Archives for the month of: November, 2014

To get ready for Thanksgiving, Cristina, my sister and I got together to bake some cupcakes! We started off with these Vanilla Apple Cupcakes that were very easy to make and absolutely delicious! Let’s just say we ended off licking the icing off our fingers it was so good! Also, we added a play date for our dogs, Nemo and Scooter, and it was quite fun!

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Ingredients
Cupcakes:
  • White cake mix
  • Apple cider
  • 3 medium eggs
  • ⅓ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp vanilla

Apple Cider Buttercream frosting:

  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • ½ cup shortening
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp meringue powder (we didn’t use any and it still came out fine but if you have some, use it!)
  • 2 tbsp apple cider
  • piping bag fitted with an extra large star tip
Directions
Prepare the cupcakes according to box instructions, substituting the apple cider where the water is called for. Add vanilla in with the other wet ingredients. Bake the cupcakes in preheated oven according to instructions. For added apple flavor, you could fold in ½ cup of diced apples into the cake batter before pouring.
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Frosting: Cream the butter and shortening together until smooth. In a separate bowl, combine the cinnamon, nutmeg, meringue powder, and powdered sugar. Slowly sift the powdered sugar and spices into the butter and shortening. Mix until well blended. Add the vanilla and apple cider to the frosting and continue mixing until smooth. If the frosting is too wet, gradually add more powdered sugar, if too dry, add additional apple cider. Using an extra large star tip, pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes creating an upward spiral, working from the outside of the cupcake to the center.
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What better day to bake when it’s frigid and snowing outside!
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One cupcake even got sent off to a surprise birthday party!
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The next set of cupcakes we made was this delicious combination of caramel apple all in a cupcake! I am a sucker for caramel so as soon as I found out that pure, thick, caramel was going both into the cupcake and the icing, I was sold! I will note that I do not like having left over icing, so I cut the icing recipe below in half and it was more than enough to cover all 24 cupcakes, but you can always make it as is shown below. Also, I didn’t do the fancy nut topping but feel free to add that nutty touch! Enjoy!

Ingredients
Cupcakes:
  • 1 (15.25 box) yellow cake mix
  • ¾ cup apple cider
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ cup apple butter
Frosting:
  • 3 (8 oz.) packages regular cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 3 (4 oz.) sticks unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • ¼ cup thick caramel topping
  • ¼ cup apple butter
  • 6 cups sifted powdered sugar
Topping (optional):
  • ½ cup thick caramel topping
  • 1 cup finely chopped nuts (such as walnuts, pecans, or peanuts)
Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 muffin pans with paper baking liners or spray pans with nonstick spray. In a large mixing bowl mix together cake mix, cider, eggs, and ½ cup apple butter with electric mixer on medium speed for 2 minutes. Spoon batter evenly into prepared pans so that each cup is about ⅔ full.
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Bake cupcakes for about 19-23 minutes or when toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Place on wire racks and cool completely.
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To make frosting, mix together cream cheese and butter in large mixing bowl until well combined and lumps are all gone. Mix in ¼ cup caramel and apple butter until well combined. Slowly mix in powdered sugar until well combined. Frost cupcakes as desired with pastry bag or knife.
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If desired, warm remaining ¼ cup of caramel in microwave for 15 seconds or until drizzling consistency. Cool slightly then drizzle over cupcakes. Sprinkle nuts on top. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve.
 I didn’t get to add a caramel drizzle or nuts but I did try a mattice icing style with the same icing through a pastry bag.
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 To end off our Thanksgiving cupcake extravaganza, we made these delicious Pumpkin Snickerdoodle Cupcakes thanks to Your Cup of Cake and they were absolutely delicious! Instead of just leaving them with plain icing on the top, we added some fun turkey faces on top of the whole treat to add to the festivities!

Ingredients
Cupcakes:
1 box yellow or white cake mix (you can use Spice mix and omit spices)
1 Tbsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp. cinnamon
15 oz. pumpkin puree
3 eggs
1/2 C. applesauce or oil
1/3 C. milk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
Snickerdoodle topping:
6 Tbsp. butter, melted
1/4 C. sugar
1 Tbsp. cinnamon
Cinnamon Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting:
1/2 C. butter, softened
8 oz. cream cheese
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. vanilla extract
3 1/2 – 4 1/2 C. powdered sugar
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Small note about this Pumpkin Pie Spice: I went to buy some at the grocery store because I saw it called for some in the recipe, but when I saw how much it cost to buy for a blend of other more common household spices, I decided not to buy it. I happened to find it in my pantry later at home and ended up using it, but always be sure to read the labels to see if it is one less thing you might need!
Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line pans with cupcake liners. Sift cake mix, pumpkin pie spice and cinnamon into a bowl an set aside.
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In a large bowl, combine pumpkin, eggs, applesauce, milk and vanilla extract.
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Stir in cake mix and spices.
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Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full and bake for 17-22 minutes or until an inserted knife comes out clean.
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Place your melted butter in a small bowl. Combine sugar and cinnamon in another small bowl.
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Use a pastry brush to brush melted butter on the tops of your cupcakes (they can be cooled or nearly cooled), then roll the tops of the cupcakes into your cinnamon-sugar to get that “snickerdoodle” look.
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Frosting: Beat butter and cream cheese. Add cinnamon and vanilla extract and slowly add in powdered sugar until you reach your desired consistency. Add 1 Tbsp. milk if it becomes too thick.
Pipe onto cooled cupcakes and sprinkles extra cinnamon-sugar on top!
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