Guinness, Whiskey & Irish Cream Cupcakes

As I mentioned on Friday, I have been doing some experimentation with the beer and chocolate combination. The Guinness-chocolate ice cream that I made totally kicked butt, so I couldn’t wait to see how I liked beer and chocolate in my cake. The answer? I like it, a whole heck of a lot. This was my first time doing Guinness-chocolate cakes, and I was totally optimistic that I would love it, and I was definitely right. These cupcakes are fashioned after the popular drink that consists of a shot of Baileys Irish Cream and Irish whiskey dropped into a pint of Guinness. I have never had one myself, but I’ve heard that if you can get it down before it curdles, it’s smooth, delicious and almost tastes like a milkshake. I’ll believe it because these cupcakes are all sorts of delicious. They’re also very boozy. Consider yourself warned :)

These cupcakes consist of a Guinness-chocolate cake base, which has a wonderful depth of flavor and is also supremely moist. The centers of the cupcakes are cut out and filled with a chocolate ganache that has been spiked with Irish whiskey. And to top it all off, the frosting is my favorite vanilla buttercream that has been doused with a serious amount of Baileys Irish Cream.

While you can’t really taste the beer in the cupcakes (it serves as more of a flavor enhancer for the chocolate), you can definitely taste the alcohol in the filling and the frosting. Which I think means that the cupcakes are a success 😉  Plus, they got six big thumbs up!

I think I need to start converting more drinks into baked goods, this was too much fun (and way delicious!).

Two year ago: Sour Cream Coffee Cake
Three years ago: Pot Roast in the Crock Pot

Guinness, Whiskey & Irish Cream Cupcakes

Yield: 24 cupcakes

Prep Time: 40 minutes

Cook Time: 17 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Guinness cupcakes with a Jameson whiskey ganache center and topped with a Baileys Irish Cream frosting.


For the Cupcakes:
1 cup Guinness stout
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
¾ cup Dutch-process cocoa powder
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups granulated sugar
1½ teaspoons baking soda
¾ teaspoons salt
2 eggs
2/3 cup sour cream

For the Whiskey Ganache Filling:
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate
2/3 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
2 teaspoons Irish whiskey

For the Baileys Frosting:
2 cups unsalted butter, at room temperature
5 cups powdered sugar
6 tablespoons Bailey's Irish Cream


1. To Make the Cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 24 cupcake cups with liners. Bring the Guinness and butter to a simmer in a heavy, medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the cocoa powder and whisk until the mixture is smooth. Cool slightly.

2. Whisk the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt in a large bowl to combine. Using an electric mixer, beat the eggs and sour cream on medium speed until combined. Add the Guinness-chocolate mixture to the egg mixture and beat just to combine. Reduce the speed to low, add the flour mixture and beat briefly. Using a rubber spatula, fold the batter until completely combined. Divide the batter among the cupcake liners. Bake until a thin knife inserted into the center comes out clean, about 17 minutes. Cool the cupcakes on a rack.

3. To Make the Whiskey Ganache Filling: Finely chop the chocolate and transfer it to a heatproof bowl. Heat the cream until simmering and pour it over the chocolate. Let it sit for one minute and then, using a rubber spatula, stir it from the center outward until smooth. Add the butter and whiskey and stir until combined. Let the ganache cool until thick but still soft enough to be piped.

4. To Fill the Cupcakes: Using a 1-inch round cookie cutter (or the bottom of a large decorating tip), cut the centers out of the cooled cupcakes, going about two-thirds of the way down. Transfer the ganache to a piping back with a wide tip and fill the holes in each cupcake to the top.

5. To Make the Baileys Frosting: Using the whisk attachment of a stand mixer, whip the butter on medium-high speed for 5 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl occasionally. Reduce the speed to medium-low and gradually add the powdered sugar until all of it is incorporated. Add the Baileys, increase the speed to medium-high and whip for another 2 to 3 minutes, until it is light and fluffy.

6. Using your favorite decorating tip, or an offset spatula, frost the cupcakes and decorate with sprinkles, if desired. Store the cupcakes in an airtight container.

(Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen)


471 Responses to “Guinness, Whiskey & Irish Cream Cupcakes”

Comment Pages 1 2 3 8
  1. Barbara on March 14, 2011 at 2:26 am

    Oh dear. I am giving up sugar for the next 40 days. Why does St. Patrick’s Day have to fall during lent!? These look so unique and amazing.


    • Gen on March 12th, 2015 at 11:23 pm

      St. Patrick’s day is your cheat day during lent, so go for it! These seem wayyyy to delish to pass up!


  2. happy-bowl on March 14, 2011 at 4:34 am

    my eyes fooled me in the first place when i saw the paper liners peeling out. then after having closer look…..well, BEB yours is a great blog. may i add your blog to my blog roll..


  3. Lisa (Dishes of Mrs. Fish) on March 14, 2011 at 5:54 am

    How fun! These look so festive. :)


  4. Happy When Not Hungry on March 14, 2011 at 6:31 am

    I haven’t had an Irish car bomb since college! What a creative recipe! These cupcakes look delicious. Def have to try!


  5. Katrina on March 14, 2011 at 7:19 am

    This is an amazing idea!! Great recipe :)


  6. Diana on March 14, 2011 at 7:54 am

    Wow, these look so good!! I love the drink, which (for me at least) is hard to get down but delicious if you can do it. I can only imagine the cupcake version is doubly delicious! Also, the thought of Baileys in frosting makes me drool a little. :o)


  7. Amanda (Eating Up) on March 14, 2011 at 8:21 am

    I don’t have to wait until Thursday to bake these, right? Good.


  8. Lauren at Keep It Sweet on March 14, 2011 at 8:22 am

    That whiskey ganache filling sounds incredible! The whole cupcake looks amazing.


  9. Ariel on March 14, 2011 at 8:40 am

    I made these last year – (this year, i’m on the lent-bus with a few of the rest of you) – and they were AMAZING. Pro-tip: after they’ve cooled, stick them in the freezer. The booze keeps them from freezing solid, and you just have tasty pucks of delicious. Yum!


  10. kate@ahealthypassion on March 14, 2011 at 8:41 am

    these look so amazing I am a sucker for anything filled


  11. Sweet Bella Roos on March 14, 2011 at 9:15 am

    My bf LOVES Irish Car Bombs (the drink, obviously). Have to make these for him! Great recipe, these cupcakes are too cute.


  12. Kelly on March 14, 2011 at 9:48 am

    I just used these same cupcake liners on the batch I made yesterday! Love your blog and can’t wait to try out some of the recipes you’ve been posting lately – the frosting on these cupcakes looks so moist and tasty!


    • Janelle_Bella on May 5th, 2011 at 1:38 pm

      What store did you buy those cupcake liners from? Or where can I buy them online?


      • Michelle on May 5th, 2011 at 3:21 pm

        Hi Janelle, I bought the cupcake liners from Michaels when they had all of their St. Patrick’s Day stuff out.


      • Chloe on October 25th, 2013 at 2:39 am

        I was wondering that too!


  13. Sharlene on March 14, 2011 at 10:25 am

    These are gorgeous and all kinds of festive! Guinness is one of my favorite beers and I can’t imagine not loving these.


  14. Adriana on March 14, 2011 at 10:38 am

    These cupcakes look amazing! I can’t wait to see more cocktail inspired cupcakes.


  15. Rachel @ The Avid Appetite on March 14, 2011 at 11:01 am

    These look fantastic! I make an Irish Carbomb Cupcake too, but I do a whiskey glaze, followed by the Bailey’s frosting – works every time :)


  16. Lindsay @Eat, Knit, Grow on March 14, 2011 at 11:08 am

    Amazing cupcakes! What a fantastic idea!


  17. jen @ the baked life on March 14, 2011 at 11:29 am

    yum! Love all the St. Patty’s recipes :)


  18. Paula on March 14, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    Definitely my kind of cupcake! Cheers :)


  19. Russ on March 14, 2011 at 1:28 pm

    Love the idea, I’ll be making these ASAP, even if i have to eat them all by myself( DARN)!!! Thanks!


  20. Sarah @ The Pajama Chef on March 14, 2011 at 8:13 pm

    looks delicious! beautiful photographs :)


  21. Lauren on March 14, 2011 at 8:34 pm

    OMG!!!!! I got so excited, I had to do a little dance. These sound….what is a better word than incredible? Great job. I love the name and idea.


  22. Donut on March 14, 2011 at 8:45 pm

    I love the presentation of these cupcakes!
    The only thing is…you left out the measurement for the baking soda.


    • Michelle on March 15th, 2011 at 8:01 am

      Oops, sorry about that! It is 1.5 teaspoons, and I made sure to fix it above. Thanks for the catch!


  23. Hillary on March 14, 2011 at 9:12 pm

    I made these using the recipe on smitten kitchen last year
    And they were the hit of the party. Your recipe
    Is very similar


  24. Mackenzie@The Caramel Cookie on March 14, 2011 at 9:18 pm

    Wow! These look like a lot of work but very delicious! Mind sending some my way ;)?


  25. Caroline on March 14, 2011 at 9:45 pm

    These are my go-to cupcakes! everyone absolutely adores them! Yours look so much prettier than mine!


  26. Sandra on March 14, 2011 at 10:25 pm

    Let’s hear it for the booze!! I’ve been thinking along the same lines, combining 1iquor into baked goods. It’s a win-win. Look forward to your combos.


  27. Kimberly on March 14, 2011 at 10:27 pm

    Love the cupcakes!


  28. Mikaela Cowles on March 15, 2011 at 1:13 am

    You take my breath away…


  29. Jen on March 15, 2011 at 1:15 am

    My boyfriend loves ICB’s and I can’t wait to make these for him, thanks for posting :)


    • Andrew on February 26th, 2015 at 3:04 am

      Do you love the drink or the terrorist atrocity it celebrates?


  30. Kimberly on March 15, 2011 at 1:52 am

    Where did you get the cupcake liners?


    • Michelle on March 15th, 2011 at 7:54 am

      Hi Kimberly, I got them at Michael’s.


      • Kimberly on March 15th, 2011 at 8:43 am

        Thank you!

        And you thank you for your blog and sharing your talents with us!


  31. Peggy on March 15, 2011 at 9:23 am

    Okay, this is serious business here. I need to get some Guinness pronto!


  32. Angela @ Mind Over Batter on March 15, 2011 at 9:47 am

    Oh, I need to get on this! I made some homemade Bailey’s last night ( and, um *cough* had a couple of shots), which I’m definitely using for these awesome looking cupcakes! Thanks for sharing such a great recipe!


  33. RavieNomNoms on March 15, 2011 at 10:56 am

    Holy hell yes please! I cannot tell you how much I am drooling right now over these! I love Irish Car Bombs and then to put it into a cupcake?! ::drools:: I am bowing down to you my Brown Eyed baker, you are a genius!


  34. Ash on March 15, 2011 at 2:29 pm

    They look so delish! Can’t wait to try!!


  35. Amy on March 15, 2011 at 3:07 pm

    I just made this cake last night! How funny to see it on this morning on your blog. I made mine into a single layer cake (with 6 cupcakes left over), and frosted it with the peanut butter frosting recipe from her (which uses the natural stuff, just peanuts and salt!)

    Just in case you’re ever interested in a new’do for the cake! So, so, tasty!


  36. Apicius' Apprentice on March 15, 2011 at 3:10 pm

    These are so wrong, they are right. What a great idea for a St. Patty’s day treat!


  37. Amy B @ Second City Randomness on March 15, 2011 at 3:52 pm

    I made these last year from Smitten Kitchen! But I did a whiskey caramel center to mix it up a bit…

    The Bailey’s Frosting is truly lifechanging. Seriously.


  38. Lauren from Lauren's Latest on March 15, 2011 at 5:20 pm

    OH MY….


  39. Avanika (Yumsilicious Bakes) on March 15, 2011 at 5:31 pm

    These look and sound delicious!! Love all the green. Can’t wait to make it! Bookmarked and stumbled :)


  40. Vera on March 15, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    I must have these, they sound absolutely AH-mazing….(and the drink is delicious if you can get it down…its been a few years since I could!)


  41. marla {family fresh cooking} on March 16, 2011 at 8:26 am

    And the fact that these cupcakes are filled makes them that much more fabulous!! So fun :)


  42. Erin A. on March 16, 2011 at 11:26 am

    I made a different version of these last night, sans the filling. I used Young’s Double Chocolate Stout and the recipe for both cake and Irish Cream frosting differ but they were DELICIOUS! The Young’s brings an excellent flavor to the cupcakes. I posted them on my blog this morning because they were that good! Sent the rest with hubby to work though…I’d eat them all! :)


  43. Cheryl and Adam @ on March 16, 2011 at 12:16 pm

    Guinness, Bailey’s and Jameson all in one recipe! YUM! And how perfectly iced these little darlin’s are! This is a perfect St. Patty’s recipe! Dessert tomorrow, then…


  44. Emily @ on March 16, 2011 at 12:42 pm

    those are beautiful! and look so delicious! i agree that turning drinks into food is a wonderful thing!


  45. Tarrah Dame on March 16, 2011 at 8:15 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing these! I have wanted to make them for a year now and spotted them on your blog. I made these tonight and they turned out wonderfully! I’m super excited to share these with my friends over some green beer tomorrow…I linked you here
    thanks again! :)


  46. Brittany on March 16, 2011 at 8:36 pm

    I just made these and they are simply DELICIOUS! My roommates ate up half of them before I could even pack them up for work. I did sub greek yogurt for the sour cream (because that’s what I had in the fridge) and they were still amazing. Can’t wait to share them! Thank you for the recipe.


  47. Tameka on March 16, 2011 at 9:24 pm

    I made these tonight to take to the office tomorrow. They smell delicious! I can’t wait to see what people think tomorrow. Thanks for the recipe.


  48. Lisa D on March 16, 2011 at 10:57 pm

    I made these to bring to work tomorrow — both my husband and I almost passed out from how delicious they were. Cannot wait to hear what everyone has to say tomorrow. I did leave out the ganache thinking that ALL the alcohol would make them NSFW. I will make them again for this weekend WITH the ganache :)


    • Melissa J on March 4th, 2015 at 8:11 pm

      How far ahead of the festivities can these be made?


      • Michelle on March 5th, 2015 at 12:19 pm

        Hi Melissa, You can make them up to a day in advance. After that, they won’t be as fresh.


  49. Michelle on March 16, 2011 at 11:05 pm

    I’ve been wanting to try these for years – so glad to see a recipe for them just in time for St. Patty’s. Quick question – what tip did you use to pipe your frosting (or how)? It looks so pretty and much better than my slapping it on with a spatula!


    • Michelle on March 16th, 2011 at 11:39 pm

      Hi Michelle, I used a Wilton 1M tip and just sort of swirled it around. Enjoy the cupcakes!


  50. Elizabeth on March 17, 2011 at 12:05 am

    I’m attempting to make these now! Do they need to be refrigerated once they are filled and frosted?


    • Michelle on March 17th, 2011 at 12:13 am

      Nope! You can store them at room temperature.


      • Elizabeth on March 17th, 2011 at 1:47 am

        Thank you! They turned out great. I can’t wait to enjoy them tomorrow!


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