Chocolate Beetroot Hi-Hat Mini Cupcakes

There are times when you will feel disappointed, okay?
  • That frappuccino with suspiciously little coffee flavour, and the misspelled name written on the cup.
  • The phone call to a friend, who ends up spending 5 minutes telling you French tongue twisters instead of talking (although, it was pretty amusing)
  • Searching on my computer for the photos I took of cupcakes, (which I was certain I uploaded, so deleted half of them from my camera) and then remember that I got distracted by Grey’s Anatomy and didn’t upload them.
  • When I went to the cupboard feeling sassy, thinking I had a bottle of red food colouring. It is not there. It is no where. Actually I’m pretty sure that food colouring hasn’t even been in the cupboard since my mum made play dough for me, ten years ago.

But sometimes, after the initial denial of that disappointment which slowly starts to sink in and become reality, comes triumph:

  • Meh, who needs the caffeine? It’s 4 pm anyway; and ‘Izabel?’ perfect! I needed a name for my new pencil!
  • Getting to show off my little well known skill of reciting a French tongue twister (it doesn’t matter that I don’t know what it means in English), which earned me a merit at school 3 years ago because I could say it the fastest!
  • Haha! At least I didn’t delete all the photos from my camera, now I don’t have to spend so much time picking which photos to use.
  • Open the fridge. WELL HELLO MR. BEETROOT! I’m glad to see that you’re already cooked and peeled, ready for me to use in my cupcakes. Oh yeah, and in the search for the red food colouring, edible gold food spray was found instead, score.

And that, is how (my initial plan of) red velvet hi-hat cupcakes, became these:

Chocolate Beetroot Hi-Hat Mini Cupcakes
adapted from here
makes 30-40 mini cupcakes

1 cup (4.3 oz / 120g) cake flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup (1 oz / 28g) cocoa powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup (2 oz / 55g) butter
3/4 cup (6 oz / 170g) sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 small beetroot, cooked and peeled*
1/2 cup (125 ml) buttermilk
1 tsp apple cider vinegar

For the frosting:
2 eggs whites
2/3 cup + 1 tbsp (6.5 oz / 185g) sugar
pinch of cream of tartar
3 tbsp water

Chocolate coating:
6 – 8 oz (170-220g) semisweet chocolate
2-3 tbsp vegetable oil

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C), line a mini muffin tin with mini muffin liners.
Stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cocoa powder and salt in a medium bowl.
In a separate bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Cream in the egg and vanilla extract.
Cut up the cooked beetroot and blend it together with the buttermilk and apple cider vinegar, in a food processor/blender or using an immersion blender.
Beat half the beetroot mixture into the butter mixture, then half of the flour mixture. Repeat so that all of the beetroot and flour mixtures have been mixed in. Divide the batter between the mini muffin liners, filling them about 3/4 full. Bake for 8-10 minutes, checking that they are done by pushing a toothpick into the centre of a cupcake which should come out clean. Let the cupcakes cool.

*Remove the leaves from the beetroot, but leave the stem. Boil the beetroot for 30-40 minutes until tender, cut off the stem and tip, then scrape off the outer skin with a blunt knife.

Frosting: Combine the ingredients, except for the vanilla, in a large heatproof bowl. Set this over a pan of barely simmering water. Using an electric whisk, whisk the mixture until you get firm peaks. Remove the bowl from the pan, and continue whisking off the heat until the mixture is completely cool. Lastly, whisk in the vanilla extract.
Pipe large spirals of the frosting onto the cooled cupcakes, using a piping bag with a wide, plain tip (mine was 13mm). Put the frosted cupcakes on a large cookie tray and put into the freezer for 2 hours, so that the frosting hardens.

Chocolate Coating: Melt the chocolate over a double boiler and stir in the vegetable oil – start with 6 oz of chocolate and 2 tbsp of chocolate, you can always make more as you need it.
Dip the top of the cupcake into the chocolate so that it coats the frosting. Set the coated cupcake back onto the tray. Repeat until all the cupcakes have been dipped. Let the chocolate set in the fridge or freezer, then serve the cupcakes at room temperature.


  1. Gillian with a G says

    LOVE this.

    My first glimpse of them I thought “OMG Viva Puff cupcakes!” / “OMG DQ chocolate dipped ice cream cone cupcakes!!” Alas they are not quite either of these things, but I’m sure they deserve to be in the same category.


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