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+ servings

Frankenstein Cupcakes

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword chocolate cupcakes, halloween cupcakes, halloween dessert
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 16 minutes
Servings 16


For the cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons white vinegar or apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive, canola or vegetable oil
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar or coconut sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar or coconut sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

For the frosting:

  • 12 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • green food coloring (I used 1/2 teaspoon sky blue + 1/4 teaspoon sunflower McCormick Natures Inspiration Food Colors)

For decorating:

  • 16 cupcakes
  • the above frosting
  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips or chunks
  • 16 candy eyes



  • Preheat your oven to 350 °F (175 °C) and line two muffin tins with a total of 16 cupcake liners.
  • In a large mixing bowl, stir together the milk and the vinegar. Let it sit for 5 minutes. Then stir in the oil, brown sugar, granulated sugar, and the vanilla extract.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, stir together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and the salt. Add this to the wet mixture and stir just until combined. Do not over mix! The batter will be almost as thin as water. Don't worry!
  • Fill the liners a little more than halfway full and bake for 16-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean or with some moist crumbs (but not raw batter). They will be very, very soft but will firm up as they cool.
  • Let them cool for 5 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.


  • In a medium mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese and butter with an electric hand mixer at medium speed until it's well combined. It's okay if it looks a bit crumbly.
  • Gradually beat in the powdered sugar until fully combined and then beat in the salt and vanilla.
  • Beat in the food coloring now. If it's firm enough to pipe, frost your cooled cupcakes.
  • If you want the frosting firmer, refrigerate it for about an hour, stirring the frosting after every 15 minutes. Don't let it chill for too long before frosting your cupcakes because it gets quite firm, like a cream cheese tart filling. In that case, let it sit at room temperature for a bit before filling the piping bag.


  • It's best to decorate these on the day of serving. If you want to prepare them in advance, then you can put on the green cream cheese and save the rest for the day of serving.
  • Melt the chocolate in a small pot over low heat, stirring frequently. Or microwave it in a microwave-safe bowl at half-power, stirring after every 30 seconds.
  • Once the chocolate has cooled a bit (it shouldn't be too hot but still easy to pipe), pour it into the piping bag fitted with Wilton Tip 2 or whatever small tip you have.
  • Pipe on the mouth and a little stitch on the side. Place on the candy eyes. Then switch to a slightly larger tip to pipe on the hair at the top.
  • You can store leftover cupcakes in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 3 days.


For the flour, you can use 1 1/2 cups (188 grams):
  • white whole wheat flour
  • whole wheat flour,
  • all-purpose flour
  • or for a gluten-free version, use 1 1/2 cups (207 grams) Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-free Baking Flour