Salted Caramel Chocolate Cupcakes

  • As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

    Salted caramel chocolate cupcakes-your favorite coffeehouse drink in cupcake form!

    Salted caramel chocolate cupcakes-your favorite coffeehouse drink in cupcake form!

    I’m SO EXCITED to share with you all this cupcake recipe. I truly believe this is the best cupcake I’ve ever made. The buttercream tastes exactly like the first sip of the salted caramel mocha drink you get at Starbucks (well, sans caffeine).

    It’s my favorite holiday/seasonal drink and now it’s in cupcake form – brilliant!

    I brought this cupcake to so many people. I brought it in for my coworkers and I brought it to happy hour with my friends. Upon my arrival with the cupcake box to the bar, the bartender asked me, “oh, are those cupcakes from the cupcake place in the shopping center?” You have no idea how awesome it felt to tell her, “nope, I made them!” with a big, cheesy grin :) I love that my frosting skills have improved so much. I remember my first few trials with frosting. Oh man, those were the days!

    These will probably be the moistest cupcakes you will EVER EVER have. Seriously. Also, in the process of buttercream recipe testing, I ate so much buttercream that my hips are cursing me and my jeans aren’t happy!

    Alright, so, if you aren’t in the mood to get up to go to Starbucks, whip up a batch of these and you won’t even miss that green lady in your hand :)

    Salted Caramel Chocolate Cupcakes

    Salted caramel chocolate cupcakes: your favorite coffeehouse drink in cupcake form!
    Prep Time: 20 mins
    Cook Time: 30 mins
    Total Time: 50 mins
    Servings (adjustable, but please note that results, timing, and cookware may vary when adjusting servings): 2 dozen
    Calories: 383kcal
    Author: Julie Chiou
    5 Hassle-Free Ways to Simplify MealtimeSign up here for all the secrets!


    • 1 box devil's food cake mix
    • 1 package of Jello instant chocolate pudding
    • 1 cup sour cream
    • 1 cup vegetable oil
    • 4 eggs, beaten
    • 1/2 cup milk
    • 1 tsp vanilla
    • 1 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

    For the salted caramel buttercream

    • 15-20 caramel candies, unwrapped
    • 3-4 tbsp heavy cream
    • 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
    • 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt, divided
    • 4 cups powdered sugar, divided


    • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line muffin tins with baking cups.
    • In a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or in a large bowl, mix together cake mix, instant pudding, sour cream, vegetable oil, eggs, milk, and vanilla. Mix very well. Gently stir in the chocolate chips with a spatula.
    • Equally divide the batter into the baking cups, filling 2/3 of the way full. Bake for 18-22 minutes, let cool for 5 minutes in pan, then remove and place them on wire cooling racks to cool completely.
    • In the meantime, make your buttercream by first melting the caramel candies and heavy cream in a small saucepan over medium heat. Once the caramel is all melted, stir in 1/2 tsp. of salt.
    • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until light and fluffy. Add in the remaining 1 tsp. of salt.
    • Gently add half of the powdered sugar to the butter and beat until light and fluffy. Then drizzle in the caramel while the mixer is on low. If the caramel has hardened up a bit that you can't pour it, heat it up just enough so you can pour it into the mixer with ease.
    • Add the remaining 2 cups of powdered sugar and beat until well combined.
    • Put the frosting in a piping bag fitted with a pastry tip of your choice.
    • Pipe the frosting on top of the cooled cupcakes.
    • Store cupcakes in an airtight container for up to 4 days.


    The frosting won't be enough for you to pipe as much as I did on all the cupcakes. You might want to double the frosting if you want to pipe a lot like I did, or you can just pipe a tiny swirl :)
    Nutrition Facts
    Salted Caramel Chocolate Cupcakes
    Amount Per Serving (1 Cupcake)
    Calories 383 Calories from Fat 225
    % Daily Value*
    Fat 25g38%
    Carbohydrates 39g13%
    Sugar 33g37%
    Protein 2g4%
    * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
    *Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. 
    Cake recipe from Kevin & Amanda
    Julie Wampler of Table for Two
    Meet The Author: Julie Chiou
    Dinner for Two Cookbook
    Order My Cookbook!

    Dinner for Two

    Leave a Comment

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    Recipe Rating


  • Jenny @ BAKE says:

    what a brilliant compliment! they do look so professional! and they sound absolutely delicious!

  • Aimee @ ShugarySweets says:

    Julie these are gorgeous! Your icing looks amazing!!

  • Blog is the New Black says:

    I can almost taste these…

  • Tara @ Chip Chip Hooray says:

    I seriously almost just licked my computer screen. WANT.

  • Elizabeth @Food Ramblings says:

    Anything with salted caramel, and I am in heaven!

  • Alice @ Hip Foodie Mom says:

    These cupcakes look amazing! Can’t wait to try these!

  • amy @ fearless homemakery says:

    would you believe i’ve never had a salted caramel mocha in my life? either way, these look fantastic + i’d love to get my hands on one right now!

  • Stephanie says:

    Looking good. =)

    I bet they’re waaaay tastier that that “cupcake place in the shopping center”! hehe

  • Hayley @ The Domestic Rebel says:

    Those cupcakes look fantastical, Julie! Salted caramel–it can do no wrong, yo. Plus, I LOOOOVE that you used boxed cake mix to dress these pups up.

  • Pam says:

    These are so good! Perfect combination of salty and sweet!

  • claire @ the realistic nutritionist says:

    these look fantastic Julie!! So glad you are feeling better :)

  • Ally's Sweet & Savory Eats says:


    That is all I can say.

  • Aly ~ Cooking In Stilettos says:

    Now, this I would adore!!!

  • Jen @ Savory Simple says:

    These cupcakes look to die for!

  • Julie Carpenter says:

    These are delicious!! I am lucky to work with Julie, and she shared one with me. Absolutely amazing!

  • Meagan @ A Zesty Bite says:

    These look so good! I think you should eat one of these with the Starbucks Drink!

  • Cassie says:

    Love this recipe! My mom has always added a pudding mix to boxed cake mix and it always makes them so moist. I have to try this buttercream too!

  • Linda @ My Foodgasm Journal says:

    Those cupcakes look gorgeous and fresh looking. You really got me hooked on this – cake mix + choco pudding…what’s easier and fun way for semi-homemade. :D

  • Rachel @ Baked by Rachel says:

    Oh my god give me the frosting right now… and a side of cupcake ;)

  • Tracey says:

    I absolutely love this flavor combo – one of my favorites of all time! I’m not a coffee person so I’ve never had the Starbucks drink, but I’m confident I’d love these all the same :)

  • Erin @ Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts says:

    Your frosting looks incredible – so high and it sounds heavenly!

  • Jackie @ Domestic Fits says:

    I can not even handle that frosting! Looks so good!

  • Leslie says:

    The fact that you melted caramel into the frosting is JUST PLIAN GENIUS!!!!! I.AM.MAKING.THESE!!!!

    • Julie says:

      Yessssssssssss! You will LOVE!

  • Katie @ Blonde Ambition says:

    That frosting sounds INSANE!! Love it!

  • Kathryn says:

    Woah, that frosting sounds incredible! The whole thing sounds incredible!

  • Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious says:

    Wow, Julie, you’ve really outdone yourself here! I need to make these ASAP, eat like 10 of these, and then burn off the calories at the gym for 2 weeks. It’ll be so worth it :)

  • Nicole @ Lapetitebaker says:

    You have mad frosting skills and these cupcakes look down right delicious!

  • Christine M says:

    Hi, can you tell me which size of devil’s food cake mix box you used? The sizes are now varied by manuf. Some are 15.25 and some are 16.5 – Thank you!

    • Julie says:

      I don’t remember. I used the Duncan Hines Deluxe Moist devils food one. So I guess find that one & see what ounce size it is? Sorry!

  • Lori @ RecipeGirl says:

    I’ll take two please. They look absolutely perfect!

  • Jennifer @ Mother Thyme says:

    Wow these are stunning, Julie! These seriously have my mouthwatering. I would have no willpower around these.

  • Megan @ Country Cleaver says:

    If you don’t bring me five of those, I’m making you snuggle with the dog this weekend. Actually you probably won’t have much choice- he’ll probably cuddle with you anyway hahah We need to fit some baking time into the weekend haha

  • Lynna says:

    omgahh. i love salted caramel flavor. this is a total win ♥

  • Angela @ AnotherBitePlease says:

    that frosting…salted carmel sounds so delicious right now!!!!!

  • Stephanie @ Macaroni and Cheesecake says:

    These look amazing! Love the salted caramel/chocolate combination!

  • sally @ sallys baking addiction says:

    Hi Julie! I’ve made these exact cupcakes before – you just cannot go wrong with chocolate and salted caramel. Love the chocolate cupcake recipe, too. You get the ease of a boxed mix with a unique homemade taste. It’s brilliant!

    Salted caramel mocha lattes are my mom’s favorite starbucks drink. Anything salted caramel is my favorite though! Beautiful piping job too!

  • Regina @ SpecialtyCakeCreations says:

    Woah…these look AMAZING! I want one. Now!

  • Ashley - Baker by Nature says:

    My face wants to be all up in that buttercream.

  • Nicole @ The Marvelous Misadventures of a Foodie says:

    You had me at salted caramel. This is my all time favorite fall/holiday flavor! The frosting sounds fabulous!

    If you’re ever in AZ stop into Zinburger – they have a salted caramel milkshake that is to die for!

  • Christine M says:

    Thanks Julie, that helps alot! these are on my “to-do” list

  • Carla's Confections says:

    Oh man! Chocolate and salted caramel heaven! Um, yes Ill take all of them please!!!

  • carrian says:

    I thought I already commented, but these look wonderful!

  • Jocelyn @BruCrew Life says:

    The fact that you said this tastes just like the first sip of Starbucks is my main motivation to make this frosting ASAP!!! I adore salted caramel…probably a little too much as my jeans are not happy with me either! I love how absolutely perfect your frosting looks:-)

  • Kim says:

    Could you color this frosting? I need blue frosting for my son’s party.

    • Julie says:

      Yeah, you probably could. I just don’t know if the light brown & blue would make a funky color or not.

  • amanda @ fake ginger says:

    Okay. You know what? I have to stop visiting your blog until my husband comes home! You are killing my diet!

  • Erin @ Texanerin Baking says:

    Whoa. You’re good at piping! I might have gasped when I saw that last picture. And I love this combination!

  • Melanie says:

    These cupcakes are amazing! I just finished them up and couldn’t resist a taste test! I sprinkled a little crystallized sugar on top.

  • Angel says:

    Your cupcake frosting look spectacular! I’ve been practicing but my pipping skill is a disaster :( Love love love your blog by the way!!!

  • Ana says:

    Wow, another hit Julie! The perfect combination of sweet and salty. I could just eaten the buttercream as it was simply divine. And the cupcake was yummy too! Very moist and full of chocolate flavor. Loved the mini chocolate chip “surprise”. Highly recommended for baking!

  • Heidi says:

    This recipe is amazing!!! The cupcakes turned out delicious and tasted as good as they looked on your blog which is always a thrill! Thank you for sharing!

  • Kayla says:

    Was your frosting taffy like?
    I made this with those little caramel melt balls instead of the candies and my frosting was thick like a soft taffy.
    Too much caramel?

    • Julie says:

      No, my frosting was stiff & buttercream like. Definitely not taffy-like. Yes, likely too much caramel.

  • 5 Hassle-Free Ways to Simplify Mealtime