Delicious fluffy dark chocolate vegan Halloween cupcakes with a homemade blackberry coulis filling and eggless Swiss meringue buttercream frosting. Topped with chocolate skulls, these spooky vegan cupcakes are perfect for Halloween.
If you're topping the cupcakes with chocolate skulls, prep these first. Melt the chocolate over a double boiler (bain-marie). Pour the chocolate into the skull molds and refrigerate until set - you may need to repeat this process several times depending on the number of skull molds you have to hand.
Preheat your oven to 180°C (356°F). Line a 12-hole cupcake tin with 12 cupcake liners.
To make the vegan "buttermilk" add the soy milk and apple cider vinegar to a small bowl, stir and allow to sit for 10 minutes.
Add the coffee, apple puree, olive oil, and vanilla extract to the vegan buttermilk mixture, stir and set aside. Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, caster sugar, and muscovado sugar to a separate bowl and whisk to make sure everything is evenly mixed. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and whisk together until combined - do not over-mix.
Distribute the batter amongst the cupcake liners and bake for 22-25 minutes. Check they are done by piercing them with a toothpick or a knife, the knife should come out clean.
Allow the cupcakes to cool for about 10 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack to cool further for 30-40 minutes.
Add the blackberries, caster sugar, and water to a saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook for 12 minutes, stirring often until the mixture is thick. Cool to room temperature and then store in the fridge until ready to use. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the coulis for making the frosting.
Use a cupcake corer (or apple corer) to cut out centers in the cooled cupcakes, reserve the pieces that you remove. Fill each cupcake with blackberry coulis and place the reserved cuts back on top of each one.
Split the buttercream into 2 parts. Add 2 tbsp of the cooled blackberry coulis to one half and blend until combined. Add the 4 tbsp of cocoa powder to the other half and blend until combined as well.
Transfer the buttercreams to a piping bag fitted with an open star nozzle. Alternate between blackberry and chocolate buttercream when filling the bag to give a swirl effect.
Pipe the buttercream on top of each cupcake, top with chocolate skulls and fresh blackberries.
These cupcakes are best served at room temperature. If you're keeping them for more than a couple of days, refrigerate them in an airtight container for up to 5 days. I recommend taking them out of the fridge for at least 2-3 hours to bring them to room temperature before serving. Especially if you’re topping them with vegan buttercream which stiffens up when chilled.
Nutritional information is based on filled cupcakes without frosting.