Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes

These Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes are made of soft vanilla vegan white cake packed full of colorful sprinkles and topped with a vegan vanilla “buttercream” icing.

Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes

In the News

If you follow me on Instagram, you may have noticed this past week was a bit chaotic for me. Florida became the target of a nasty hurricane named Irma.

I was all set to share with you these cute little Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes when I had to start evacuation planning for me and my family. This was definitely not how I planned to spend my week.

At first, we weighed our options of evacuating to North Carolina or just waiting out the storm. Even though hurricanes give you time to prepare, they also have the ability to quickly change course.

Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes

A Hard Decision

Each day that passed leading up to the hurricane left fewer and fewer resources behind. Stores were out of water, bread, batteries, plywood, almost everything. Gas stations were out of gas. Hotels were booked solid north of Tampa and on into Georgia and South Carolina.

Hurricane house

We made the hard decision to stay because I would rather be near home with the supplies I knew we already had than stranded with no gas and nowhere to go three hundred miles from home. This is not an easy choice to make for anyone. My only advice is that you do what you feel is right for you and your family to keep them safe.

My son and I, stayed with friends that live farther inland during the hurricane because our home is located in a flood zone and flooding looked to be likely. We evacuated but we did not evacuate far from home. I am so grateful to our friends for taking us in and making us feel so comfortable and welcome in their home. I will never be able to repay them for their kindness.

In the two years I have lived here, I had not yet had to deal with a hurricane scare. This was definitely a lesson to be learned and a memory I will never forget. However, I believe I passed a Floridian milestone and learned exactly how I react to stress.

Stress Baking

Is it any surprise that I stress bake? As Captain Cupcakeasaurus and I were making evacuation decisions, I got to work baking. I couldn’t control myself. My anxiety was through the roof and all I could think to do was to focus on the food.

Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes

I baked a lasagna, two chicken broccoli casseroles, a flat of brownies, a chocolate poke sheet cake and thirty chicken burritos.

That was just the first day.

The next day I made homemade mustard basted chicken legs, sausage and date Brussel sprouts, cauliflower mash and two batches of chocolate cake box cookies.

I was frenzy baking y’all!

Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes

I was frenzy baking y'all! Click To Tweet

Free Baking Conversion Cheat Sheet

First Responders

Thankfully, all of the food was put to a good use and sent off to the Fire Station for those hard working firefighters. Captain Cupcakeasaurus went into work with the instructions that he would be working for a minimum of seventy-two hours. Not only were we weathering a hurricane, but we were weathering it apart.

Fire Station

Our community came together to look after each other. I have to praise all of our first responders, police and even the linemen (Is linepeople the gender neutral term for that?) that were working during and immediately after the storm to help those in need and get everyone back in their homes and their power back on.

I am very thankful that the storm died down significantly by the time it crossed our home so damage was minimal. We only had two trees down in the yard and no flooding. Things could have been SO MUCH worse.

Hurricane Trees

Back to the Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes

Originally, I was creating this custom cupcake flavor for an artist friend who also happens to be Vegan. I wanted to create a colorful and fun cupcake reminiscent of her artwork and photography.

Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes

Once the news of the upcoming storm hit, these cuties were specifically made to brighten my day. After seeing the colorful swirls of Hurricane Irma across the weather map, I felt like colorful sprinkles might be a fun way to bring back a little cheer.

Something about those rainbow colored sprinkles always puts a smile on my face.You can purchase your own bag of colorful Vegan Funfetti here.

Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes

Confessions

In all honesty, this was not my first batch of Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes. But as you know, I refuse to share with you a recipe that is not rightly approved by my kitchen first.

The first time, I made these cupcakes, they were a disaster. I had filled my cupcake tins three-quarters full as I often do. The cupcakes rose so much they expanded over the top of my tins and created sugar cookie like discs over the top of my cupcakes!

Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes

I tweaked the recipe to better balance the wet and dry ingredients to hopefully reduce so much expansion and I made sure not to overfill my cupcake tins. There you go. My error is your reward. Just make sure to only put a Tablespoon of batter in each cupcake tin and you will have beautiful level cupcakes.

Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes

 

I Want To Know

After this experience with Irma, I have a greater empathy for those who have been at the mercy of Mother Nature. Have you ever experienced a natural disaster in your area? How did it affect you or change your perspective? Do you have any tips or tricks to prepare for such a disaster?

I want to know about you. Comment down below or you are always welcome to send me a personal email if you’d prefer.

Sharing our experiences and coming together is how we make life taste sweeter.

 

Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes
Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes
Print Recipe
Soft vanilla vegan white cake packed full of colorful sprinkles and topped with a vegan vanilla "buttercream" icing.
Servings Prep Time
18 cupcakes 10 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Servings Prep Time
18 cupcakes 10 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes
Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes
Print Recipe
Soft vanilla vegan white cake packed full of colorful sprinkles and topped with a vegan vanilla "buttercream" icing.
Servings Prep Time
18 cupcakes 10 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Servings Prep Time
18 cupcakes 10 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Ingredients
Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes
Vegan Vanilla "Buttercream" Icing
Servings: cupcakes
Instructions
Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place liners in a cupcake tin.
  2. Add apple cider vinegar to the cup of almond milk, stir and set to the side.
  3. In a large bowl, use electgric mixer on medium high speed to cream coconut spread and sugar.
  4. In a separate bowl combine and whisk dry ingredients of flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  5. Add a third of the dry ingredients to the sugar mixture and mix thoroughly.
  6. Add half of the almond milk to the sugar mixture and mix thoroughly.
  7. Alternate additions of almond milk and dry ingredients, mixing thoroughly between each addition. Finish with the last third of the flour mixture.
  8. Add vanilla and mix with a spatula.
  9. With spatula, fold in the rainbow sprinkles.
  10. Place a Tablespoon of batter in each lined cupcake tin. The batter rises significantly and any more than a Tablespoon will result in overflow during baking.
  11. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes. A toothpick inserted will come out clean when done.
Vegan Vanilla "Buttercream" Icing
  1. In a large bowl using the whisk attachment of an electric mixer, beat coconut spread until smooth.
  2. Add in sifted powdered sugar a little at a time, mixing thoroughly between each addition.
  3. Add in vanilla extract and mix until well blended.
  4. Refrigerate until ready to use or if a firmer consitency is desired.
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Triple Chocolate Cupcakes

Triple Chocolate cupcakes including a rich moist chocolate cake filled with a semisweet chocolate filling and topped with a fluffy salted chocolate buttercream.

 Triple Chocolate Cupcakes

Getting Started

When I was a single working mom, do you know what my favorite store was? I’ll give you a hint; it wasn’t Target.

My favorite store was Lowe’s. Yes, the home improvement store.

After working long hours and having minimal expendable income, I took great pride in improving my home one Do It Yourself project at a time.

I could always count on the friendly and knowledgeable faces at Lowe’s to clue me in on if a job was outside my capabilities or not.

In the short four years I lived in that North Carolina home, I managed to paint every room, change out all the door hardware, replace the innards of a running toilet, install closet shelving in all of the closets, and hang my own flat screen.

Those are just some of the many projects I took on during my stay.  I was visiting Lowe’s almost every week.

 Triple Chocolate Cupcakes

I suppose I could say, “I have a husband for that now,” but then what kind of feminist would I be?

Captain Cupcakeasaurus knows my Lowe’s obsession and shares in it. I may not be at the home improvement store each week anymore, but someone from our family is there.

Doing the Maintenance

After sixteen years of living in his bachelor pad house, the home improvement bug has finally bitten him too. Ok, that bug very well may have been me!

What is the project this week? Well, in true cakeasaurus fashion, we don’t just do one project at a time. That might just be practical!

 Triple Chocolate Cupcakes

While I’ve been tackling the baking and sharing, Captain Cupcakeasaurus has been diligently working away at painting the trim of our living room.

We painted the walls in July before we had family visit and are just now getting around to the trim. Ugh!

Simultaneously, we are also scraping off really old paint from our beadboard kitchen. If you are thinking,”Wait! Don’t you bake in that kitchen?!” The answer is YES!

Obviously, we aren’t paint-scraping WHILE I am baking. But, it is a huge eyesore until we can get it all scraped and ready for a fresh new color.

If you happen to be scraping paint yourself this weekend, I can not say enough about this handy little tool. The Big Blade Scraper slides a thin blade under the edge of the paint and then peels it right on off. It is also way less noisy than power tool options.

Secret DIY guilty pleasure: I actually love scraping the paint. It is so satisfying to take that scraper and shave off a good long piece of paint. I liken the feeling to peeling an apple in one long continuous ribbon or something like that.

So, while Captain Cupcakeasaurus is doing the manual labor in the living room, I decided to create a treat to reward his efforts.

 Triple Chocolate Cupcakes

Do It Yourself

A fellow blogger, Ali Jaffri, is a contributor for DIYsomo.com. The site is a one stop shop for almost all of your Do It Yourself project tutorials. Whether you are scraping paint or working on a car, the site has helpful “how to” articles for all sorts of projects.

Speaking with Ali about his site, we inevitably started talking about his favorite cupcake flavors. This, honestly, is how all of my conversations turn. Is it any wonder that I write about cake for a living?

Well, his favorite is also the favorite of millions of people and I had to create a cupcake that would provide the perfect treat after a long week of labor. Monday is Labor Day after all!

Triple Chocolate

Maybe after trying Beauty Bae’s Blueberry Blue Velvet cupcakes, you realize I have a tendency to take a concept and totally overdo it. Today is no exception.

Chocolate is always a favorite around this house and when I heard Ali’s favorite is chocolate as well that gave me further license to chocolate this cupcake up.

Start With A Base

The only time that moist is a positive adjective is when you are talking about cake. This moist rich chocolate base is very similar to the one used in the Kahlua Chocolate Cherry Cupcakes. I traded Kahlua for a salted caramel brewed coffee.

The cake is dark and dense enough to cut a hole in. You know what that means? That’s right! It is begging for a filling!

Chocolate Filling

The chocolate filling is very similar to a ganache but prepared slightly different. The coconut milk makes the chocolate a smooth shiny consistency; perfect for cupcake filling and drizzling.

 Triple Chocolate Cupcakes

The best chocolate filling is made with the best chocolate. There really is no comparison. Ghirardelli chocolate morsels melt in your mouth and make the whole house smell like chocolate.

Take advantage of twenty percent off of your Ghiradelli chocolate purchase this Labor Day weekend. Labor Day Sale: 20% off Site-wide at Ghirardelli.com.

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The recipe makes a bit more than you will probably need but you can always freeze it and use it again later for more cupcakes or to elevate your favorite hot chocolate.

After filling your cupcakes, save some of the filling for your buttercream; you’re going to need it.

Chocolate Buttercream

I am screaming! This is THE BEST chocolate buttercream I’ve ever made.

What the buttercream is not:

It is not overly chocolatey. We have enough chocolate going on. However, if you feel it just isn’t quite chocolate enough for your tastes, just add some more of the filling to the buttercream.

What the buttercream is:

It is so light, so decadent, just a little salty and makes you want more.

You know when you eat a chocolate on chocolate cake and about half way through the slice your belly starts to grumble and your teeth start to ache? That is precisely what this buttercream icing prevents. You get all the chocolate loving flavor but none of the regret.

Where Do They Go

I often get asked about where my cupcakes end up. Baking every week, there is no way my little family of three could possibly be putting away all those cupcakes. You’re right, we’re not!

I am typically sending them off to the fire station for Captain Cupcakeasaurus and his fellow firefighters to enjoy. Often friends and neighbors will get a few goodies too.

This week, this batch was so delicious they didn’t survive long enough to make their way to a different home. A few snuck off to a friend’s house but the majority were consumed right here in our paint scraped kitchen.

 Triple Chocolate Cupcakes

DIY Rewards

Over the holiday weekend, make sure you take a moment to relax from all your home improvement projects and reward yourself with these Triple Chocolate Cupcakes.

If you aren’t sure what project you want to tackle next, or you aren’t sure how to get started check out DIYsomo for inspiration. Let Ali know what you think of the chocolate deliciousness he inspired.

Fill Me In

What DIY projects are you currently working on? Do you have projects you want to tackle but have been putting off? How do you plan to reward yourself for all your hard work?

Triple Chocolate Cupcakes
Triple Chocolate Cupcakes
Print Recipe
Triple Chocolate cupcakes including a rich moist chocolate cake filled with a semisweet chocolate filling and topped with a fluffy salted chocolate buttercream.
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 30 minutes
Cook Time
15-20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 30 minutes
Cook Time
15-20 minutes
Triple Chocolate Cupcakes
Triple Chocolate Cupcakes
Print Recipe
Triple Chocolate cupcakes including a rich moist chocolate cake filled with a semisweet chocolate filling and topped with a fluffy salted chocolate buttercream.
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 30 minutes
Cook Time
15-20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 30 minutes
Cook Time
15-20 minutes
Ingredients
Salted Caramel Chocolate Cupcakes
Chocolate Filling
Salted Chocolate Buttercream
Servings: cupcakes
Instructions
Salted Caramel Chocolate Cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, mix together the sugar and eggs on low speed.
  2. Add the vegetable oil to the egg and sugar mixture and mix thoroughly.
  3. In a separate mixing bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  4. Alternating between the dry ingredients and the buttermilk, add about a third at a time to the egg mixture, starting and ending with the dry ingredients.
  5. Add in the coffee and mix on low speed until well blended.
  6. Fold in vanilla extract with a spatula.
  7. Fill lined baking cups 2/3 full. Bake for 15-20 minutes. A toothpick inserted may not come out completely clean. Crumbles are ok, wet cake batter is not.
  8. Refrigerate cupcakes for about 30 minutes or until they are cool to the touch.
  9. Using a cupcake corer or a small spoon, scoop out about a half inch hole int eh middle of the cupcakes.
Chocolate Filling
  1. In a double boiler, melt chocolate and butter until smooth and shiny.
  2. Slowly add in coconut milk, stiring constantly until well blended.
  3. Set chocolate off heat to cool. Do not refrigerate.
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Bold and Free Vegan Avocado Chocolate Cupcakes

Vegan Avocado Chocolate Cupcake

A Vegan Avocado Chocolate Cupcake topped with a Vegan Avocado Chocolate “butter cream” icing to satisfy one of the most stringent diets and the familiar chocoholic.

Hey, Guys!

Today is Friday and you know what that means: Cupcake time!

It is also the day that Aimee from Be Bold and Free goes live on her Facebook and Instagram accounts.

Who is Aimee and what is Be Bold and Free?

Aimee is the inspirational author of the blog Be Bold and Free. Though she documents her journey with health and maintaining a plant-based diet, her site is really more about taking risks and finding new adventures.  In many ways, I feel like her message of “be bold to live free” goes hand in hand with my message to make life taste sweeter.

In the spirit of Aimee’s message of taking chances and exploring life outside of my comfort zone, I decided to experiment with my first intentionally vegan recipe. Aimee has removed meat from her diet and found that her health and mood have both drastically improved. Keeping meat out of a cupcake may sound like a pretty easy feat for some folks but that isn’t so easy for the creator of the Almost Legendary Apple Bacon Cupcakes.

The other challenge with veganism is also abstaining from animal byproducts like eggs, milk and even honey. That part is a little more difficult but certainly not impossible.

Why Avocados?

Do vegan chocolate cupcakes have to be made with avocados? Absolutely not! The avocados were just an extra challenge.

Captain Cupcakeasaurus hates avocados. He will not touch the guacamole or the chunky Mexican shrimp cocktail. Making a dessert that I know he would not be able to resist like a chocolate cupcake and then filling it with his least favorite food was both torturous for him and hilarious for me. I knew he wouldn’t be able to resist and would end up loving these Vegan Avocado Chocolate Cupcakes.

Avocados Are Cool

They are also an awesome fruit with twenty or so essential vitamins and minerals.  Some people even call them a super food because of all of their healthful benefits.

Avocados are sometimes called Alligator pears. How appropriate is that name for this Floridian baking endeavor? They are green and pear shaped and often have a scaly outer skin. My Florida avocados were quite large and actually had a smoother skin than their Mexican counterparts.

A Chocolate Cupcake is a Chocolate Cupcake, with or without avocados. Click To Tweet

A Chocolate Cupcake is a Chocolate Cupcake

To be completely honest, these chocolate cupcakes are just regular chocolate cupcakes with a few substitutions. If you are really that scared of using an avocado in your chocolate cupcakes, you could easily use an oil equivalent. I’m telling you though, these cupcakes are perfect just the way they are.

If you are looking for another chocolatey vegan cupcake recipe, you can always try Black Bean Chocolate Cupcakes with Date Syrup. Just remember to use agave instead of honey for that recipe.

Bold and Free Vegan Avocado Chocolate Cupcakes
Print Recipe
A chewy vegan chocolate cupcake made with Florida avocados and topped with a vegan avocado "butter cream" icing
Servings Prep Time
12 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Bold and Free Vegan Avocado Chocolate Cupcakes
Print Recipe
A chewy vegan chocolate cupcake made with Florida avocados and topped with a vegan avocado "butter cream" icing
Servings Prep Time
12 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Ingredients
Vegan Avocado Chocolate Cupcakes
Vegan Avocado Chocolate "Butter Cream" Icing
Servings: cupcakes
Instructions
Vegan Avocado Chocolate Cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake tin with twelve liners.
  2. In a small bowl of measuring cup stir together almond milk and apple cider vinegar. Let sit while preparing other ingredients.
  3. Brew coffee and let cool to room temperature.
  4. In a large bowl whisk together dry ingredients of flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
  5. In a large mixing bowl with a paddle attachment, mix together the sugar, avocado puree, applesauce and both vanilla and maple extracts. Mix on medium speed until well blended.
  6. Add almond milk mixture and brewed coffee to the avocado mixture. Batter will be very wet.
  7. Add dry ingredients into avocado mixture a little at a time mixing thoroughly between each addition.
  8. Spoon batter into cupcake liners 3/4 full. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove from tin and let cool on rack.
Vegan Avocado Chocolate "Butter Cream" Icing
  1. In a large mixing bowl with the whisk attachment, mix the avocado puree, coconut spread, cocoa powder and salt on medium to high speed until well blended.
  2. Add confectioner's sugar one cup at a time, mixing thoroughly between each addition.
  3. Icing will be a bit wetter than most; refrigerate until ready for use. Ice cooled cupcakes and enjoy.
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The cupcake batter may seem a bit wet when you are spooning it into the cupcake tin but I promise it works out just fine out of the oven. Sometimes when I bake, I have a couple cupcakes that want to swell more than others and create that dreaded muffin top. This batter stays put and all the cupcakes come out even and beautiful. They are chewy and moist like every favorite chocolate cake you’ve ever eaten.

A vegan cupcake was not so difficult. A vegan icing on the other hand proved to be a bit more challenging. You try making a delicious icing that doesn’t use milk, butter or cheese!

Originally I was going to just make an avocado “butter cream” but frankly the color put me off enough that I decided to make it chocolate icing instead. I can’t ruin a beautiful chocolate cupcake by putting an avocado green icing on top.

I used a little bit of a coconut spread to help the “butter cream” hold together. If you have a vegan butter on hand, it would probably work as good if not better.

Today we made life taste sweeter with vegan sugar.

Just remember when you are making a recipe that has strict dietary restrictions make sure to read all of the labels. Even ingredients that you would not expect, like sugar, might have animal products or by products included. Typically, if a product is vegan it will be labeled as such. Reading the ingredient list on the packaging is helpful too.

Everyone Needs a Chocolate Cupcake Sometimes

It is even better when you are also receiving healthful nutrients from avocados. I definitely stepped out of my comfort zone to create this Vegan Avocado Chocolate Cupcake. I hope you are also inspired by Aimee’s message and take a risk by giving them a shot.

Let me know in the comments what you think of these vegan alligator pear chocolate cupcakes. Then head over to Be Bold and Free and let Aimee know how much you loved her custom cupcake.

 

Almost Legendary Apple Bacon Cupcakes

Almost Legendary Apple Bacon cupcakes are apple cupcakes chocked full of bacon and topped with a Maple Cream Cheese Icing.

Hey, guys!

As promised, I am bringing you delicious cupcake recipes straight from my kitchen. This particular recipe is one I have been perfecting for the past five years.  The first time I made Apple Bacon Cupcakes was for a potluck at my old call center job.

They looked so pretty without icing, I didn’t even bother frosting them. I will heed warning, without frosting they could easily pass as muffins and someone could mistake them for being healthy. There’s my disclaimer.

Free Baking Conversion Cheat Sheet

What makes this recipe nearly legendary?

My coworkers fell in love with these scrumptious little Apple Bacon cakes and began asking for them on a regular basis.  Since then, they have always been a favorite and people ask me for them again and again.

Every time I made them, I would tweak the recipe just a bit until I found the perfect apple to bacon ratio for maximum tastefulness. What makes these cupcakes really over the top is all the bacon.

Two Pounds of Bacon!

Not only are they garnished with a piece of crispy bacon but there is also a pound of that crumbled bacon in the cake batter itself. The salty bacon is balanced well with the light sweetness of the apple.

Today, the recipe is fairly easy and I include a frosting that pairs well with the flavor combinations. I would hate for someone to mistake them for muffins and think they were diet approved. However, the flavors are certainly ones that can be enjoyed for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or late night snack time.

How to make Apple Bacon Cupcakes:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and go ahead and shred those Gala apples. This is the most time-consuming part of this process. Once the oven is preheated, place one pound of bacon on a cookie sheet. As much as I love cookies, bacon is a far better use of these pans.

Bacon, Bacon, Bacon

Of course, you could fry up your bacon the old fashion way but this way saves time and allows you to cook quite a bit at once without fear of bacon burns. You know, those burns you get when you are frying bacon with minimal clothing on and inevitably grease splatters out on tender bits of exposed skin.

If you are planning on making the icing and garnish as well, now would be the time to throw the other pound of bacon on a cookie sheet too.  Let your bacon cook until it looks like you’re desired preference of crispiness. I usually just let it crisp up while I mix up the other ingredients.

In a large mixing bowl…

In a large mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients of all purpose flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and sugar. Set this bowl to the side while we prepare the wet ingredients.

Mix together the wet ingredients of softened unsalted butter, vanilla extract, eggs and buttermilk in a separate mixing bowl. On low speed, pour your wet ingredients into your dry ones and mix until thick batter forms. Now you can add in your apples. The batter will be lumpy and that is completely okay. It is about to get a lot lumpier.

When your bacon is to your crispiness liking, pull it out and let it cool on the cookie sheets. If you are wondering what to do if you don’t like your bacon crispy, that is completely fine. It can be a bit chewy just remember it is going inside your cupcake and might make your cake chewy too.  Let the bacon cool until it is cool enough to crumble easily in your hands. If it is chewy, grab the kitchen shears and cut into small pieces. Add bacon to the batter and stir on low until well mixed.

This recipe makes approximately twenty-four cupcakes. Place paper cupcake liners in two cupcake trays and spray with cooking spray. It may sound weird to do both but the liners are so much easier to remove when sprayed a little. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove from pans and let cool to prepare for icing and garnish.

How to make the Maple Cream Cheese Icing:

In a medium mixing bowl beat cream cheese and butter until smooth. Slowly add powdered sugar while mixing until the icing forms a semi thick consistency. Mix in the maple syrup and add cinnamon. I am a fan of the cinnamon and like seeing the little specks in the icing to add dimension.

The bacon cooked earlier should be nice and cool by now. You can use either your hands or kitchen scissors to cut the strips of bacon into 1-2 inch pieces. I try to find the crispier pieces for garnish because they hold up better for presentation.

Food is 90% presentation! Click To Tweet

And like my grandmother always says, food is 90% presentation. Gently place the salty crunchy piggy pieces on top of each cake. And ta da! You have delicious beautiful cakes perfect for any time of day or night. Whether you are winning over co-workers or welcoming neighbors or just feeding the family, these Almost Legendary Apple Bacon Cupcakes are sure to satisfy.

 

Are you needing a perfect potluck contribution? Let me know what you and your coworkers think of this recipe in the comments below!

Almost Legendary Apple Bacon Cupcakes
Print Recipe
Apple cupcakes chocked full of bacon and topped with a Maple Cream Cheese Icing.
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Almost Legendary Apple Bacon Cupcakes
Print Recipe
Apple cupcakes chocked full of bacon and topped with a Maple Cream Cheese Icing.
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Ingredients
Almost Legendary Apple Bacon Cupcakes
Maple Cream Cheese Icing
Servings: cupcakes
Instructions
Almost Legendary Apple Bacon Cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake bacon on a cookie sheet until desired crispiness. Set aside and let cool. Keep oven set at 350 degrees.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients of all purpose flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and sugar.
  3. In a separate bowl stir together the wet ingredients of softened unsalted butter, vanilla extract, eggs and buttermilk.
  4. On low speed, pour your wet ingredients into your dry ones and mix until a thick batter forms and all ingredients are well mixed.
  5. Crumble cooled bacon and fold bacon and apples into mix. Mix on low speed until well blended.
  6. Bake for 15-20 minutes at 350 degrees. A toothpick inserted will come out clean. Cool on baking rack.
Maple Cream Cheese Icing
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Cook bacon to desired crispiness. Set aside and let cool.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl beat cream cheese and butter until smooth.
  3. Slowly add powdered sugar while mixing until the icing forms a semi thick consistency.
  4. Add the maple syrup and add cinnamon. Mix until well blended.
  5. Ice cupcakes and garnish with bacon. Bacon can be crumbled over top or can be broken into 1-2 inch pieces and placed on top.
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Baby Z’s Perfectly Pear Cupcake

Baby Z’s Perfectly Pear cupcake is a Cinnamon Pear cupcake with Pear Butter Cream Icing and topped with Banana flavored cereal puffs.

I am so excited to share with you this special cupcake for a special little one. Her favorites: pears and cereal puffs are key ingredients for this custom cupcake recipe.

I met Gina through the Facebook group Bloggers Supporting Each Other. She is a lifestyle blogger for the modern momma over at Momm(a)Musing. Immediately, I could tell she was a fun loving mom like me. I only wish I had her inspirational words of wisdom when I first gave birth to Little Cakeasaurus Rex. She provides encouragement and amusement for all young mothers and those soon to be.

Gina is the proud Momma of Baby Z. Baby Z has been known to be a picky eater but I hope that a few of her favorite flavors will make this cupcake a favorite as well. You can learn all about Gina’s parenting journey and all about little Baby Z at Mommamusing.com.

The Inspiration

With Baby Z in mind, I went to work to create a custom cupcake just for her and hopefully Momma will be pleased too. Her favorite flavors are pears. She also enjoys the baby cereal puffs. I have not met a baby yet that didn’t love shoveling these in by the fist full. These two favorites were the inspiration for Baby Z’s Perfectly Pear Cupcake.

Baby Z’s custom cupcake is a pear cupcake with pear icing. If you think that sounds like too much pear, you’d be wrong. Even though fresh pears are super juicy and flavorful, they have a very mild flavor when cooked.

So, even though these cupcakes are full of pears, you may not realize it just by taste alone. Some recipes use applesauce as an alternative for eggs and oil in baking recipes. The flavor of the baked goodie doesn’t suddenly taste like apples. For this recipe, the pureed pears performed like the applesauce in those other recipes. The cake does not have a distinct pear flavor nor do we need eggs or oil for this recipe.

To me, the flavor of the Perfectly Pear cupcake closely resembles that of a spice cake. It has a little cinnamon flavor and a muffin like consistency that makes it perfect as a breakfast cake. I may or may not have had one for breakfast.

Making the Cake

Baby Z's Pear Cupcake with Pear Icing
Print Recipe
Cinnamon Pear cupcake with Pear Butter Cream Icing and topped with Banana flavored cereal puffs
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
25-30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
25-30 minutes
Baby Z's Pear Cupcake with Pear Icing
Print Recipe
Cinnamon Pear cupcake with Pear Butter Cream Icing and topped with Banana flavored cereal puffs
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
25-30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
25-30 minutes
Ingredients
Pear Cupcakes
Pear Butter Cream
Servings: cupcakes
Instructions
Cinnamon Pear Cupcake
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, with an electric mixer and paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar on medium speed until smooth.
  3. Add vanilla extract to butter mixture.
  4. In a blender, puree 2-3 whole pears to make 2 cups of puree.
  5. Add Pear puree to butter mixture. Mix on low speed until pear puree is mixed in. Batter may look like it is separating.
  6. Add flour mixture into pear mixture a cup at a time, making sure ingredients are well blended after each addition.
  7. Line cupcake tin with 24 liners. Fill the cups 3/4 full and bake for 25 minutes at 350 degrees. Toothpick will come out clean when done. Remove from cupcake tin and cool on baking rack.
Pear Butter Cream Icing
  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and 2 cups of powdered sugar on medium high speed for about 4 minutes until fluffy.
  2. Add salt, cinnamon and vanilla extract. Mix until well blended.
  3. Add pear puree and whipping cream. Mix thoroughly.
  4. Add additional powdered sugar as necessary to thicken Icing to desirable consistency.
  5. Pipe icing on to cooled cupcakes. Sprinkle baby cereal puffs off the top for decoration and an added crunch.
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Just like we pureed the kiwis for Vera’s Peach Spice Cupcakes with Kiwi Sparkler Icing, I used the Nutri Ninja cups from my Ninja Mega Kitchen System (Blender, Processor, Nutri Ninja Cups) BL770 to quickly puree the pears. I just peel them and de-seed them and then the blender does all the work. A couple pulses and I have perfect pear puree. Now, I pureed my own, but if you are making these for a baby like Baby Z, then you may have pear baby food around that would work just as well.

Remember Baby Z’s second favorite? Cereal Puffs! After icing these Perfectly Pear Cupcakes, I decided to add banana flavored cereal puffs to the top. They add dimension, texture and an added crunch to this pear cupcake. Your little one may want to pluck them off and eat them individually. That is fine by me but I like the crunch.

In all honesty, had I found pear cereal puffs, they would have probably sent this cupcake over the top. Banana was the flavor I found that I thought would best go with our Perfectly Pear cupcake. They are a bit different for a cupcake but I really couldn’t resist and I LOVE the extra crunch. I mean it, the crunch takes the cake!

The crunch takes the cake! Click To Tweet

Baby Z’s cupcake needed to be cute and feminine. I found these beautiful butterfly cupcake liners at the Dollar Tree. They have party supplies for almost every occasion and you don’t end up spending an arm and a leg.

 

Don’t forget to let Gina know how much you loved Baby Z’s cupcakes at Momm(a)Musing. Do you have a little one at home that would love these Perfectly Pear cupcakes? Let me know in the comments below and  follow me on Pinterest so you can have all your favorite recipes at your fingertips.

Kahlua Chocolate Cherry Cupcakes

When we don’t have the time to sip on our Unicorn frappuccinos, sometimes when we’re at home we like to add a little kick of Kahlua to our cup of Joe. Kahlua, coffee and,… what is it missing? Oh yes! Chocolate!

 

Hey guys!

This recipe may look familiar. I have posted it before but I wanted to bring it to you again in a much easier to read format. It is also so delicious that it needed to be brought back into my kitchen this week.

We often see Kahlua added into mixed drinks at a bar but not often added into our brownie or cupcake recipes. It really is a shame. I think Kahlua adds the perfect coffee flavor to enhance all the chocolate recipes. This one is no exception.

Feel free to have a Kahlua mixed drink while baking. Just drink and bake responsibly of course.

First, we will start with a basic rich chocolate cupcake recipe but add a twist. I promise there is nothing basic about it especially after adding a good helping of Kahlua. 

Similar to many cupcake recipes, the ingredients are divided into two groups: the wet ones and the dry ones. For the most part anyway.

When I am exploring a new recipe one of the first things I try to do is determine which bowl should be my mixer bowl and which is not. I can not stand putting my eggs in the wrong bowl and having to switch to my stand mixer later.

I know, I’m sure the professionals out there are saying I should thoroughly read through a recipe before I start mixing. Who has time for that? I barely make it through the ingredient list. Ha!

To clarify, go ahead and put your eggs, sugar, and vegetable oil in your stand mixer bowl and that will from hence forth be your Wet Ingredients. In your other mixing bowl, whisk together the Dry Ingredients.

Alternate mixing in the Dry Ingredients first into the Wet Ingredients and then adding the buttermilk. You will do this two to three times both starting and ending with the Dry Ingredients.

I save the coffee, Kahlua and vanilla extract for last. Mix in the coffee and Kahlua while still using the mixer on low to medium speed. Everything should be well blended to make that magical cupcake chemistry happen.

You can remove the bowl from the mixer and fold in the vanilla extract. I find that the vanilla extract tends to get lost in the batter if it is over mixed.

Once your cakes are good and liquored with that Kahlua tastiness, you will want to bake them at 350° for about 15-20 minutes. A toothpick poked into the middle may not come out completely clean. Don’t worry. A few crumbles attached to the toothpick are completely okay.  Just make sure it doesn’t come out with wet batter attached because that would not be tasty.

Keep an eye on those cupcakes though because the cake for this recipe will come out like brownies with a crispy outer edge and gooey center.  The perfect consistency if you ask me.  Though absolutely delicious (especially for us brownie lovers), a little refrigeration helps firm the cupcakes up in order to help with adding our surprise centers.

Surprise centers?!

That’s right! A sweet and slightly tart surprise to balance all of that rich chocolate. This is where the cherry pie filling comes in to play.

After chilling, it is time to cut holes in your beautiful cakes. Oh no! It will be okay. The taste is worth the price of beauty on this one. There are plunger type utensils that will core your cupcakes for you. Using this utensil would probably make my job a whole lot easier. But, you know me, I like to take the extra difficult route and then tell you all about it.

 I just take my handy-dandy kitchen knife and do my best to cut a round pocket into the cake. Be careful not to cut too low to the bottom of your cupcake. We don’t want the cherry falling out! It also doesn’t need to be huge, just large enough to hold one cherry and a little bit of the pie filling jelly.

If you do it my way, this can certainly be a time-consuming process but it is worth it. After spooning a cherry into each pocket, just replace the cake hole over top. It doesn’t matter if it is pretty or even the cake hole from the same cake. Icing will cover up the imperfections and no one will notice when they are sinking their teeth into decadence.

I have been making quite a few butter creams lately and maybe you thought they were my favorite. They’re not! Sure a Butter Cream has its place but the star of the show is usually a light fluffy creamy cream cheese icing. Think about it. Your favorite cake? Probably Red Velvet. Why? The cream cheese frosting!

I’m kidding. I have no idea which is your favorite cake. However, that Red Velvet is a favorite to many so just keep that in mind here.

 

The magic of the cream cheese icing is that it provides that balance for your taste buds. Of course we all have our sweet tooths (teeth) and we love indulging in those deep rich chocolate flavors but we need that life raft of cream cheese icing to bring us back to our senses.

 A sweet cake, I feel, deserves a milder icing so as not to give you a toothache. With all the overly sweet elements of this cake, it can become heavily sweet very quickly.  The cream cheese icing moderates that sweetness and adds a bit of pep with the coffee grounds that complement the Kahlua flavor in the cake.

Much like those frappuccinos from our favorite coffee shop, I like more sugar and cream than I do actual coffee. Even my coffee grounds are flavored. I prefer light and flavored coffee like vanilla or French vanilla and that is usually what I have on hand. You are certainly welcome to switch out the type of coffee grounds for any that you prefer. Those flavors are already flavors you enjoy so there is no harm done in adding them to your icing. I would love to know what you think of the icing with a more robust coffee used in the icing. 

After icing, your cakes are perfect the way they are.

I wanted to add to that sentence but really they are perfect. But, if you insist on beautiful presentation, adding a cherry to the top is the perfect detail. It provides the perfect preview of what is to come inside.

The can of pie filling from earlier still has half a can of cherries left. We are not wasteful. We use those cherries and call them decoration. Just plop one of those babies on top and now you have a picture perfect dessert that all of your chocolate lovers will enjoy. Your coffee lovers will it enjoy it too. So will your Kahlua lovers. Also, your cherry lovers. I bet they’d enjoy this recipe as well. 

Let me know what you think of this recipe in the comments below. I am always curious to know how yours turned out and if you made any changes. Let me know down below!

Thanks for making life taste sweeter!

Kahlua Chocolate Cherry Cupcakes
Print Recipe
Moist chocolate cupcakes rich with coffee and Kahlua flavors. The cherry filling adds just the right amount of tartness to round out a mouthful of flavor. Creamy Coffee Cream Cheese Icing balances the flavors and brings it all together.
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
20 minutes 30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
20 minutes 30 minutes
Kahlua Chocolate Cherry Cupcakes
Print Recipe
Moist chocolate cupcakes rich with coffee and Kahlua flavors. The cherry filling adds just the right amount of tartness to round out a mouthful of flavor. Creamy Coffee Cream Cheese Icing balances the flavors and brings it all together.
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
20 minutes 30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
20 minutes 30 minutes
Ingredients
Kahlua Chocolate Cherry Cupcakes
Coffee Cream Cheese Icing
Servings: cupcakes
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, mix together the sugar and eggs on low speed.
  2. Add the vegetable oil to the egg and sugar mixture and mix thoroughly.
  3. In a separate mixing bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  4. Alternating between the dry ingredients and the buttermilk, add about a third at a time to the egg mixture, starting and ending with the dry ingredients.
  5. Add in the coffee and Kahlua and mix on low speed.
  6. Fold in vanilla extract with a spatula.
  7. Fill lined baking cups 2/3 full. Bake for 15-20 minutes. A toothpick inserted may not come out completely clean. Crumbles are ok, wet cake batter is not.
  8. Refrigerate cupcakes for about 30 minutes or until they are cool to the touch.
  9. Cut a small hole in the middle of each cupcake. This can be done with a cake plunger/corer or just a knife and spoon. Save the scooped out holes.
  10. Spoon cherry pie filling into the cupcake holes. Make sure to include at least one cherry and some of the pie filling jelly. Save remaining pie filling cherries for topping. Replace the cake holes over top of the cherry and await for icing.
Coffee Cream Cheese Icing
  1. In a large mixing bowl with the whisk attachment, cream the cream cheese until light and fluffy.
  2. Add evaporated milk and mix until well blended.
  3. Slowly add powdered sugar, mixing on low to medium speed. the icing will start to make a smoother consistency.
  4. Add coffee grounds, vanilla extract and salt and mix on medium speed until all ingredients are well mixed. Icing should be creamy consistency.
  5. Frost cupcakes and add a cherry from the Cherry pie filling to the top of the cake to complete.
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Vera’s Peach Spice Cupcakes with Kiwi Sparkler Icing

A super sweet collaboration with Vera from Voice of Vera inspired a whole new world of connections and custom cupcake creations. This Peach Spice Cupcake with Kiwi Sparkler Icing was created just for her.

The Inspiration

One of my favorite things to do is to go gift shopping for someone special. I like the feeling of thinking about them and thinking about what they would enjoy while searching the aisles. Many times, a type of candy , a specific animal or a figurine will remind me of a memory we shared together.

Baking isn’t much different. I was making Little Cakeasaurus Rex his Chunky Monkey Cupcakes and I was thinking about him the entire time. Thoughts of his monkey toes curling around my finger when he was a baby and how he would even hold his bottle with his feet spun around my mind like the batter around the beater.

I decided it might be fun to start connecting my recipes to people. How neat would it be to connect with other inspiring and adventurous people and create a custom cupcake flavor representative of who they are and what they do?

Who is Vera?

I was discussing this idea with Vera from Voice of Vera and she was excited to start swapping recipes and have me make a custom cupcake recipe for her.

Vera is a creative mom of four and blogs about her adventures including fashion and DIY.  One of my favorite things about her blog is that it is full of inspiration and her uplifting motto says it all:  “The best is yet to come!”

When she described her favorite flavors as being sweet, tart and fruity, the recipe practically wrote itself. I knew I needed something fun and flavorful for this awesome woman.

Custom Cupcake Creation

When the warm weather comes around, I can’t help but get a taste for fresh tropical fruit. Pineapples, kiwis, raspberries,you name it, I love them!

Growing up in North Carolina, our summer vacation was always a four hour trip to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Along the way, the family tradition was always to stop at a fruit stand and grab a basket full of big juicy South Carolina peaches. One bite of that peach and you would have sweet syrupy juice dripping down your chin. That sweet nostalgic flavor equates to summer for me. Now that we are knee deep into summer vacation, I am having an intense hankering for that sweet peach deliciousness.

This Peach Spice Cupcake recipe satisfies all of those tropical fruit cravings and has the added bonus of reminding me of a cocktail.

Peaches check off the sweet and fruity requirements for Vera’s custom cupcake. Now, I needed that tart flavor to bring it all together.

 

Peach and Kiwi

Peaches and kiwis? I know, right?! Who knew? The fact is, peaches have such a sugary taste to them that I felt a peach cupcake in the middle of summer desperately needed a complementary tart icing.

Kiwis provided the tartness to balance this recipe and make it the perfect sweet, tart and fruity flavor we were looking for.

 

A Kiwi Sparkler is a summer cocktail that includes kiwi and peach scnapps. How perfect?! The peach schnapps is what I would use to tie the kiwi icing to its peachy cupcake counterpart.

Now, I used Florida peaches for the Peach Spice Cupcake. Florida peaches are much smaller and less juicy than their Georgia and South Carolina relatives. They still provided that popping peach flavor though which is all I needed.

However, the difference is important. Pay attention!

Important!

If you are using a juicier peach for your baking endeavors, you may need to make adjustments to the recipe. If your ingredients are too wet, your cupcakes will shrink or sink in the middle. To offset this, you can either bump up your dry ingredients accordingly or you can just reduce the amount of peaches you use.
Personally, I would just do the latter. Adding in less peaches is way easier than adjusting the rest of the recipe and if they are that juicy, you won’t be losing any of the flavor.

Let’s get started!

Go ahead and set your oven to our favorite temperature of 350 degrees. Now is a good time to go ahead and put cute cupcake liners in your tin. You can get colorful and thematic ones here.

In a large mixing bowl, beat your butter and sugar on medium speed until nice and smooth. Then, add in your egg, vanilla and rum. The rum is going to make your batter look pretty wet and runny. It may also make it look like it is separating. It is okay and it won’t be ugly for long.

In a separate bowl, whisk together your dry ingredients. This is your flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda, cinnamon and ginger. It doesn’t matter how many cupcakes I make, every time I add in the baking soda, salt and baking powder, I always feel like I am about to create a science experiment. I mean, I am a culinary chemist to some extent.

 

Usually a recipe like this will use buttermilk to mix alternately with the dry ingredients. I decided to try something a little different by using Greek yogurt instead. The step works out about the same.

Pour about a third of your dry ingredients into your wet batter mix. Mix on low speed until well blended. Then add in half of the Greek yogurt and blend again. Keep alternating until you finish with the last third of the dry ingredients. Mix until well blended but do not over mix.

Fold in the peaches with a spatula and spoon batter into cupcake liners. You want to fill the cups three-fourths of the way full. Bake at 350 degrees for twenty-four to twenty-eight minutes. Mine were done at about twenty-six minutes. Just keep an eye out on them and check with a toothpick. The toothpick should come out clean when the cupcakes are ready.

Now for the Icing!

In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and shortening together until smooth. This is easily accomplished with a whisk attachment for a stand mixer, but I’ve been successful using my old hand-me-down GE hand mixer too.  To make sure the icing stays smooth and silky, sift the powdered sugar in to the bowl one cup at a time, beating between each cup.

In a blender, blend about three kiwis into a puree. Peel the kiwis first with a potato peeler, leaving just the fleshy green fruit. I used the Ninja Blender to make the puree. Two presses of the pulse button and the kiwis are liquefied into a tart puree.

The kiwi puree definitely resembles baby food at this point. I thought it might make the icing a strange pea green color but the  white powdered sugar lightens the color tremendously. Add the kiwi puree, salt, peach schnapps and vanilla extract to the powdered sugar mixture. You will want to mix that on medium speed until well blended.

Sift the last cup of powdered sugar into the mixing bowl and mix on medium speed. Your icing will be smooth and almost silky feeling. There will be some specks from the kiwi seeds mixed throughout the icing.

 

Now it is time to enjoy.

Top those juicy sweet Peach Spice cupcakes with the Kiwi Sparkler icing and you have the perfect summer treat. I hope you love the sweet, tart and fruity flavors of this unique cupcake.

Make sure to head over to Voice of Vera and let her know how much you love her custom cupcake flavor.

If you are interested in developing your own custom flavor or having me develop one for you, please leave a comment below. I’d love to connect to with you!

This is how we make life taste sweeter together!

 

Peach Spice Cupcakes with Kiwi Sparkler Icing
Print Recipe
Juicy sweet peach spice cupcake with chunks of real peaches topped with a tart Kiwi Sparkler icing.
Servings Prep Time
12 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
25 minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
25 minutes
Peach Spice Cupcakes with Kiwi Sparkler Icing
Print Recipe
Juicy sweet peach spice cupcake with chunks of real peaches topped with a tart Kiwi Sparkler icing.
Servings Prep Time
12 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
25 minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
25 minutes
Ingredients
Peach Spice Cupcakes
Kiwi Sparkler Icing
Servings: cupcakes
Instructions
Peach Spice Cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and sugar until smooth.
  2. Add egg, vanilla extract and rum to butter mixture. Mix on medium until blended. The rum will make the batter separate. It will not look pretty but it will be okay in the end.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, and ginger.
  4. Mix the dry ingredients in with the wet ingredients, alternating with the Greek yogurt. Start and end with the dry ingredients.
  5. Fold in chopped peaches and spoon into a lined cupcake tin 3/4 full. Bake at 350 degrees for 24-28 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove from tins and cool on rack.
Kiwi Sparkler Icing
  1. Beat butter and shortening with a whisk attachment on medium speed until smooth.
  2. Add two cups of powdered sugar sifted, one cup at a time. Mix well between additions.
  3. In a blender, puree three kiwis to make 1/2 a cup of puree.
  4. Add kiwi puree, salt, peach schnapps and vanilla extract to the powdered sugar mixture. Mix on medium speed until smooth.
  5. Add last cup of powdered sugar to the mixture and beat on medium to high speed until icing is smooth and silky.
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Summertime Tequila Margarita Cupcakes

Summertime means toes in the water and butt in the sand and a Tequila Margarita cupcake in hand. These Cuervo-ed cupcakes are all you need to round out your Margaritaville themed summer bash.

Summertime Tequila Margarita Cupcakes

 

It is Friday folks!

That means we made it through another week and it is time to celebrate!

It is five o’clock somewhere and if you haven’t broken out the tequila yet, maybe you should go ahead and do that. Today I’m making heavily alcoholic Tequila Margarita Cupcakes with a Tequila Lime Butter Cream Icing.

Tequila topped in tequila! Yes, siree!

Summertime Tequila Margarita Cupcakes

Summer brings on all the fun festivals and fiestas. This Tequila Margarita cupcake is sure to be a crowd pleaser wherever you may be headed.

Now, I have made Margarita Cupcakes several different ways but this is by far the most…should I say lush? The first time I attempted concocting the perfect Margarita cupcake, I made a purely lime based cupcake with a Tequila Butter Cream Icing. Well, that was nice and all but the lime flavor wasn’t very strong and it didn’t make me think of Jimmy Buffett when I took a bite.

Today, I present to you the new and improved Tequila Margarita Cupcakes specially concocted for that perfect tequila margarita taste.

Summertime Tequila Margarita Cupcakes

 

Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees. This is another recipe where we will be keeping our Wet Ingredients from our  Dry Ingredients.

In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients of flour, baking powder, and salt. Place this bowl to the side for a moment while we prepare the Wet Ingredients.

Summertime Tequila Margarita Cupcakes

In a large mixing bowl, pour the sugar and lime zest.  Now the idea here is to get your sugar all limed up. (I start singing “Put the lime in the sugar bowl and shake it all up.”) You can press it with a fork or your fingers or whatever you’ve got until the sugar is fully mixed with lime oils. If you have a paddle attachment, use it to mix in your butter, eggs and vanilla extract until smooth.

Summertime Tequila Margarita Cupcakes

Put the lime in the sugar bowl and shake it all up! Click To Tweet

This recipe calls for buttermilk. Sometimes, when I plan ahead, I have buttermilk on hand.

Other times, I do not and I still want my Tequila Margarita cupcakes!

So, I improvise. That is really what cooking is all about anyway.

Summertime Tequila Margarita Cupcakes

 

To make your own improvised buttermilk, you will need white vinegar and regular milk (whole or 2% would work best). Take one tablespoon of white vinegar and then fill your measuring cup with milk until it reaches a full cup. Stir and let it sit. It will look chunky and separated. That is actually what it is supposed to look like believe it or not.

It isn’t time for the buttermilk yet but if you needed to make your own like I did, it will need to sit for a few minutes and now is a good time to do that.

Summertime Tequila Margarita Cupcakes

Your mix doesn’t look like cake mix yet and that’s okay. It is going to look a lot funnier before it gets better. Add the lime juice and tequila. Yay tequila! That’s our favorite part, right? Mix on medium speed and scrape down the sides occasionally. The sugar will want to stick to the walls. Don’t let it.

Alright, now time for those Dry Ingredients. Pour a third of the mix in with the tequila mixture. Then pour half of the buttermilk in. I just leave my mixer turning while I’m alternating between the two. Just make sure to have your mixer on a slower setting so you don’t fling flour everywhere. Then add another third of the flour mix, followed by the rest of the buttermilk, and finishing with the flour. Just make sure it is mixed in well before moving to the next ingredient. I found this batter to be thicker than some of my other recipes.

To make your presentation pristine, line your tins with paper cupcake liners. I like to use yellow or green to go with the traditional margarita color. I spray them with cooking spray too and it makes the paper easier to remove.

Oh! I almost forgot, I found this nifty little tip on Pinterest and it really works. Place a little rice in the tin underneath the liners and it helps to prevent the bottoms of your cakes from getting all oily. This is especially helpful if you’ve decided to use adorable little liners.

Fill the cups 3/4 of the way full and place in oven for about twenty minutes. Typically, I only fill my tins 2/3 full but this is a denser cake and they do not rise the same as other cakes. A toothpick inserted will come out with very few crumbs when removed.

Summertime Tequila Margarita Cupcakes

Let those Cuervo-ed cupcakes cool while you prepare the icing.

What better way to top a drunken cupcake than with a drunken icing? Let me tell you, this is the best icing I think I’ve ever made. I’m not just tooting my own horn. I mean I’ve experimented a lot in my kitchen and this has been one of the most successful experiments thus far.

Summertime Tequila Margarita Cupcakes

 

One of my absolute favorite things to do in the kitchen is to experiment! This means adding flavors together that are unexpected or it could mean I didn’t have the ingredient I was supposed to have and I had to improvise.  Improvising is a totally acceptable way to make any recipe your very own.

Often I cook and bake on a whim and I am not running out to a store to pick up something for one freaking recipe.  I am sure you are familiar with that feeling too. You get really excited for a recipe and then while you’re reading over the ingredients you start making a mental grocery list of what you may not have on hand.

Well, my answer to this is just to fake it until I make it. If I don’t have that particular ingredient, I just add in a few things I think will correspond with the flavors. I take what I have and I make it work. Previously, I’ve made tequila butter creams that required meringue, or triple sec or a number of other ingredients.

Summertime Tequila Margarita Cupcakes

I mention this because this recipe has some ingredients that I wouldn’t expect to be common in most households. I tend to collect liqueurs for just such experiments in the kitchen and to develop new flavor combinations. However, I thoroughly encourage you to look around and see what else you have that might work just as well. I don’t only encourage it, I promote it. Please share with me any of the alterations you make while baking these delicious Tequila Margarita Cupcakes. Leave a comment below, even if you have to substitute the tequila!

This icing uses your favorite tequila, an orange liqueur, and a key lime liqueur to round out that delicious margarita flavor.

In a small bowl, mix those together with the salt and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and the shortening. I use the whisk attachment on my Kitchenaid mixer to help get that smooth creamy consistency. Let your mixer spin on medium speed for about two minutes and that should do the trick.

Summertime Tequila Margarita Cupcakes

 

Man, I love my Kitchenaid mixer with attachments. I have been baking for a long time but I actually did not acquire my Kitchenaid until just a few years ago. Providing a custom cake for a wedding and a friend meant I was paid with a Kitchenaid. How awesome is that?! I know that upfront it may seem pricey, but I promise it is worth every penny! You can get ahold of a KitchenAid KSM150PSER Artisan Tilt-Head Stand Mixer with Pouring Shield, 5-Quart, Empire Red just like mine to make all of your baking adventures easier.

Now that the butter and shortening are smooth, add in three cups of powdered sugar. Add it in one cup at a time and make sure it is well blended before adding the next.

Now it is time to beat in your liquids. The icing will look really wet but we are about to thicken it up. And like the witch in Hansel and Gretel, we are going to thicken it up with sugar. The remaining powdered sugar is added one cup at a time and beaten until the mixture is well blended. The icing will be light and fluffy.

Summertime Tequila Margarita Cupcakes

If you notice, your icing is a creamy beautiful white. That is well and good for icing but when I think margaritas I think of that tropical fluorescent lime green color. Eight to ten drops of Neon green food coloring provided the color I desired. This is baker’s choice really. If you want white, go with white. I wanted Neon Green, so I went with Neon Green. If you want Barney purple, go with Barney purple (but you’re going to need some other food colors for that).

As for garnishing these bad boys, I had an extra lime or two left over from the cupcake recipe and decided to zest the top and then add a slice of lime. By the way, I think dipping the lime in the icing and then sucking it off while biting the lime is absolutely delicious. It has the sweet and sour combination down to perfection. Also, who can have tequila without sucking on a few limes?

Summertime Tequila Margarita Cupcakes

 

Be safe out there this summer. Soak up the sun and dip your toes in the waves. I hope you enjoy these delectable Summertime Tequila Margarita cupcakes. Let me know that you love them by sharing this recipe with your friends!
Tequila Margarita Cupcakes
Print Recipe
Completely inspired by your favorite summer cocktail Margarita, this extra boozy Tequila Lime Cupcake is topped with a Tequila Lime Butter Cream to make the perfect Tequila Margarita Cupcake.
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 40 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 40 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Tequila Margarita Cupcakes
Print Recipe
Completely inspired by your favorite summer cocktail Margarita, this extra boozy Tequila Lime Cupcake is topped with a Tequila Lime Butter Cream to make the perfect Tequila Margarita Cupcake.
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 40 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 40 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Ingredients
Tequila Margarita Cupcake
Tequila Lime Butter Cream
Servings: cupcakes
Instructions
Tequila Margarita Cupcake
  1. Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients of flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, mix sugar and lime zest together until sugar is well coated in lime oils. With a paddle attachment, mixing on low to medium speed, add in butte, eggs and vanilla extract until smooth.
  3. Add lime juice and tequila to butter and egg mixture. The consistency will be very wet. Mix on medium speed and scrape sides as necessary to keep the sugar from sticking.
  4. Alternating between the flour mixture and the buttermilk, add a third of the flour mix to the butter and egg mixture. Mix thoroughly. Then add half of the buttermilk.
  5. Add another third of the flour mixture and mix thoroughly then the remaining half of the buttermilk.
  6. Finish by adding the last third of the flour mixture. Mix on medium to high until all ingredients are well mixed. This will be a thick batter.
  7. Fill lined cupcake tin about 3/4 full. Bake for 20 min or until toothpick comes out clean.
Tequila Lime Butter Cream
  1. In a small bowl stir together the tequila, both liqueurs and salt, and set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl with the whisk attachment, beat the butter and shortening on medium speed for about 2 minutes until smooth.
  3. Add three cups of powdered sugar to the butter mixture one cup at a time. Make sure powdered sugar is well blended before adding the next cup.
  4. Add tequila mixture to butter and sugar mixture. Beat on low to medium speed. The icing will be very wet.
  5. Add remaining powdered sugar one cup at a time, mixing well between each cup.
  6. Beat icing on medium to high until it is light and fluffy. Stir in food coloring with a spatula if desired.
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Black Bean Chocolate Cupcakes with Date Syrup

A gluten free, flour free, sugar free, egg free and yet still remarkably delicious Black Bean Chocolate cupcake with Date Syrup to satisfy all of those New Year diet resolutions.

Happy Friday Guys!

It is a new year and there are so many new things going on! I had planned to start this year with resolution friendly recipes for all of us trying to lose weight in the new year.

Flax Egg?

I was looking at all sorts of vegan recipes that called for butter substitutes and flour substitutes and something called a Flax egg. I’ve used Flax seed before but never did that seed turn into an egg. Anyway, needless to say, I did not feel those particular recipes did us any favors for the flavors we want to be enjoying in the new year.

 

When I worked in retail years ago, I had a coworker that was on Weight Watchers. She would always bring in cakes with substitutions like black beans or applesauce. Those were some delicious cakes. Don’t knock it until you try it. In my efforts to provide you with health friendly options AND not lose any taste, I whipped up these delectable little morsels. They are super fudgey chocolatey bites and the perfect size in mini muffin form.

Black Bean Chocolate Cupcake with Date Syrup

New Year, Clean Slate

Another one of my resolutions is to get this house clean! Captain and I started working on the kitchen, cleaning out all those plates, pots and pans that haven’t been used int he last six months. This Black Bean Chocolate Cupcake is also clean house friendly. More specifically, it is dishes friendly. Everything is mixed up right in the blender so you don’t have to worry about pulling out the Kitchenaid for this one.

Black Bean Chocolate Cupcake with Date SyrupWhen I moved down, I didn’t bring my blender because it had quit working properly and Captain and I had almost double of everything else. Well, on our little kitchen cleaning crusade, I got to meet his blender. I’m pretty sure it is from the seventies. I don’t mean the older eighties model that had a row of buttons with one orange one that you pressed for different speeds. No, I mean, further back than that. This thing has two knobs. One knob is labeled with low, off, and high in that order. The second knob is a timer for blending up to sixty seconds.

Is this thing going to blow?

I’m surprised something didn’t blow up when I was blending my black beans. It made a really loud noise and I still had to remove the top and spatula dance around the blades to make sure everything was mixed. But alas, all black bean chunks were well blended with no black bean pieces remaining.

Black Bean Chocolate Cupcake with Date Syrup Black Bean Chocolate Cupcake with Date Syrup

In the blender, which I hope yours is younger than you are (I don’t think I can say the same), mix up your black bean mixture with the black beans and peanut butter first. Then add in the banana, cocoa powder, honey and vanilla. Just keep blending, just keep blending… Occasionally, while the blender is off, you may want to scrape down the sides and around the blades to make sure everything gets mixed in well.

Black Bean Chocolate Cupcake with Date Syrup Black Bean Chocolate Cupcake with Date Syrup

The batter is super thick and you’ll want to make sure you smooth out the tops before sticking them in the oven. The cupcakes don’t change shape so if they go in with funny looking peaks, they come out with stiff funny looking peaks. It definitely makes drizzling the date syrup over them interesting.

Black Bean Chocolate Cupcake with Date Syrup Black Bean Chocolate Cupcake with Date Syrup

Are you still having doubts?

Little Cupcakeasaurus Rex tried one and said, “There’s caramel and peanut butter…. and Twix.” The salty chocolate cupcake with the sweet date syrup does create an almost candy bar effect in your mouth. Chewy, chocolatey, salty, sweet, what more could you ask for?

 

This Black Bean Chocolate cupcake proves that we don’t need sugar to make life taste sweeter. Apparently, we don’t need flour, milk or eggs either. I’ll still stay away from the Flax eggs but I hope you enjoy the chocolate goodness of these Black Bean Chocolate cupcakes.

Let me know what you think of these sweet chewy morsels in the comments. Are you starting a new diet or just looking for something different? I would love to know what you think.

Black Bean Chocolate Cupcake with Date syrup
Print Recipe
Rich fudge like chocolate cupcakes with a sweet date syrup drizzle. No eggs, butter, milk or flour are used in this recipe.
Servings Prep Time
24 mini cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 mini cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Black Bean Chocolate Cupcake with Date syrup
Print Recipe
Rich fudge like chocolate cupcakes with a sweet date syrup drizzle. No eggs, butter, milk or flour are used in this recipe.
Servings Prep Time
24 mini cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 mini cupcakes 20 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Ingredients
Black Bean Chocolate Cupcakes
Date syrup
Servings: mini cupcakes
Instructions
Black Bean Chocolate Cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. In a blender, blend black beans and peanut butter until smooth and there are no black bean chunks. Add in banana and blend.
  3. Add in cocoa powder, honey, baking powder and vanilla extract and blend until smooth. While blender is off, scrape down the sides and edges with spatula to make sure everything is well mixed.
  4. Put about a tablespoon of batter in a lined mini muffin tin. The batter is thick and cupcakes will maintain same shape throughout baking. Bake at 325 degrees for 20-25 minutes. A toothpick should come out mostly clean though the cupcakes are very fudgey.
Date Syrup
  1. In a small saucepan heat on high the dates and water. Bring to a boil.
  2. Add honey and maple syrup and stir constantly. Continue to stir as the syrup thickens and keep the dates from sticking to the bottom.
  3. Reduce heat to low and let the syrup simmer and thicken. Spoon syrup over Black Bean Chocolate Cupcakes and enjoy.
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New Year Bubbly and Berry Cupcakes

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

The best way to celebrate the new year is with champagne and strawberries. These Bubbly and Berry Cupcakes make the perfect kickoff for a brand new year!

I am so excited for the new year!

More excited than I was to move to Florida. More excited than I was for Christmas.

What better way to celebrate the new year than with some bubbly champagne and delicious strawberries? That sounds like a good start to a new year to me.

IMG_20160101_150258654~2

I have had such a build up of excitement lately. This feeling I think normally hits people in fall or spring but for me it is right now. I want to shed all of the dead weight of 2015 and start 2016 clean, new and fresh. I have so many ideas and projects in store. I just can’t wait to share all of them with you.

Of course I will be maintaining our special Fridays of delicious cupcake goodness (forgive this one for being a bit late (I know, I know, not a great start for a new year)). But, I also have some other great recipes to share that I know you are going to love and some projects I’ve been working on as well. My house is going to undergo some changes this year with planning and budgeting and maybe some inexpensive remodels too. I can’t wait to get underway!

But first, let’s have a cupcake!

New Year Bubbly and Berry Cupcakes4~2

The natural inspiration for this cupcake was bubbly champagne. You pour a glass, you toast a friend, you kiss your love and that’s what New Years is all about. Well, for most folks anyway.

New Year Bubbly and Berry CupcakesCaptain Cupcakeasaurus was working at the station on New Year’s Eve so the kiddo and I packed a few glasses, grabbed a bottle of sparkling cranberry juice instead and toasted in the new year that way. Our family was together and that was the important part.

New Year Bubbly and Berry Cupcakes

I am not one to just “miss out” though. When the holiday calls for champagne, we are going to have champagne dang it! It is funny because I have been craving ham for months now expecting it to come around for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Well, when my grandmother announced she wouldn’t be doing ham for either of those holidays I practically purchased a ham the same day and announced we would be having it for our New Year’s dinner. They were a great price at Aldi and I ended up buying two.  The point is, I’m not missing out on my ham either!

New Year Bubbly and Berry Cupcakes

The natural pairing with champagne (outside of orange juice for a morning mimosa of course) is strawberries. This New Year Bubbly and Berry cupcake brings you both in a supremely sweet package. The cupcake has just a hint of champagne flavor so no need to splurge on fancy bubbly for this recipe. The cheap kind works just fine. The batter will be wetter than some of our other batters but it works out in the end.

New Year Bubbly and Berry Cupcakes When they are ready to come out of the oven they actually resemble muffins in look and density.

New Year Bubbly and Berry CupcakesNew Year Bubbly and Berry CupcakesDon’t let that fool you though because topping them in a fluffy sweet Strawberry Buttercream makes for a delicious little cake. You can enjoy them on their own or go ahead and serve with bubbly good stuff.

New Year Bubbly and Berry CupcakesIt is time for the toast. Hold your glass high. Here is to a new year full of energy, fun, tasteful treats  and another year of making life taste sweet!

 

 

New Year Bubbly and Berry Cupcakes
Print Recipe
Light Champagne and strawberry cupcake topped with a sweet Strawberry Buttercream.
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 15 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 15 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
New Year Bubbly and Berry Cupcakes
Print Recipe
Light Champagne and strawberry cupcake topped with a sweet Strawberry Buttercream.
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 15 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 cupcakes 15 minutes
Cook Time
20-25 minutes
Ingredients
Bubbly and Berry Cupcakes
Strawberry Butter Cream
Servings: cupcakes
Instructions
Bubbly and Berry Cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare 24 cupcake tins with liners.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs and strawberries on medium speed. Add in champagne and vegetable oil.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together dry ingredients of flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
  4. Add dry ingredients a cup at a time into the ;large mixing bowl and mix until well blended. Batter will be quite wet.
  5. Fill cupcake tins 3/4 of the way full. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Cupcakes will resemble muffins. A toothpick will come out clean when done.
Strawberry Buttercream
  1. In a mixing bowl with the whisk attachment, beat butter until light and fluffy.
  2. Add 4 cups powdered sugar and vanilla to the butter and mix on medium high until well blended.
  3. Add pureed strawberries a little at a time while mixing into the buttercream. Powdered sugar may need to be added to maintain firm frosting consistency after pureed strawberries are added.
  4. Pipe frosting on to cooled cupcakes and enjoy.
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