German Chocolate Cupcakes


  • 1 3/4 cups (219g) all-purpose flour 
  • 3/4 cup (62g) raw cacao powder or unsweetened natural cocoa powder
  • 1 3/4 cups (350g) coconut sugar or sweetener of choice 
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp espresso powder (optional)
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) coconut or vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (180g) full fat sour cream or yogurt (regular or vegan), at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) buttermilk (or nut milk), at room temperature
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) hot water or coffee
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup milk of choice
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup yogurt, vanilla (dairy or non-dairy)
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar or brown sugar or sweetener of choice
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla


  1.  Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). G Line cupcake pans with 14 or 15 paper liners. 
  2. For the frosting, spread the pecans and coconut out on a cookie sheet and bake in the 350 F oven for 3-10 min. Coconut can brown quickly, so depending on the baking sheet you use times may vary. Just keep your eye on it.
  3. In a medium sized saucepan, add the milk and cornstarch. Whisk together to get rid of any lumps. Turn the stove top on to medium-high heat, and continue to whisk the mixture occasionally until thickened.
  4. Reduce the heat and whisk in the yogurt, sugar, and vanilla extract. Make sure the vanilla yogurt is one that you like the flavor of by itself, since it will significantly impact the flavor of your frosting.
  5. Allow the frosting to cool slightly, then transfer it to a heat safe bowl and put it in the fridge to cool completely and thicken up.
  6. Make the cupcakes: Whisk the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and espresso powder (if using) together in a large bowl. Set aside. 
  7. Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment (or you can use a whisk) mix the oil, eggs, sour cream, buttermilk, and vanilla together until combined. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, add the hot water or coffee, and whisk or beat it all until the batter is completely combined.
  8. Scoop the batter into the cupcake liners. (I use a 2-inch ice cream scoop.) Bake in the center of the oven for 20 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes, remove from the pans, and allow to cool completely before frosting. 
  9. Frost the cupcakes with a knife or small metal spatula


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