These Chocolate Cupcakes are the best! They’re fluffy, sweet, feature a moist crumb, and they’re full of deep, rich chocolate flavor from cocoa powder. Best of all, these cupcakes are easy to make and will keep for days.

The texture and taste of homemade chocolate cupcakes is unlike any other dessert – and when you add on our special blackberry buttercream frosting or fabulous chocolate buttercream frosting, your cupcakes will be out of this world! This simple chocolate cupcake recipe will give you perfect cupcakes every time.

A chocolate cupcake on a white plate.

Cocoa lends a rich chocolate flavor to cakes that’s hard to replicate with melted chocolate, which is why I use cocoa in my Hershey’s Chocolate Cake and my favorite Cocoa Brownies.

I’ve never met a cupcake that I didn’t like. But this chocolate cupcake recipe has so much flavor that I can’t stop thinking about eating another one of these beauties!

Why you should make chocolate cupcakes

  • Homemade cupcakes with homemade frosting = perfection!
  • These cupcakes are perfect for weekend treats, birthday parties, and more!
  • They’re perfect for sharing with family and friends – or keeping all to yourself!

The flavor of homemade cupcakes beats out store-bought cupcakes every time! And this is the best chocolate cupcake recipe I’ve made!

Keep in mind that making cupcakes isn’t hard to do at all, so save your money and stop buying them premade at the store!

What you’ll need

  • All-purpose flour
  • Granulated white sugar
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder – natural or Dutch-processed is fine
  • Baking powder
  • Baking soda
  • Salt
  • Egg – room temperature
  • Buttermilk – room temperature
  • Vegetable oil
  • Vanilla extract
  • Hot water
  • Muffin tins
Chocolate cupcakes with blackberry buttercream frosting on a white cake stand.

Read this article if you’re interested in the difference between Dutch-processed cocoa and natural cocoa powder (Hershey’s cocoa is natural.)

How to make chocolate cupcakes

Here’s everything you need to know to make the best chocolate cupcakes.

  1. Making the batter. Use a medium bowl to mix up the dry ingredients, then a large bowl for the wet ingredients. You’ll fold the dry mixture into the wet to create the chocolate batter, scraping the bottom of the bowl until everything is well combined.
  2. The hot water. This is a secret ingredient that helps bring out the flavor of the cocoa. Stir this in after you’ve mixed the batter.
  3. Scoop and bake. You can use an ice cream scoop to place the batter equally in the muffin liners. You want to get them about 2/3rd full. Then pop the pan in the pre-heated oven and bake 20-22 minutes until a tester comes out clean.
  4. Cool and frost. Place the cupcakes on a wire rack and allow them to rest until cooled. When completely cooled, cover with your favorite frosting. We suggest our homemade Blackberry Buttercream Frosting or Chocolate Buttercream Frosting.


How do I store my chocolate cupcakes?

For best results, store these cupcakes for several days in an airtight container. The cupcakes do not need to be refrigerated unless frosted with a cream cheese or buttercream frosting.

Can you freeze chocolate cupcakes?

You can freeze chocolate cupcakes after they are baked, but do so before adding any frosting. Place the cupcakes on a baking sheet and set in the freezer for several hours or overnight. Then place the frozen cupcakes in a freezer bag or container. Use within 3 months for optimum flavor retention.

How many calories in a chocolate cupcake?

There is no single answer to this question, since ingredients can vary.

When is National Chocolate Cupcake Day?

Get your chocolate cupcakes ready to show off on October 18. Post to social media and tag @southernfoodandfun.

These amazing moist chocolate cupcakes are perfect for any special occasion. You can adapt the frosting or decorations on top of the cupcakes to match the occasion, such as pink and red candies for Valentine’s Day or red and green for Christmas. And if you don’t really like frosting, you can sprinkle the cupcake with powdered sugar and call it good!

Side view of a chocolate cupcake on a white plate.

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Chocolate Cupcakes

The best chocolate cupcakes are moist and have deep, chocolate flavor. These deliver!
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Servings: 12
Save This Recipe


  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated white sugar
  • ½ cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 egg room temperature
  • ½ cup buttermilk room temperature
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup hot water


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place the cupcake liners in the muffin pan. Set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • In another bowl, whisk egg, buttermilk, oil, and vanilla extract. Whisk vigorously until everything is well combined.
  • Add flour mixture to wet batter in batches until everything is well incorporated without any lumps.
  • Stir in the hot water and just combine the batter without over-mixing it.
  • Using an ice cream scoop, spoon the batter equally into 12 muffin liners about 2/3rd full. Bake chocolate cupcakes for 20-22 minutes until the toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. 
  • Place the cupcakes on a wire rack and allow them to rest until cool before frosting.



Calories: 125kcal, Carbohydrates: 27g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 0.4g, Trans Fat: 0.002g, Cholesterol: 15mg, Sodium: 112mg, Potassium: 120mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 17g, Vitamin A: 36IU, Calcium: 35mg, Iron: 1mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Calories: 125
Keyword: chocolate cupcakes, chocolate cupcakes recipe, homemade chocolate cupcakes
Love this recipe?Mention @southernfoodandfun or tag #southernfoodandfun!
Lucy standing behind a counter with a cheese board and glass of wine.

About the author

Hi, I’m Lucy! I’m a home cook, writer, food and wine fanatic, and recipe developer. I’ve created and tested hundreds of recipes so that I can bring you the best tried and true favorites.

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