Show of hands, who here has/had a grandmother whose pockets and/or purse always seemed to have a few Werther’s Original butterscotch candies in them?
That’s what I thought… everyone in the world can put your hand down.
These cupcakes pack all of the punch of a Werther’s Original and then some. I actually found the cake recipe on Pastry Affair when I was looking for a “butterbeer” cupcake recipe. A friend of mine recipe had a Harry Potter themed baby shower, and I made the food, including butterbeer cupcakes. But instead of the recipe posted with the cake, I decided to modify my favorite buttercream icing recipe instead to give it a wallop of butterscotch flavor.
The cake itself uses cream soda, and has a lighter buttercream-like taste. The butterscotch icing takes it over the top!
And I couldn’t resist adding a dot of pure butterscotch ganache on top. Because why not gild the butterscotch lily?
I actually recommend making these buttercream cupcakes a day or two before you’re going to serve them. They’re super moist, so you don’t have to worry about them drying out, and the buttery flavor seems to intensify over time.
If you want a milder butterscotch flavor, make the buttercream cupcakes according to this recipe, then use a vanilla icing instead of the butterscotch icing. It will still have a sweet butterscotch flavor but it won’t be such a punch in the face.
These cupcakes pack a punch of butterscotch flavor.
- 2 cups flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, softened
- 1 cup dark brown sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 teaspoon butter flavoring
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 cup cream soda
- 1 package (11 oz) butterscotch chips
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 2 sticks (1 cup) butter, softened
- 4 cups powdered sugar (more may be needed)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 teaspoon butter flavoring
- up to 4 tablespoons milk
- In a large bowl, beat together the butter for the cake (1 stick) and brown sugar until fluffy.
- Add eggs, vanilla for the cake, and butter flavoring. Beat well.
- In a separate bowl, sift together the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt).
- Fold in 1/2 of the dry ingredients slowly until well incorporated (do not beat - fold in by hand).
- Fold in the butter milk.
- Fold in the other 1/2 of the dry ingredients.
- Finish by folding in the cream soda.
- Line cupcake tins and fill 3/4 of the way full. Bake for 18 minutes at 350 degrees, until cupcakes are gold and inserted toothpick comes out clean. Remove from tons to cool completely.
- While cupcakes are baking and cooling, make the butterscotch icing (you can also make this the next day - the cakes get a more intense butter flavor if they sit 1-2 days before serving).
- Pour the butterscotch chips into a bowl.
- Heat the heavy cream over high heat, stirring continuously, until small bubbles form (just before boiling)
- Remove from heat and pour over butterscotch chips.
- Allow mixture to sit for 1-2 minutes, then stir to combine. Set aside to cool slightly while making the rest of the icing.
- Beat butter, vanilla, butter flavoring, and salt on medium speed for 3-4 minutes, until butter is fluffy.
- Add 1/2 of the butterscotch ganache to the butter and beat to combine.
- With your mix on slow, gradually add the powdered sugar to the butter mixture. Add a little at a time so powdered sugar doesn't fly everywhere.
- If your icing seems too loose, add a little more powdered sugar, 1/4 cup at a time until you get the consistency that you want. If your icing seems too stiff, add milk, 1/2 tablespoon at time until you get the right consistency. (For me, the best ratio was 4 cups of powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons of milk, but it depends on your preference and the weather - if you are serving these on a warm day, go for a stiffer icing.)
- Frost the cupcakes with a knife or using a piping bag.
- Put the leftover butterscotch ganache in a piping bag (or a ziplock bag with the tip cut off) and drizzle over cupcake or add a dollop to the top of each cupcake.
You can also make twice the amount of butterscotch ganache and fill the cupcakes with it before frosting them.