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Chocolate and salted caramel have a natural affinity and these cupcakes happily bring them together. Our salted caramel frosting is a cheat's version, which is simple to whip up as you don't need to make a proper caramel sauce. 






Skill level

Average: 2.7 (9 votes)


  • 1 tsp sea salt flakes, extra, to sprinkle


 Chocolate cupcakes

  • 125 g butter, at room temperature
  • 150 g (⅔ cup, firmly packed) dark brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 125 g good-quality dark chocolate (54% cocoa), melted and cooled
  • 190 g (1¼ cups) plain flour
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 125 ml (½ cup) milk


 Salted caramel frosting

  • 250 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • ⅓ cup (115g) golden syrup
  • 75g (⅓ cup, firmly packed) brown sugar
  • 1½ tsp sea salt flakes, or to taste
  • 250 g (1 cups) icing sugar, sifted

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Chilling time 45 minutes

Cooling time 30 minutes

Preheat oven to 180ºC (160ºC fan-forced). Line a 12-hole 80 ml (⅓ cup) muffin tray  with muffin paper cases.

Use an electric mixer to beat the butter and sugar, scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally, until pale and creamy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the cooled chocolate.

Sift together the flour, cocoa powder and baking powder. Use a large metal spoon or spatula to fold half the flour through the chocolate mixture. Fold in the milk and then the remaining flour mixture until just combined.

Spoon the mixture into the paper cases, dividing evenly. Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre of a cupcake comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes in the tin, then transfer to a rack to cool completely (this will take about 30 minutes).

Meanwhile, to make the salted caramel frosting, use an electric mixer to beat the butter, golden syrup, brown sugar and salt until pale and creamy. Add the icing sugar and beat until smooth and very pale and creamy. Spoon the frosting into a large piping bag fitted with a large 1.5 cm star nozzle or 1.7 cm plain nozzle and pipe swirls of frosting onto each cooled cupcake. Sprinkle each cupcake with a little extra sea salt flakes.


Baker’s tip

• These cupcakes will keep in an airtight container for up to 2 days. Keep at room temperature if un-iced, or in the fridge if iced (stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving if chilled).


Anneka's mission is to connect home cooks with the magic of baking, and through this, with those they love. Read our interview with her or for hands-on baking classes and baking tips, visit her at BakeClub. Don't miss what's coming out of her oven via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.


Photography by Alan Benson. Styling by Sarah O’Brien. Food preparation by Tina McLeish. Creative concept by Lou Fay.


For more recipes, view our online column, Bakeproof.