A Time for Reason, or How to make Guinness and chocolate muffins

I started this blog out of the need to write more, but without a direction in mind, it was difficult to keep it up. But finally common sense and practicality have come to the fore. Instead of tearing pages from magazines and trying to remember which of my books contains the required recipe, I’ve decided to start adding them here. It will also be convenient when people ask me for recipes (this is for you, Laura), to just send them a link.

Here we go. Enjoy and good luck!

Guinness and chocolate muffin/cupcakes:

This recipe is my baking version of Spancil Hill, I’m sick of making them, yet I know they won’t fail me. They last for days. I once left one in the fridge for a full week and it was perfect when tasted. I’ve tried to make them last for longer, but they are usually demolished before I have time to experiment.


250ml Guinness (bottles and cans usually come in 330mls, so don’t be afraid to lash the rest in)
250g unsalted butter, cut in pieces
75g cocoa
400g caster sugar
142ml sour cream
2 eggs
1 tbsp vanilla
275g plain flour
2.5 tsp bicarbonate

For the topping:
300g Philadelphia cream cheese
150g icing sugar
150ml double/whipping cream


Pre-heat oven to 180 degree Celsius (fan oven 160 degrees)
Line muffin/cupcake cases

Pour Guinness into a large wide saucepan and add butter
Heat until butter is melted
Whisk in cocoa and sugar

Beat the sour cream with eggs and vanilla
Pour into pan of beer mix
Whisk in flour and bicarbonate

Fill muffin cases 3/4 of the way (it will be quite runny and full of bubbles from the Guinness)
Bake for 18-20 minutes
Cool in tins for 20 minutes before setting out on a wire tray

For the topping:
Whip the cream with a whisk or an electric beater until firm.

Mix in the cream cheese and beat until smooth

Sieve over icing sugar and mix it in.
Spread on top of the cakes, so they look like a pint.


10 Comments Add yours

  1. Laura Whiskerd says:

    Thank you Sylvia!


  2. Pas de probléme, my love. Sorry it took so long!


  3. martha says:

    Guinness=full of iron and protein (??) =>these are health foods. QED you’re welcome


  4. Christine says:

    Success! Thanks Sylvia, didn’t have a weighing scales so winged it a little on measurements but tastes good (if not distinctly Guinness-y … The only measurement I followed to a t … Lashed it in)


    1. Splendid! There isn’t a strong Guinness taste but it really contributes to the moistness of the cake. well done 🙂


  5. Declan Treanor says:

    Great recipe, great result! Thanks Sylvia.


    1. Well done! Spread the word to anyone who needs baking info. I’ll make a couple of clarifications, based on your questions 😉


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