Darcie Bakes //

Baking from scratch… because good things take time.

Vanilla Cupcakes with Nutella Frosting.

This here is one of those less fancy, photos from Instagram posts.

You see, full-blown food blog posts are – believe it or not – a lot of work. You have to first test the recipe, hope that it turns out if it’s a new-to-you recipe. Then you have to hope that your food looks aesthetically pleasing. After that, you need to plan when to take photos of the food. Edit said photos, upload them, rewrite the recipe in your own words, format things accordingly, and add some writing to the post to make it into that special blog post.

Yeah. It’s a ton of fun; really. I always have a blast when I work on these posts, and I [like most bloggers] truly pour my heart and soul (what soul?) into them. But they are a lot of work. And sometimes with a full-time job, some semblance of a social life, other extra-curricular activities, and the need for sleep/general hygiene/self-care, well… I fall behind. In these times, I find it useful to take photos from my Instagram account of food that I’ve posted before, but hadn’t yet gotten around to blogging about. As I said, this is one of those posts: vanilla cupcakes with Nutella frosting.

cupcakesnutellaTo kinda change the subject on you real fast: Did you know that European Nutella is better than American Nutella? Some might disagree, and I haven’t done a side-by-side taste test to be absolutely certain, but I’m pretty sure. When I was in Germany back in June, I consumed massive quantities of Nutella, mostly on flaky croissants. [I’m still dreaming about them.]

I’m not sure what the exact differences are, but I believe that the European Nutella is made with less sugar. It just tastes slightly less sweet, and different… and better. It’s not surprising, though, as mostly everything European is a lot less sweet than what we Americans are used to. And that’s probably a good thing, but I did find it a slight adjustment when I ordered a vanilla latte, for example. I found that I always had to add a tad bit of sugar, because the lattes in Germany aren’t nearly as sweet as ours seem to be by default.

Anyway, Nutella ramblings aside, I unfortunately didn’t make these cupcakes with European Nutella. I made them a month or two before I left for Germany, so I didn’t have access to any. But rest assured, even with our inferior American Nutella, they still turned out tasty! I took them to a work potluck, and people gobbled them up. The cupcakes are made with a simple vanilla cake, but the frosting is where it’s at. The Nutella adds a lovely subtly hazelnut/chocolate flavor to a typical buttercream, and that’s what makes these special. I find that the vanilla/chocolate/hazelnut flavor combination is the bomb.com. Make these with any kind of Nutella (if you’re lucky enough to get your hands on the real deal, then do yourself a favor and use it!), and enjoy!

{I purchased this giant glass jar of Nutella at what is basically the equivalent of an Aldi’s in Germany. Fun times.}

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Vanilla Cupcakes with Nutella Buttercream Frosting.
: Eighteen regular sized cupcakes. I made both miniature and regular, so I’m not sure how many I got in total!

– 2 cups cake flour {I typically use the cake flour substitute of cornstarch and regular AP flour; Google it for more information.}
– 2 tsp. baking powder
– 1/8 tsp. baking soda
– ¼ tsp. salt
– 1 ¼ sticks (10 TBSP.) unsalted butter, softened
– 1 cup granulated sugar
– 3 large eggs
– 1 large egg yolk
– 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
– ¾ cup whole milk (I used 2%)

Nutella Frosting:
¾ cup unsalted butter, softened
– 1/2 cup Nutella
– 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
– 1 TBSP. milk
– 1 cup powdered sugar


For the cupcakes:
1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line eighteen muffin cups with cupcake liners. Set aside.
2. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
3. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or a hand mixer), beat the butter until soft and creamy. Add the sugar and beat it for about three minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Add in the vanilla extract.
4. Keeping the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients alternating with the milk. Begin and end on the dry mixture. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed, and be sure to mix just until the ingredients are combined.
5. Spoon the batter evenly into the prepared muffin tins, filling each cavity about 2/3rds of the way full. Bake for about 15-17 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven, and let cool for ten minutes, then remove the cupcakes from the pan and let them cool on a wire rack.

For the frosting:
1. Beat together the butter and Nutella in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the remaining ingrdients, and beat until the powdered sugar is incorporated.
2. Increase the mixer speed to medium-high and beat until the frosting is smooth, fluffy, and stable. Frost completely cooled cupcakes as desired, and enjoy!

+ Recipe from Handle the Heat, who adapted from Koko Cooks, who adapted from Dorie Greenspan.

{Nom nom nom.}

PS: This is my 100th post! Woohoo! 🙂

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