Best-ever Chocolate Cupcake Cones with Vanilla Bean Buttercream

This is a super chocolaty & moist cupcake recipe that Lily and I enjoy making together for friends & family. (Alternatively, you can use the batter in two, 8” round pans instead of making cupcake cones.)

I adapted the cake portion of this recipe from my idol, Ina Garten; it never fails to please!

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cups Hershey cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup low-fat buttermilk, shaken
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup freshly brewed coffee, mild roasted
  • 1 box Joy brand “COLOR Cups” or other brand “wafer type” ice cream cones
  • Wilton Gel Food Coloring in Leaf Green (for “grass” on rim) (optional)
  • #233 tip to make “grass” buttercream (optional)
  • Wilton ice cream cone cupcake stand (optional)
  • Bunny decorations or spring “Jimmie” sprinkles (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed until combined. In another bowl, combine the buttermilk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry. With the mixer still on low, add the coffee and stir just to combine, scraping the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula.  The batter will be not worry! For cupcakes: using a retractable ice cream scoop, place 2  TBS. batter into each ice cream cone. Bake for 20 minutes on a Wilton ice cream cone baking rack or place in muffin tins to hold in place until a toothpick comes out clean 

If you prefer to make cakes, pour the batter into 2, 8” prepared pans (buttered, parchment, butter again, then dusted with flour) and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool in the pans for 30 minutes, then turn them out onto a cooling rack and cool completely.

Vanilla Bean Buttercream

  • 1 pound (4 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste OR pure vanilla extract
  • 2 ½ cups sifted confectioners' sugar
  • 2 – 4 TBS heavy whipping cream

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-high speed until light yellow and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the vanilla and continue beating for 3 minutes. Turn the mixer to low, gradually add the confectioners' sugar, then beat at medium speed. On low speed, add the whipping cream, a little at a time, until you get desired consistency, increasing to medium speed for another minute.

Remove about 1/2 cup of buttercream and add a small amount of Leaf Green gel. Place the #233 grass tip to a pastry bag and pipe “grass” around the rim of each cone. Using a ¼ cup retractable ice cream scoop, place buttercream on top of cones resembling ice cream.

If for Easter, add a bunny to the top of the buttercream (if you can’t find cardboard/toothpick bunnies, you could add a bunny “tail” at the top. Or, simply sprinkle jimmies on top.