For the Espresso Cupcakes
- 1/2 C (113g) Salted Butter, at room temperature
- 1 3/4 C (375g) Granulated Sugar
- 2 Lg Eggs, at room temperature
- 1 TBSP Vanilla Bean Paste
- 1 1/4 C Buttermilk, at room temperature
- 1 TBSP Espresso Powder
- 2 1/2 C (310g) All Purpose Flour
- 2 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
- 1/4 tsp Salt
For the Bailey’s Buttercream
- 1 C (226g) Unsalted Butter, at room temperature
- 4 C Powdered Sugar
- 2 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- 3 TBSP Bailey’s Irish Cream
- 1–2 TBSP Heavy Cream, at room temperature
For the Cupcakes
- Preheat the oven to 350 and line 2 cupcake pans with 22 total cupcake liners.
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar for 5 minutes.
- Add the eggs and mix for an additional 2 minutes. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt.
- Pour the vanilla bean paste and the espresso powder into the buttermilk and whisk to combine.
- Alternate adding the dry ingredients and the buttermilk starting and ending with the dry ingredients. So, add 1/3 of the flour mixture, then half of the buttermilk, then 1/3 of the flour, etc.
- Mix until the dry ingredients are just incorporated.
- Portion the batter into the cupcake liners filling just over 3/4 of the way full.
- Bake at 350 for 10 minutes, then rotate the cupcakes and bake an additional 8-10 minutes or until the edges are just starting to brown and a toothpick comes out mostly clean with a few moist crumbs attached.
- Let cool completely before frosting.
For the Buttercream
- Cream the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment for 10 minutes, scraping down the bottom and sides of the bowl occasionally.
- Add the vanilla and salt and mix to combine.
- Add 1/2 of the powdered sugar, mix on low for 3 minutes, then repeat with the remaining powdered sugar.
- To swirl two flavors of buttercream together, separate it into two bowls. Flavor half with Bailey’s and the other half with some espresso powder dissolved into heavy cream. Spread each flavor of buttercream onto plastic wrap and roll it up into a long log. Use scissors to cut off one end of the plastic wrap on both flavors, then slide them down into a piping bag fitting with a star tip like Wilton 1M.
- Pipe the buttercream onto all of the cooled cupcakes, and serve.