Archives for category: Frosting

I am a happy godmother of two amazing young women: Stephanie and Laura and we were able to spend a weekend together where we explored some embassies in DC, checked out the DC Funk Parade, ate some Chinese food, made brunch and baked cupcakes! Since the beginning of great summer weather is approaching, we thought it would be fitting to make these amazing strawberry lemonade cupcakes. The original recipe also suggested putting them in mason jars which is adorable too, but we stuck with some quintessential summer cupcake liners that were too perfect to pass up. Enjoy these refreshing summer treats!

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Lemon Cupcakes Ingredients: 

  • 1 1/4 cups cake flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon pure lemon extract
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup oil (vegetable, canola or extra light olive oil)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream (any fat content)

Strawberry Frosting Ingredients: 

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 4oz. (1/2 block) cream cheese (cold)
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2-3 Tablespoons strawberry jam
  • 2-3 fresh strawberries, pureed (or very finely chopped)
  • 1 Tablespoon heavy cream, or milk, as needed

Lemon Cupcakes Directions:

Preheat oven to 350*F. In a medium bowl, add cake flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir together with whisk, and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, add eggs and beat 10-20 seconds.

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Add sugar and continue to beat on medium speed about 30 seconds. Add vanilla, lemon extract, lemon juice, zest and oil, beat.

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Add sour cream and blend until combined.

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Reduce mixer speed to low and slowly add the flour mixture. Mix just until the dry ingredients are incorporated. Pour (or scoop) batter into a muffin pan prepared with paper liners. Fill liners about 2/3 full (no more).

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Bake cupcakes in pre-heated oven for 12-15 minutes

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Strawberry Frosting

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter until fully smooth. Add cream cheese, and again beat until fully incorporated and very smooth. While mixing on low speed, add the powdered sugar, one cup at a time.

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Add vanilla extract, then strawberry jam and beat until well combined. If the jam you are using has large chunks in it, you may need to blend in a food processor or press through a fine strainer before adding to the frosting. Depending on the ripeness of your berries, you may want to add 1 drop of pink food coloring to the icing.

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If the frosting is very thick, add heavy cream or milk, then beat until light and fluffy. Frost on cooled cupcakes.

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Love these goons:

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My sister turned 23! I just can’t believe it! She will always be my little sister but that just means the older she gets, the older I’m getting! Because she is my PIC in my baking madness, I wanted to dedicate the next few posts to her. I baked quite a bit for her birthday week and here are some recipes and pictures of what we did. Needless to say we were on a sugar high for that week but it was quite nice and I’m grateful every day to have such a kind, funny, talented, and all around awesome sister.  Love you and to many more happy and sweet birthdays!

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To start it all off, I made her some donuts! She loves cinnamon flavored treats and I though this was perfect to start off her birthday 🙂 Also, these donuts are baked so no need to fry anything or feel guilty later!

Ingredients

Donuts:
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ teaspoon white vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 4 tablespoons butter, softened
Glaze:
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
Directions
Preheat oven to 350F. In a large bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon; set aside. In a small saucepan bring together the milk, white vinegar, vanilla, egg, and butter. Cook over medium-heat, stirring constantly with a whisk until the butter melts, about one minute. Remove from heat.
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Add the milk mixture into the flour mixture; mix until combined.
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Using a large tablespoon, spoon the doughnut mixture into an ungreased doughnut pan.
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Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove and immediately invert the pan onto a cooling rack. While the doughnuts are cooling, begin to work on the glaze.
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Glaze
Place all the ingredients in a small saucepan and cook over medium-heat, stirring constantly just until combined and no lumps appear. Set the saucepan over a bowl filled with hot water.
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Dip the doughnuts into the glaze, one at a time, and set on a rack, glaze side up. Put something underneath the rack because some of that glaze will drip off.
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Give it a few minutes before you dig in!
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We went to a dance performance at the Kennedy Center that evening and the sunset was stunning!
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And afterwards, the birthday song of course!
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Snow day! My sister and I set out to make the fluffiest cake ever and have a snowy photo shoot. We really had a great time and were able to take pictures out in the snow before it stopped snowing (all though it was more hail by the time we went out!). We put some food coloring in the cake batter and just put all of it in a pan and cut it in two with a large bread knife. After frosting the cake, we covered it with coconut shavings. Definitely making this again and hope you enjoy the pictures! Check out my sister’s photography site at http://www.laurajquintero.com

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Ingredients for cake:
    • 5 large egg whites, at room temperature
    • 1 whole egg
    • 1 cup whole milk, at room temperature
    • 2-1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
    • 3 cups cake flour, sifted
    • 2 cups sugar
    • 1 tbsp + 1 tsp baking powder
    • 3/4 tsp salt
    • 12 tbsp unsalted butter, cold and cut into 24 even pieces

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Ingredients for frosting:
  • 3 sticks + 2 tbsp unsalted butter, softened and cut into cubes
  • 3 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar (icing, powdered)
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt

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Directions: 

For the cake:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease, line with parchment, and flour two round 8-inch pans.
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In a medium bowl or measuring cup, combine and stir the egg whites, whole egg, 1/4 cup of milk, and the vanilla. Set aside.
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In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the dry ingredients together on low speed (I use the “stir” setting on my mixer) for 30 seconds.
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Add the butter one piece at a time, about every 10 seconds, ensuring it’s cold (you can keep some in refrigerator while you’re adding pieces). Continue to mix on low until the mixture is a fine crumbly texture. Add milk, and mix on low speed for 5 minutes. Scrape the sides of the bowl and begin to add the egg mixture in 3 separate batches, mixing until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. (You want to ensure that the batter is homogenous.) Fold once or twice to ensure the batter at bottom of bowl is incorporated.
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Divide the batter in two, spreading it evenly with a small offset palette knife. If you have a kitchen scale, weigh to ensure 2 even layers.
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Bake until a cake tester comes out with a few crumbs when inserted into the center, about 30 minutes. Be so careful to not over-bake. Check cake at 20 minutes, but not before, and then set the timer for 5 minute intervals. Let cool on racks for 10 minutes before loosening the sides with a small metal spatula, and invert onto greased wire racks. Gently turn cakes back up, so the tops are up and cool completely.
Wrap tightly and store at room temperature for up to 2 days, refrigerator for up to 5 days, or frozen for up to 2 months. Best eaten the same day as baked.
For the frosting:
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip butter for 8 minutes on medium speed (I use “4” on my KitchenAid). Butter will become very pale & creamy. Add remaining ingredients and mix on low speed for 1 minute, then on medium speed for 6 minutes. Frosting will be very light, creamy and fluffy. Best used right away. You can eliminate the vanilla bean and use a total of 1-1/2 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract.
Assembly:
Place bottom cake layer on cake plate or 8″ round thin cake board and spread 1 cup of frosting on top with a small offset spatula. Gently place 2nd cake layer face down on top. Place a generous scoop of frosting on top, spreading evenly with a small offset spatula and working your way down the sides until you have a thin layer of frosting over the entire cake. Chill until set, about 30 minutes. Remove from refrigerator and apply a final “coat” of frosting.
Store in a cake keeper at room temperature for up to 2 days, or in refrigerator for up to 5 days. Best eaten day 1.

First snow day of 2015! After a huge craving for some hot cocoa, I found recipes for hot cocoa cupcakes and hot cocoa frosting! My sister and I had been planning on taking some snow-filled pictures and this was the perfect opportunity to do so! Enjoy the recipes, the snow and the pictures!

Ingredients

Cupcakes

  • 1 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup cocoa
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup hot water

Frosting

  • 1/2 cup Hot Cocoa Mix
  • 1/3 cup hot water
  • 1/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 pound powdered sugar

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line cupcake tray with baking cups. Mix flour, cocoa, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in the bowl of your stand mixer until all of the dry ingredients are combined. Add eggs one at a time, mixing in between. Add milk, oil and vanilla and mix until combined. Turn mixer on low and slowly add hot water until incorporated. The batter will be very liquid.

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For ease of pouring, transfer batter to a large measuring cup and pour batter into baking cups about 2/3 full.

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Bake for about 16-18 minutes or until done. Remove and let cool.

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For the frosting, combine cocoa mix and water in large mixer bowl. Beat in butter and vanilla extract. Gradually beat in powdered sugar until smooth and creamy. Add more hot water if frosting is too thick.

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Here are my sister’s awesome pictures!

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Behind the scenes :p

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Making this cake was quite nice but the lemon glaze didn’t quite end up looking like the original picture but it was still delicious and the combination between the lemon and the berries was awesome! Also, the flour over frozen berries was a total life hack! Enjoy!!

Ingredients

Cake
    • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
    • 2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
    • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
    • zest of 1 lemon
    • 3 large eggs
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 3/4 cup kefir (or buttermilk)
    • 3 cups mixed berries (I used 1 cup raspberry, 1 cup blackberry, 1 cup blueberry)
    • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Glaze
  • 1 cup and 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 4 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened (not melted! the butter should still be able to retain its shape!)

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 F. In a medium bowl, mix 2 1/2 cups flour, baking powder and salt and combine thoroughly.

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In a separate large bowl, add together the softened butter, sugar and lemon zest and mix, using mixer, on high setting for about 5 minutes until even consistency is reached and the mixture reaches lighter color. Add eggs, vanilla to the butter-sugar mixture and continue beating until well-incorporated.

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Now we’ll be adding flour mixture into the butter-sugar mixture in 3 gradual steps, instead of dumping all of flour at one time. If you dump all of flour mixture into your butter mixture at one time, it will be more difficult to stir and you won’t get a smooth texture. So, we’ll be adding flour and kefir (or buttermilk) in 3 additions: With your mixer on low speed, add 1/3 of flour mixture to butter-sugar mixture, beating just a little until all is well combined. Then follow by 1/4 cup of kefir (or buttermilk). Add second 1/3 cup of flour mixture, beating with mixer just to combine. Follow by 1/4 cup of kefir (or buttermilk), beating just to combine. Finally, add third 1/3 cup of flour mixture, followed by final 1/4 cup of kefir (or buttermilk). Again, beat just enough to combine. Make sure to have your mixer on low speed while adding flour, otherwise flour might fly around your kitchen. Make sure to not overmix or overbeat, use mixer just to combine the ingredients.

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In a separate bowl, combine berries with 2 tbsp of flour. This is supposed to prevent berries from clumping together and sinking. Note about using frozen berries: I did make this cake with frozen berries without defrosting them. It’s important that, if using frozen berries, they should not be clumped together, each berry should be separate (I freeze fresh berries by lining them on a cookie sheet). So you can use both fresh and frozen berries, and in either case you toss them with flour before adding to the batter.

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Using spatula, fold berries into the cake batter, trying not to squish the berries.

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Spray your cake pan with a Baking Spray with Flour (which works great for bundt pans). Pour batter gently into prepared pan.

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Bake for at least 60 minutes (depending on the oven, it could be as long as 1 hour 15 minutes), until the toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Mid-time through the baking, turn the pan around in the oven for even baking.

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Remove the pan from oven, let it cool for 40 minutes on wire rack. And here is my way of releasing the cake from the bundt pan, which proves successful each time I use it: After your bundt pan cooled off for 40 minutes, place the bundt pan in the freezer for 30 minutes – it will still be quite hot to the touch (even after 40 minutes of cooling), so use kitchen gloves to handle the pan. Remove the pan from the freezer after 30 minutes, invert the bundt pan and let it sit inverted for a bit to let the gravity do the work (it could take as little as half a minute or as long as 20 minutes, depending on your bundt pan). Then, gently lift bundt pan and your cake should be released

Whisk powdered sugar, lemon juice and butter until very thick and very white. Spread this lemon juice frosting over the top of the cooled cake like shown on the photos.

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This cake really does taste like muffin, no joke! I was having a rough day and I really just wanted to make a cake. My sister helped me out and we worked on this cake for quite some time while watching the CFB Championship game. It was a lot of fun but the cake didn’t look quite as nice as the original recipe did. But that just drives home the purpose of Baking with Friends: that the process itself is what is so enjoyable about baking, the cake may come out pretty or ugly, tasty or nasty, but either way, the important part you will remember later on was how much fun you had in the process. So grab some friends, make this cake and let me know if yours didn’t fall apart in the end! 🙂

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 3/4 cups all purpose Gold Medal Flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • Zest of 2 lemons
  • 1 pound fresh blueberries (I didn’t have enough blueberries so I mixed in some raspberries as well)

Buttermilk Glaze:

  • 3 tablespoons buttermilk
  • 1 cup powdered sugar

Oat Crumble Topping:

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons oats
  • 2 tablespoons sliced almonds (I didn’t use these but you can!)

Ingredients

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Spray a bundt pan with non-stick cooking spray and sprinkle with flour to fully cover the pan.

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In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Then beat in the eggs and vanilla. Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a separate bowl. Turn the mixer on low and slowly add the flour and buttermilk, alternating each, until all incorporated.

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Finally beat in the lemon zest before turning the mixer off.

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Use a spoon the stir in half the blueberries.

Pour the batter into the prepared bundt pan and sprinkle the remaining blueberries over the top.

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Bake for 60-80 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool for at least 20 minutes before flipping out onto a cooling rack.

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DO NOT try flipping the cake any earlier than 20 minutes, or the cake will stick. Promise! Waiting 30+ minutes is safer.

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Once the cake is cooling on the rack, mix the oat crumble. Add all the ingredients to a small bowl and pinch with your fingers to blend the ingredients and break into small pieces. Sprinkle the mixture over a baking sheet and bake in the heated oven for 5-10 minutes. Cool on the baking sheet before proceeding.

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For the glaze, whisk the buttermilk and powdered sugar in a small bowl. Drizzle the glaze over the cake and immediately sprinkle the oat crumble over the top of the cake before the glaze dries.

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Not too shabby and absolutely delicious!

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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!

For National Donut Day, my sister and I decided to use our donut pans (for the first time) and make these delicious pink velvet donuts with a homemade glaze! These were absolutely phenomenal and we made them in regular and mini sizes which made it even more fun to decorate and eat later. Enjoy and Happy National Donut Day! Also, credit goes out to my sister for taking the beautiful pictures! Check her pictures out at Laura Quintero Photography

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Donut Ingredients

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1-1/2 c buttermilk
  • 2-1/2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 4 eggs slightly beaten
  • 4 tbsp melted butter
  • 1 tsp red food color

Glaze Ingredients

  • 2 cups confectioners sugar
  • 2-2 1/2 tbsp milk
  • 2-3 drops food color if desired
  • decorations of choice

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Sift together flour, sugar, salt & baking powder. Add buttermilk, eggs, vanilla to dry mixture- mix. Add butter- mix until combined. Add cocoa powder & food color- beat until just combined.

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Fill full size donut pans & bake 5-8 minutes OR! fill mini-donut maker & bake 3-5 minutes.

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Donuts are done when they spring back when touched- do not over cook. While the donuts are baking, prepare the glaze by first sifting the powdered sugar into a medium bowl. Stir in enough milk to make soft and spreadable. If using colors, divide into separate bowls and add food color to each. Allow to cool on wire rack. Dip in glaze and add sprinkles before glaze dries.

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