Who doesn’t like chocolate? Enjoy this impressive tower at your next birthday celebration.

Tip: If you use paper cups in the muffin pan, remove them from cupcakes before assembling the tower.

Makes 12 cupcakes; Serving size: 1 cupcake

  • preheat oven to 350 F (180 C)
  • 12 cup muffin pan, lightly greased or lined with paper cups


  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp instant coffee granules (or 1 tbsp brewed coffee)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup low-fat plain yogurt

Lava Icing:

  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sweetened flaked coconut
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tbsp butter or canola oil
  • 2 tbsp 2% milk
  1. In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and baking soda;
  2. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on high speed, beat brown sugar, eggs and oil for 3 minutes. Add cocoa, coffee, and vanilla and beat for 1 minute. Stir in flour mixture alternately with yogurt, making two additions of flour and one of yogurt.
  3. Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups. Bake in preheated oven for 18 to 20 minutes or until tops spring back when lightly touched. Let cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then transfer to rack to cool completely.
  4. Icing: Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine brown sugar, coconut, cocoa, butter and milk. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. Boil for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool completely.
  5. On a large serving plate, arrange cupcakes in a tower, with four on the base, four on the second level, three on the next level and 1 on top. Pour icing over tower. Serve immediately.

Nutrients per serving:

  • Calories: 237
  • Fat: 13.5 g
  • Saturated fat: 3.3 g
  • Sodium: 102 mg (4% DV)
  • Carbohydrate: 27 g
  • Fiber: 1 g (4% DV)
  • Protein: 4 g
  • Calcium: 64 mg (6% DV)
  • Iron: 1.4 mg (10% DV)

Diabetes Food Choice Values

  • 2 carbohydrates
  • 2-1/2 fats

– from the cookbook, “Dietitians of Canada Cook”, by Mary Sue Waisman, Msc, RD. Recipe writer: Caroline Dubeau, Dietitian, Ontario

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