I’ve been on a very s’mores wavelength lately.  Ever since Andrew’s birthday party, I’ve had s’mores on the brain.  That kicked up s’mores station did a number on me.  I’ve got even more s’mores goodness to share without throughout this month but in the meantime, I thought I would share a revised version of s’mores cupcakes.  I swapped out the cake portion for my favorite chocolate cupcake and altered the quantity of frosting so that you don’t have a gallon left over.  Ha!

This has long been one of the most popular cupcakes on the site and for good reason.  The irresistible graham cracker + chocolate + marshmallow combo is made even better with the cap of pretty torched frosting.  First-timers are always impressed and intrigued by the frosting so if you’re looking for a summer show-stopping dessert, look no further.


For the graham cracker crust:

  • 1½ cups graham cracker crumbs
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 5 1/3 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted

For the cake:

  • ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon hot water
  • 2¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ tsp. baking soda
  • ¾ tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 2 sticks plus 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 2/3 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup sour cream

For the frosting:

  • 4 large egg whites, at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ tsp. cream of tartar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract



  • 01

    Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line two cupcake pans with paper liners. In a small mixing bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter; mix well with a fork. Drop about 1 tablespoon of the graham cracker mixture in the bottom of each cupcake liner and press down to line the bottom. (Note: The bottom of a small cup or bottle works well here.)  Bake for 5 minutes. Remove from the oven, and maintain the oven temperature.

  • 02

    In a small bowl, combine the cocoa powder and hot water and whisk until smooth.  In another medium bowl combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt, and whisk to blend.  Combine the butter and sugar in a medium saucepan set over medium heat.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is smooth and the butter is completely melted.  Transfer the mixture to the bowl of an electric mixer and beat on medium-low speed until the mixture is cool, about 4-5 minutes.  Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.  Blend in the vanilla and then the cocoa mixture until smooth.  With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture in three additions alternating with the sour cream, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients and mixing each addition just until incorporated.

  • 03

    Divide the batter evenly between the prepared liners, filling each about ¾-full.  Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 18 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through baking.  Let cool in the pan about 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

  • 04

    To make the frosting, combine the egg whites, sugar and cream of tartar in a bowl set over a pan of a few inches of simmering water. (Note: I use my clean, dry mixer bowl right off the bat to avoid dirtying two bowls.) Heat the mixture, whisking frequently, until it reaches 160° F with an instant-read thermometer. Transfer the mixture to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk starting at low speed and gradually increasing to medium-high speed until stiff, glossy peaks form. Mix in the vanilla until combined.  Transfer the frosting to a pastry bag fitted with a decorative tip (I used Ateco # 829.)  Brown with a kitchen torch and garnish with chocolate and graham cracker segments (optional).

  • These look absolutely lovely. The icing especially!

  • Natashaminocha

    Hi Annie,
    These look absolutely stunning! They are already on my to-do-list for the week!
    For the frosting, do you use regular sugar or confectioner’s (icing) sugar?
    Thanks Natasha

  • Jersey Girl Cooks

    I love how these look! I bet they are yummy too.

  • Yay! I love your original version, but I never knew what to do with all the extra frosting… besides make more cake. :)

  • These are by far some of the best cupcakes I have ever made. I totally agree with you about the graham cracker + chocolate cake + marshmallow combo – to die for!

  • Jill

    Wow! These look great. I love s’mores anything, and this is right up my alley!

  • annieseats

    If it just says sugar, you can assume regular sugar. I will always indicated confectioners’ or otherwise if it’s something else. Hope that helps :)

  • KP

    These look AMAZING!

  • I’ve been meaning to make s’mores cupcakes for awhile. These look great, love the topping

  • Liz N

    Annie, which kitchen torch do you use? I’ve looked on Amazon and have found varying comments on each brand. I don’t want to spend a lot of money but want one that will work for these cupcakes and creme brulee and not fall apart. Thanks!

  • Cheryl

    I have been baking for over 30 years for family and friends and made these cupcakes for the first time last week (the original recipe as posted by Annie). These are by far the most incredible tasting and looking dessert I have ever made! Thanks, Annie, for sharing this wonderful recipe!

  • Oh man, I’ve had s’mores on the brain lately too. These are gorgeous by the way : )

  • These look wonderful. I’m sure they taste as good as they look.

  • Gina W

    Annie, if you don’t have a torch, can you broil in the oven? Can’t wait to try!!

  • S’mores are in my list of top 10 favorite foods! Weird? A little, but I think it’s because I associate them with the comforting memory of carefree summers. S’mores ANYTHING is awesome in my book… especially these cupcakes, which you executed so perfectly! Definitely going to have to make them before the summer is over :)

  • This makes me actually want to buy a kitchen torch – regardless of my fear that I’m going to set my hair or kitchen on fire… :) Smores are totally worth it though!

  • Jen

    Wow these look great! Is there any other way to brown the frosting?? Would the oven broiler work? I don’t have a kitchen torch :( I guess I should put it on my wish list!

  • annieseats

    You can try the broiler but you have to be *super* careful. Every time I’ve attempted it, I end up with ruined cupcakes. I think the torch is worth the investment.

  • annieseats

    You can try but every time I’ve attempted it, I ruined the cupcakes. You have to be extremely vigilant. I think the torch is worth the investment.

  • annieseats

    Mine is super generic and I don’t recall a brand. It just said “kitchen torch” or something of that nature. I got it at Bed Bath & Beyond.

  • Emily

    Annie! I have been a long time fan of your blog, especially your cupcakes!
    I wanted to let you know that you were the start of me making cupcakes. It has been a couple years since and I am still loving to bake. Since the first time I tired these s’mores cupcakes I knew I couldn’t stop trying your other flavors. These are AMAZING cupcakes people, trust me they are worth the long time you spend in the kitchen. I have started a little business that someday I would like to turn into a real shop. Thanks Annie for your hard work – this blog is fabulous. I love seeing the new posts and always can’t wait to see what the next posting will be!
    Thanks again for continuing this blog (keep up the cupcakes!)

  • KP

    Though I have not frosted these yet the cake itself is wonderful! I did drop a piece of Hershey’s chocolate in the middle for an extra S’more surprise! Yum!

  • Ak072499

    I have these in the oven as I type! I can’t wait to try. Now, I am off to see if a neighbor has a kitchen torch in trade for these yummy treats :)

  • tea

    Thanks so much for posting. I LOVE the original recipe but yes, i had so much left over frosting it was crazy!

    <3 your site. I'm looking for a yummy dinner recipe here now. =)

  • gina w.

    Thanks! Guess I have to buy a torch! I don’t have time to ruin cupcakes! lol!

  • Allison

    I’ve been wanting to do a S’more cupcake for a long time, but couldn’t figure out where to put the graham cracker. This is great! I’ll definitely give these a try.

  • What would your tip you used to decorate translate in the Wilton group!
    Thanks – Lori

  • Gina Iampolsky

    Oh my god! You’re killing me these cupcakes are delicious….I want one of these now!!!!!!!!
    I love, LOVE… Great photos…Gina

  • I was looking at a torch just the other day in a kitchen shop and wondered if I needed one. I decided no because I never had before and lo and behold, along comes this recipe to prove me wrong.

  • Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes

    Mmmmm keep the s’mores recipes coming! I need a kitchen torch now!

  • What’s not to like about S’mores Cupcakes! Gotta Pin this one so I can refer back to it.

    Keep writing…

  • This is gorgeous and going on my list of “wow” stuff. Thanks!

  • Wow. Great idea and gorgeous the way you have piped the marshmallow and scorched it. Lovely!

  • These are so fun! Love the look of them. Maybe even filling each one with a little marshmallow cream might be nice :)

  • Wow. This cupcakes have me kind of speechless. They look amazing, and I cannot wait to try them.

  • Meaghan

    My 6 yo son, Collin loves you for the Smore’s kick you are on. It is one of his favorite treats and since we will be camping this week, he will get to indulge! I have been waiting for the cupcake post to surprise him for a noncamping treat! Thanks!

  • Pam

    Wow Annie, love your blog. I’m impressed you have time to become a doctor, too. You go girl!


  • Jshosho

    I made this recipe before you added the new changes and it was yummy. I did not print the old one and I am curious since it is not in front of me where you made the changes ? Thank you :))

  • Amanda

    Have you thought about doing a post behind the scenes as you photograph your food? I’d be interested in seeing where in your home you do it, the types of backgrounds and tabletops you use etc. and also how and where you store the accessories you use for your food photography.

  • Sikeltz

    What size coupler do you use for that tip? I just ordered a set of Ateco tips. Do I need the large coupler or the medium ones? I know I need to get both, but I just wondered what size you used?

  • marie

    I’ve made these and like you said everyone LOVED them, definitely impressive as well as absolutely divine.

    I see you’ve altered the frosting, yes I had a lot left over. But guess what, I had enough batter for 11 more cupcakes as well. I ended up saving the batter and frosting and just making more crust a week later, but do you end up with more batter too?

  • annieseats

    I changed the recipe for the cake portion so there shouldn’t be as much left over. Some maybe, though a perfect alteration wasn’t possible hear. I’d probably just make a few more chocolate cupcakes :)

  • annieseats

    I don’t use a coupler,

  • annieseats

    People ask about this a lot but it’s something I prefer left to the imagination. I would like the focus to remain on the food, not how I get “the shot”. However, I am considering teaching photography workshops in the future so if I do, that’s one way to see how it all goes down :)

  • annieseats

    As I mentioned in the post, cut down the frosting significantly and changed the cake batter out for a different recipe. Glad you enjoyed them!

  • annieseats

    Not sure, you’d have to experiment. Wilton tips and Ateco tips don’t necessarily have exact translations in the opposite brand.

  • Kim

    I made these last night, and ran into a couple things: 1. I didnt have enough frosting which makes me wonder if I left the mixer on long enough. I was pretty sure I had stiff peaks, but the taste is there, just not the volume. 2. My graham cracker crust is pretty crumbly, to avoid this next time, would you add more butter? Thanks!

  • annieseats

    Sounds like yours didn’t whip up quite enough to get the full volume. The crust shouldn’t really be crumbly – not sure why that would happen. You can try adding more butter but the amount listed should be sufficient.

  • Heather

    Oh, I can’t wait to make these! I’ll be taking them to a special gathering of friends and was wondering how far in advance I can make them? Are they best the day of, or can I make them a day or two before?

  • annieseats

    Please see the FAQ page. Thanks!

  • Kim

    Thanks for the feedback!

  • The cupcakes look delish. I’ve experimented with a mini kitchen torch many times and find it incorporates a butane taste. I tried not holding the flame too close or for too long. Have you experienced this problem? Here is the one I use:


  • annieseats

    No, the one I use never imparts any sort of flavor other than the torched flavor you would hope for. I wonder if the type of fuel may have anything to do with it?

  • Liz

    Can I use the broiler instead of the kitchen torch??

  • annieseats

    Please read through the earlier comments :)

  • Tayler

    Hi Annie! I made these before you changed the recipe and loved the old chocolate cake more than this one. Is that recipe on one of your different posts or is there a way I can get that recipe? Thank you!

  • Jeannievance77

    I made these cupcakes for Easter for our annual “Cupcake Wars”. They were to die for and turned out just like the picture. Needless to say, I took First Place! Thanks Annie! You are such an inspiration.

  • annieseats

    Awesome! Glad they were a hit :)

  • annieseats

    It’s the Hershey’s chocolate cake recipe. You can find it on their website.

  • Jennifer

    Hi, I am in the process of making these cupcakes and I am finding that the frosting is very thin in consistency. Is there something I may be doing wrong? I whipping the frosting for over fifteen minutes and it still did not improve. By the way this recipe is amazing!

  • annieseats

    It could be an issue with your bowl being either wet or possibly having remnants of grease from another use – either of those can prevent meringue from forming properly. This definitely should not have a thin consistency.

  • Karaschnaidt

    Hi annie, i make this marshmallow frosting all the time, and after a few hours it kind of deflates in the inside and becomes very airy…how can i prevent that and make it taste like it is when i first get done whipping it?

  • annieseats

    I’m not sure. I personally haven’t noticed that issue but I assume it’s just a natural change that happens over time. If you think it tastes best fresh then just frost right before you serve.

  • Melissa in GA

    Try these cupcakes! I made them this weekend and everyone loved them.

  • Lani

    Delicious. I made them the first time from the original recipe and everyone raved so looked for them again. Came out even better

    I’d love to send some to my daughter at school. Can you freeze them frosted?

  • annieseats

    I haven’t tried that. You could experiment, but I doubt it would have quite the same quality/taste after freezing.

  • Elena

    These cupcakes were so great! I made them for my son’s first birthday party (we had a woodland animals theme) and they turned out perfect. Everyone loved the fluffy icing and I loved finding another use for my kitchen torch! Thanks!

  • shulames

    hey! if I’m making these the night before, how do i store them? should i keep the frosting separate overnight in the fridge? or can i frost them and leave them on the counter overnight? store them frosted in the fridge?

  • annieseats

    Please see the FAQ page. Thanks!

  • lecamo

    what you would suggest for dairy free alternative ingredients?

  • annieseats

    Please see the FAQ page regarding substitutions. Thanks!

  • Katie M

    I made these last minute and couldn’t find a kitchen torch to buy so after icing I put them on a cookie sheet under a broiler on low for about 3 minutes. I’d definitely recommend watching them if you try this, but mine turned out great and could possibly be my favorite cupcakes I’ve ever made. Thanks for the recipe! They were a hit!

  • Heather

    I made these tonight and it was amazing! Great recipe! Everyone loved them, and wanted more. Thank you for sharing.

  • Holly

    I’m not sure if the revision is right.. I used to always use this frosting recipe, and I’d half it to cover 12 cupcakes – and there was usually some left over.

    But when I made it today since the revision.. there was only enough frosting for six cupcakes. so now I have to go make another batch, which is a bit frustrating considering how long it takes to make :(

    I’d definitely beaten it to stiff peaks too – I don’t think the peaks could have got much stiffer!
    Also, is it really necessary for the egg whites to be at room temperature? – I don’t know if I can wait that much longer to make the next batch

  • annieseats

    I’m sorry to hear that you had trouble. However, the revision is correct and I have tested it multiple times. Four egg whites beaten to stiff peaks should be enough to frost far more than 6 cupcakes so it sounds like something went wrong. The egg whites don’t have to be at room temperature, but if they are chilled it will just take a lot longer to reach 160 degrees when they are warmed.

  • Melissa

    Do you think this would recipe would work if I made a cake and used a spring form pan?

  • annieseats

    You can bake any cake batter in a cake pan or a cupcake pan. However, putting the full amount of batter in a springform pan will not work because the height/width of the batter will leave the center raw long after the edges are baked. You would be better off using two regular (more shallow) round cake pans.

  • Chris

    If I was short on time, do you think I could cheat and use fluff for the topping?

  • annieseats

    Some readers have tried that and haven’t had good results from what I recall. This is worth the effort and really doesn’t take that long :)

  • Darcy Sharman Shires

    I love this recipe, but…TELL ME what I am doing wrong that I can’t seem to cook the frosting to 160. I will float the bowl in water that is simmering to full on boil, cook and cook and cook, and either the temperature of my mix starts going DOWN after about 130 until it is cemented to the bowl and unusable, or it gets “stuck” between 155 and 160 for an hour. Is this just a thermometer problem (though the thermometer works well for other cooking applications) or a technique problem? I’m not that unexperienced a cook but I AM unexperienced with merengue, so not sure what is going on!

  • annieseats

    First of all, make sure your bowl isn’t actually touching the water. It should be hovering at least a few inches above. The steam should be heating the bowl, not the water itself.

    I’m not sure what the issue could be otherwise. The longer you heat something, the hotter the temperature should get.

  • kevin

    Hi! Just wondering, how many cups does 1 stick of butter equal?? Is it just one cup?

  • annieseats

    1/2 cup. See the conversion chart in the right sidebar for more easy conversion tips :)

  • Jess Carney

    Can’t wait to make these!! While I’m posting I want to let you know you are my go-to dessert blog. I’ve made SO many of your cakes/cupcakes and always get rave reviews. THANKS from Barrie, Ontario!!!!

  • ariel

    These looks yummy. I will be making 5dozens of these but im worried about the frosting part. I’m worried that the frosting will not hold longer or it may harden prior to serving the cupcakes. Any thoughts?

  • annieseats

    It should be fine. I make these in advance frequently and have never had a problem.

  • Jennifer Lynn

    These look delicious for the fall…I have a great recipe for marshmallow fluff icing, do you think it would go well in place of the recommended vanilla frosting, or would it be too sweet?

  • annieseats

    This actually is a marshmallow icing and it is awesome. Highly recommend it!

  • Tiffany Schulte

    I love this recipe. I’ve made the full version before and it was a hit for a child’s birthday party. I also make the chocolate cupcake portion alone as my go-to- chocolate batter recipe. We no longer keep all-purpose flour in the house so I made these tonight with unbleached white whole wheat flour and they still turned out great. We also just have imitation vanilla extract at the moment and it worked just as well. Curious if you’ve ever swapped the sugar for raw turbinado instead.

  • Amy I.

    Hi Annie, these sound fantastic! I’m going to make them for my birthday in a few weeks. Just wanted to give you a heads up in case you weren’t aware that the photo on this and a couple other posts isn’t showing up, at least for me (Flickr says image isn’t available).

  • annieseats

    Hi Amy, thanks for the message. I do know about the pictures. Flickr had some error recently that caused nearly 90% of my images to disappear. I have been working hard to fix it but haven’t gotten around to all of them yet because I have to reenter them into each post and it is quite time consuming. Hopefully I will be finished soon!

  • Wendy Benoit

    Hi Annie, I made these cupcakes over the weekend for a neighborhood party and they were a great success! I had just enough frosting for 24 cupcakes, no left over! My frosting was not as fluffy as the one in your picture, it had more of a marshmallow fluff consistency, but I whisked it until stiff peaks formed… I think my problem was that my cream of tartar was expired! Thanks so much for sharing! I needed an excuse to buy a kitchen torch :-)

  • annieseats

    My guess is it was more an issue of humidity or something in the mixing bowl when you beat it (supposedly even a trace of fat/grease can mess up meringue.) I’ve had the same cream of tartar forever but haven’t had a problem with making meringue. Probably not your fault but likely something you couldn’t really control. I’m glad they were good anyway!

  • Cara

    Hi Annie, Do you recommend a kitchen torch? I looked in your Amazon shop and didn’t see one… and I trust your opinion on kitchen goods :) Thank you! :) PS You are right… the flavored syrups are not hard to make..had some success tonight! :) These are next on my list!

  • annieseats

    Oh, I absolutely do recommend a kitchen torch! I just added one to the Amazon shop – glad you brought that to my attention! http://astore.amazon.com/annseat-20/detail/B009AYZXJ0

    I love my torch and look for any excuse to use it. Of course the kids also think it’s one of the most fun an exciting things ever to watch :)

  • Cara

    Thank you Annie! Can’t wait to get one :)

  • Nathalie Bickley

    I made these this weekend for the World Cup game, they were a huge hit! Thanks for making me look like a star!

  • Meg

    Another winning recipe! I made these last week to bring to my cousin’s lake house in the North Woods of Wisconsin. Perfect setting for serving these cupcakes! And boy are they impressive. I love the graham cracker crust. Yum! Made the house smell divine when baking. The chocolate cake is moist and tender. And the frosting, oh, so beautiful! So many oohs and ahhs at how gorgeous the toasted frosting looks.

    For anyone who is curious, I baked, frosted, and torched these before transporting, and the extras kept at room temperature for several days just wonderfully. The frosting held up perfectly. So they can definitely be fully prepared ahead of time with no problem! Another bonus!!

  • Cara

    Awesome- good to know! Thinking of bringing these to bachelorette party :)

  • Liz N.

    I finally made these today, after years of bookmarking this recipe! This is perfection. I did a little quality control and tried an unfrosted cupcake and it’s uh-mazing! The graham cracker crust with the chocolate cake is to die for. I had no issues with the recipe, from start to finish. I didn’t have Dutch-processed cocoa (and have discovered that most grocery stores carry non-alkalized) so the chocolate cake isn’t as dark as yours, but it still tastes delicious! The chocolate cake for this cupcake might be my favorite ‘scratch’ chocolate cake recipe! I’m sure this will WOW the guests and the birthday girl I’ve baked these for.

  • Ursula Boudreau

    I’m curious, did you recently modify this recipe by any chance? I made these cupcakes 3 weeks ago as a trial run for a cupcake contest and I made them for the actual contest this past weekend. Co-workers who sampled both batches said this one was sweeter. I can’t for the life of me figure out how that’s possible if I followed the recipe exactly. Everyone loved them, but they noticed a difference.

  • Annie

    No, this post hasn’t been updated in a very long time. So odd!