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Hot Chocolate Cupcakes with Praline Filling

Everything you love about hot chocolate and pralines combined into one dessert. These Hot Chocolate Cupcakes are filled with decadent chocolate praline filling encased in a moist chocolate cupcake. The perfect dessert for the holiday season featuring marshmallows and candy canes.

This post is sponsored by Tony Chachere’s Famous Creole Cuisine.  All opinions, text, images or video are 100% my own. 

Pralines are the ultimate Southern candy and they are featured on every dessert table spread throughout the holiday season.  It has been a beloved candy in our family for generations. Hot chocolate is a childhood favorite that we’ve all grown to love. Every year I look forward to mom’s homemade hot chocolate while we wrap gifts next to the fireplace.

We’re just a few weeks away from Christmas and the holiday season is in full swing.  Last week I hosted the first holiday party of the season and I’m already looking forward to the next one.

Since I can remember, my mom used to make the best pralines and hot chocolate during the holiday season. This year, I wanted to bring back those special memories and create a holiday-inspired hot chocolate cupcake with chocolate praline filling. Not only has this Hot Chocolate Cupcake been a hit in our house, but I even got my friends in the Mid-West making it for Christmas this year.

Every year right around Thanksgiving time, I stock up on baking goods and spend the first week of December baking.  It’s a family tradition I grew up with and I look forward to it every year.  While many people are out shopping throughout December, I spent my days in the kitchen baking my favorite holiday cookies and desserts.

If you’ve ever visited New Orleans, then you know that classic dishes like Gumbo, Jambalaya, and Red Bean and Rice, give the south its culinary charm.  Well, those classic dishes are made with Tony Chachere’s Creole Seasoning. This year, I wanted to use the trusted Louisiana based brand to infuse the best tasting praline sauce throughout this cupcake recipe with their Praline Honey Ham marinade version in a dessert.

I’ve used Tony Chachere’s Praline Honey Ham Injectable Marinade throughout this recipe to incorporate a delicious caramel honey taste. The outcome is an incredibly delicate, moist, and rich dessert that truly deserves bragging rights. This cupcake tastes just like hot chocolate and pralines. I’ll be sharing these cupcakes in a holiday baking exchange with friends and I can’t wait to see their excitement as they bite into the center!

To get a rich and decadent praline filling stuffed into each bite, use Tony Chachere’s Praline Honey Ham Injectable Marinade. I found mine at my local grocery store in the baking or sauce aisle and recently on end aisle cap. Just one 17 oz. bottle for this recipe and you’ll be able to share an elevated dessert with family and friends during the holiday season.

If you’re looking for a new take featuring classic holiday recipes combined into one, give this cupcake recipe a try.

What are some of your family traditions for the holiday season?

Hot Chocolate Cupcakes

Everything you love about hot chocolate and pralines combined into one dessert. These Hot Chocolate Cupcakes are filled with decadent chocolate praline filling encased in a moist chocolate cupcake. The perfect dessert for the holiday season featuring marshmallows and candy canes.
5 from 11 votes
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: hot chocolate cupcakes
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 21 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 21 minutes
Servings: 18 servings
Calories: 464kcal


  • cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • cup cocoa powder
  • teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¾ cup buttermilk
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • cup Tony Chachere’s Praline Honey Ham Injectable Marinade (You’ll need about 1 17 oz. bottle for the entire recipe)
  • cup strongly brewed hot coffee

Chocolate Praline Filling

  • ¼ cup cold water
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ¾ cup chopped pecans
  • ½ cup packed light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup Tony Chachere’s Praline Honey Ham Injectable Marinade

Hot Chocolate Frosting

  • ¾ cup unsalted butter (at room temperature)
  • cup powdered confectioners’ sugar
  • 9 ounces cream cheese (softened)
  • ¾ cup vegetable shortening
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder
  • ½ tablespoon Tony Chachere’s Praline Honey Ham Injectable Marinade


  • Candy canes (crushed)
  • mini marshmallows
  • chocolate sprinkles


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line muffin pans with 18 paper liners.
    In a medium bowl, whisk flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda and baking powder.
    In a large bowl, whisk eggs. Whisk in buttermilk, oil, vanilla extract, and Tony Chachere’s Praline Honey Ham.
    Whisk in flour mixture then whisk in hot coffee until smooth.
    Divide cupcake batter equally between paper cups; about 2/3 to the top. Bake in oven for 19-22 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool cupcakes then place on cooling rack in refrigerator.
    In a medium saucepan, whisk together cornstarch and water. Turn heat to medium then whisk in chopped pecans, brown sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla extract, and Tony Chachere’s Praline Honey Ham. Frequently whisk mixture; about 7 minutes. Allow to cool at room temperature; about 10 minutes. Place saucepan in refrigerator to thicken; about 40 minutes or overnight.
    In a large bowl fit with a mixer, beat butter and powdered sugar until smooth. Beat in cream cheese and shortening in chunks until smooth. Beat in cocoa powder. Scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula then beat in Tony Chachere’s Praline Honey Ham. Cover bowl and refrigerate until nearly hard.
    To fill each cupcake with chocolate praline filling, use the back of a piping tip inserted into the center of the cupcake to remove a small portion of cake or use a wooden spatula to press cake down. Add 1 teaspoon filling into center.
    To pipe cupcakes, fill a pastry bag with frosting and a tip. I used a Russian ball tip to frost but any piping tip can be used.
    Refrigerate cupcakes then top with mini marshmallows, crushed candy canes, and chocolate sprinkles. 


Calories:464kcal | Carbohydrates:57g | Protein:5g | Fat:26g | Saturated Fat:11g | Polyunsaturated Fat:4g | Monounsaturated Fat:9g | Trans Fat:1g | Cholesterol:56mg | Sodium:160mg | Potassium:193mg | Fiber:3g | Sugar:43g | Vitamin A:476IU | Vitamin C:1mg | Calcium:58mg | Iron:2mg


  • Avatar for Swankyrecipes
    Analida Braeger
    12/06/2018 at 7:45 pm

    5 stars
    Wow. What a sweet bomb. I love love pralines. I think the surprise in the cupcake is delightful. I’m looking forward to giving these a go. Thanks for sharing.

  • Avatar for Swankyrecipes
    Kelly Anthony
    12/07/2018 at 7:25 am

    5 stars
    First of all, the frosting on these cupcakes has my heart totally and completely. Second of all, so does the base! An all-around perfect cupcake!

  • Avatar for Swankyrecipes
    12/07/2018 at 12:17 pm

    OH-MY-GOODNES! These look great! I don’t even know where to start. These look amazing!

  • Avatar for Swankyrecipes
    Carrie Ditton
    12/07/2018 at 1:45 pm

    5 stars
    AWESOME!!! Pure Awesomeness from the top to the bottom! Pinned!

  • Avatar for Swankyrecipes
    Renee Gardner
    12/08/2018 at 1:51 am

    These look so delicious! Love the layers of frosting with the mini marshmallows and sprinkles.

  • Avatar for Swankyrecipes
    Karyl Henry
    12/08/2018 at 9:44 am

    5 stars
    Okay, you totally caught me off guard with the marinade! I would never think to use it for a dessert recipe. And these cupcakes, BTW, look absolutely phenomenal!

  • Avatar for Swankyrecipes
    Krista Price
    12/08/2018 at 10:09 am

    5 stars
    These cupcakes are a head turner, for sure! You’re a cupcake genius for using the marinade. Absolutely brilliant! These look amazing!

  • Avatar for Swankyrecipes
    12/08/2018 at 12:16 pm

    5 stars
    I love that surprise inside! That praline filling sounds delicious!

  • Avatar for Swankyrecipes
    12/08/2018 at 8:22 pm

    5 stars
    There are so many things to love about these cupcakes! The flavors – praline and hot chocolate – so good. But that frosting to cake ratio is what I am talking about. These have my name written all over them!

  • Avatar for Swankyrecipes
    Chef Markus Mueller
    12/09/2018 at 8:12 am

    5 stars
    What an idea! Making the cupcakes taste like hot chocolate! These really are prefect for holiday parties! Ill have to start making them myself!

  • Avatar for Swankyrecipes
    12/09/2018 at 2:00 pm

    5 stars
    What a beautiful cupcake recipe! I love the flavours …praline, hot chocolate and the frosting is to die for! Your pictures do full justice!

  • Avatar for Swankyrecipes
    12/09/2018 at 9:08 pm

    5 stars
    WOW! These look fantastic! I love the idea of hot chocolate cup cakes it is so creative! This is going to be in my “must bake list” this year!

  • Avatar for Swankyrecipes
    Amanda Mason
    12/10/2018 at 12:09 am

    5 stars
    These look absolutely stunning! I’m loving how pretty these are and that injectable marinade! These are perfect for the holiday season!!

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