate, mix the chocolate, and put it for another 30 seconds if is needed. Repeat the process until the chocolate is fully melted.
Ingredients for Chocolate Frosting for the Cupcakes
- 1 cup of cream cheese.
- ⅓ cup of natural cocoa.
- ½ cup of chocolate (optional).
- ½ cup of powdered sugar.
- ½ cup of cream.
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.
After that, take a large enough bowl in which it will be easy for you to mix all the ingredients.
Put the cream cheese and whipped cream in it and mix well. You will get a composition as in the image below.
Over this composition, pour the powdered sugar and natural cocoa. Mix well all the ingredients.
Pro Tip: Be careful to set a low speed at the mixer because you risk spreading the whole kitchen with those dry ingredients. If the minimal speed of the mixer is too high, you can mix all the ingredients initially manually using a spoon.
After mixing these ingredients you will get a uniform composition as in the image below:
Basically, this is already a frosting ready to use.
(Optional) If you prefer a richer chocolate taste, add the melted chocolate over this mixture and mix well one more time with all the ingredients.
For decorations, you will need sac a poche (decorating bag).
Pro Tip: If you do not have a “sac a poche” at hand, you can use a durable plastic food package, to cut a small corner and you will be able to pour the cream as you want. The easiest way is to use zip lock bags.
Optionally, for extra decoration, you could throw a mix of cake sprinkles over the cupcakes.
♻️ Make Ahead and Storage:
You could prepare them a day or two before serving and store the frosting and cupcakes in the fridge separately. On the day when you will need to serve them, just decorate them before serving.
You can keep 1-2 days covered on the table, or if you have a larger quantity or you plan to keep them for longer, you can keep them in an air-tight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. But most probably, you will eat all of them on the first day. So good they are.
You can bake more cupcakes than you need and freeze them (without decorating them). When you plan to serve them, defrost in the microwave for 1-2 minutes, or even better in the fridge the night before or in the air fryer for 4-5 minutes.
Easy Air Fryer Chocolate Cupcakes
Homemade Chocolate Cupcake Mix
Homemade Cupcake Mix
- Put all the dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.¾ cup All-purpose Flour, ½ cup Cacao, ¾ teaspoon Baking Powder, ½ teaspoon Baking Soda, ¼ teaspoon Salt, ½ cup Cane Sugar, ½ cup Brown Sugar
- In another bowl, mix the liquid ingredients.2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract, 2 pieces Eggs, ⅓ cup Vegetable Oil, ½ cup Buttermilk
- Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry ones.
- After you have mixed well the composition, add the chocolate. Mix well one more time.½ cup Chocolate
Baking the Cupcakes
- Preheat the air fryer to 320°F (160°C) and in the meantime fill on half the cake mix into the cupcake liners.
- Bake the cupcakes at 320°F (160°C) for 15-20 minutes. The baking time may differ based on your air fryer model.
- With a toothpick, after 15 minutes test if the cakes are ready. If not, adjust the timing acordingly.
Homemade Cupcake Frosting
- In a bowl, mix the cream with cream cheese.1 cup Cream Cheese, ½ cup Cream
- After that, add cocoa, powdered sugar and vanilla. Mix well.⅓ cup Cacao, ½ cup Powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- Optional, at the end, add melted chocolate. Mix well for the last time.½ cup Chocolate
- In the end, decorate the cupcakes as desired.
- Bring all ingredients to room temperature.
- Mix dried ingredients separately and liquid ingredients separately. This will allow you to avoid forming lumps.
- Start decorating the cupcakes only after they have cooled down, otherwise the cream will melt.