Coffee and Walnut Cupcakes

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An absolute staple in the baking world. The coffee and walnut cupcake. Name me a better baking duo than coffee and walnut – I’ll wait.

If you’ve had a flick through my website, you’ll see that I quite enjoy a walnut based recipe and this is my go-to when I’ve got a load of nuts leftover that need using. You can also store walnuts in the freezer for up to 12 months but I tend to never get that far and like to use everything all in one go. So anyway back to my cupcakes…these are great for beginner bakers who are just leaving their Victoria sponge era and want something richer and nuttier with a bit of a caffeine hit. You can use caffeine-free coffee if preferred, however I’m all about eating a full batch and experiencing heart palpitations by 11am.

If you can stop yourself from eating more than four in one go, then these cupcakes are an absolute winner. Plus, with the addition of walnuts you get a nice protein boost alongside some other good vitamin-y type stuff. So does that count as healthy?! Let’s say yes.

Bake up a batch for your next cake stall, picnic or other wholesome activity – they’ll beat any flapjack. If you want to take on something slightly more challenging, give my strawberry cheesecake swiss roll a go. Like my cupcakes, they’re simple and straightforward but you get to practise your sponge rolling techniques. Then you can move onto my lovely Malteser profiteroles


metric imperial

For the Cupcake

  • 2 tbsp coffee powder
  • 2 tbsp coffee powder
  • 5 1/2oz self raising flour
  • 150g self raising flour
  • 6oz soft brown sugar
  • 165g soft brown sugar
  • 6oz salted butter
  • 165g salted butter
  • 3 free range eggs
  • 3 free range eggs
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • 3oz walnuts, finely chopped (+1/2oz to top cupcakes)
  • 80g walnuts, finely chopped (+20g to top cupcakes)

For the Icing

  • 2 1/2oz butter
  • 75g butter
  • 4 1/2oz mascarpone cheese
  • 125g mascarpone cheese
  • 1 tsp coffee syrup or 1 shot espresso
  • 1 tsp coffee syrup or 1 shot espresso
  • 7oz icing sugar
  • 200g icing sugar


  1. Preheat the oven to 140°C Fan/325°F/Gas Mark 3.
  2. Line a cupcake/muffin tray with cases.
  3. Literally, mix all the cake ingredients together in a bowl and use a hand whisk or stand mixer to combine together to become a batter. Easy!
  4. Divide the batter into the cases and bake for around 18-20 minutes.
  5. Whilst they are in the oven, you can start making the icing.
  6. Whisk together the butter, icing sugar and coffee until thick, then spoon in the mascarpone until all combined. Place your mixture into a piping bag (or a sandwich bag with the corner cut off) and place in the fridge until needed.
  7. Remove the cupcakes from the oven and leave them to cool on a wire rack until completely cooled. Don't be temped to add the icing early!
  8. Once cooled, pipe on the icing and sprinkle with more walnuts and if you fancy, a pinch of dried coffee. Enjoy!