TIRAMISU CUPCAKES

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These vanilla tiramisu cupcakes are a hand-held version of classic tiramisu. Tender and fluffy, they feature a Kahlua-and-coffee soaked filling. They’re crowned with a luscious mascarpone frosting and sprinkled with cocoa.

PIN TIRAMISU CUPCAKE RECIPE

Half dozen tiramisu cupcakes on a countertop being frosted and sprinkled with cocoa powder.

It’s now easier than ever to indulge a craving for the classic Italian favorite. These special desserts taste just like they came from a European bakery!

Tiramisu cupcakes are perfect for celebrations all year round. Take them to potlucks, baby showers and wedding showers. Serve them at birthdays, anniversaries, and graduations. Enjoy them for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

No plates and forks needed for these portable treats. Just a stack of napkins.

During the busy holiday season, I recommend assembling a double batch and freezing half without frosting. Then you’ll have them on hand when needed. Just defrost and top with swirls of frosting.

INGREDIENTS

These delicious desserts come together with basic refrigerator and pantry staples. Below are the ingredients you’ll need for the recipe.

CUPCAKE BATTER

  • All-purpose flour
  • Granulated sugar
  • Baking powder
  • Sea salt
  • Ground cinnamon
  • Whole milk
  • Vegetable oil
  • Large eggs
  • Pure vanilla extract

POKE-CUPCAKE INGREDIENTS

  • Espresso or strong-brewed coffee
  • Kahlua
Ingredients for Tiramisu cupcake recipe.

MASCARPONE FROSTING

  • Mascarpone cheese
  • Cream cheese
  • Salted butter
  • Pure vanilla extract
  • Powdered sugar (confectioner’s sugar)
  • FOR GARNISHING: Unsweetened cocoa powder or a finely-grated artisan chocolate like American Heritage Chocolate.
Ingredients for making mascarpone cheese frosting for tiramisu cupcakes.

EASY INGREDIENT SUBSTITUTIONS

Missing an ingredient for the tiramisu cupcakes or mascarpone frosting? Don’t put on your shoes and head to the market. Instead, head to your fridge or pantry. Check for these easy ingredient swaps.

It’s convenient and money-saving to use ingredients you already have on hand!

  • ALL-PURPOSE FLOUR: Either pastry flour or cake flour can be used as a 1:1 substitute for this cinnamon cupcake recipe.
  • GRANULATED SUGAR: Use light brown sugar instead.
  • GROUND CINNAMON: This ingredient provides flavor and aroma. The best swaps are apple pie spice or pumpkin pie spice. You can also use ground nutmeg or allspice (but 1/2 the amount).
  • VEGETABLE OIL: The best 1:1 subs are safflower oil and canola oil. They won’t change the flavor of the tiramisu cupcakes.
  • WHOLE MILK: Use 2% milk instead. If you have heavy cream on hand, use 60% cream to 40% water. Or try dairy-free vanilla milk.
  • VANILLA EXTRACT: Sub with bourbon, brandy or amber rum.
  • KAHLUA: Use a chocolate-flavored liqueur or spiced rum.
  • MASCARPONE CHEESE: Use all cream cheese instead. Or make your own mascarpone cheese for this recipe. See “Recipe FAQ” section below for the easy recipe. Only half the amount will be needed for 12 cupcakes.
  • CREAM CHEESE: Use all mascarpone cheese plus extra powdered sugar to make the frosting thick and sturdy.
  • SALTED BUTTER: Sub with unsalted butter plus a tiny pinch of salt.
  • POWDERED SUGAR: Make your own powdered sugar from granulated sugar. Process sugar in a blender or food processor until fine and fluffy. One cup granulated sugar yields about 2 cups powdered sugar.

BEST CUPCAKE PAN FOR THIS RECIPE

For bakery-style cupcakes, I pull out my 12-well cupcake pan by USA Pan. This heavy-duty piece has ridged surfaces which increase air flow for even baking and browning. It’s what I count on for picture-perfect desserts.

Grab a set of 2 through the Amazon affiliate link below.

Frosted tiramisu cupcakes resting atop parchment paper on backside of a small baking tray.

RECIPE STEPS

CUPCAKE BATTER

RECIPE PREP: Adjust oven rack to center position. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 12-well cupcake pan with parchment-paper cupcake wrappers.

  • STEP 1: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together dry ingredients: flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, sea salt, and ground cinnamon.
  • STEP 2: In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together wet ingredients: milk, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients. Mix just until combined. For fluffy tiramisu cupcakes, don’t overmix.
  • STEP 3: Divide batter between the 12 wells of prepared cupcake pan. Fill them 3/4 full. A cookie scoop can make the process easier. Bake cupcakes 14 to 16 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center of 2 cupcakes comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  • STEP 4: In a small bowl, combine Kahlua and espresso. Once cupcakes have cooled completely, poke the top of each dessert 5 times with a fork. Drizzle 2 teaspoons of the mixture over the top of each cupcake.
How to make the best tiramisu cupcakes in 4 easy steps.

MASCARPONE FROSTING

RECIPE PREP: If the temperature of your kitchen is warm, chill the metal mixing bowl and paddle attachment (from your stand mixer) in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes.

  • STEP 1: Measure out ingredients for the frosting: softened cream cheese, mascarpone cheese, butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Add cream cheese, mascarpone, butter and vanilla to the bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment.
  • STEP 2: Cream ingredients (about 2 minutes) until fully combined with a smooth texture. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add powdered sugar. Once sugar is fully incorporated, turn up the speed to high. Whip until frosting is light and fluffy. But don’t overmix or frosting can curdle.
  • STEP 3: Transfer icing to a piping bag with your favorite metal tip. I used a Wilton 2A for decorating mine. For a lovely presentation, around the top of the desserts leave a 1/2-inch rim undecorated without frosting. It’s lovely to see a portion of the actual cupcake surface.
  • STEP 4: For garnishing, lightly dust the frosting with unsweetened cocoa powder or finely-grated chocolate.

RECIPE TIP: Cool cupcakes COMPLETELY before frosting. This takes 1 hour on the countertop when set on a wire rack.

One of the biggest mistakes when making cupcakes is cutting corners and frosting them too soon. We want the icing to stay firm and perky, not become soft, limp and melty.

How to make mascarpone frosting and frost tiramisu cupcakes in 4 easy steps.

RECIPE FAQ

These are the most commonly-asked questions when making tiramisu cupcakes with mascarpone frosting. Included are the most helpful answers for recipe success with this top-notch dessert.

CAN I DOUBLE THIS RECIPE?

Yes. The cupcake batter can be doubled. Just take care to not overmix. The frosting recipe can also be doubled.

CAN TIRAMISU CUPCAKE BATTER BE MADE IN ADVANCE?

No. It’s not recommended. The cupcakes would dense instead of light and fluffy. The batter should be baked right after it’s assembled.

HOW TO MEASURE FLOUR CORRECTLY?

When using measuring cups (not a scale), here’s an easy method to ensure the correct amount of flour for a recipe: With a spoon, FLUFF up the flour inside the flour bag. SPRINKLE flour into the measuring cup by the spoonful. LEVEL off flour in the measuring cup with a knife.

TIP FOR COOLING CUPCAKES QUICKLY BEFORE FROSTING?

Cooling cupcakes completely before frosting is important. Even if they’re cool to the touch, there may be residual heat in the middle that can rise and ruin the frosting. Cool cupcakes on countertop 1 hour. Or use this easy method: Transfer cupcakes to a metal tray with wire rack for good airflow. Cool on countertop for 10 minutes. Then stick the tray into the fridge 20 to 30 minutes, or until desserts are completely cool.

HOW TO MAKE A SUBSTITUTE FOR MASCARPONE CHEESE?

Use cream cheese from a brick, not from a tub. Blend until smooth: 16 ounces (softened) cream cheese, 1/3 cup sour cream, and 1/4 cup heavy cream. Easy peasy, and so delicious.

HOW LONG WILL TIRAMISU CUPCAKES STAY FRESH?

When stored in the fridge in an air-tight container, they’ll stay fresh with a good texture for up to 2 days. For longer storage, freeze them without frosting inside zip-top freezer bags with the air pressed out.

Frosted tiramisu cupcake with a bite taken out.

MORE DESSERT RECIPES TO MAKE ASAP

If you loved this tiramisu cupcake recipe, you’ll also love these tasty desserts. Each is a time-tested family favorite.

Three tiramisu cupcakes iced with swirls of mascarpone frosting and dusted with finely-grated chocolate.

rate this recipe ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

For family birthdays and classroom parties, there’s nothing more special than a batch of 12 tiramisu cupcakes. They’re as stunning as they are tasty.

If you too love this celebratory dessert, give it a 5-star rating in the comments. Then be a recipe hero! Share it with a friend.

Gold Line: Sprinkles of Inspiration | confettiandbliss.com
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Three tiramisu cupcakes on the back of a baking tray getting frosted with mascarpone frosting and sprinkled with cocoa powder..

TIRAMISU CUPCAKES


  • Author: Denay DeGuzman
  • Prep Time: 20 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 Minutes
  • Total Time: 40 Minutes
  • Yield: 12 Cupcakes 1x

Description

Tiramisu cupcakes are light and fluffy, and feature a light soak of espresso with Kahlua. With beautiful lush swirls of mascarpone frosting and a sprinkling of cocoa, they’re perfect for celebrations!


Ingredients

Scale

CUPCAKE BATTER

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

POKE CUPCAKE INGREDIENTS

  • 1/4 cup espresso or strong-brewed coffee
  • 2 tablespoons Kahlua

MASCARPONE FROSTING

  • 4 ounces mascarpone cheese, softened
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 tablespoons salted butter, softened
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar (or a bit more, if needed)

FOR GARNISHING


Instructions

CUPCAKE BATTER

RECIPE PREP: Adjust oven rack to center position. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 12-well cupcake pan with parchment-paper cupcake wrappers.

  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together dry ingredients: flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, sea salt, and ground cinnamon.
  2. In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together wet ingredients: milk, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients. Mix just until combined. For light fluffy cupcakes, don’t overmix. 
  3. Divide batter between 12 wells of prepared cupcake pan. Fill them 3/4 full. A cookie scoop can make the process easier. Bake cupcakes 14 to 16 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center of 2 cupcakes comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack.
  4. In a small bowl, combine Kahlua and espresso. Once cupcakes have cooled completely, poke the top of each dessert 5 times with a fork. Drizzle 2 teaspoons of the mixture over the top of each cupcake. 

MASCARPONE FROSTING

RECIPE PREP: If the temperature of your kitchen is warm, chill the metal mixing bowl and paddle attachment (from your stand mixer) in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes. 

  1.  Add cream cheese, mascarpone, butter and vanilla to the bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment.
  2.  Cream ingredients (about 2 minutes) until fully combined with a smooth texture. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add powdered sugar. Once sugar is fully incorporated, turn up the speed to high. Whip until frosting is light and fluffy. But don’t overmix as the frosting can curdle.
  3. Transfer icing to a piping bag with your favorite metal tip. I used a Wilton 2A for decorating mine. For a lovely presentation, around the top of the desserts leave a 1/2-inch rim undecorated without frosting. It’s lovely to see a portion of the actual cupcake surface. 
  4. GARNISH THE FROSTING: Lightly dust the frosting with unsweetened cocoa powder or finely-grated chocolate. 

Notes

BEST RECIPE TIP: Cool cupcakes COMPLETELY before frosting. This takes 1 hour when set on a wire rack. One of the biggest mistakes when making cupcakes is cutting corners and frosting them too soon. We want the icing to stay firm and perky, not become soft, limp and melty.

HOW LONG WILL CUPCAKES STAY FRESH? When stored in the fridge in an air-tight container, they’ll stay fresh with a good texture for up to 2 days. For longer storage, freeze them without frosting inside zip-top freezer bags with the air pressed out. 

  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Tiramisu Cupcakes, Tiramisu Cupcake Recipe

Gold Line: Sprinkles of Inspiration | confettiandbliss.com

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