Copycat Pizza Planet Cappuccino Cupcakes Recipe

This copycat recipe for the long lost (but not forgotten) Pizza Planet Cappuccino Cupcakes lets you recreate this Walt Disney World favorite at home.

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Back before it was “PizzzeRizzo”, Pizza Planet at Disney’s Hollywood Studios used to serve the most amazing Cappuccino Cupcakes.

Our family made it a point to grab lunch at the quick service restaurant at least once a trip to the theme park not because it has good pizza (it’s kind of “eh”) but to devour these cupcakes.

We have been on a search for them ever since they disappeared from the menu (I was surprised they never made an appearance at Starring Rolls Cafe when it was still open).

I’ve tried to recreate these in my kitchen and while my family voted the frosting as perfected years ago, there was still something not quite “there” with the cupcakes themselves.

Recently, I was flipping through an old dessert cookbook I’d purchased while on a Walt Disney World vacation years ago and stumbled upon a recipe for a layer cake that used coffee in the batter.

Thinking this could be a great match if not THE recipe, I converted it to a cupcake recipe. The results were incredibly moist, dense cupcakes that take me right back to one of my favorite vacation spots.

A Few Notes On This Recipe

  • The original Pizza Planet cupcakes were very dense. This recipe does create a dense cupcake right out of the oven but if you have the ability to make them in advance and allow them to sit in the refrigerator for a day or two before you frost and serve them, they will be even better.
  • This recipe makes about 20 standard cupcakes or 10 jumbo-sized cupcakes.
  • I used one batch of cappuccino buttercream frosting for the cupcakes photographed in this post and it was exactly enough to cover all 10 jumbo cupcakes. If you want to create higher mounds of frosting on your cupcakes, I recommend doubling the frosting recipe otherwise you will definitely run out before you get to your last cupcake.

I used these Jumbo Cupcake Pans and these bakery-style liners for the Pizza Planet Cupcakes pictured.

overhead view of a decorated cappuccino cupcate

What You’ll Need to Make the Famous Toy Story Pizza Planet Cupcakes

To Make the Cupcakes

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 1 cup of hot coffee
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cappuccino Buttercream Frosting

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cups of powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground coffee or expresso powder

For the Garnish

  • Health Toffee Bits
  • 1/4 cup dark chocolate chips, melted
cappuccino cupcake with buttercream frosting, toffee bits, and chocolate drizzle on a white plate

How To Make the Copycat Pizza Planet Cappuccino Cupcakes

Begin by preheating your oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit and place cupcake liners in your cupcake pans. (We are baking these at 325 degrees F instead of 350 degrees F because we want the cupcakes to have a nice flat top for decorating, as opposed to a domed top, which you’ll get if you bake them at a higher temperature.)

In a large bowl, mix the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cocoa powder, and sugar with an electric mixer at low speed, until just combined.

Next, add the oil, coffee, and milk to the dry ingredients. Mix at medium speed for another 2 minutes.

Now, add the eggs and vanilla extract to the mixture and mix for an additional 2 minutes at medium speed.

Evenly divide the batter between your cupcake liners. (Note, this is a very thin batter.)

If baking standard-sized cupcakes, bake for about 22 minutes until a toothpick stuck into the center comes out done. If making jumbo-sized cupcakes, bake for about 27 minutes, or until a toothpick stuck into the center comes out clean.

How To Make the Cappuccino Buttercream Frosting

In a small bowl mix the coffee grounds into the vanilla until dissolved and set aside. (If you are able to grind your own coffee beans for this, set your grinder to the espresso setting to create grounds that will dissolve quickly. I’ve had this burr grinder for years and love the flexibility it gives me when grinding beans.)

Using the whisk attachment of an electric stand mixer, whip the butter on medium-high for 5 minutes.

Next, reduce the mixer speed to low and begin adding the powdered sugar, a little bit at a time, waiting until what you’ve added has been incorporated before adding more.

Once you’ve added all of the powdered sugar, turn off the mixer and scrape the sides of the bowl and the inside of the whisk so that the entire mixture is in the middle of your bowl.

Turn the mixer back on at medium-high speed and whip the frosting for 1-2 minutes until it’s nice and fluffy. Add the coffee-vanilla mixture to the bowl and continue to mix at medium-high speeds until the mixture has been completely incorporated.

How to Assemble the Pizza Planet Cappuccino Cupcakes

3 frosted and decorated cappuccino cupcakes on a plate

Melt the Chocolate Chips – Place the chocolate chips in a small, heatproof microwave bowl and heat on high for 30 seconds. Stir the chocolate and place it back in the microwave for another 20 seconds, take it out, and stir again. Continue to heat in 20-second intervals until the chocolate chips are smooth and melted.

Frost the Cupcakes – If you don’t have a piping bag to frost the cupcakes, you can place the frosting into one lower bottom corner of a ziplock bag, cut the corner, and carefully squeeze the frosting onto the cupcakes. An icing knife works as well.

Add Health Toffee Bits – Sprinkle the toffee bits around the edges of where the frosting meets the cupcakes. Gently pat them into the frosting to make sure they stick.

Drizzle the Melted Chocolate – Use a small spoon to drizzle the melted chocolate chips over the top of the frosted cupcake.

For best results, store the cupcakes in your refrigerator and bring them to room temperature before serving.

overhead view of a decorated cappuccino cupcate

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3 frosted and decorated cappuccino cupcakes on a plate

Copycat Pizza Planet Cappuccino Cupcakes Recipe

Print Recipe
This copycat recipe for the long lost (but not forgotten) Pizza Planet Cappuccino Cupcakes lets you recreate this Walt Disney World favorite at home.
Prep Time:10 mins

Ingredients

For the Cupcakes

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 1 cup of hot coffee
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Cappuccino Buttercream Frosting

  • 1 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cups of powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground coffee or expresso powder

For Garnishing

  • Health Toffee Bits
  • 1/4 cup dark chocolate chips melted

Instructions

How To Make the Copycat Pizza Planet Cappuccino Cupcakes

  • Begin by preheating your oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit and place cupcake liners in your cupcake pans. (We are baking these at 325 degrees F instead of 350 degrees F because we want the cupcakes to have a nice flat top for decorating, as opposed to a domed top, which you’ll get if you bake them at a higher temperature.)
  • In a large bowl, mix the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cocoa powder, and sugar with an electric mixer at low speed, until just combined.
  • Next, add the oil, coffee, and milk to the dry ingredients. Mix at medium speed for another 2 minutes.
  • Now, add the eggs and vanilla extract to the mixture and mix for an additional 2 minutes at medium speed.
  • Evenly divide the batter between your cupcake liners. (Note, this is a very thin batter.)
  • If baking standard-sized cupcakes, bake for about 22 minutes until a toothpick stuck into the center comes out done. If making jumbo-sized cupcakes, bake for about 27 minutes, or until a toothpick stuck into the center comes out clean.

How To Make the Cappuccino Buttercream Frosting

  • In a small bowl mix the coffee grounds into the vanilla until dissolved and set aside. (If you are able to grind your own coffee beans for this, set your grinder to the espresso setting to create grounds that will dissolve quickly. I’ve had this burr grinder for years and love the flexibility it gives me when grinding beans.)
  • Using the whisk attachment of an electric stand mixer, whip the butter on medium-high for 5 minutes.
  • Next, reduce the mixer speed to low and begin adding the powdered sugar, a little bit at a time, waiting until what you’ve added has been incorporated before adding more.
  • Once you’ve added all of the powdered sugar, turn off the mixer and scrape the sides of the bowl and the inside of the whisk so that the entire mixture is in the middle of your bowl.
  • Turn the mixer back on at medium-high speed and whip the frosting for 1-2 minutes until it’s nice and fluffy. Add the coffee-vanilla mixture to the bowl and continue to mix at medium-high speeds until the mixture has been completely incorporated.

How to Assemble the Pizza Planet Cappuccino Cupcakes

  • Melt the Chocolate Chips – Place the chocolate chips in a small, heatproof microwave bowl and heat on high for 30 seconds. Stir the chocolate and place it back in the microwave for another 20 seconds, take it out, and stir again. Continue to heat in 20-second intervals until the chocolate chips are smooth and melted.
  • Frost the Cupcakes – If you don’t have a piping bag to frost the cupcakes, you can place the frosting into one lower bottom corner of a ziplock bag, cut the corner, and carefully squeeze the frosting onto the cupcakes. An icing knife works as well.
  • Add Health Toffee Bits – Sprinkle the toffee bits around the edges of where the frosting meets the cupcakes. Gently pat them into the frosting to make sure they stick.
  • Drizzle the Melted Chocolate – Use a small spoon to drizzle the melted chocolate chips over the top of the frosted cupcake.

Notes

  • The original Pizza Planet cupcakes were very dense. This recipe does create a dense cupcake right out of the oven but if you have the ability to make them in advance and allow them to sit in the refrigerator for a day or two before you frost and serve them, they will be even better.
  • This recipe makes about 20 standard cupcakes or 10 jumbo-sized cupcakes.
  • I used one batch of cappuccino buttercream frosting for the cupcakes photographed in this post and it was exactly enough to cover all 10 jumbo cupcakes. If you want to create higher mounds of frosting on your cupcakes, I recommend doubling the frosting recipe otherwise you will definitely run out before you get to your last cupcake.
  • For best results, store the cupcakes in your refrigerator and bring to room temperature before serving.
Servings: 10
Author: Snug and Cozy Life

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