Malted Milk Chocolate Cupcakes
Since I was little, I always viewed Easter candy in three tiers: peanut butter meltaway eggs, Reese’s peanut butter eggs, and everything else. Give me chocolate and peanut butter candy and I’ll be a happy camper. While I lump everything else together in one bucket, there was one candy that got a slight edge over everything else – malted milk balls. It was a curious choice for me since I typically shy away from crunchy kinds of candy, but I’ve always been smitten with that classic malt flavor.
I’ve had malted chocolate cupcakes on my to-do list for at least two years, and thought that making them for Easter would be a fitting tribute to one of my favorite non-peanut butter candies.
If you have a soft spot for malted baked goods, then you’re in for a real treat. These cupcakes have a substantial amount of malted milk powder both baked into the actual cupcake and infused into the frosting. Some grocery stores sell the Carnation brand of malted milk powder, but I’ve never been able to find it. Instead, I order mine from King Arthur Flour and keep a stash in the pantry for when I’m craving a malted treat.
These cupcakes are wonderfully moist and every bite is loaded with a hefty dose of malt flavor. The frosting is different from any that I’ve made before; it’s essentially a cross between a whipped ganache and a buttercream. Which is to say… it’s phenomenal. It’s not too sweet, very malt-y and insanely creamy.
What are your three favorite Easter candies?
[Did you buy malted milk powder and are looking for more recipes? Check out all of my recipes using malted milk powder!]
One year ago: OREO Rice Krispie Treats
Two years ago: Buttery Honey Beer Bread
Five years ago: Easter Egg Sugar Cookies
Malted Milk Chocolate Cupcakes
For the Cupcakes:
- 2 cups (250 g) all-purpose flour
- 2 cups (400 g) granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (125 g) malted milk powder
- 6 ounces (170.1 g) unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
- ½ cup (113.5 g) unsalted butter
- ¼ cup (56 ml) vegetable or canola oil
- 1¾ cups (427 ml) whole milk, at room temperature
- 3 eggs, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the Frosting:
- 12 ounces (340.2 g) milk chocolate, finely chopped
- 1 cup (125 g) malted milk powder
- 1 cup (238 ml) heavy cream
- ½ cup (113.5 g) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces, at room temperature
- Make the Cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two standard muffin pans with paper liners.2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and malted milk powder.
- Place the chocolate and butter in a small bowl and microwave in 30-second increments on 50% power, stirring in between each, until the mixture is melted and smooth. Stir in the oil until combined. Add the chocolate mixture to the bowl with the dry ingredients, along with 1 cup of the milk, and whisk until mostly combined (the mixture will be thick).
- In a measuring cup, whisk together the remaining ¾ cup milk, eggs and vanilla. Pour half of this mixture into the bowl and whisk until incorporated, then add the second half and mix again until everything is combined.
- Divide the batter evenly among the liners, filling each about ¾-full. Bake for 20-24 minutes, or until the cupcakes spring back when lightly pressed and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove the pan to a wire rack and let the cupcakes cool for 5 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
- Make the Frosting: Place the chopped chocolate in the bowl of a stand mixer; set aside.
- Whisk together the malted milk powder and heavy cream in a small saucepan. Place over medium heat and bring to a simmer, whisking constantly. Remove from the heat and pour over the chopped chocolate in the mixing bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let stand for 5 minutes. Remove the plastic wrap and gently stir the chocolate mixture with a whisk or rubber spatula until completely smooth and no lumps remain. Cover the bowl again with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, until thoroughly chilled.
- Using the whisk attachment of your stand mixer, begin beating the chocolate mixture on low speed and gradually add the pieces of butter, one piece at a time, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Once all of the butter has been incorporated, increase the mixer speed to medium-high and beat until the frosting is thick and smooth. If it's too thick to pipe, you can add more heavy cream, a teaspoon at a time, to thin out the consistency.
- Using the decorating tip of your choice (I used an Ateco #808), pipe the frosting onto each cupcake and top with chopped malted milk balls, if desired. Store the cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days.
Did you make this recipe?
Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!
Hi, thanks for this recipe, but is there perhaps a typo in the quantities somewhere? Maybe the milk?
It made an extremely runny batter and i had to add nearly an extra cup of flour to thicken.
The bad news is , I couldn’t taste any malted milk. But, mine has been sitting around for awhile, maybe it lost its “umph.” But the good news is that these are the best chocolate cupcakes I’ve ever had. They are soo moist, so rich, they are absolutely perfect. I will make these again, hopefully “aged” malt powder wasn’t the key:)
A lot of work for not a lot of malt taste. Strange mixing directions.
Im in the middle of trying to pipe my frosting on these,,I was so excited till now,,the frosting seems wayy too soft to stay formed on top. Im trying with one first and will update,,or hopefully theres a solution or this is normal? Should I refrigerate first?? I did exactly as the recipe states,,I can make anything with a recipe,,but Im worried…
FINALLY got around to making these, and my mind is absolutely blown! The frosting made me nervous, but it whipped up beautifully and was insanely good. Thank you for another wonderful recipe — my coworkers were very impressed.
I would love to try this recipe as I love chocolate and malt! I have Ovaltine Chocolate Malt powder as I use it for a chocolate cake that I make.
I did see in the comments that you answered the question of whether or not to use regular or chocolate malt, and you said to use regular. My question: as I already have Chocolate Ovaltine Malt, can I use it? What would happen if I didn’t use regular flavor?
Hi Paula, Ideally I like the plain so the chocolate doesn’t compete with the chocolate in the cupcakes, but it won’t hurt to use the chocolate ovaltine if you already have it.
Thank you for your reply. Hoping to try this recipe soon!
I was not able to find malted milk powder. can i use normal milk powder?
also, is the milk chocolate for frosting supposed to be normal chocolate or cooking chocolate?
Looking forward to hearing from you.
Hi Mia, You can, although you will obviously be missing the malt flavor. I’m not sure of the difference between “normal” chocolate and “cooking” chocolate. Could you explain?
Uh oh. I bought the chocolate malt powder…..will this make a difference?
Hi Kerry, It will probably affect the flavor a little, but I don’t think it would ruin them.
I tried your double chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter frosting and they are always a hit with everyone. I love chocolate malt milk balls. I’m definitely going to try this. Thank you for sharing the recipe.
Sooo pretty and totally delish. Can’t wait to make these. Sammie x http://www.feastingisfun.com
I don’t like malted milk balls but they’re my sister-in-law’s favorite thing in the world. Filing this one away to take the next time she hosts a family potluck.
Actually my SIL’s father just passed away so I took these to the funeral home. She hugged me after the service today and through her tears said, “those cupcakes were delicious.” So thanks for such a delicious (RICH!) recipe to make her happy at this sad time.
I’m just wondering…..for this malted milk chocolate cupcake recipe, are you requiring regular malt powder, or the chocolate malt powder? Here in NE PA, we do have the Carnation brand in our stores, and it is usually available in either regular or chocolate. So I wasn’t sure which I would use for these cupcakes (which….OMG, I HAVE TO TRY! AND SOON!!)
Hi Linda, Use regular malt powder, NOT chocolate. Enjoy!
Hi Michelle, would you please tell me which of the malt powders you ordered from King Arthur as they carry two different kinds.
P.S. Love, love your blog!!!!
Hi Suzie, I linked to the exact one that I use above – it’s the malted milk powder.
Love these cupcakes. Have a Happy Easter. It’s going to be wonderful with you new little man.
These would rank right up there for me…I love Whoppers! What else? Jelly Beans (I really love black jelly beans!)
Peeps, jelly beans (pink, yellow, & white), and the small chocolate nestle eggs.
Solid dark chocolate bunny… ears eaten first, chocolate peanut butter eggs and malted mike balls! I will definitely try your recipe. We are able to purchase the Carnation Malt Powder in the Philadelphia area.
yum, these look so good!
Wow. I think I actually got drool on my keyboard. Haha these look so yummy :)
These cupcakes sound so good.
I love malt!
I like anything that is from Godiva Chocolate :~D
Love the thought of malted frosting! My three favorite Easter candies are Robin’s Eggs, Hershey’s Candy Coated Eggs, and Cadbury’s Candy Coated Eggs. Really — just love chocolate! :)
These cupcakes look divine…a must try for the near future. On a side note, I noticed you mentioned Tracy’s Culinary Adventures at the bottom of your post.
I used to love checking her blog but it seemed to sudddenly and inexplicably cease to be shortly after she introduced her new blogsite design in January 2014. There was no information/explination and I was wondering if you or any of your followers know what happened to the blog. I do hope Tracy and her family are all okay.
Hi Nancy, I know that she had a baby late last year, so I’m not sure if she decided to stop the blog because of that or perhaps a complication with pregnancy? I have no idea, just speculating!
As I said, I found it so curious that she developed a whole new blog design…which I imagine must takes lots of time…introduced it with a special announcement in January 2014 and then…nothing. Not a single post after the introductory post. As I said, I certainly hope everything is okay with Tracy and her family.
Enjoy your first Easter with you adorable little bunny boy!
Am I limited to just 3 Easter candies? Like all men, I love Reeses peanut butter cups and Reeses Pieces. And if you don’t believe, do ask every man in your life if they like those two things and they will say “absolutely” Now go ask them if they like coconut and they will say no! Men hate coconut. But these cupcakes. Wow, it’s like there goes my diet. I would have no self control!
Have you been to Mon Aimee Chocolat in the Strip? They have so many flavors of malt balls (including PB!!!).
Hi Lisa, I haven’t been, but my sister always brings me chocolate-covered salted caramels from there!
These would definitely have a special place in my heart. I adore Whoppers especially the Robin’s Eggs at Easter. The frosting looks too good!
Hi! I really love chocolate malted milk balls so this is a must for me!