Dark Chocolate Pistachio Cupcakes

Pinterest is always a treasure trove of ideas when it comes to recipe ideas….ok for anything, but I write a food blog, and recipes are my life!! I LOVE CHOCOLATE, there I said it. So when I saw a recipe for a chocolate pistachio cake, I saw cupcakes. Dark Chocolate Pistachio Cupcakes to be exact.

Dark Chocolate Pistachio Cupcakes

Having adapted a recipe from Jen at Baked By An Introvert, I have created quite possibly the best cupcakes I have ever made. Rich dark and chocolaty, with a hint of pistachio flavor, and pretty to boot! If you are looking for an impressive cake, follow Jenn’s recipe it has an extra chocolate component of ganache…yum!!!!

I love cake, but what is a cupcake but a personal cake? Easier to decorate, easier to store, easier to tote with you. Cupcakes are simply the best desserts.

On the downside (not really) for only two people cupcakes make a lot….all the better to share. This recipe made two dozen regular size and one dozen mini cupcakes. Sharing was necessary.

Dark Chocolate Pistachio Cupcakes

My nephew works for an auto company, and from time to time, I drop off treats. The last time was for Brad’s birthday, and I didn’t have time to make homemade, so I purchased cupcakes from a local bakery. Now don’t get me wrong the cupcakes from the bakery are delicious, but they are not homemade. When I called and ask if Brad and his work buddies liked the cupcakes, he said yes, but they liked mine better.

So naturally, when I had an abundance of cupcakes, I knew I had to take some to my nephew. Calling again to ask how they liked them….”They were a hit”…enough said.

The cake part of this recipe is quite possibly the most delicious chocolate cake recipe I have ever made. It was incredibly moist, and with my change to the recipe using dark cocoa powder, it transformed the cupcake to a dark chocolate lovers dream!

Dark Chocolate Pistachio Cupcakes

The extraordinary thing about this recipe is the frosting. Pistachio paste!

I did not know such a thing existed….until I searched for it on Amazon. Which is why I made my own…yikes! Purchasing pistachio paste, well let’s just say cha-ching! I couldn’t believe how pricey it was. Ok, so pistachios aren’t cheap anyway but suffice it to say it’s about half the price to make it yourself.

It sounded hard to do and time-consuming, but it really wasn’t. A good sturdy food processor and it was done in a flash. Don’t skip making this it is the heart of the frosting. Tip: go really light on the food coloring, or you will have a really unnatural color.

Dark Chocolate Pistachio Cupcakes

Because I take pictures of the recipes, I always need the pretty factor. Dark Chocolate Pistachio Cupcakes do not disappoint, they look ultra-fancy with minimal effort.

Dark Chocolate Pistachio Cupcakes

Dark Chocolate Pistachio Cupcakes….your new best cupcake recipe!!!!!
Looking for a special summer cupcake check out these Campfire Cupcakes. Sure to be a hit with both young and old!

Campfire Cupcakes

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Dark Chocolate Pistachio Cupcakes

Dark Chocolate Pistachio Cupcakes

  • Author: Marty Boyd
  • Yield: 2 dozen 1x
  • Category: Cupcakes
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: American


Adapted from Baked By An Introvert



For the cupcakes:
2 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup dark cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup butter, melted
1 and 3/4 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla paste(or extract)
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1/2 cup espresso (2 teaspoons espresso powder in 1/2 cup hot water)
For pistachio paste:
1 and 1/2 cups (184 grams) unsalted pistachios, shelled
1 teaspoon canola oil, more if necessary
For the frosting:
2 cups butter, softened
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
36 cups powdered sugar
12 drops green food coloring
1 cup chopped pistachios, for garnish


Heat the oven to 350°F. Line cupcake tin with liners.
In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt; set aside.
Melt the chocolate in the microwave according to directions on the package.
In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment or using a handheld mixer beat the butter and sugar together on medium-low speed until light and fluffy.
Beat in the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition, scraping the bowl as needed.
Add the vanilla, and then add the melted chocolate and mix until incorporated.
Setting the mixer to low speed, gradually add half the flour mixture, followed by the buttermilk and coffee, and then the remaining flour mixture. Beat just until combined. The batter will be thick.
Scoop the batter into prepared lined tins.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until cupcakes spring back when touched.
Cool the cupcakes in the pans for 10 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
Pistachio Paste:
In a food processor, process the pistachios until they become coarsely ground. Stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Adding the oil a little bit at a time. Continue to blend for 15-20 minutes, stopping and scraping down the sides, until smooth and creamy. Set aside.
In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment or with an electric hand mixer, beat the butter at medium-high speed until smooth. Add cream, vanilla, and salt. Continue to beat until incorporated.
Gradually add the powdered sugar, one cup at a time until the desired consistency has been reached. Increase the speed of the mixer to medium-high speed beat until light and fluffy.
Fold the pistachio paste and food coloring (go lightly with the food coloring, or you will have a very intense colored frosting into the frosting. Mix until well combined.
Pipe frosting onto cupcakes and garnish with chopped pistachios. I used one shelled pistachio for garnish as well.

Keywords: dark chocolate, pistachios, cupcakes, bake, pistachio paste, dessert

4 thoughts on “Dark Chocolate Pistachio Cupcakes”

  1. These look so amazing! When I make the pistachio paste, do I use the raw or roasted pistachio nuts?
    Thank you!

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