Red Wine Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

I was unaware there was anything better than cupcakes. But there is. Because seriously, cupcakes AND red wine combined? Is the best. I was a little bit skeptical about the recipe originally, but I knew it would be sooo appropriate for my sister’s shower, so I had to try them out. I did a test run a month or so before the shower and the reaction was really fabulous. Some people even said they were the best cupcakes I’ve ever made (and I think I’ve made some pretty good ones). Several recipes for red wine cupcakes actually exist, so I looked at a bunch and made my own version.

What you’ll need for 24 cupcakes (see frosting recipe below):
  • 1/2 C unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 5 oz. chocolate chips
  • 1/2 C boiling water
  • 2 sticks butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 C sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/4 C flour
  • 1 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1 t salt
  • 3/4 C red wine (I chose a Shiraz, which I think worked really well)

In a heatproof bowl combine cocoa powder and chocolate chips and pour in the boiling water.


Using a whisk, stir the chocolate until it’s all melted.


In a larger bowl, cream the butter and sugar together. Then beat in each egg one at a time until they’re all mixed in. In a separate bowl combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Then slowly add that to the mixture making sure it’s all combined.


Add some of the chocolate to the mixture, then some of the wine, alternating until all of it is blended.

Pour batter into your papered muffin tins, almost all the way to the top. Awesome tip I learned from my mom? Use an ice cream scoop to spoon your batter into the cupcake papers. It is SO much easier than anything else I’ve tried!

Pop those in the oven at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes and let cool. You’ll have to excuse my lack of photos. Things were a little bit crazy this weekend and taking picture of each step of my cupcake-making was a bit low on my priority list, though I’m now kicking myself!

I know my sister is a big fan of cream cheese icing, and I figured it would compliment the red wine cupcakes quite well. But you can make any frosting that best suits your tastes!

Cream Cheese Frosting:
  • 1/2 C butter, room temperature
  • Salt, pinch
  • 4 oz. cream cheese
  • 2 1/2-3 C confectioner sugar
  • 1 T vanilla
Beat the butter with the salt until it’s nice and fluffy. Then add the cream cheese and continue beating until it’s all combined.

Add the powdered sugar to the bowl about 1/2 C at at a time and beat to combine. Keep adding more until the frosting is at the consistency and sweetness-level that you desire.

I made half the frosting pink with a little bit of food coloring and kept the rest white. Then I used all the pretty decorations my mom got. My only issue with these cupcakes is that the chocolatey-ness of them made it so you couldn’t see how pretty the cupcake papers were! So, we added another on at the end. Because they were pretty, pink, and polka-dotted.


Then we placed them on a tiered cake stand with the Sweet cupcake cake (and yes, my mom laced that ribbon around each of the cupcake plates!).


I LOVED how these cupcakes came out for several reasons. They were super moist and had a really great flavor. The wine wasn’t super obvious, but you could definitely taste its subtle flavor. I just can’t believe I’ve successfully found a way to combine two of my favorite things and have a feeling I’ll be making these for a lot of parties. And wait until you see what I’ve got up my cupcake sleeve next…


[Sues]

25 Comments

  • Jen said:

    Red wine, chocolate and cream cheese frosting—you’ve outdone yourself! And, they are gorgeous!

    May 19, 2009 9:32 am
  • Sara said:

    these were AWESOME. i think the texture of the cake was the best part of them. they were like velvet!

    May 19, 2009 10:52 am
  • Kelly said:

    Yum. Wine plus chocolate sounds fabulous. Do these have a subtle chocolate flavor like a red velvet or is it a stronger chocolate flavor?

    May 19, 2009 11:47 am
  • Joan said:

    Red wine is ALWAYS good! I will try these.

    May 20, 2009 11:01 am
  • RebeccaC said:

    What an intriguing idea…and heart healthy too with all the red wine and chocolate…right?

    May 20, 2009 1:53 pm
  • Susan said:

    WOW, I was beginning to think they were a myth. I can’t wait to try to make them.

    May 20, 2009 7:26 pm
  • RecipeGirl said:

    It’s like beer bread (kinda). Love the idea… fun for a party, definitely. Your display is so cute too :)

    May 22, 2009 3:22 pm
  • toni said:

    This is amazing! And it’s the first time I’ve heard of using wine in cupcakes. I bet they tasted really phenomenal :)

    May 23, 2009 6:23 am
  • Cupcake Vineyards Wine said:

    We think this recipe sounds amazing, and we have just the wine!

    http://www.CupcakeVineyard.com

    Would you mind if we post your recipe on our Blog when we get up in running?

    June 4, 2009 11:17 am
  • Shannon said:

    I made these for a picnic yesterday and someone told me they were "to die for". They came out SO good! I used chocolate icing, which gave them a little bit more of what I call a 'chocolate hangover', but they were delish!!

    July 6, 2009 5:06 am
  • Jessica said:

    I made these a few weeks ago and they were so fabulous that I came back to your website to find the recipe again. Without a doubt the best cupcake recipe I’ve ever made.

    August 30, 2009 11:53 am
  • d said:

    delicious! definitely a crowd pleaser. i added some wine into the icing as well which gave it a nice color. i added a bit more cream cheese to thicken it back up. fantastic! thanks.

    June 8, 2010 6:36 pm
  • These are SO delicious! I’m making them for the 2nd time right now!

    September 15, 2010 6:53 pm
  • Robert Nabors said:

    I used a Moscato Rosé instead of Shiraz it is a little sweeter than Shiraz. Also, I added an Black Berry purée to the icing…delicious! It blends so well with the Moscato Rosé!

    January 24, 2011 2:15 am
  • Emily said:

    I tried these, and they were great! I also tried this same recipe but used Kahlua instead of red wine!! AWESOME!

    February 4, 2011 11:42 pm
  • Lynne said:

    I made these for wine club and they were a big hit. I used chopped dark chocolate instead of the chocolate chips. Delicious!

    February 8, 2011 4:20 pm
  • Arielle said:

    I love this recipe. I keep going back to it again and again. My latest favorite incarnation for this recipe is cake balls. Because it’s not a super sweet recipe you don’t go into sugar shock when you cover the cake balls with chocolate. Loves. http://braidedandegged.blogspot.com/2011/05/cake-ballin.html

    May 25, 2011 9:56 am
  • Mary-Joy said:

    Wow!! I just had to make these when I saw the receipe. They are AMAZING!!! Thank you!! x

    July 27, 2011 12:55 am
  • Kristin said:

    These are soo moist and good! Only problem is they were flaky on the top making them difficult to frost and look good. They are not the prettiest but taste so yummy!

    November 14, 2011 11:19 am
  • Aimee said:

    I just made these and, as everybody has said, they taste awesome! Just one word of caution…when I added the red wine (even in very small amounts) and turned on my mixer it went EVERYWHERE. Not good. I ended up adding the wine by folding it in with a spatula.

    August 17, 2012 2:07 pm

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