Chocolate Cupcakes With Orange Buttercream Frosting

you may know of vegetarians who don’t eat eggs. heck, you may be one of them. the big question that intrigues most people who do eat eggs is how those who don’t can give up on desserts and pastries – especially since most of them are made with eggs.

here’s your answer – ingenious bakers have created a line of eggless baking recipes that have stood the test of time and taste. one such is the “wacky chocolate cake”. the name may sound funny, but the innovative recipe’s origin lies in serious circumstances – it was actually created during the world wars, when food products like eggs, butter and milk were tightly rationed. i first saw the recipe in “joy of vegan baking” by colleen patrick-godreau. i have since made this in the form of cupcakes two or three times – and it turns out fantastic every time 🙂 and if we are talking chocolate cake, why not make it even more irresistable with orange buttercream frosting? that’s just what i did – and topped it all off with chocolate curls and dragees.

i couldn’t say “no” to these yummy goodies, and if you have a sweet tooth, i am sure you can’t too 🙂

*Photography by Saraswathi Raja Krishnan


1-1/2 cups all-purpose/plain flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1-1/2 tsp vanilla or rum flavouring/extract
1/3 cup canola/sunflower oil
1 tbsp white distilled vinegar
1 cup cold water

Buttercream frosting:
50 gms salted butter (softened)
1-1/2 cups icing sugar (sifted)
1 tbsp orange rind or 1 tsp orange flavouring (adjust to taste)
two or three drops orange colouring (optional)

Making the cupcakes and frosting:
Make the frosting first.  Cream the butter lightly and add in the rind/flavouring and mix it in. Beat in the sugar bit by bit. The mixture might get very thick, but keep going. Add in the colouring bit by bit to get the desired effect. If the mixture is too thick once all the sugar has been mixed in, you can always mix in a couple of drops of milk to get it to a consistency suitable for spreading. Keep in the fridge when you are mixing the cupcake batter, and take it out when you put the cakes in the oven – this will give it enough time to come to a suitable temperature. Now for the cupcakes. Preheat the oven to 180 deg C. Lightly grease your cupcake tin or put in cupcake liners. Combine the flour, sugar, salt, cocoa powder and baking soda in a bowl and mix well. Make a well in the center and pour in vanilla/rum flavouring, vinegar, oil and water. Mix until the ingredients are just combined (dont keep beating the batter). Pour into the cupcake tins (*fill to about two-third of the mould, leaving enough space for the cake to rise) and bake for about 10-15 mins until done (*to test done-ness, insert a toothpick into the center of a cupcake – if it emerges clean, the cake is ready to be taken out). Take out and cool. When the cakes are completely cool, frost, decorate with dragees or chocolate curls, and take a bite! 🙂



  1. Très joli blog. Bravo pour les réalisations.
    A bientôt.

  2. Merci beaucoup, Nadjibella! 🙂 Je suis heureux que vous l’aimiez! 🙂 A bientôt.

  3. Dear Yamini, thank you for visiting my blog and leaving a comment on zebra cake. Glad you liked the recipe:) By the way, I have moved my blog to You can find zebra recipe as well as other recipes on my new blog.
    You have a nice space here. Lovely cupcakes:)

    1. Dear Farida,
      Thank you for the compliments 🙂 I am really happy that you dropped in on my blog! 🙂 When i was looking through your blog, i found my way to your new blog – and have found many recipes there that i would love to to try 🙂

  4. shubha · · Reply

    Hi Yamini

    I tried this cake for a friend. It was quite easy preparing it and came out very well. I did almond frosting added some sprinkles to top.

    Thanks for sharing such a fool prrof receipe. Your frosting looks too good certainly better than mine.

    Good Luck with your new ventures


  5. […] recipe for chocolate cake from The Joy of Vegan Baking (which i had mentioned once before in my Chocolate Cupcakes post) i breezed through baking the cake layers and preparing the soaking syrup. things were going […]

  6. […] taste and happened to have orange flavouring at home, I used the orange buttercream recipe from For the Love of Food and made some minor adaptations.  The most marked difference would be in the use of sugar – […]

  7. […] taste and happened to have orange flavouring at home, I used the orange buttercream recipe from For the Love of Food and made some minor adaptations. The most marked difference would be in the use of sugar – I […]

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