Friday, November 16, 2012

Chocolate Cupcakes with Malt Buttercream

When I ordered the pound of malt powder, I wasn't sure quite how much there would be. I knew that powders generally tend to be pretty light, so there had to be at least a few cups. I didn't realize that I would be able to use such a small amount to make so many malt balls! I knew instantly that I would have to make a malt frosting. The first batch I made to taste, and then recreated it a second time writing down measurements as I went. While I love the preciseness of baking, I find frosting fascinating because it is very much just tweaking things until you get it to the consistency you desire. There's a lot more give and take. And it's hard to mess it up. If it's too wet you add more sugar, and if it's too thick you add more milk. Now that's something I can appreciate it. There's nothing I hate more than throwing away food.
I tried to make a wild variation on the chocolate cupcakes from VCTOTW with half dark cocoa and half Valrhona cocoa and then replacing a half cup of flour with a vegan malted milk powder I made. But you couldn't taste the malt flavor at all in the cake, so I added even more malt powder. Then the cupcakes baked pretty weirdly and cracked all over the tops. I wouldn't dare share the recipe with even my worst enemy. You should just make your favorite chocolate cake recipe and join me from there. I topped my pitiful little cupcakes with a malt frosting that made them much more delightful. The chocolate & malt combination tastes like a dreamy milkshake I once had at Lula's Sweet Apothecary. I cut a few mint striped paper straws in thirds and stuck them into the frosting for even extra milkshake appeal.

leaves and flours vegan chocolate cupcakes with malt frosting
Malt Buttercream
enough for a dozen cupcakes

1/2 cup Earth Balance
1/2 cup shortening
3 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup malt powder
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp vanilla
2-4 tbsp non-dairy milk of choice
Cream the Earth Balance and shortening together until no lumps remain. Add 2 cups of powdered sugar and beat until incorporated. Add remaining powdered sugar, malt, cocoa, vanilla, and 2 tbsp of the milk. Beat until fluffy, stopping occasionally to scrape sides of bowl. If too thick, add remaining milk a tablespoon at a time.

leaves and flours vegan chocolate cupcakes with malt frosting


  1. These look fantastic. Wishing I had malt powder.

  2. your swirls look so wonderful. i could just face plant into them.

  3. You are really speaking my language here - I just love malt flavor! I grew up on Ovaltine so I've had a taste for it since childhood. I must admit, I'm rather tempted to make your frosting just so I can smear it on toast.