You need to bring something sweet and tasty for an event that will take place in less than 24 hours.

You are cake challenged.

What could you possibly do?   Get into panic mode?   Call 911?   Worse yet, grab something from the grocery store?  No need.    Emergency cupcakes to the rescue!

(from Abigail Dodge, The Weekend Baker)

1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder, not Dutch-processed, sifted
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup hot water
1/2 cup canola oil
1 large egg
1 + 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

For frosting:
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup butter, cut into pieces
1 cup condensed milk
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
Optional: sprinkles for decoration

Heat the oven to 375F.  Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.

Combine flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda and salt in a blender.  Cover with the lid and process until combined.  Add hot water, oil, egg, and vanilla.  Process until smooth, making sure to stop a few times and run a spatula around the edges to ensure it is fully homogenized. Pour into the prepared muffin cups, filling 3/4 of the way.

Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean – about 17 to 20  minutes.  Transfer to a rack to cool.

Prepare the frosting by melting chocolate and butter in the microwave. Add condensed milk, corn syrup, vanilla and salt.
Whisk until well blended. Set aside at room temperature, whisking frequently. The frosting will thicken as it cools. When completely cool, cover with plastic wrap until ready to frost the cupcakes.  It can be prepared in advance.

Decorate with sprinkles if you so desire…


to print the recipe, click here

Comments: This recipe is all over the internet, getting praises from both experienced and naive bakers.  Experienced bakers love the fact that they can have something simple but delicious ready at the drop of a hat.  Naive bakers… well, we need this recipe.  It is a dream come true for those with cake insecurities.   One important note:  the frosting recipe makes A TON.  Unless you plan to have cake emergencies on a daily basis for a month, consider halving it. 😉

ONE YEAR AGO:  The bread we love

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15 thoughts on “SWEET EMERGENCY

  1. Looks like a goer to me! I read a post the other day about a chocolate cake made in a mug in a microwave, which made me fall about. I just ‘re-googled’ to see if I could find it again and I see it has been about for a while… I think I’d rather have your snazzy cupcakes🙂


  2. Joanna, I know this recipe you are talking about – a friend of mine tried it and absolutely hated it, so I never bothered making it myself… But I read reviews of folks who swear by it for a quick fix type of cake.


  3. I haven’t made these yet, but Abby Dodge is one of my most favorite bakers/cookbook authors. I love The Weekend Baker, and she has a ton of recipes published in Fine Cooking and on Epicurious.

    One of my favorite recipes from The Weekend Baker is a bar cookie that’s brownie on the bottom, chocolate chip cookie on top. Doesn’t even require a mixer.


  4. Then I won’t bother either… good to know! Shall we form a cake anxiety support group? My problem is that when the odd cake does work out, I don’t really trust that it will do it again. They seem so variable and a sunken cake is so much sadder and unappetising looking than a loaf with a funny shape or a cracked side. That’s why I adore making bread and am always anxious round cakes….


  5. Pingback: Tweets that mention SWEET EMERGENCY « Bewitching Kitchen -- Topsy.com

  6. Made these in my food processor for a friends birthday dinner..no time to make frosting..so just sprinkled some icing sugar over them. Served with a Raspberry Eton Mess..the 10 guests were dazzled. Thanks Sally


    • So glad you enjoyed it, Barb….

      I made it once without frosting too, in a way I prefer cakes without frosting: easier to eat, and not as sweet. But my beloved thinks that no cake is complete without it. Compromise, compromise… 😉


  7. Sally,
    I love this recipe, I used it once when I was invited to teach a home ec class in a local high school! I made it 6 times, once for each class! I made one @home so they’d have one to eat then each class worked on one batch for the next class to eat! Never fails!


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