These Bleeding Black Cupcakes are delicious, black chocolate cupcakes filled with a rose flavored white chocolate ganache and topped with chocolate buttercream, tinted black. They are so much fun to make and eat!
These spooky Halloween Black Cupcakes are an easy treat, perfect for any Halloween party!
HAPPY HALLOWEEN EVERYONE! I’m a bit late to the party with this post, but these dainty cupcakes are just perfect for Halloween, I had to share ’em! You may have also noticed that my blog is looking a little different now. Do let me know what you think of the new look. 🙂
How do you get these cupcakes to be black?
Black cocoa + black food coloring gel.
This combination helps achieve this jet black color for both the black cupcakes and the black frosting. I used my chocolate cake recipe and chocolate buttercream recipe, and replaced the dutch cocoa powder with black cocoa powder.
Usually you don’t swap dutch cocoa powder with black cocoa powder – but I tested it in this recipe and made sure it works!
I haven’t been able to find black cocoa powder in Canada yet, but if you’re in the US – you can get it easily through amazon.
What if I can’t find black cocoa powder?
If you can’t get your hands on black cocoa powder, then you will have to use black food coloring instead. You do have the option of using activated charcoal, but I haven’t used it for baked products since it can affect the texture of the cake and frosting.
For black food coloring, I used Wilton black food coloring. I usually use Americolor, but the Wilton black coloring tints much better. Also make sure to get GEL FOOD COLORING, not the watery food coloring. Gel food coloring is a lot more concentrated, and you will need much less to get that jet black color.
Rose flavored chocolate ganache
Since I wanted the center of the cupcakes to be blood red in color, I went with a white chocolate ganache which I colored red, and then flavored with rose water.
It’s a simple filling for the cupcakes, and really delicious too. Plus the sweetness of the ganache balances the cocoa flavor from the cupcakes quite well.
To get that bright, bloody red color, I mixed a few drops of TULIP RED (from Americolor) and a couple of drops of SOFT BROWN (again from Americolor). Red coloring can taste weird if used too much, but the Tulip red color gel doesn’t have a weird after taste. So it’s a great way to color your baked goods bright red.
How to make these Bleeding Black Cupcakes
Making the cupcakes is easy.
I use my chocolate cake recipe, but replace the cocoa with black cocoa powder and add black gel food coloring. The recipe will make about 30 cupcakes.
While I used regular cupcake liners, you can use fancy black cupcake liners to stay on theme as well, if you like.
Making the frosting
My chocolate buttercream frosting is incredibly creamy and delicious! However, I had to use a double batch of that frosting recipe to get all of these cupcakes frosted.
I used black cocoa instead of dutch cocoa and added some black gel food coloring to get that gorgeous jet black color.
To keep the filling simple, I just made an easy white chocolate ganache, and then colored it red. Make this ahead of time so that the ganache has time to cool down and thicken by the time you’re ready to fill the cupcakes.
Filling and decorating Halloween cupcakes
There are 3 ways to core the middle of these cupcakes.
- Cupcake corer – a specialized tool to remove the center of cupcakes.
- A melon baller – I usually use my melon baller to create a cavity in the middle – remove about 2 scoops of cake from the middle, and you’re good to go.
- A small, sharp knife – I used this method for these cupcakes. I inserted the knife tip at an angle into the middle of the cupcake, and removed a funnel-shaped portion from the center. This way, if the filling sets inside the cake, then it will look more like a heart when the cupcake is sliced in half.
Frosting the cupcakes
Fill the middle with the rose white chocolate ganache. The ganache should be really thick but still pourable.
Next, pipe the black chocolate frosting on the filled cupcakes. I went for large swirls, but you can do a simple rosette or anything that strikes your fancy!
For the large swirls, I used a large open star tip, but you can also use a large closed star tip. If you don’t have any star tips, you can use a large round tip or just a ziploc bag with the edge snipped off.
Decorating the cupcakes
You can decorate these Halloween black cupcakes HOWEVER you want! Here are some of my favorite ways.
- Halloween sprinkles (Red & Black to go with the filling).
- Silver dragees or silver sprinkles.
- Sparkling sugar or a light dusting of luster dust.
- Drizzle of rose white chocolate ganache.
- Marshmallow webs – heat the marshmallows for a few seconds and then use your hands to stretch the marshmallow over the frosting. This looks amazing but also very sticky. Personally, it just wasn’t worth the mess for me for these cupcakes.
You can even get your kids involved with the decorating! These Halloween cupcakes are definitely a fun project to do with kids! 🙂
Halloween Black Cupcakes
- 1 batch chocolate cake Substitute the dutch cocoa powder with black cocoa powder
- Extra black gel food coloring if needed Wilton
- 2 batches chocolate buttercream substitute the dutch cocoa powder with black cocoa powder
- Extra black gel food coloring if needed
Red White Chocolate Filling
- 240 g white chocolate chips
- 100 g heavy cream (about 1/2 cup)
- 1 tsp rose water extract
- Pinch of salt
- Tulip red gel food coloring americolor
- Soft brown gel food coloring americolor
- Halloween sprinkles of your choice
White Chocolate Filling
- Make the white chocolate filling first so it has time to cool down to room temperature.
- Heat the cream + rose water extract + salt in a saucepan, until it starts to steam (near boiling, but not actually boiling).
- Add the white chocolate chips and let them sit for a few minutes, with the pan covered.
- Stir to completely melt the white chocolate chips in the cream. (All of the white chocolate chips should melt in the residual heat.)
- Add a few drops of tulip red gel food coloring and mix it in. Then add 1 or 2 drops of the brown food coloring to deepen the red color to a blood-like red. Set aside to cool to room temperature. Once cool, set aside until needed.
- Preheat oven to 350°F / 180°C. Place cupcake liners in 2 cupcake trays.
- Make the batter according to the recipe here. Replace the dutch cocoa in that chocolate cake recipe with the black cocoa, and mix a little black food coloring in the milk before adding it to the cake batter.
- When you have the black chocolate cake batter ready, use a 4 tbsp (or ¼ cup) cookie scoop to scoop the batter into the cupcake liners in the cupcake tray. You will have some leftover cake batter - just cover it with plastic wrap and set aside.
- Bake the two cupcake trays in the preheated oven for about 25 minutes, rotating the trays once, at the 15 minute mark.
- The cupcakes will be done when a toothpick inserted in the middle, comes out clean.
- Remove the cupcakes from the oven and let them cool down for about 5 - 10 minutes. Then gently remove them from the cupcake tray.
- Repeat with the remaining cupcake batter.
- While the cupcakes are baking / cooling, make the frosting.
- Make the chocolate buttercream frosting according to the recipe here. Replace the dutch cocoa with black cocoa. Add a few drops of black food coloring if needed, at the end of the whisking stage.
- Scrape the black frosting into a large piping bag that is attached with a large open star or closed star piping tip.
Assembling the Cupcakes
- When the cupcakes have cooled down, remove a cone or funnel-shaped piece from the center of the cupcakes with a sharp knife as shown in the pictures in the post.
- Fill the cavity with room temperature white chocolate ganache.
- Frost the cupcakes with the black frosting. I like to frost them with a large swirl, but you can frost them however you like.
- Sprinkle Halloween sprinkles on top, and serve. (Note: remember to warn your guests that the cupcakes will "bleed", so that don't get “blood” on their hands! Or clothes.)