Champagne cupcakes with creamy champagne buttercream are the perfect Valentine's Day dessert for two! Grab a mini bottle of champagne or sparkling wine, and make these small batch champagne cupcakes.
It’s not as if my partner and I can’t finish off an entire bottle of champagne on Valentine’s Day or New Year’s Eve, but we prefer to save some to make champagne cupcakes with champagne buttercream.
Champagne belongs in so many desserts! It’s sweet bubbly flavors are so welcome in fruity desserts. Champagne and sparkling wine are the same thing, by the way—but champagne comes from the champagne region of France. When it comes to drinking champagne, I like Method Champenoise, which means it was fermented and made in the traditional method, which has a second ferment right in the bottle. There are cheaper ways to make champagne, which is why the price varies on sparkling wines. Buy what you like, and try a lot to know what you like!
Whenever I have leftover slightly flat champagne the next day, I make my strawberry champagne trifle for two. If I’m wanting to serve a fancy but super simple dessert at a dinner party, I make my Champagne Sundaes—a scoop of fruity sorbet (blood orange or raspberry are both good), top with toasted store-bought poundcake cubes and drizzle over champagne. The flavor combination is so refreshing and unexpected!
But champagne cupcakes with champagne buttercream is probably my favorite way to enjoy bubbles! This recipe makes just 4 cupcakes because I love small batch desserts for Valentine’s Day, but you can double it to make more. Another fun Valentine's Day dessert is my small batch chocolate cupcakes.
If you don’t want to buy an entire bottle of champagne, you can buy a mini bottle and have plenty for this champagne cupcakes recipe!
Ingredients for champagne cupcakes:
- flavorless oil: Any type of flavorless oil will work in these cupcakes: vegetable oil, canola oil, avocado oil, or grapeseed are great. We want the oil to be flavorless so that the other flavors of the cupcakes sing; do not use coconut oil.
- salt: Salt balances flavors in desserts.
- granulated sugar: plain white granulated sugar, not caster sugar.
- egg: One egg at room temperature. Cold eggs can be hard to incorporate into a batter smoothly. If you need to bring your eggs to room temperature quickly, soak them in a bowl of warm water for 10 minutes before using.
- dry champagne: When we say 'dry' champagne, dry means not sweet. Use a regular sparkling wine or champagne for this recipe; a sweet champagne or sweet sparkling wine can make the cupcakes too sweet. We only need 5 tablespoons of champagne, so a mini bottle for a picnic is perfect here!
- vanilla extract: Just a small amount of amp up the flavors of the bubbles.
- almond extract: A small amount of almond extract gives cupcakes that wedding cake flavor, and I love it here.
- orange zest: Freshly grated orange zest has fragrant oils that enhance any citrus flavor in champagne.
- flour: all purpose flour, scooped and then leveled for accurate measurement.
- baking powder: Make sure your baking powder is fresh by checking the expiration date.
- baking soda: Ensure your baking soda is fresh and active before baking by mixing it with a small amount of vinegar or lemon juice to ensure it’s still actively bubbly.
Ingredients for champagne buttercream:
- dry champagne: A few tablespoons of champagne right from the bottle helps the frosting come together.
- powdered sugar: Sift powdered sugar before using.
- unsalted butter: Ensure butter is at room temperature for making frosting.
- candied orange peel: Just for garnish, optional. You can decorate with white or gold sprinkles instead.
How to make champagne cupcakes:
- Combine the oil, salt and sugar together in a medium bowl. Use an electric mixer to mix everything together very well.
- Add room temperature egg, vanilla extract, almond extract, and orange zest. Whisk this mixture together very well before proceeding.
- Finally, sprinkle all of the dry ingredients evenly over the surface of the bowl: the flour, baking soda and baking powder.
- Mix the batter together very well, and then divide between 4 cupcake liners in a pan. Bake at 350-degrees F for 19-20 minutes. Use a toothpick to test before removing cupcakes from oven.
How to make champagne buttercream:
Beat together all champagne buttercream ingredients: softened butter, powdered sugar, and champagne. Beat until fluffy and pipe-able consistency.
Place the champagne buttercream in a piping bag fitting with an open star tip, pipe it on top of each cupcake, and then garnish with candied orange peel or sprinkles, or both!
For the cupcakes:
- ¼ cup flavorless oil
- pinch of salt
- ⅓ cup sugar
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 2 tablespoons dry champagne
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
- a few drops of almond extract
- ¼ teaspoon freshly grated orange zest
- ⅓ cup + 1 tablespoon flour
- ⅛ teaspoon baking powder
- pinch of baking soda
For the buttercream:
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2-3 tablespoons champagne
- candied orange peel for garnish (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350° and line 4 cups in a muffin pan with paper liners.
- In a medium bowl, beat together with an electric mixer the oil, salt and sugar. Beat very well for 1 minute until light and fluffy.
- Add the egg, champagne, vanilla, almond extract, and orange zest and beat to combine.
- Sprinkle on top the flour, baking powder and baking soda. Beat lightly to combine. Do not overmix.
- Fill each muffin cup ¾ full and bake for 19-21 minutes, test for doneness at 20 minutes with a toothpick. Let cupcakes cool on a wire rack completely before frosting.
- To make the frosting, beat together in a medium bowl the butter, powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons champagne. If you need a little more liquid, add the last tablespoon of champagne.
- Frost cupcakes and serve garnished with canedied orange peel.
flavorless oil: Any type of flavorless oil will work in these cupcakes: vegetable oil, canola oil, avocado oil, or grapeseed are great. We want the oil to be flavorless so that the other flavors of the cupcakes sing; do not use coconut oil.
egg: One egg at room temperature. Cold eggs can be hard to incorporate into a batter smoothly. If you need to bring your eggs to room temperature quickly, soak them in a bowl of warm water for 10 minutes before using.
dry champagne: When we say 'dry' champagne, dry means not sweet. Use a regular sparkling wine or champagne for this recipe; a sweet champagne or sweet sparkling wine can make the cupcakes too sweet. We only need 5 tablespoons of champagne, so a mini bottle for a picnic is perfect here!
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 438Total Fat: 26gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 16gCholesterol: 77mgSodium: 88mgCarbohydrates: 47gFiber: 0gSugar: 44gProtein: 2g