IMG_9695I’m always on a quest to make lighter desserts that actually taste good. No fake sugar, no weird ingredients, just straight up deliciousness. That’s how my lighter chocolate cake recipe was born, and I’m constantly tweaking and refining it to make other delicious treats out of it. Recently, I did the math, and realized I could use that same light chocolate cake base to make a seriously delicious cupcake that is just 4 WW Smart Points. 4. Seriously, as far as dessert goes – that’s pretty insane.

The cake

lighter chocolate cupcakeThe cake is made lighter a few ways. First off, a drastic reduction in the amount of sugar and oil – leaving just enough for it to still be sweet and moist, but not so much that you break the (caloric) bank. Next, some smart substitutions, both of which happen to be 0 points (and if you’re not following WW, they make the cake higher in protein and lower in fat). Nonfat Greek Yogurt, one of my favorite healthier baking ingredients, makes this cake moist and fluffy without adding a ton of calories. Espresso (which could be subbed with coffee), brings out the deep, rich flavor of the cocoa without adding any fat or calories, but makes a huge difference in the taste.

The toppings

You could totally top this with frosting, and literally any flavor would be delicious. I particularly love this cake with a peanut butter frosting, raspberry buttercream, or lightened up Greek Yogurt frosting.

However, to keep this dessert super light and low in points, I topped it with Cool Whip! 2 tbsp is just one point, and it’s creamy, sweet, and delicious. I then threw on some sprinkles and a few chocolate chips, and voila – the perfect bite-sized dessert that’s just as satisfying as any bakery cupcake, but without the guilt!

Looking for some other light baked goods?

Check out some of my other lightened up dessert recipes:

*Commission links below. If you shop through these links, I get a small percentage of the sale, at no extra cost to you!

Let’s make Light Chocolate Cupcakes!


  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder (unsweetened)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup Greek Yogurt (0% fat)
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup brewed coffee (or 1/4 cup espresso mixed with 1/4 cup water), room temp
  • Cool whip and desired toppings


  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, salt, and cocoa powder
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together egg, canola oil, Greek Yogurt and pour into dry mixture. Whisk together to combine.
  4. Pour in coffee (should be room temp so it doesn’t cook the egg) and whisk entire mixture until you have a uniform batter.
  5. Pour into a greased or lined cupcake pan, filling each cup roughly halfway. I like to use silicone baking cups to make life easier- no greasing required!
  6. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean
  7. Let cool completely, then frost with Cool Whip, add toppings, and enjoy!

Let me know if you make this recipe by leaving a comment and/or tagging me on Instagram at @foodbythegram!

12 thoughts on “Lighter Chocolate Cupcake

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s