Butterbeer Cupcakes

I am an avid reader and have enjoyed so many incredible books in my 34 years. No books have had quite the effect on me though that the Harry Potter series has. The arc of the story over the seven books just completely absorbed me and I will never, ever forget the feelings I felt when it was over. I went to the midnight release of the seventh book since there was no way I could wait until the next day. It was heartening to see that I was not the only 20-something there without a child! I bought my copy and was home by 1 am. I did not put the book down until 10 am when I finished in spite of my best intentions of trying to savor it slowly. I started crying uncontrollably when I finished reading first of all because there was a huge roller coaster of heartache and soaring hope in the book that had me reduced to an emotional wreck. I was also crying because after 7 books spanning years it was time to say goodbye to Hogwarts and all of its amazing characters. It felt like saying goodbye to my friends. These butterbeer cupcakes have been making the rounds on the internet in different variations, and being such a Harry Potter fan I had to try making my own version. It made me feel connected to the books again!

The butterbeer cupcake batter...I could probably just clean this bowl out with a spoon and be happy!
Oh my goodness, it took everything to not eat all of the batter for the butterbeer cupcakes with a spoon right then and there! It smelled so good. Using brown butter gave it such a depth of flavor.
The butterbeer cupcakes baked to golden perfection!
The butterbeer cupcakes baked to golden perfection in about 20 minutes. I inserted a toothpick in the center of one just to be sure they were completely baked through. The toothpick test is the most reliable test in baking.
Shiny butterscotch ganache for the butterbeer cupcakes.
While the cupcakes baked and cooled, I worked on the incredible butterscotch buttercream frosting. I set up a heat proof bowl over a small pot of gently boiling water to melt lots of butterscotch chips and heavy cream together. This ganache was the flavor base of the frosting for the butterbeer cupcakes. When I beat it into butter, vanilla, cream soda and powdered sugar, oh wow was it a heavenly frosting!

Then I just frosted each cupcake and drizzled them all with the leftover butterscotch ganache. The final touch was to put a butterscotch candy on top of them and they were picture perfect! I felt like I got to go back to The Three Broomsticks and have a butterbeer with Madame Rosmerta. The butterscotch and cream soda just made these butterbeer cupcakes so flavorful. Make a batch and get transported to that wonderful wizarding world!

Butterbeer Cupcakes
Butterbeer Cupcakes
4.34 from 3 votes
Butterbeer Cupcakes
Butterbeer Cupcakes
Prep Time
30 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
1 hr
Course: Dessert
Servings: 12 cupcakes
Author: Jeanie and Lulu's Kitchen
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon all-spice
  • 1 1/2 cups dark brown sugar
  • 3 whole eggs
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup cream soda
  • 1 bag butterscotch chips 11 oz size
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 6 tablespoons butter softened to room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cream soda
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 12 whole butterscotch candies unwrapped for decorating
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 and line a 12 well cupcake pan with paper liners. Take the stick of butter for the cupcakes and heat it in a small saucepan over medium high heat. Allow it to melt and bubble just until it starts to get nutty and amber colored. It should take about 2-3 minutes to turn it into glorious brown butter. Set it aside and let it cool for a couple of minutes.
  2. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and all spice together in a bowl. Whisk them together to aerate them. Then in the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the brown sugar and cooled brown butter. Beat them together with the paddle attachment until well combined. Add in each egg one at a time, followed by the vanilla. Turn the speed to low and slowly pour in 1/3 of the dry ingredients, followed by the buttermilk. Then pour in the next 1/3 of the dry ingredients followed by the cream soda. Finish with the remaining dry ingredients until it is a smooth batter.
  3. Use a 1/3 cup measure to scoop the batter into each well of the cupcake pan. Bake the butterbeer cupcakes for about 20 minutes until they get puffy and golden. Insert a toothpick into the center of one to make sure they are baked through. It should come out squeaky clean. Set the cupcakes aside to cool for 15-20 minutes.
  4. While the cupcakes bake and cool, prepare the luscious butterscotch buttercream frosting. Set a small pot filled 1/4 of the way with water on the stove and bring it to a low boil. Combine the butterscotch chips and heavy cream in a large heat proof bowl and set it over the pot of water. Use a heat proof rubber spatula to stir them together as they melt together into a shiny, smooth butterscotch ganache. Set the ganache aside when it's done.
  5. You will need to wash the stand mixer bowl and paddle attachment before making the frosting. Combine the butter, vanilla, cream soda and one cup of the butterscotch ganache in the stand mixer bowl and beat them all together until well combined with the paddle attachment. Turn the speed to low and slowly pour in the powdered sugar until a fluffy frosting forms.
  6. Frost each cooled cupcake using either a pastry bag with the star attachment or an offset spatula. Either way works! Then drizzle each cupcake with the leftover butterscotch ganache and top them all with a butterscotch candy. Serve immediately and enjoy!