Decadent Rose Cupcakes with white chocolate ganache

Rose cupcakes with white chocolate ganache

These decadent Rose Cupcakes with white chocolate ganache are old fashioned cupcakes delicately flavored with rose water and with a rose flavored white chocolate ganache cake covering, instead of buttercream frosting. This recipe is ideal for a special event like Valentine’s Day or a birthday.

When I was young I loved the plain cakes, without cream or frosting, that were served at celebrations and religious festivals. The cakes and loaves had the fine crumb of a moist pound cake recipe and my mother’s generation called them ‘Triem’.

I never knew what that word ‘Triem’ meant, but as a child I used to call them ‘dry cakes’ because they had no buttercream frosting or whipped cream topping.

I remember the first time I asked out loud for a slice of ‘dry cake’ in company. The hostess’es eyes widened and the look of shock and horror on her face made my mother hastily explain that I was referring to the butter cakes without the icing. Sometimes the traditional pound cakes and loaves included glacé cherries in the batter, or had flaked almonds scattered over the top.

Pound cake cupcakes and loaves

Rose loaf cake or ‘Triem’ with cherries and almonds

I don’t recall my mother ever making a Triem and my only attempt from a friend’s recipe did not quite taste like hers. A few years ago I found a cupcake recipe on what appears to be a now defunct baking website. I have made this vanilla cake without milk a few times since then, but this pink rose flavored cake recipe is certainly better than the original in my estimation. This is an easy recipe to attempt if you want to learn how to make pound cake from scratch.

I wish I could explain the exquisite aroma that filled my home while these cakes were baking. Heady, like the scent of newly blossomed roses and rich with the aroma of buttery cake. When I tested one that was all dollied up with ganache it occurred to me that this may be favorite cake flavor combination to date.

Cupcakes being frosted with ganache

How to make fail proof Pink Rose cupcakes

  • I set out to make a pink rose cupcakes using natural beetroot powder for coloring, but that didn’t exactly turn out the color I expected. It was a deep orange instead (yellow yolks plus too little red powder).
  • My second version excluded the beetroot powder but included rose water and freeze dried strawberry bits that gave it just the right amount of taste and color. The taste was reminiscent of the buttery ‘Triem’ loaf cakes that I loved from my childhood.
  • ‘If at first you don’t succeed, try and try again…’ That refrain kept playing over and over in my mind for another week before I decided to attempt it one more time. Thankfully the third version had the correct color with the addition of a small amount of rose gel color. I made 12 cupcakes and a small loaf.
  • To the loaf I added cherries, slivered almonds and a dusting of confectioner’s sugar as a throwback to the Triem cake from my childhood.
  • To glam up the pink rose cupcakes, I added a frosting of rose pink white chocolate ganache, raspberries and chocolate curls.

Cupcakes with rose colored white chocolate ganache, raspberries and white chocolate curls

How to make white chocolate ganache

  • Use white chocolate with at least 30% cocoa fat for the best result.
  • White chocolate takes longer to melt than milk or dark chocolate so the cream must be hot enough.
  • After pouring over the just boiled cream, let it sit before stirring. This will ensure that it melts evenly and doesn’t leave any unmelted pieces.
  • Don’t leave out the rose syrup as it adds a very delicate delicious flavor to the ganache.
  • Allow it too cool until thick cream before whipping.

Rose cupcakes with white chocolate ganache for afternoon tea

If old fashioned pound cake recipes are not your thing then perhaps you would prefer one of these:

Rose cupcakes with white chocolate ganache

Decadent Rose cupcakes with white chocolate ganache

Razena Schroeder
This beautifully buttery pound cake batter is scented with rose water and can be used for cupcakes or loaf cakes then topped with a decadent white chocolate ganache.
4.87 from 15 votes
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Course Cakes
Cuisine Cape Malay
Servings 24
Calories 296 kcal


Cake batter

  • 250 grams butter softened at room temperature
  • 250 grams fine granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 260 grams cake or fine sponge flour approximately 500 ml or 2 cups, sifted
  • 15 ml baking powder approximately 3 level teaspoons, sifted
  • 10 ml vanilla extract approximately 2 teaspoons
  • 10 ml rose water approximately 2 teaspoons
  • 60 ml milk approximately 1/4 cup or 4 tablespoons
  • 5 drops rose gel color as required to achieve desired color

White Chocolate Ganache

  • 300 ml heavy whipping cream
  • 300 grams white chocolate at least 30% cocoa fat
  • 10 ml rose syrup approximately 2 teaspoons
  • 5 drops rose gel color as required to achieve desired color
  • 200 grams Raspberries
  • 50 grams Pink chocolate curls for decoration optional



  • Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees Celcius or 160 fan / 350 F / Gas mark 4.
  • Beat together the butter and sugar until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is light and creamy. This may take between 5-10 minutes depending on the type of cake mixer you are using.
  • Add the eggs to the butter and sugar mixture one at a time and beat thoroughly between each addition.
  • Add the vanilla extract, rose water and rose gel color and ensure that you scrape the sides of the bowl to mix in all the butter and sugar at the bottom and sides.
  • Fold the flour and baking powder into the butter mixture in three batches, alternating with the milk mixture.
  • Spoon into a greased baking tin and bake for 35-40 minutes. It may require a shorter baking time if you are using a fan assisted oven.
  • You may use the same batter for cupcakes and they will take about 15 – 20 minutes.


  • Bring the cream to the boil and pour over the chocolate pieces.
  • Allow to sit for 3-5 minutes then add the rose syrup, gel color and stir until thoroughly combined.
  • Allow to chill in the fridge until it has the consistency of thick cream.
  • Whip until thick and spreadable consistency then decorate as desired.


Sift the flour at least three times before adding to the batter to ensure a light and tender crumb.
Optional - add 5 grams freeze dried strawberry or raspberry pieces to the cake batter.
You can use the batter for cupcakes and this will yield 20-24 cupcakes. Alternately you can make two small loaves or two sandwich cakes. I made 12 cupcakes and one small loaf. 


Calories: 296kcalCarbohydrates: 29gProtein: 4gFat: 19gSaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 70mgSodium: 103mgPotassium: 159mgFiber: 1gSugar: 19gVitamin A: 494IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 75mgIron: 1mg

Disclaimer: Nutritional information for the recipe is an approximation and varies according to the ingredients and products used.

Keyword chocolate, easy baking, halaal recipes
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Rose cupcakes with white chocolate ganache and raspberries

My recipe for Rose cupcakes with white chocolate ganache was originally developed for a Bloggers Monthly challenge to commemorate Breast Cancer Awareness month, and the theme was anything pink. You can read my blog post about Breast Cancer Awareness month here. When you try this recipe in your own kitchen, I pray that you remember all those whom we have lost and supplicate for all those who are still battling illness and disease.

This recipe for Rose cupcakes with white chocolate ganache celebrates those who are still fighting the good fight and is in remembrance of those who have passed.

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This was first published on 31 October 2015 and has since been updated.


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  • Reply
    October 30, 2017 at 12:13 am

    A rose ganache?! Now that’s something new to me. I can imagine this going well around here and maybe I would add some crushed pistachio on top as deko and extra flavor kick.

    • Reply
      Razena Schroeder
      November 1, 2017 at 2:08 pm

      I will try the crushed pistachio idea next time. Thanks Helene 🙂

    • Reply
      Razena Schroeder
      November 1, 2017 at 2:09 pm

      Actually, there is rose syrup flavoring the ganache so you were spot on 🙂

  • Reply
    October 29, 2017 at 5:32 pm

    How beautiful are these? Perfect for an afternoon tea party, for sure! Yum!

  • Reply
    October 28, 2017 at 11:08 am

    These cupcakes look delicious and certainly not ‘dry cakes’ – great story 🙂

    • Reply
      Razena Schroeder
      October 29, 2017 at 1:07 am

      The irony is… I actually hate the real dry cakes, the ones you can’t eat without a big cup of something to wash it down because it’s getting stuck in the back of the throat 😂

  • Reply
    peter @feed your soul too
    October 27, 2017 at 6:15 pm

    These look delicious. I love the color you got on these.

    • Reply
      Razena Schroeder
      October 27, 2017 at 11:47 pm

      I tried natural color but the beet powder and egg yolk’s yellow resulted in a very strange orangey shade. The gel color worked perfectly and only a few drops were needed to get it a pretty shade of pink.

  • Reply
    November 12, 2016 at 7:42 pm

    The cup cakes look awesome…loved the presentation.

  • Reply
    Heather @Boston Girl Bakes
    October 18, 2016 at 2:15 am

    Rose water is still on my list of baking to do list of things to try! And love these for Breast cancer awareness month!! 🙂

    • Reply
      Razena Schroeder
      October 18, 2016 at 10:37 am

      Rose water gives such a lovely subtle floral fragrance to baked goods, as long as you don’t use too much 🙂

  • Reply
    Platter Talk
    October 18, 2016 at 1:07 am

    Hi. Trying this again. I think that these cupcakes would be great for a wedding shower or to use on Mother’s Day.

  • Reply
    October 17, 2016 at 9:57 pm

    I love a versatile cake batter. These cupcakes would be perfect for Valentine’s Day, birthdays, Mother’s Day, Wedding Showers…any special time, or just to surprise your family!

    • Reply
      Razena Schroeder
      October 18, 2016 at 10:35 am

      I wish I had a gluten free version of these for you, but I suspect you could use gluten free flour 🙂

  • Reply
    October 17, 2016 at 9:20 pm

    These look positively pretty! I think I am going to make them for a bridal shower I am hosting. Thank you for sharing! xo Tiffany

    • Reply
      Razena Schroeder
      October 18, 2016 at 10:35 am

      Ooohhh. A bridal shower sounds like fun, and pretty pink cupcakes will definitely be a treat 🙂

  • Reply
    Mandee Pogue
    October 17, 2016 at 7:37 pm

    Oh man! I am not much of a baker, but you make this look so easy! I can’t wait to try!

    • Reply
      Razena Schroeder
      October 18, 2016 at 10:34 am

      It is probably one of the easiest to make (and eat).

  • Reply
    The Food Hunter
    October 17, 2016 at 7:02 pm

    I bet it smelled delightful in there!

  • Reply
    April 16, 2016 at 2:42 pm

    Such adorable cupcakes! They look too good to eat Razena! I love a hint of rose flavoring in “dry cakes” too 😉

    • Reply
      Razena Schroeder
      April 16, 2016 at 6:37 pm

      Thanks Meeta… I love my ‘dry cakes’ and want to try a few new flavour combinations soon 🙂

  • Reply
    Gwen @simplyhealthyfamily
    April 16, 2016 at 3:08 am

    I know one little 6 year old girl who would be thrilled to help me enjoy these! I’m sure they smelled lovely as well!

    • Reply
      Razena Schroeder
      April 16, 2016 at 11:05 am

      I can’t even begin to explain how good the apartment smelled while these were baking… roses… buttery cake…

  • Reply
    Sam | Ahead of Thyme
    April 16, 2016 at 2:51 am

    These cupcakes are so cute! Need some NOW!