We spent this weekend experimenting with chai desserts and landed on an easy chai cupcake recipe. If you’re in need of a new cupcake flavour or cupcake frosting idea, follow this chai cupcake with chai buttercream frosting recipe! Your whole kitchen will smell like a beautiful blend of aromatic chai spices and remind you of a cozy autumn’s day. This recipe is also a great alternative use of loose chai leaves and chai masala spices if you aren’t a big fan of drinking chai itself. The flavour of the chai cupcakes is balanced well with the sweetness of the chai buttercream frosting. Your biggest worry should be trying not to eat the whole batch in one go!
This recipe was supposed to make half a dozen chai cupcakes but I ended up with four. It could be because we ate quite a bit of the batter while making them. We just couldn’t help ourselves!
To make these chai cupcakes vegan, you can:
Swap the butter with vegan butter or margarine
Swap the egg for 1/3 cup of apple sauce
Yield: 4 to 6 cupcakes
Total time: 1 hour
Chai infused Milk:
1/3 cup milk (dairy or non-dairy)
1 heaped tbsp Chai Buddy Original Blend Chai or Loose Masala Chai
Chai Cupcake Ingredients:
1/4 cup butter, soft
1/4 cup caster sugar
1/2 cup self-raising flour (or 1/2 cup all-purpose flour + 1 tbsp baking powder)
1 large free-range eggs (or 1/3 cup apple sauce for a vegan alternative)
1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tbsp chai infused milk
Chai Cupcake Frosting Ingredients:
1/4 cup butter, soft
1.5 cups icing sugar, sifted
3 to 4 tbsp chai infused milk
Chai Infused Milk:
- In a small cooking pot, pour in 1/3 cup of milk and one heaped tablespoon of loose Chai Buddy original chai blend or any loose masala chai blend. Brew the mixture on a low heat for 2 to 3 minutes or until the chai milk mixture starts to boil and bubble up. If you use a non-dairy milk, you only need to brew the chai milk for 1 minute. Be careful not to split the milk.
- Turn off the flame and let the chai steep in the milk for another five minutes.
- Strain out the chai leaves and spices then set aside the chai infused milk to let it cool.
- Preheat the oven to 170 degrees C. Line a cupcake tin with liners.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the flour and baking soda. Set it aside.
- Add the softened butter and sugar to the bowl of an electric mixer and beat on high speed until fluffy and incorporated together, 2 to 3 minutes. Add in the egg, mixing well on medium speed until combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl if needed. Pour in the chai infused milk, beating on medium speed for another minute until the batter is evenly brown in colour. With the mixer on low speed, add in the dry ingredients and mix on medium speed until the batter is a light brown colour. The mixture should be combined and fluffy. If the batter is a little dry, you can add a bit of milk till you get the right consistency.
- Fill the cupcake liners about 2/3 of the way full. Bake until the tops are set or an inserted toothpick comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Let the chai cupcakes cool completely before frosting.
Chai Buttercream Frosting:
- Add the butter to the bowl of an electric mixer and beat on high speed until creamy. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add in the icing sugar. It is really important that you take the time to sift the icing sugar, to avoid clumps in the frosting. Beat until the sugar is incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl if needed. Beat the frosting on high speed for 2 to 3 minutes until fluffy and creamy. Add in the rest of the chai infused milk and beat the frosting mixture for 1 to 2 minutes or until combined. If the frosting seems too thick, beat in another tablespoon of milk.
- Frost the cupcakes once cooled. If you feel a bit fancy, you can sprinkle a mixture of cinnamon, ground cardamom and sugar on top of the frosting!
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