In Italy, Nutella sandwiches are the equivalent of the classic PB&J, but honestly, all Europeans love Nutella on... well, everything. Bread, croissants, crackers, crunchy breadsticks, bananas, strawberries... seriously, you name it. In America, it's more of a new thing, but it seems to be quickly catching on. Thank goodness. :)
While I was just hanging out on Pinterest the other day, I spotted this amazingly delicious looking picture of what appeared to be chocolate and vanilla marble cupcakes, but I was happily surprised to discover that it was actually Self-frosting Nutella Cupcakes. Um, say what?! And I was even more pleasantly surprised when I found out how easy they are to make. Dear cupcakes, where have you been my whole life?! These are so fabulous with so little effort that it'll absolutely blow your mind. Think about a dense, almost chewy vanilla cupcake. Almost like a cookie. Then add in a generous swirl of Nutella that magically melds with the cake batter in the oven and becomes warm and melty while the top becomes crunchy... yep. Heaven! Make these right now. If you have Nutella in your pantry, you probably have everything else you need. Yuuu-um.
Nutella Marble Cupcakes
Yields: 12 standard-size cupcakes
Adapted from a Yahoo article?
1/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temp.
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup white sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/3-ish cup Nutella, at room temp. (more or less as wanted/needed)
Preheat the oven to 325F.
In a medium bowl, beat together the butter, oil, and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add in the eggs, one at a time, then the vanilla, beating until well incorporated. Add in the flour, baking powder, and salt, and beat on low speed until combined. It's supposed to be super thick and sticky! Line a 12-cup muffin tin with little muffin liners.
Using a (nonstick-sprayed) cookie scoop or spoon, fill about 1/3 of a liner with the batter, then add a spoonful of Nutella. Top with more cake batter, then more Nutella!* Use a knife or a toothpick to swirl. Repeat with all, then bake for 25-30 minutes, until they spring back when poked with a finger. Enjoy with a glass of cold milk!
*Side note: I didn't do the cake batter/Nutella layering, as the original recipe didn't suggest it, but I really wish I did! It may take a little extra time, but it's gonna be so worth it! The only thing I disliked about the cupcakes was that the Nutella goodness was restricted only to the top... having it throughout the cupcake would make it even better. Just sayin.