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  • Writer's pictureCharlotte Emily

Chocolate Reindeer Cupcakes

Updated: Aug 23, 2021


As we’re fully into the Christmas season now, it seemed only right to make some reindeer cupcakes – chocolate four ways, a fudgy cupcake and a bit of fun! 

These are really easy to make and so much fun! I make chocolate cupcakes so often, that I’m trying to think of ways to make them different each time. Well, adding some festivity to them seems perfect and what’s better than a reindeer? 

Preparation : 10 minutes 

Baking Time : 20 – 25 minutes 

Decorating Time : 30 – 40 minutes 

Makes : 20 – 22 cupcakes


– For the Cakes –

• 330g Dairy-Free Milk (I used Oat) 

• 1 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar 

• 275g Caster Sugar

• 55g Coconut Sugar 

• 100g Dairy-Free Butter

• 275g Plain Flour

• 60g Cacao Powder

• 1 tsp Bicarbonate Soda

• 1 tsp Vanilla Extract

– For the Icing –

• 120g Dairy-Free Butter

• 600g Icing Sugar 

• 80g Cacao Powder 

• 2 tsp Vanilla Extract

• 3 tbsp Dairy-Free Milk (I used Oat)

• Small amount of Black Food Colouring

– For the Decoration –

• Melted Chocolate

• Chocolate, grated 

• Mini Crunchy Pretzels


– For the Cakes –

  1. Preheat the oven to 160C fan and line a cupcake/muffin tray with cases (I prefer my cupcakes to be muffin size so I use muffin cases).

  2. In a bowl or jug, whisk together the milk and apple cider vinegar and leave it untouched whilst you make the rest of the cake batter (the aim is for it to curdle, as unpleasant as that sounds!).

  3. Cream the butter and sugars together, then add the dry ingredients and mix.

  4. Slowly add in the milk mixture and vanilla extract, making sure to mix it until it’s all combined into the cake batter. Be careful not to over-beat the batter, as too much air in the mix can cause the cakes to sink in the centre when they come out of the oven (something that I’ve done too many times!)

  5. Spoon the mixture into the cases, filling them between 1/2 and 3/4 full and place in the oven for 20 – 25 minutes. 

  6. Once baked, take the cupcakes out of the tray and leave to cool completely on a wire rack, before starting to decorate them. 

– For the Icing –

  1. Cream the butter and icing sugar together until light and fluffy (I use a standing mixer on a high speed with a whisk attachment). 

  2. Once creamed, add the cacao powder, vanilla extract and milk (add half a table spoon at a time) and continue to whisk. If you’d like more cacao powder, you may need to add a little more milk. 

  3. For the icing for the eyes and nose, either separate some buttercream and add some black food colouring, or use some icing sugar and water with some food colouring. 

– For the Decoration –

  1. Break the pretzels in half, to create the antler shape. Melt some chocolate in a pan and then dip the pretzels in to cover them. Once covered, place them on some baking parchment and put them in the freezer to allow the chocolate to set, to create the antlers.

  2. Whilst the antlers are in the freezer, pipe a layer of icing onto the cupcake and smooth the top, with the centre slightly higher than the sides (to create the nose). Then pipe two smaller circles of icing towards the top of the cake, where the antlers will stand.

  3. With the black icing, pipe a nose, mouth and eyes and leave for a couple of minutes to set. 

  4. Grate some chocolate into a bowl and sprinkle it over the cupcakes, using your finger to gently remove any from the nose, mouth and eyes.

  5. Once the antlers are frozen, take them out of the freezer and push the thinner end into the smaller circles of icing at the top of the cupcake. 


• If you make this, please tag me on Instagram @thecharlotteemilyy or use the hashtag #cebakes

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