Cinnamon Roll Cupcakes

Do you want your entire kitchen to smell like the inside of a Cinnabon store? No point in answering that question really… the answer is usually always YES.  I’ve been on a total cupcake craze lately.  I don’t know what it is… they are just so fun to make.  and cute to look at.  and delicious to eat.  These treats are a little labor intensive but really, really worth the effort.  Just imagine warm vanilla cupcakes with a brown sugar/cinnamon swirl topped with an ooey-gooey coffee flavored cream cheese frosting.  Hungry yet?! :)

Thanks for sharing this recipe with me Gwennie!

Recipe yields 12 cupcakes

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Ingredients:

For the Cinnamon Swirl:

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter (melted)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

For the Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt (or sour cream)
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Frosting:

  • 8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon coffee extract
  • 3 cup powdered sugar (add more or less to make it a stiffness that you like)

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Directions:

To make the filling:

  • In a small bowl, stir all of the ingredients together until combined. Set aside.

To make the cupcakes:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees (180 C). Line a muffin pan with cupcake papers; set aside.
  • In a large bowl, or the bowl of a standing mixer, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add the butter, yogurt, eggs, and vanilla and beat until smooth. Scrape the bowl, making sure there are no streaks of flour remaining (do not over mix).
  • Place 1 1/2 tablespoons of batter in each of the paper liners in the prepared muffin pan. Make a small well in the middle of each cup of batter with a toothpick, Stir the filling to make sure the butter is combined, then spoon a scant 1 teaspoon of the filling into each cup. Use a toothpick to swirl the filling and batter together.
  • Add another 1 1/2 tablespoons of batter to each cup and repeat the filling/swirling process.
  • Bake for 18 to 22 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer to a wire cooling rack and allow to cool completely before frosting.

To make the frosting:

  • Mix butter, coffee extract and cream cheese on medium speed until well combined (approximately 30 seconds).
  • Slowly add powdered sugar a little at a time and mix until frosting is light and fluffy (approximately 2-3 minutes).

Enjoy!

Source: Cinnamon Roll Cupcake recipe adapted from Cinnamon Roll Cupcakes by Bakingdom

Pirate Party Cupcakes **(so cute I’m re-visiting them!)**

Two years back I made cupcakes for our March Break Pirate Camp at work and they were so cute I couldn’t resist making them again.  Here is the original post here.  These cupcakes are really fun to make.  After they are baked, you hide a chocolate covered coin in the middle as buried treasure.  I used tan colored butter cream frosting and sprinkled a few graham crackers crumbs on top for sand.  I found the liners and little flags at Dollarama which was a great find.  You can also add a little red “X” to mark the spot of the buried treasure.  Arrrgh.

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Enjoy!

Bake a Little Love

Valentine’s Day is almost here! I usually don’t like the commercialism surrounding holidays but when it comes to Valentine’s Day I just can’t seem to help myself.  Maybe its all the pink, red and purple stuff.  Maybe its the cheesy music.  Maybe its the flowers… or maybe its the TREATS! The possibilities for baking are endless.  Also, can I please draw your attention to these adorable foodie valentine cards I saw in last month’s Rachael Ray Magazine? “Take Olive Me” and “I’m Muffin Without You” are two of my favorites.  I love puns.

So here is something really awesome… I was asked to write today’s blog post by a company called Brilliant Earth.  They provide high quality jewelry originating from pure sources that is made using socially responsible practices.  You can check out their gorgeous website here.  This year for Valentine’s Day Brilliant Earth is launching a “Create a Little Love” campaign by putting together a collage of various images that represent LOVE.  Watch for it on Valentine’s Day! Of course I said yes to getting involved, any opportunity to incorporate some extra creativity is always welcome around here :)

I chose to represent LOVE using cupcakes.  Cupcakes are cute.  Cupcakes are fun.  Cupcakes are hands down my favorite treats to bake.  Whether I want to express a thank you, spoil someone on their birthday or whip up something special for a baby shower I always seem to express my love & affection to my friends and family through cupcakes.  I mean, how can you not love something so delicious?

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I know Valentine’s Day is right around the corner so if you are a bit pressed for time, these cupcakes are for you.  Chances are, you will have most of these items in your pantry and can whip them up in no time flat.  Nobody will know that you didn’t slave over them for hours.

Unbelievably Quick and Easy Chocolate Cupcakes

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup strong coffee
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar
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Directions:
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Mix ingredients together on medium speed in a large bowl with your stand mixer or Kitchen Aid until well blended.
  • Bake for 25 minutes or until set.

See?! So easy! Oh, and in case you are worried you don’t really taste the coffee its just for adding a bit of a richer flavor.  You could even do 1/2 cup water 1/2 coffee if you wanted.

I topped these cupcakes with a white chocolate butter cream (ummm yes please).  Here is the link for the yummy white chocolate frosting I made from Comfortably Domestic.  Chocolate is so forgiving when it comes to frosting.  For these treats you can really top them with whatever frosting you wanted.    Chocolate frosting, whipped cream frosting, cream cheese frosting… I’ve included a few of my favorite recipes here:

* ALSO… Winners and Home Sense have these adorable paper cupcake liners available right now.  You just bake the cupcakes right in the liners standing up on a cookie sheet!

Enjoy! Try to find some time this week to go home and bake a little love… you will be glad you did! <3

Dinosaur Egg Cupcakes

I think my favourite cupcakes to make are for kids.  They are just so freakin’ cute!  I made these treats for my little friend Nathaniel’s 2nd birthday a few weeks back.  His mom (a good friend of mine) had requested a healthy-ish dessert so I whipped up some low sugar carrot cupcakes with an (almost) sugar free frosting.  The fondant on top was suppose to be peeled off before eating but of course most of the kids just dove right in and ate it anyways haha.  I ordered the liners and cupcake toppers from an online company called Meri Meri.  You can view it here!  I really like the products sold on this website because most of the toppers are really sturdy instead of just being made out of flimsy paper.

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The concept behind these cupcakes was really simple… I wanted to make them look like dinosaur eggs so I just cut out fondant circles in all different colours and then topped them will little circles made of fondant in contrasting colours.  They were a huge hit :)

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Enjoy!

Chocolate Cupcakes with Blackberry Buttercream Frosting

I’ve made these cupcakes a few times now.  I’m not crazy about buttercream but when its mixed with fresh fruit I am a much bigger fan! Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, peaches, you name it.  The nice thing about using fresh fruit is that your icing turns a beautiful colour without needing any added colorants.  I used my favourite basic chocolate cupcake for this recipe (which you can find here).  I guess I am going to have to put away the fresh fruit recipes soon and start thinking about pumpkin and gingerbread… I don’t want summer to go away just yet :(

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Frosting Ingredients:

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 4 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted
  • 1/2 cup blackberries
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch salt
  • blackberries, for garnish

Directions:

  • Puree the blackberries in a small food processor.
  • Strain the pulp out into a fine-mesh strainer. Using a rubber spatula, push the blackberry pulp through the sieve to remove the seeds. Discard the seeds, and set the pureed blackberries aside.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment cream the butter over medium speed for 1 minute. Reduce speed to low, and carefully add in the confectioners sugar.
  • Add the vanilla extract, as well as the blackberry puree. Increase speed to medium, and beat until smooth and frosting is combined.
  • Frost as desired.

Enjoy!

Source: Icing recipe taken directly from the Blackberry Buttercream Frosting by Tide and Thyme