The Ultimate Cupcake Guide

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Cupcakes are getting trendier and trendier by the minute I feel like! It’s no surprise to me how many cupcake bakeries there are these days and they are even becoming popular on reality TV shows; such as “Cupcake Wars on Food Network. Often times, the quickest way to get ahold of cupcakes when you need them is at our grocery store bakery because we don’t want to make our own. Their cute size makes them so convenient to eat as well..so, what’s not to love in a cupcake? This chart is so handy because it gives an idea on how to create your own perfected cupcake. Use this recipe below for a perfect basic yellow cupcake mix. Chocolate, vanilla, buttercream, strawberry, and just about any-other frosting you love would be delicious with this recipe…I think it would be almost be impossible in my opinion for any frosting not to taste amazing with this. 🙂

Control Recipe: Basic Yellow Cupcakes
Yield: 12

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (6.35 ounces)
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon fine salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1 stick (1/2 cup or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 large egg
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons whole milk

Steps:
1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line a standard 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners. In a small bowl combine the flour, baking powder, and salt.

2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat sugar and butter until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add egg and vanilla and beat until combined. Add flour and milk alternatively, starting and ending with the flour, beating well after each addition. Continue beating for one minute. Divide the batter between the cupcake cups, filling each about 2/3 full.

3. Bake for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

Recipe adopted from: Relish

Cinnamon Roll Cookie Bars

There is nothing better than the smell of cinnamon rolls baking in the oven. Cinnamon Rolls are definitely one of my favorite indulgences, especially for breakfast! When I came across this recipe I thought it was too good and easy to be true.  They  smelled exactly like cinnamon rolls baking in the oven and the only  difference is it took 10 minutes to make, thats it! You really need to try this!

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Yield: 18

Ingredients:
Bars
1 box Vanilla Cake Mix
1 box Cook and Serve Vanilla Pudding
3/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup light brown sugar
2 eggs
1 Tbsp water
2 Tbsp cinnamon
Frosting
1 (8 oz) block cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
5 cups powdered sugar
*optional ~ Cinnamon Sugar to garnish
3 Tbsp sugar + 1 tsp cinnamon

Steps:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray, set aside.
In large bowl combine all ingredients for the bars. Stir until there are no lumps.

2. Spread into prepared baking dish and bake 20-25 minutes until edges are golden. Let cool completely before frosting.
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3. Now the frosting..in mixing bowl beat together cream cheese and butter until smooth. Slowly add the powdered sugar and continue beating for 1-2 minutes until smooth and creamy.
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4. Spread on cooled bars. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar on top for garnish. Cut into squares when ready to serve.
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Recipe Adapted from Cookies and Cups

How to: Frost The Perfect Cupcake

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Have you ever wondered how to get the most perfect swirl of frosting on top of your cupcake? Next time you bake a batch of cupcakes be sure to try a different pipping tip. I typically always use one of the star tips because its so versatile and goes with just about any design/theme you are trying to go for.  The open star tips looks elegant and is also great for capturing sprinkles. The round tip works well if you want a silkier and simple look. Pipping bags are the most useful and could be found at almost any grocery  store in the baking sections or even any craft store. However, if you don’t have one you can always use a 1-gallon ziplock bag.

http://www.ourbestbites.com/2012/05/how-to-frost-cupcakes/

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Old Fashioned Iced Oatmeal Cookies

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Oatmeal cookies are one of my favorites and this recipe tastes just like the store bought ones–except its homemade! My icing recipe is just perfect for this because it is very simple, light, and dries almost instantly. I always prefer to make “too much” icing because there is nothing more annoying than running out in the middle of frosting cookies! So I included a little extra to be on the safe side 🙂

Yield: 12

Ingredients:
2 cup flour
2 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 cup butter
1 Tbsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
2 cups brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract

Icing:
2 cups powdered sugar
2-3 Tbsp milk

Steps:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a mixing bowl, cream together butter, vanilla, and sugar. Then add in flour, oats, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Mix until dough is formed.

2. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. For a dough ball with hands (about 1 1/2 Tbsp) and place on sheet 1 1/2 inch apart. With a spoon, gently press down on dough ball. Bake for 10-12 minutes until golden brown.

3. While cookies are baking, in a mixer add powdered sugar and milk and mix for a good 3 minutes until well combined. The icing should be slightly runny. Put icing in a sandwich plastic bag and cut the tip to make a hole. Be sure to cut it VERY small..almost as small as possible! Once cookies are cooled, gently drizzle icing on cookies and let cool for 15 minutes or until icing is set.

Gingerbread Boy Cupcakes

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Gingerbread cookies are the cutest part of Christmas time! These cupcakes make the perfect treat for any Christmas party or if you are having visitors over!

Yield: 24

Ingredients:
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 egg; room temperature
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
3/4 cup brown sugar
24 gingerbread cookies

Frosting:
4 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp maple syrup

Steps:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda, nutmeg, ginger, cinnamon, and salt. Mix and set aside. In a medium bowl combine butter, sugar, and syrup. Mix until combined.

2. Combine wet ingredients to flour mixture and mix with a blender or kitchen aid. Pour in the whipping cream slowly while mixing.

3. Line cupcake tins with wrappers and spoon in cupcake mixture evenly within 24 cupcakes. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until cupcakes are golden brown.

4. To make the frosting, in a mixing bowl mix the powdered sugar, whipping cream, syrup, and vanilla extract, and syrup with a mixer. Mix until light and fluffy. Add more powdered sugar or whipping cream depending if frosting is too thick. Once cupcakes are baked and cooled, with a butter knife frost cupcakes and place a gingerbread cookie in the center.