Love and Olive Oil

Cinnamon Chocolate Churro Cupcakes

Cinnamon Chocolate Churro Cupcakes

Taco night is quickly become a tradition around these parts. Hosted by our lovely neighbor, these nights are basically an excuse to get together. Neighbors, friends, new friends… and tacos. The ultimate community food.

But what goes with tacos? For dessert, I mean. I considered flan (involves making caramel, I scrapped that real quick), tres leches cake (or tres leches cupcakes), margarita lime something or other, homemade churros…


Except I didn’t want to deal with deep frying anything.

So I did the next most logical thing.

I reinterpreted the churro.

As a cupcake.

Cinnamon Churro Cupcakes with Mexican Chocolate Pudding Filling

The best churros are the ones served with warm dipping chocolate. And I wasn’t about to serve cupcakes with dipping chocolate, so I filled them with a spiced chocolate pudding instead.

That’s right, pudding. Delicious pudding. Pudding that would have been a treat on its own. But enveloped in a light and perfectly crumbly cinnamon cake? Help me now.

Cinnamon Churro Cupcakes with Mexican Chocolate Pudding Filling

Not wanting to overpower the delicate cinnamon scented cake and rich creamy filling, I went a slightly different direction with the frosting. No thick and heavy buttercream here. Rather, an ethereal chocolate cinnamon whipped cream. Light, airy, and utterly divine.

Churro Cupcakes with Chocolate Whipped Cream Frosting

The result was nothing short of sinful. No, I wouldn’t use this frosting on a hot summer day, and no, I wouldn’t trust it to hold up more than a day (not that I expect anything adorned with it to last that long, but still). Fresh out of the piping bag, this frosting is incredible. Heck, if there had been any left over I would have piped it right on to a steaming cup of hot chocolate and swooned in utter delight.

Cinnamon Chocolate Churro Cupcakes

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Cinnamon Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon cider vinegar
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Mexican Chocolate Pudding Filling:

  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 3 ounces good quality semisweet or dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Chocolate Whipped Cream Frosting:

  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon meringue powder
  • Pinch of cream of tartar
  • Pinch of cinnamon
  • 1 cup chilled whipping cream


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl, sift together flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt.
  3. Combine almond milk and vinegar and stir to combine. Whisk in sugar, oil, and vanilla. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ingredients. Mix until relatively smooth. Fill cupcake liners with a scant 3 Tablespoons of batter (cups should be just under 2/3 of the way full). Bake for 20-22 minutes or until set, and toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer to cooling rack and allow to cool completely.
  4. To prepare filling, combine the cornstarch, sugar, salt, and cinnamon in the top of a double boiler or a heatproof bowl set over a larger pot filled with 1 inch of water. Slowly whisk in the milk, scraping the bottom and sides with a heatproof spatula to incorporate the dry ingredients. Place over gently simmering water and stir occasionally, scraping the bottom and sides. Use a whisk as necessary should lumps begin to form. After 15 to 20 minutes, when the mixture begins to thicken and coats the back of the spoon, add the chocolate. Continue stirring for about 2 to 4 minutes, or until the pudding is smooth and thickened. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla. Transfer to a small bowl and cover, gently pressing a layer of plastic wrap against the surface before refrigerating (this will prevent a skin from forming). Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 3 days (ahem, good luck with that).
  5. For frosting, whisk powdered sugar, cocoa powder, milk, meringue powder, cream of tartar, and cinnamon in large bowl until smooth. Cover and refrigerate until well chilled and ready to use, 30 minutes to 1 hour. Using electric mixer or a stand mixer with a whisk attachment, gradually beat chilled cream into chocolate mixture. Continue beating until stiff peaks form.
  6. With a small pairing knife cut out cones from the tops of cupcakes approximately 1 inch in diameter. Set aside but do not discard. Spoon approximately 1 tablespoon of filling into each cupcake (you’ll have extra pudding, so grab a spoon). Replace top and press into place (it helps to remove a bit off the base of the cone piece to help it sit more level on the filling – tasties for you). Pipe on whipped cream frosting, taking care to cover up all seams. If desired, sprinkle with a bit of cinnamon sugar prior to serving.
All images and text © / Love & Olive Oil

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  1. I made these a while ago, and they are definitely the best cupcakes I’ve ever had. I have never really liked cake very much, but these were irresistible!

  2. Could you substitute Coconut (canned) milk for the almond milk and milk due to a child with nut and milk allergies in this recipe? This looks absolutely delicious!

    • Most definitely. I usually find that most “milks” are interchangeable when it comes to cupcakes. So be it cow, almond, soy, or coconut… they all should work equally well. Granted I haven’t *tried* it myself, but I can’t see why not. :)

  3. Hi. I just found this recipe and really want to make these cupcakes. I live in Mexico and can’t find almond milk. Is there any reason why I should use almond milk instead of regular milk? Does it affect the flavor, or did you use it because it is vegan? Thanks.

  4. OK, I made these yesterday and my pudding never set up either! I stood there for more than 30 minutes …. and then 2 hours in the fridge. Still too soupy. And of course, OCD me filled ALL the cakettes before coming to this conclusion. Soooo, I unfilled them. And then I dumped what was left directly back into a saucepan on low heat … no bowl over the simmering water. I think this was the trick, although I have no science to back it up. It seemed to come together in about 3 or 4 minutes with a direct connection to the heated surface. I just had to be super-careful to keep whisking so the bottom didn’t scorch.

    The finished product was delightful … not a crumb left.

    Can anyone tell me why cupcake wrappers sometimes buckle into themselves when you pour in the batter? Do I have bad quality cupcake wrappers or is it my poor technique?

  5. Was the almond milk you used sweetened or unsweetened? or does it matter? TH

  6. Bless you for making these and sharing with us! I have been scouring the internet the last few hours looking for a churro cupcake recipe that did not involve cream cheese frosting or dulce de leche. I prefer my churros with Mexican hot chocolate, and this is the perfect interpretation of that in my mind! Thank you, thank you, thank you.

  7. so delicious…cupcake by itself is amazing, so fluffy!!! i’ve made these a couple of times…they hold up well for a couple of days too…try adding a tiny bit of cayenne pepper to the pudding for a bit of heat!! thanks for posting!

  8. I LOVE these cupcakes– what a brilliant idea! I would really like to make these for my wedding rehearsal dinner, but will probably be making them 2 days in advance. Do you think the cupcakes and the custard will stay? I will of course have to make the whipped cream topping on site…

  9. Gorgeous!!! By the way, the cute lil’ pup in my profile pic is named Churro (still looking very posh in her P&P collar!).

  10. I love your recipes!

    Would it matter if I used a 2% milk instead of whole or would coconut milk be better?

  11. I’ve made these twice so far, and i absolutely love them. My frosting is much more brown and chocolatey, but it’s by far my favorite part of this recipe. Thank you for bringing this delightful treat into my life!!!

  12. I made these for our Girl’s Night Dinner and everyone loved them. I’m not a big chocolate cake fan but these were perfect. The right amount of chocolate and cinnamon. Will def make these again…

  13. These sound so good. I’ve made your chocolate wasabi cupcakes before and I crave them! I want to try these. Can you tell me what tip you used for the frosting? Thanks. Love your site.

  14. DELICIOSO! Churros are my all time favorite dessert, so I knew I had to make these. I did however use fat free milk instead of almond and Mexican vanilla extract. They were amazing!!!! The cupcakes were also delish without frosting… Thank you so much for you terrific recipes :)

  15. So I did make these last weekend and they turned out great! I loved the Mexican Chocolate pudding and we ended up with plenty extra so my kids and I ate it all up! The chocolate whipped cream icing turned out nice and fluffy as well (I was a little skeptical, since it was my first time making whipped cream, but it was delicious!) And the cupcakes were moist and delicious as well. But there was one thing that I changed about the recipe, which I wouldn’t do again… I didn’t have almond milk on hand, just regular milk, so I decided to try and make my own almond milk by adding about 1/8 tsp. to my milk. Not a good idea. It just gave the cupcakes an almondy taste, which was a little overpowering for me. I have never drank almond milk before, so I wasn’t sure what the taste would be like, so I guessed. Next time, I think I will just use regular skim milk. Over all, these were a big hit and everyone enjoyed them. Thank you so much for a wonderful recipe!

    • I can see how almond extract would make these a bit too almondy. Almond milk is surprisingly mild, only slightly nutty and nothing at all like the extract. Just plain milk would be a perfectly suitable solution. :) Glad you enjoyed them anyway!

  16. Yum! I made these last week and just did a basic buttercream with cinnamon frosting. My pudding didn’t thicken quite enough, but it was still so delish – glad there was extra! My only issue was with the cake, which was too dense for my taste. I don’t know what I did wrong. I’ve tried many of your cupcake recipes and LOVE, LOVE, LOVE them! Oh, and the cookie dough truffles…oh my gosh…they were so good!

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