Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes with Bailey’s Buttercream and Salted Caramel Filling

This Chocolate Guinness Cupcakes have a chocolate Guinness cake filled with salted caramel and topped with a Bailey's Irish Cream Buttercream!

Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes with a Salted Caramel Filling topped with a silky Bailey’s Irish Cream Buttercream. I tried to come up with a shorter name; I really did. But nothing else really did them justice.

These. Are. So. Good.

This Chocolate Guinness Cupcakes have a chocolate Guinness cake filled with salted caramel and topped with a Bailey's Irish Cream Buttercream!

Any time of year.

Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes with Bailey's Buttercream and Salted Caramel Filling

Most people would fill these cupcakes with a Guinness Ganache, and I gave great thought to that, but I am not most people and I personally think Salted Caramel pairs better with the chocolate and Bailey’s Irish Cream flavors. It’s a serious win. Possibly because the Salted Caramel Sauce is THE BEST EVER. But we already talked about that the other day.This Chocolate Guinness Cupcakes have a chocolate Guinness cake filled with salted caramel and topped with a Bailey's Irish Cream Buttercream!

The hint of Bailey’s with the salted caramel and the deep, dark chocolate cake…Oh Dear Lord. People write poetry about stuff that isn’t even half this good.

The Bailey’s buttercream is light and fluffy, not too sweet, with a perfect pop of Bailey’s. The Guinness enhances the chocolate flavor and adds an extra lightness to the pound cake recipe that I used, and the caramel brings it all together into one magnificent St. Patty’s Day package of yumminess.

Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes with Bailey's Buttercream and Salted Caramel Filling

I will warn you that once a year will not be sufficient! Come May you are going to find yourself craving these Irish inspired treats and that is okay. I’ll be right there with you!

Boozy Buttercream fanatics rejoice! Because I have found you your new best friend.

This Bailey’s Buttercream is divine. I mean seriously divine. It took every fiber of my Being not lick the spatula, the bowl, the whisk attachment and the piping bag clean.

I know. My shame has no bounds!

Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes with Bailey's Buttercream and Salted Caramel Filling

The cake is an adaptation of a pound cake but the Guinness makes it a touch lighter than a traditional pound cake recipe.

Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes with Bailey's Buttercream and Salted Caramel Filling

The key to getting the caramel to stay as a filling and not disappear into your cake is making sure that it is the right consistency before filling. It should flow like cooling lava, a slow, trudging flow. It should not fall like ribbons or be so hard that it doesn’t flow at all. You also want to make absolutely sure that your cake is 100% cooled.

Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes with Bailey’s Buttercream and Salted Caramel Filling

Yield: 24 Cupcakes

Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes with Bailey’s Buttercream and Salted Caramel Filling

These Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes with Bailey's Butter Cream and a salted caramel filling are sensational! The Frosting is silky with just the right amount of Bailey's; the cupcakes are moist and super chocolatey; and the salted caramel filling pulls it all together!


    For the Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes:
  • ¾ cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder
  • ¾ cup Guinness beer
  • 1 cup sour cream at room temperature
  • 1 ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 5 large eggs at room temperature
  • For the Bailey’s Irish Cream Buttercream:
  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 6 tablespoons Bailey’s Irish Cream


    To Make the Cupcakes:
  1. Preheat oven to 325° and line 24 cupcake tins with liners.
  2. Combine cocoa, chocolate and espresso powder in a large bowl. Bring Guinness to just barely boiling in a small saucepan. Pour hot Guinness over chocolate mixture and whisk until completely melted and smooth. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
  3. While the chocolate is cooling, combine flour, salt, and baking soda together in a small bowl and whisk.
  4. When chocolate is cool, whisk in the sour cream.
  5. Beat the butter sugar and vanilla together in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until pale and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until incorporated. The batter may seem separated and that is okay!
  6. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour mixture in three additions. Alternate flour with chocolate mixture, beginning and ending with flour.
  7. Scoop batter into cupcake liners. Bake until a toothpick comes out with some crumbs still attached; 20-30 minutes.
  8. Let the cupcakes cool completely.
  9. To Make the Buttercream:
  10. Beat butter until light and fluffy on high speed with an electric mixer.
  11. Slowly add powdered sugar. Continue to beat until well combined.
  12. Add the Bailey’s a tablespoon at a time beating, and scraping the bowl down between each addition. Whip until light and fluffy. If your butter was not completely softened, this will take longer.
  13. Use a rubber spatula to put the frosting in a piping bag fitted with a tip of your choice. Press the buttercream all the way to the bottom of the bag making sure there are no air bubbles. Twist the top opening to ensure you don’t lose any of the deliciousness.
  14. To Assemble the Cupcakes:
  15. Remove the center of the cupcake using a knife, a cupcake corer, or any other small, round object of your imagination. Fill the center with salted caramel. It should be thick like cooling lava. If it is too warm (read: runny) then it will just soak into your cake.
  16. Pipe (or spread) the frosting onto each cupcake. Sprinkle with green sanding sugar if desired!
  17. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days.


I piped the frosting with a Wilton 2D in case you were wondering. Chocolate Cake adapted from America’s Test Kitchen Rich Chocolate Bundt Cake*. Buttercream adapted from Found Via Recipe Girl

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  1. Shelley says

    The Salted Caramel Filling link isn’t working. It says page cannot be found. Can someone fix it? I want to make these this week as they sound incredible!

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Hi Shelley, I am so sorry about that! I’m not sure what happened but I fixed both links and just in case it’s easier, I have included it here too [Salted Caramel Sauce]

      I hope you love them!

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      That’s a hard question because everyone’s “too sweet” threshold is different! And the cocoa % varies widely between brands. I have found that Nestle’s Semi-Sweet is much sweeter than Ghirardelli, for example. I personally think it would taste just as good with semi-sweet. If you try it, come back and let me know what you thought!

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Thanks, Natasha! I love you site and I’m so glad you stopped by mine!

      You have waaaay more self control than I do!!!

  2. says

    I just tried making these and there was SO much batter! I made 24 cupcakes and then filled an entire 9X11″ pan! The batter was wonderfully fluffy and light before I poured it into cupcake liners. The cupcakes look delicious, I’m just wondering if anyone else had a similar issue with producing so much extra batter. I hate to be wasteful. I don’t know what I’m going to do with so much cake!

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Hi Kari! No one else has said that but I’m sorry that happened to you. The only thing I can think is that you didn’t fill your cups as high as mine. I use a 2″ cookie scoop to scoop my batter. You could try to freeze some! I do that so that I can always have a cupcake when the mood strikes 🙂

  3. JM says

    I had the same issue as Kari. I’m admittedly a novice baker, but I can’t figure out how on Earth you were only supposed to have 24 cupcakes! Even filling the cups all the way up to the top I still needed 3 more cups! The batter was so fluffy that I figured maybe they wouldn’t rise like normal cupcakes, so maybe we were supposed to fill the cups all the way, but nope! Now I get to clean my oven. *doh* At least I learned something and won’t make that mistake again. lol I wish I had known beforehand that the batter could be frozen. I never would have thought to pour it into a different type of pan and bake it like Kari did because I would have no clue how to adjust the temp/time to suit whatever pan size I chose. I can say this, though, the bits of batter that ended up on the cookie sheet tasted delicious and I’ll be making the frosting and caramel filling tomorrow. 🙂 Thanks for the recipe!

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Hi JM. I am so sorry! It has been over a year since I made these cupcakes, so the recipe is not fresh on my mind. I will update the instructions to be clear on how far to fill the cups and that there will be some extra. Just to be clear, cupcake batter cannot be frozen but extra baked cupcakes can be! If you only have one cupcake pan, you can let the extra batter sit while the first 24 cook, then remove the cupcakes, add extra liners and bake a second batch. Since this recipe calls for baking soda, which reacts with an acid immediately and doesn’t have a delayed rising action like baking powder, the second batch will not rise as much.

      In case you want to know…you can always bake cupcake batter in cake pans or vis versa! Just bake at 350 F (in a standard, non-convection oven) until a toothpick, metal skewer or knife, inserted into the center comes out with only a few clinging crumbs. When baking a new recipe, I am constantly peering into the oven without opening the door to see how the cake is rising and if it needs to be tested! I abhor dry cake! To keep from poking 30 holes in your cake, you can start testing when the top no longer looks wet and springs back to the touch. I know that was probably more information than you wanted, but I hope it helps!

      • JM says

        I don’t know that there’s anything you need to apologize for, I just wanted to share my experience making the cupcakes in case any other novice bakers out there had the same silly thought that I did. I really should’ve known better than to fill the cups up to the top. Thank you for the clarification and all the extra information! It’s not too much at all and is greatly appreciated! I will definitely be freezing some of these cupcakes. BTW, the filling and frosting came out great and taste amazing! 🙂

        • AmericanCooking22 says

          I so glad you had success with the filling and frosting! Caramel can be tricky! And I have overfilled my cupcake tins and loaf pans more than once, so don’t feel bad at all! Sometimes you just want all the banana bread to fit in mini loaf tins and it wasn’t meant to be!! 😀


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