Double Chocolate Crème Fraîche Cupcakes

12 servings
30 min prep time
1 hr 20 min total time

The star ingredient in these beautiful cupcakes from Hummingbird High is creme fraiche, used in both the cake and frosting. Rich, chocolaty cupcakes are topped with a creamy, velvety, simple-to-make frosting.


Chocolate Crème Fraîche Cupcakes

1 ounce 72%-cacao dark chocolate, coarsely chopped

Chocolate Crème Fraîche Cupcakes

1/3 cup hot coffee

3/4 cup (3.75 ounces) all-purpose flour

1/2 cup (1.5 ounces) unsweetened cocoa powder

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup (7 ounces) granulated sugar

1/2 cup (4 ounces) Vermont Creamery Crème Fraîche at room temperature

1/3 cup vegetable oil

1 large egg

1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

Chocolate Crème Fraîche Frosting

6 ounces 72%-cacao dark chocolate, coarsely chopped

1/4 cup Vermont Creamery Unsalted Cultured Butter - 82% Butterfat cut into 1-inch cubes

1 tablespoon light corn syrup

1/4 cup Vermont Creamery Crème Fraîche at room temperature

2 tablespoons whole milk, at room temperature

Pinch of kosher salt


  • STEP 1

    Center a rack in oven and heat to 350°F.  Line 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners.

  • STEP 2

    Fit freestanding electric mixer with a whisk attachment. Combine 1 ounce coarsely chopped dark chocolate and 1/3 cup hot coffee in bowl. DO NOT STIR — let sit for 2 minutes to allow the chocolate to melt.

  • STEP 3

    As chocolate is melting, combine 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt in another medium bowl; whisk until combined. Set aside.

  • STEP 4

    Turn mixer on its lowest setting and whisk chocolate and coffee together, then add 1 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 cup crème fraîche, 1/3 cup vegetable oil, 1 large egg, and 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract. Continue whisking until just combined. Stop the mixer and sprinkle in dry ingredients over the liquid ingredients. Turn mixer back on to medium-low and continue whisking until dry ingredients are just incorporated.

  • STEP 5

    Using 1 tablespoon cookie scoop, divide batter evenly between cupcake liners. Bake 20-25 minutes or until cupcakes are domed and top springs back when gently touched. Remove from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack to room temperature before frosting.

  • STEP 6

    Combine 6 ounces dark chocolate, 1/4 cup unsalted butter,and 1 tablespoon light corn syrup in a double boiler or a heatproof bowl sitting on top of a pan with simmering water. Melt completely, using a heatproof rubber spatula to stir occasionally to release heat and fully combine the ingredients.

  • STEP 7

    Once the chocolate and butter have fully melted, remove from heat. Whisk chocolate mixture gently to release more heat, before whisking in 1/4 cup crème fraîche and 2 tablespoons milk. Continue whisking until both the crème fraîche and milk are fully integrated and frosting is a uniform dark chocolate color. Set aside for 15 minutes to cool, giving the frosting a gentle whisk or two every 5 minutes to allow heat to escape.

  • STEP 8

     At first, the frosting will seem too liquidy, but the frosting will quickly cool as it is spread onto the cupcakes. Work quickly to frost the cupcakes before the frosting cools completely — it will harden as it cools. Use an offset spatula or a butter knife to divide and spread the frosting evenly between the cupcakes, and garnish with any additional decoration.

Hummingbird High

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Hummingbird High

Michelle is the baker, blogger and photographer behind Hummingbird High that started in 2011, when she first moved to Denver, Colorado. Having never lived anywhere besides coastal cities, she had no idea at the time that baking at high altitude is completely different from baking at sea level! She started Hummingbird High to help learn more about high-altitude baking and is a record of attempts, trials & errors, and eventually, successes. Since then she’s moved back to San Francisco, CA. What you see on her blog today are a collection of innovative and accessible recipes complemented by exotic spices, quirky flavor combinations and a few challenging undertakings, all which cover the broad world of baking. To learn more about Michelle, visit her blog, Hummingbird High.