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Coffee Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Espresso Buttercream


Moist, homemade Coffee Cupcakes made with instant espresso powder and hot coffee come together in under 1 hour. You'll love these cupcakes topped with creamy and fluffy vanilla bean espresso buttercream speckled with vanilla seeds and espresso. These easy to make cupcakes will be your new favorite treat to satisfy your coffee craving!



Coffee Cupcakes

  • 195 g (1 1/2 cups) all-purpose flour
  • 220 g (1 cup) granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon instant espresso powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 120 g (1/2 cup) buttermilk, at room temperature
  • 120 g (1/2 cup) hot coffee
  • 50 g (1/4 cup) vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg + 1 yolk, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste

Vanilla Bean Espresso Buttercream

  • 226 g (1 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 450 g (1 pound) powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon instant espresso powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste
  • 2-4 tablespoons heavy cream or milk


Coffee Cupcakes

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F/177°C. Line a standard muffin pan with cupcakes liners and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, espresso powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk the buttermilk, coffee, oil, egg, yolk, and vanilla.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and whisk for 1 minute to combine.
  5. Fill the cupcakes halfway with batter.
  6. Bake the cupcakes for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  7. Cool the cupcakes for 5 minutes in the pan and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.

Vanilla Bean Espresso Buttercream

  1. In a large bowl, using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment beat the butter until smooth and creamy, 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add the powdered sugar and espresso powder and mix on low speed until completely incorporated.
  3. Add the vanilla and enough cream for desired consistency.
  4. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. Beat on medium speed for 3-4 minutes until light and airy.


Storage: Store cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days. Any longer than that, transfer to the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Freezer: Store cupcakes in a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge before serving.

Mini Cupcakes: Fill mini liners halfway and bake for 10-12 minutes.

9-inch Cake: Bake the batter in a greased and floured 9x9-inch square baking pan for 25-27 minutes.

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cooling Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 18 minutes
  • Category: Cupcakes
  • Method: Baking

Keywords: espresso cupcakes, coffee dessert, coffee buttercream, espresso buttercream