Brooklyn Blackout cupcakes

brooklyn-blackout-cupcakes-5brooklyn-blackout-cupcakes-7I know, it’s a strange name for a cake. Apparently this recipe can trace its roots to Brooklyn, New York, during the second World War, when the Civilian Defence Corps spent their nights doing blackout drills. They clearly needed cake afterwards, so we have Ebinger’s bakery to thank.

brooklyn-blackout-cupcakes-9All you need to know is that we’re talking dark, fudgy, chocolate cupcakes laced with beer.

brooklyn-blackout-cupcakes-8Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a fan of beer – though bizarrely I can just about tolerate a Guinness – but this works. They’re warming and comforting, and perfect as the nights now start at about 4pm. Case in point: I was fighting the dying light to take the photos for this recipe last weekend which is why they’re a bit orangey #foodbloggerproblems

brooklyn-blackout-cupcakes-2They were also the perfect opportunity to use up these cute little Halloween sprinkles 🦇🎃

brooklyn-blackout-cupcakes-3brooklyn-blackout-cupcakes-1It’s my Dad’s birthday today, so have a virtual beery cupcake on me, Dad! Lots of love, Han x

Brooklyn Blackout Cupcakes

  • Servings: The quantities below made 11 cupcakes, so can be scaled up
  • Print

I don’t confess to being a beer expert, so I use beer/stout interchangeably in the recipe below. The beer I used was a Sainsbury’s own London Porter; the label said it had notes of chocolate so that was good enough for me!

This recipe is modified slightly from this one from the Ovenly bakery in Brooklyn.


  • 120ml dark beer/stout
  • 115g unsalted butter
  • 50g cocoa powder
  • 125g plain flour
  • 205g caster sugar
  • ¼ tsp bicarb. soda
  • ½ tsp fine salt
  • 85g greek yogurt
  • 1 egg
Chocolate + stout buttercream:
  • 150g soft, unsalted butter
  • 350g icing sugar
  • 50g cocoa powder
  • 25g dark chocolate
  • splash of dark beer/stout
  • pudding mix {see below}
  • extra dark chocolate + sprinkles {optional, for decoration}
Pudding mix:
  • 120ml milk
  • ½ tbsp cornflour
  • 30g sugar
  • 15g dark chocolate
  • ¾ tbsp cocoa powder
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch salt



Preheat your oven to 180*C and line a cupcake tin with paper cases.

In a small saucepan, bring the beer and the butter to a simmer, and whisk in the cocoa powder until the mixture is smooth. Set aside to cool.

Measure out the flour, sugar, bicarb and salt into a bowl and mix together with a spoon.

In a larger mixing bowl, whisk together the yogurt and the egg. Pour in the cooled chocolate + beer mixture, and then fold in the dry ingredients until fully combined.

Divide the mixture between the cupcake cases and bake for 18-20 minutes.

Pudding mix:

Whilst the cupcakes are cooling, put 15ml of the milk into a small bowl and mix well with the cornflour.

Combine the rest of the milk, sugar, chocolate, cocoa powder, vanilla and salt in a saucepan and heat gently until the chocolate has melted.

Whisk in the cornflour mixture and cook on a low heat for a couple of minutes, until the mixture has thickened slightly and is starting to bubble.

Pour into a bowl, cover with clingfilm and chill in the fridge.


In a big mixing bowl, beat together the butter, icing sugar and cocoa powder.

Melt the chocolate with a splash of stout and pour into the buttercream mixture, along with the chilled pudding mixture. Beat until smooth and fluffy.

Set up a piping bag with a star tip and pipe rounds of buttercream on top of each cupcake. If desired, melt a little more chocolate and drizzle on top, and add sprinkles.

2 thoughts on “Brooklyn Blackout cupcakes

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