Hot and Spicy Quickie in the Kitchen: LF Chocolate Cupcakes w/Peanut Butter Cream Cheese Frosting

There are 3 things I love… (well, more than that) but these 3 are at the top of the list: Chocolate, Spicy, Cupcakes. These are all of that PLUS they are low-fat, insanely tasty, light, fluffy, decadent, and no-joke addictive. They also have bites with benefits- yes, hot and spicy foods also are natural fat burners, helping to heat up your metabolism so that you burn more calories and fat faster.

Cupcake Ingredients:
-1 3/4 cups flour
-1 cup white sugar (or I substituted with “Whey Low”- only 4 calories per tsp, as opposed to 15 calories per tsp of sugar, cutting total sugar content down dramatically)
-3/4 cup cocoa powder (I used Ghirardelli natural unsweetened cocoa)
-1 1/2 tsp baking soda
-1 1/2 tsp baking powder
-1/2 tsp salt
-2-3 tsp Chocolate Chili from Teeny Tiny Spice Co. of Vermont (or just add 1 tsp chili powder, 1 tsp cinnamon)
-1 1/4 cups low fat buttermilk (I substituted w/ 1 cup non-fat milk, 1/4 cup Fromage Blanc 0% fat… it’s like a FF sour cream)
-1 cup light brown sugar lightly packed
-2 eggs, lightly beaten
-1/4 cup canola oil
-2 tsp vanilla extract
-1 cup hot black coffee

Peanut Butter Icing Ingredients:
-1/4 cup peanut butter
-1/4 cup reduced fat cream cheese
-1/4 cup Fat Free Ricotta Cheese (this was my addition to the recipe, though not called for originally. But I LOVE the addition)
-1 cup Confectioner’s sugar (I substituted with Whey Low)
-1-2 tsp Chocolate Chili from Teeny Tiny Spice Co. of Vermont (or just add 1 tsp chili powder, 1 tsp cinnamon)
-1/2 tsp vanilla extract
-2 tbsp Peanuts chopped (I skipped it)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray cupcake pan w/ nonstick spray
2. In large bowl, whisk together flour, white sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, salt.
3. Add buttermilk (or substitute), brown sugar, eggs, oil, vanilla. Mix well to combine. Whisk in hot coffee.
4. Pour batter into pan and bake for 20-25 minutes. Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then remove from pan and cool completely.
5. Meanwhile, prepare icing. In a small bowl mix all ingredients except peanuts. Spread on cooled cupcakes and sprinkle with chopped peanuts.

Serves 16
Calories: 255 as made to the original recipe. With my substitutes, probably more like 150-200 calories


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