These Copycat Hostess chocolate cream filled cupcakes are a treat from my childhood. I never imagined that I would be able to replicate it as an adult!
One of the things I enjoy doing with my daughter is our weekly menu planning. We get her involved and ask her what she wants to eat the following week. Then I gather my recipes and write out my shopping list. On Friday nights, the three of us take a field trip to the grocery store and buy our ingredients together.
It’s a fun family bonding time, and it also demonstrates to our daughter that everyone shares in the responsibility equally. If she’s part of the decision-making process, she can help influence what we eat. Sometimes, she’ll attempt to help in the meal prep too.
One day, while we were discussing our meal for the upcoming week, Addie suggested cupcakes. She made a very specific reference to the Hostess chocolate cream filled cupcakes that my husband and I pointed out a few weeks prior. I probably made a comment to her that “mommy can make that at home” and she remembered.
So I set out to recreate these cupcakes for my little girl. These were a lot more involved that I anticipated, as there were 3 different things to prep: the cupcakes, the filling/frosting and the ganache. Granted, each component wasn’t too difficult on its own, but these did dirty a lot of dishes.
I also found that after cutting the recipe below in half, I only got 7 cupcakes (which was fine by me). The halved ganache was plenty for the 7 cupcakes, and I had leftover frosting. Just keep those proportions in mind in case you are making the full batch and don’t end up with 24 cupcakes.
Despite the lengthy time these copycat Hostess chocolate cream filled cupcakes took to make, I still enjoyed them very much. They definitely were reminiscent of the packaged ones we used to buy at the grocery store, but without all the funky and unpronounceable ingredients.
Copycat Hostess chocolate cream filled cupcakes
- ½ cup plus 2 Tablespoons cake flour
- ⅓ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs separated and at room temperature
- ⅓ cup canola oil
- ½ cup plus 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 Tablespoons water
Cream filling (and for the white swirl on top)
- 2 egg whites
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup light corn syrup
- 2 Tablespoons water
- 1 and ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 8 ounces bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate chopped
- 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter softened
Make the cupcakes
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line two standard muffin pans with paper liners and set aside.
- In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- In a separate large mixing bowl, mix together the egg yolks, canola oil, ½ cup of sugar, and water together until well blended. Add in the dry ingredients and mix until everything just comes together.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or in a separate large bowl if using a handheld mixer, beat the 2 egg whites at high speed until you achieve soft peaks. Add in the 2 Tablespoons of sugar and beat at high speed until you achieve stiff peaks.
- Fold in about a third of the egg whites into your cupcake batter until well blended. Then gently fold in the remaining two thirds of the egg whites until everything is just combined.
- Evenly distribute the batter into your prepared baking pans, filling each well about ½ full.
- Bake in your preheated oven for 13-16 minutes or until the cupcake springs back once you touch the center.
- Allow the cupcakes to cool completely before filling and frosting.
Make the filling
- Combine all of the ingredients together in the bowl of a stand mixer set over a pot of simmering water (alternatively, if you are using a handheld mixer, simply use a large bowl). Continue heating until the sugar dissolves.
- Place the bowl into your stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. If you are using a handheld mixer, use the whisk attachment. Beat on high speed until you achieve stiff peaks. Remove about ½ cup of the filling and set aside for decorating the tops of the cupcakes.
Make the ganache
- Heat the cream in a glass measuring cup until almost boiling (alternatively, you can heat the cream on the stove). Add in the chopped chocolate and allow to sit for about 2 minutes. Then thoroughly whisk until the chocolate becomes thick. Add in the butter and mix well.
Assemble the cupcakes
- Take one cupcake and cut an inverted cone out of the center. Fill the hole with some of the filling (using a pastry bag).
- At this point, you can either put part of the cut-out cupcake center back on top (to prevent any filling from leaking out) or simply dip the cupcake - your choice. Turn the cupcake upside down and dip just the top into the ganache.
- Place the reserved filling into a pastry bag fitted with a small round tip or use a zip-top bag and cut a tiny hole in one of the corners. Pipe little swirls across the centers of the cupcakes. Refrigerate the cupcakes for about 10 minutes to allow the ganache and white swirls to set.
- Serve and enjoy!