Calling all mint + chocolate lovers! These Andes Mint Cupcakes are so flavorful, delicious and easy! You’ll flip for these fudgy cupcakes with a sinful mint buttercream and rich chocolate ganache!
I want to use this time to openly apologize to Andes mints.
Dear Andes mints,
I love you – you know that? I often forget about how much I love you because I have the attention span of a gnat at times and get distracted by shiny things which further proves I was a squirrel in a past life. I know I don’t often pick you when I am choosing a candy in the supermarket, but it isn’t because you suck. You never get stale, you never lose your flavor, you never stop being addictive and simple and delicious. And let’s face it, you’re the best part about eating at Olive Garden. So I apologize for oft-overlooking you, because every time I get the chance to unwrap your shiny green package and savor your sweet, simple, perfect flavor, I’m overwhelmed with happiness. Please accept my sincerest apologies in the form of these cupcakes, which pay homage to how great you are.
Yeah, it’s true: I always end up going for Red Vines (my all-time fave candy) or peanut M&M’s when I’m picking out candy at the grocery store… but I do love Andes mints for their simplicity and predictable goodness. I’ve never unwrapped one and thought, “meh.” They’re always perfect!
And with St. Patrick’s Day around the corner (seriously, HOW???), I figured I needed to make a cupcake that pays tribute to this delectable mint candy. Thus, these Andes Mint Cupcakes were born.
They couldn’t be easier to make, too, which is great so you have more time to imbibe on St. Patty’s Day and less time fretting over ganache. #truth
They start with a humble box of chocolate cake mix – any brand, any preference, or if you’re feeling extra Suzi Homemaker, make your own chocolate cupcake batter. Bake ’em up until they’re done and cool them before frosting.
The frosting is where the mint flavor really shines through. It starts with butter, a little splash of vanilla extract, cream, and peppermint extract, which gives it that signature minty kick. Add in some confectioners’ sugar and a drop or two of green food coloring to really make the color pop, then pipe it high onto each cooled cupcake. *Note that if you’re going to pipe the frosting as high and abundant as I did, you may want to double your batch.*
Lastly, you’ll whip up a simple chocolate ganache, which only looks and sounds complicated, but in actuality is only two ingredients: chocolate and heavy cream. Once melted together, it creates this sinful, rich, decadent sauce that you’ll spoon and drizzle on the tops of the frosted cupcakes before finishing it off with an Andes mint.
Moist, flavorful, fudgy cupcakes topped with a sweet mint buttercream and devilishly rich chocolate ganache. The perfect homage to the humble mint candy!
- FOR THE CUPCAKES:
- One box chocolate cake mix, plus ingredients on back of box (you may also use your favorite chocolate cupcake recipe)
- FOR THE BUTTERCREAM:
- 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1-1 & 1/2 teaspoons peppermint extract (start with one teaspoon and work your way up – this stuff gets potent really fast!)
- 2-3 Tablespoons heavy cream
- 3 & 1/2 -4 cups confectioners’ sugar
- FOR THE GANACHE:
- 1 cup chocolate chips (I like semi-sweet)
- 1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
- 22-24 Andes mints, unwrapped
- Prepare and bake the cupcakes according to package instructions, or using your favorite homemade chocolate cupcake recipe. Cool completely.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter, vanilla extract, and peppermint extract until smooth, about 1 minute. Gradually add in the confectioners’ sugar, one cup at a time, alternating with the heavy whipping cream until frosting is light and fluffy. Add in a drop or two of liquid green food coloring, tinting it to your desired shade.
- Pipe or spread the frosting onto the cooled cupcakes. Note that if you pipe the frosting as high on the cupcakes as I did, you may want to double the frosting recipe.
- For the ganache: add the chocolate chips to a small bowl. Microwave the heavy cream for about 30-45 seconds or until hot. Pour the heavy cream over the chocolate chips and let stand for about 5 minutes. Stir until combined, glossy and thick. Spoon a little bit over each cupcake and allow it to drip down the sides. Top with an Andes mint.
I just adore how easy these delectable cupcakes are, and I know you will, too!
Have a super sweet day!