For the Cupcakes:
▪ 1 cup Guinness stout
▪ 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
▪ ¾ cup Dutch-process cocoa powder
▪ 2 cups all-purpose flour
▪ 2 cups granulated sugar
▪ 1½ teaspoons baking soda
▪ ¾ teaspoons salt
▪ 2 eggs
▪ ⅔ cup sour cream
For the Whiskey Ganache Filling:
▪ 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate
▪ ⅔ cup heavy cream
▪ 2 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
▪ 2 teaspoons Irish whiskey
For the Baileys Frosting:
▪ 2 cups unsalted butter, at room temperature
▪ 5 cups powdered sugar
▪ 6 tablespoons Baileys Irish Cream
Whiskey Caramel Sauce:
• 1 cup sugar
• ¼ cup water
• ½ cup heavy whipping cream
• 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
• ¼ teaspoon salt
• ¼ cup Irish whiskey
1. To Make the Cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 24 cupcake cups with liners. Bring the Guinness and butter to a simmer in a heavy, medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the cocoa powder and whisk until the mixture is smooth. Cool slightly.
2. Whisk the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt in a large bowl to combine. Using an electric mixer, beat the eggs and sour cream on medium speed until combined. Add the Guinness-chocolate mixture to the egg mixture and beat just to combine. Reduce the speed to low, add the flour mixture and beat briefly. Using a rubber spatula, fold the batter until completely combined. Divide the batter among the cupcake liners. Bake until a thin knife inserted into the center comes out clean, about 17 minutes. Cool the cupcakes on a rack.
3. To Make the Whiskey Ganache Filling: Finely chop the chocolate and transfer it to a heatproof bowl. Heat the cream until simmering and pour it over the chocolate. Let it sit for one minute and then, using a rubber spatula, stir it from the center outward until smooth. Add the butter and whiskey and stir until combined. Let the ganache cool until thick but still soft enough to be piped.
4. To Fill the Cupcakes: Using a 1-inch round cookie cutter (or the bottom of a large decorating tip), cut the centers out of the cooled cupcakes, going about two-thirds of the way down. Transfer the ganache to a piping back with a wide tip and fill the holes in each cupcake to the top.
5. To Make the Baileys Frosting: Using the whisk attachment of a stand mixer, whip the butter on medium-high speed for 5 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl occasionally. Reduce the speed to medium-low and gradually add the powdered sugar until all of it is incorporated. Add the Baileys, increase the speed to medium-high and whip for another 2 to 3 minutes, until it is light and fluffy.
6. Using your favorite decorating tip, or an offset spatula, frost the cupcakes and decorate with sprinkles, if desired. Store the cupcakes in an airtight container.
7. To Make the Whiskey Caramel: Into a large heavy bottom sauce pan add sugar and water. Using a wooden spoon, stir until combined. Cook, stirring continually, over medium-high heat until mixture boils. Then leave alone until mixture turns into a caramel/amber color. Remove pan from heat when color is achieved.
8. WHILE sugar is cooking, into a separate sauce pan add: cream, butter and salt. Cook over medium heat until warmed through and butter has melted.
9. When amber color has been achieved, CAREFULLY and SLOWLY pour cream mixture into pot. Mixture will bubble furiously, gently stir using a silicon spatula and continue to stir until well combined.
10. Once combined, add whiskey and stir to combine. Set aside to cool slightly and then drizzle on top of the frosted cupcakes. Sprinkle on green sanding sugar/festive sprinkles over the top.