The site’s most popular recipe of all time: Jack and Coke Cupcakes! Rich chocolate cola cupcakes filled with a Jack Daniel’s whiskey chocolate ganache and topped with a creamy whiskey buttercream frosting. Throw a 21+ party and serve these alongside bourbon balls, white chocolate champagne truffles, boozy angel food cupcakes and champagne cupcakes!
This Jack and Coke Cupcake recipe is, hands down, my most popular recipe.
Readers have commented, pinned, left pictures as comments on Pinterest, tweeted, shared on Facebook, and even emailed me to tell me how much they love them. It’s crazy to me how much you all love this recipe, but… well, I completely get it. It’s ridiculously delicious.
Tips for making Jack and Coke cupcakes
Let’s start with the cupcakes:
- I recommend using aluminum liners or silicon cupcake holders. Paper liners coated with nonstick spray will still work, but aluminum liners are very easy to peel away from the cupcake without losing precious morsels of chocolate cake.
- You have to use regular Coca Cola. You cannot use any of the reduced or sugar free versions – it won’t work for the purpose of this recipe. So, I repeat: use the original Coke.
- Only stir the cooled cocoa mixture and flour mixture until just combined. This is very important, or you’re going to end up with a tougher cake texture in the end.
My love affair with their cracked, puffy cupcake/muffin tops is borderline obsessive. They’re just so pretty.
Now, about the ganache:
- When you’re making the ganache, don’t jump ahead and add the whiskey too soon. Make sure you add it right at the end, otherwise you’re going to cook off some of that flavor!
- You have to find the balance between having the ganache too cool or too warm. Too cool, it won’t be fluid enough to work with. Too warm, and it’ll melt through your piping bag and just plain cause a mess! Wait to pipe it in until it’s cool enough not to give you trouble when you’re placing it in a piping bag.
- I like to use a cupcake corer to remove the center of the cupcake, but you can also just use a small paring knife to carve it out. Save the cores and make some cake pops with them later! Or just eat them… ’cause that’s what I actually do.
Last but not least, the frosting:
- Make sure you whip the butter until it’s light and fluffy – it’s key to getting the texture we want.
- Add the powdered sugar slowly, a little bit at a time. If you try to add it all at once, you’re going to end up with a big mess and you’ll have a sugar explosion all over your kitchen and make it appear as though a blizzard blasted through your window.
- Alternating adding powdered sugar and whiskey helps keep the mixture moist enough to work with until you have all ingredients combined.
- You can add a teaspoon of pure vanilla extract if you want it to be less whiskey-y, but isn’t that whiskey flavor why we’re making it? Maybe just add ¼ teaspoon for a little balance.
- I love adding little gummy cola candies on top because it’s the perfect garnish. You could also add candied lime slices, crumbles of some of your cupcake cores, or nothing at all! Let the frosting stand alone in all its glory.
I’d say this email from a coworker after eating one speaks for itself:
I might need a designated driver
Just inhaled your cupcake (that’s what she said) and it was . . . well, after that first bite it’s all a blur.
Seriously, SO delicious and I could eat an entire cake-pan full of that icing. In fact, I’m headed to rehab this afternoon because of it.
You’re a baking genius. Thank you so much for honoring me with one of the few your had!
. . . . And now, I will attempt to walk a straight line.
However, FYI – these cupcakes are not actually going to get you drunk – sorry.
After you’ve made this recipe, please consider coming back to share your experience with others by leaving a comment below with a star rating!
The Best Jack and Coke Cupcakes
- 1 ½ cups Coke, don't use Diet or Coke Zero! You need the sugar that's in the original
- ½ cup unsalted butter
- 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 cup sugar
- ½ cup packed dark brown sugar
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- ½ cup semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips
- ⅓ cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon butter, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon Jack Daniels whiskey
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- 6 tablespoons stick unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3 tablespoons Jack Daniels whiskey
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, optional
- 24 gummy cola bottles or 24 lime fruit slices, garnish, for adorableness
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, and line 24 cupcake cups with aluminum liners (or use silicon cupcake holders). Set aside.
- In a medium saucepan, combine Coke and butter and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Add cocoa powder, sugar, brown sugar and whisk until sugars are dissolved and mixture is smooth. Set aside to cool for 15 minutes or so.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, lightly beat egg. Add cooled cocoa mixture and stir to combine. Add flour mixture and stir until just combined.
- Pour batter into cupcake liners, filling them ¾ of the way. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until a toothpick stuck in the center comes out clean. Transfer cupcakes to wire rack to cool completely.
- Place the chocolate chips in a small heatproof bowl. In a small saucepan, heat the cream until it's simmering and then pour it over the chocolate in the heatproof bowl. Let it sit for one minute and then stir until smooth. Add the butter and whiskey and stir until combined.
- Let the ganache cool enough that it won't give you trouble when you place it in a piping bag.
- Cut the centers out of the cooled cupcakes - I used a small paring knife, but you could also use an apple corer or a cupcake plunger (if you're fancy schmancy and have one).
- Put the ganache into a piping bag with a wide tip and fill the holes in each cupcake to the top. If you're like me and don't have a real piping bag, just put it in a plastic freezer bag and cut off a small corner.
- Whisk the butter in a large bowl with an electric mixer for a couple minutes. You want it to be light and fluffy.
- Slowly add the powdered sugar, a few tablespoons at a time. Trust me - you don't want to pour it all in at once. For one, you'll make a gigantic mess because the sugar will explode all over your kitchen and make it appear as though a blizzard blasted through your window. Also, the frosting will be grainy and impossible to mix properly.
- Once you've used about half your powdered sugar, add in a bit of whiskey and then mix again. This will thin it out a bit, allowing you to continue mixing in the remaining sugar. Continue to add a bit of whiskey and mix until you've used all the sugar. As far as I'm concerned, using more than 3 tablespoons whiskey is NOT a problem. I accidentally dropped 5 tablespoons in the bowl... and a few tablespoons in my mouth... oops.
- You can also add a teaspoon of vanilla extract if you want it to be less whiskey-y.
- Pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes however you'd like. Top them with the little gummy cola bottles and voila - adorable, deliciously whiskey infused cupcakes!
- Keep in mind that elevation can affect your results, as well as the temperature of your ingredients.
- Not a fan of whiskey? Swap it out for your favorite rum!
- I recommend using aluminum liners or silicon cupcake holders. Paper liners coated with nonstick spray will still work, but aluminum liners are very easy to peel away from the cupcake.
- You have to use regular Coca Cola. You cannot use any of the reduced or sugar free versions - it won't work for the purpose of this recipe. So, I repeat: use the original Coke.
- When you're making the ganache, don't jump ahead and add the whiskey too soon. Make sure you add it right at the end, otherwise you're going to cook off some of that flavor!
- I like to use a cupcake corer to remove the center of the cupcake, but you can also just use a small paring knife to carve it out. Save the cores and make some cake pops with them later!