Why is it so hard to get back to work after being on vacation?  I’m thinking these cupcakes from Stress Baking might be what I need to get back into the swing of things.  So save this recipe for when you are under some stress or when you just want some “kick” in your cupcakes.

Jack & Coke Cupcakes

Cupcakes
  • 1 1/2 cups Coke (don’t use Diet or Coke Zero! You need the sugar that’s in the original)
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
Ganache Filling
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon butter, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon Jack Daniels whiskey
Frosting
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 3/4 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons Jack Daniels whiskey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
  • 12 gummy cola bottles or 12 lime fruit slices (garnish, for adorableness)
Cupcake Prep
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and line 12 cupcake cups with aluminum liners (or use silicon cupcake holders).
  2. In a medium saucepan, combine Coke and butter and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Add cocoa powder, sugar, brown sugar and whisk until sugars are dissolved and mixture is smooth. Set aside to cool for 15 minutes or so.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, lightly beat egg. Add cooled cocoa mixture and stir to combine. Add flour mixture and stir until just combined.
  5. Pour batter into cupcake liners, filling them 3/4 of the way. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until a toothpick stuck in the center comes out clean. Transfer cupcakes to wire rack to cool completely.
Ganache Prep
  1. Place the chocolate chips in a small heatproof bowl. In a small saucepan, heat the cream until it’s simmering and then pour it over the chocolate in the heatproof bowl. Let it sit for one minute and then stir until smooth. Add the butter and whiskey and stir until combined.
  2. Let the ganache cool enough that it won’t give you trouble when you place it in a piping bag.
  3. Cut the centers out of the cooled cupcakes – I used a small paring knife, but you could also use an apple corer or a cupcake plunger (if you’re fancy schmancy and have one).
  4. Put the ganache into a piping bag with a wide tip and fill the holes in each cupcake to the top. If you’re like me and don’t have a real piping bag, just put it in a plastic freezer bag and cut off a small corner.
Frosting Prep
  1. Whisk the butter in a large bowl with an electric mixer for a couple minutes. You want it to be light and fluffy.
  2. Slowly add the powdered sugar, a few tablespoons at a time. Trust me – you don’t want to pour it all in at once. For one, you’ll make a gigantic mess because the sugar will explode all over your kitchen and make it appear as though a blizzard blasted through your window. Also, the frosting will be grainy and impossible to mix properly.
  3. Once you’ve used about half your powdered sugar, add in a bit of whiskey and then mix again. This will thin it out a bit, allowing you to continue mixing in the remaining sugar. Continue to add a bit of whiskey and mix until you’ve used all the sugar. As far as I’m concerned, using more than 3 tablespoons whiskey is NOT a problem. I accidentally dropped 5 tablespoons in the bowl… and a few tablespoons in my mouth… oops.
  4. You can also add a teaspoon of vanilla extract if you want it to be less whiskey-y.
  5. Pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes however you’d like.