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Gingerbread Chocolate Chip Cupcakes

Rebecca | Roses & Whiskers
Soft, gluten free gingerbread cupcakes infused with brown butter and milk chocolate chips, and topped with an eggnog and nutmeg buttercream.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 50 mins
Cook Time 18 mins
Total Time 1 hr 8 mins
Servings 16 cupcakes


  • 1/2 cup unsalted brown butter solidified and softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg room temperature
  • 1 egg yolk room temperature
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk room temperature
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cup gluten free 1 to 1 baking flour for gluten-full cupcakes, substitute all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cloves
  • 1 cup milk chocolate chips mini chocolate chips also work


  • 1 cup unsalted butter softened to room temperature
  • 5 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 4-5 tbsp eggnog
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg


  • Cream brown butter and sugar until light and fluffy. (See recipe notes for instructions on browning butter.) Beat in egg and egg yolk until fully incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
  • On medium speed, mix in molasses, buttermilk and vanilla. The batter will look like it's not fully incorporated, but that's okay.
  • Whisk the dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and spices) together in a separate bowl. On low speed, gradually add flour mixture to molasses mixture. Mix until just combined. Fold in chocolate chips.
  • Line cupcake pans with wrappers and fill each cup 2/3 full of batter. For more even baking, divide the batter equally among two 12-cup pans (8 cupcakes in each) and fill the empty cups 2/3 full of water.
  • Preheat the oven to 400°F (204°C). Let the cupcakes rest for 30-40 minutes before baking. I found that letting the cupcakes rest prevents the middle from sinking in.
  • Put the cupcakes in the oven and immediately turn the temperature down to 350°F (177°C). Bake for 16-19 minutes, or until inserted toothpick comes out clean. Leave in pan for 3 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling.

Frosting and Decorating

  • Cream butter until smooth. On low, mix in 2 1/4 cups of powdered sugar and 2 tbsp eggnog. Once incorporated, mix in remaining sugar, nutmeg and 2 tbsp of eggnog. Increase mixer speed and cream until light and fluffy. Add in another tbsp of eggnog if needed for desired consistency. Mix in green food coloring for trees, or leave some white and dye the rest red for Santa hats.
  • Using Wilton tip 1M, pipe layers of rosettes to form tree shape. Top with sprinkles or decorate as desired. Use Wilton tip 2A to pipe a Santa hat and tip 21 for the "fur."


To brown butter, melt it on the stovetop over medium heat, stirring frequently. The butter will foam as it begins to melt. Once the foam begins to disappear you'll notice the milk solids settling on the bottom of the pan and beginning to brown. As the butter browns you'll start to smell a nutty aroma. When the melted butter turns a light brown color quickly remove it from the heat and pour into a glass bowl. There's a fine line between deliciously nutty brown butter and burnt butter, so be careful. But it takes practice! Place in the refrigerator to solidify. I like browning the butter the night before making the cupcakes.