Coca-Cola Cupcakes

When I first came across this recipe, I thought “Oh, how unhealthy!” I mean, COKE? In CAKE?

It wasn’t the butter or the two cups of sugar that ruffled my feathers. No, it was the half can of soda that make me put down my cocktail and tisk-tisk.

Well, I got over it and I’m glad I did. These cupcakes are amaaaazing. Moist and chocolaty, with a light, springy crumb. They’re not overly sweet (I know that was your next question) and they don’t taste like Coke at all. I think it’s more of a textural thing. The soda adds just a little bit of extra lift to the batter.

The only bit of nonsense that I discovered was the number of cupcakes this recipe makes: 28.

Twenty-eight, for the English majors in the crowd, is not a number that divides evenly by 6. I ended up with two pans of 12 and one pan of four, which I had to bake on its own after the first 24. Insert eye roll here. SO, if you want to avoid bad cupcake math, you can either fill your liners more to get an even 24, or less to get 30 (in which case, you’ll still need that extra pan.) If you end up with 26 or 29 or some other cockamamie amount, I don’t want to hear about it. You’ve been warned.

ALL THAT SAID, it’s still worth trying. You are going to love the one whisk one-pot (yes, pot) ease of the whole ordeal. I’ve never made a cake on the stove before. It was actually kinda fun and a whole lot faster to mix and clean-up than my go-to chocolate cake recipe.

One other important thing to note: these kept for DAYS in the fridge. I baked them on Sunday and they were still moist and delicious on Thursday.

a frosted cupcake, missing a bite

Coca-Cola Cupcakes 
(from The Baking Fairy – see note)

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup canola oil
1 cup Coke*
2 cups white sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 Tbsp white vinegar
1 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup cocoa powder
Pinch salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin pans with good quality cupcake liners.

In a large pot on the stove, combine butter, canola oil and Coke. Heat on med-high until mixture comes to a boil. Add sugar, stirring until dissolved.

Remove from heat and whisk in flour and baking soda. Quickly whisk in eggs, one at a time. Add remaining ingredients, stirring until completely mixed.

Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full. Bake for 20 minutes, or until cakes test clean and tops spring back when lightly pressed.

Cool completely before icing.

*Pro tip: measure the oil first. The oil left in the measuring cup will prevent the Coke from fizzing and you’ll get an accurate measurement faster.

Coke Buttercream
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
5-6 cups icing sugar
2 tsp vanilla
4-5 Tbsp Coke

In a stand mixer or with a hand-held, beat butter until creamy. Beat in 2 cups of icing sugar. Scrape down sides, add vanilla, coke and another cup of icing sugar. Continue adding sugar, one cup at a time, (scraping down sides at each addition) until buttercream is a spreadable/pipeable consistency. Keep tightly covered at room temp until ready to use.

To assemble: Spread or pipe a generous swirl of buttercream onto each cupcake. Top with a gummy coke bottle.


Note: I got the recipe from The Baking Fairy – Chocolate Coca-Cola Cupcakes – who got the recipe from Cincy Shopper – Copycat Cracker Barrel Coke Cake.



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