Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes

Hey, vegans! I made you something.

Something pretty great, actually.

Like, so great they sort of make me want to give up animal products.

Wait. Is bacon an animal product? Never mind, then.

But seriously, make these. Even if you’re not vegan. They’re super easy and yummy. They’re sort of dense and fudgey…in a good way.

Also, you’re welcome, vegans.

Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes
Recipe from Pastry Affair
Makes 12 cupcakes

Cupcake Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 cups sugar
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
2 teaspoons espresso powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon vinegar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup water

Frosting Ingredients:
3/4 cup special dark chocolate chips
1/2 cup coconut milk, shaken VERY well before measuring

Directions:
To make the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a cupcake tin with liners. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, espresso powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the vanilla, vinegar, oil, and water. Using a spatula, mix until smooth.
Fill the liners about 3/4 full and bake for 18-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Let cool in the tin for a few minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the frosting: Place the chocolate chips into a mixing bowl and set aside. On medium-high heat, bring the coconut milk to a boil (again- VERY important that you shake the can of coconut milk very well to mix it all up. It separates in the can and if all you get is the coconut water, it won’t whip properly).  Stir often to keep the milk from scorching.
Pour the milk over the chocolate, making sure all the chocolate is covered by the milk. Allow to sit for several minutes before stirring to allow the chocolate to melt. Allow the mixture to set on the counter until it cools completely.
Once completely cooled (this may take 20-40 minutes), beat the mixture for several minutes until it incorporates and gets light and fluffy. Place in a pastry bag and pipe onto the cupcakes.

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Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes

I have something revolutionary for you.

(OK, admittedly, “I” don’t have it. I got it from this blog. But you may not have seen it otherwise, so I can sort of take credit, right?)

Are you ready for this?

Here it is:

Pumpkin Pie Frosting.

Yeah. Like, actual baked pumpkin pie…loaded into a piping bag…and swirled onto a cupcake.

Ah-mazing.

And revolutionary.

And yummy.

And perfect for the holidays.

One tip, though: Don’t “frost” these cupcakes until shortly before you’re going to serve them. They just look more appetizing when they haven’t been sitting out. I promise.

Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes
Recipe from Une-deux senses
Makes 16 cupcakes

Crust Ingredients:
3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
2 tablespoons brown sugar
3 tablespoons butter, melted

Cupcake Ingredients:
1 3/4 cup cake flour
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick butter, diced, at room temperature
1/2 cup milk, divided
2 eggs
1 egg white
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Frosting Ingredients:
2 eggs, beaten
15 ounce can pure pumpkin
2 tablespoons molasses
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 tablespoon flour
12 ounce can evaporated milk

Directions:
To make the frosting: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. In a medium bowl, mix together all of the frosting ingredients until well combined. Pour into a 9-inch round pie plate and bake for 15 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees and cook for an additional 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool completely before using.

To make the crust: Make sure the oven is still heated to 350 degrees. Line cupcake tins with 16 liners and set aside. In a medium bowl combine the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and butter and mix well. Add 1 tablespoon of the mixture to the bottom of each cupcake liner and press down (I used my 1/4 cup measuring cup and it worked perfectly). Bake for 5 minutes or until golden. Set aside while you make the cupcakes.

To make the cupcakes: Sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Add the butter and 1/4 cup of the milk. Mix on medium speed until smooth, about 4 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.  In another bowl, blend together the eggs, egg white, 1/4 cup milk, and vanilla. Add to the batter in 3 additions, mixing on medium speed for 2 minutes after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl between each addition.
Fill each liner 3/4 full and bake for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool in the tins for a few minutes, then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

When cupcakes and frosting are both cooled completely and you are about ready to serve them, scoop the pie frosting into a piping bag and swirl onto the cupcakes. Enjoy!

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Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

I promised more pumpkin recipes, didn’t I? Well, here you go…

These cupcakes scream “fall”: pumpkin, spices like nutmeg and cloves- what else could you want in a cupcake this time of year?

They’re so delicious and comforting. I just love a good pumpkin cupcake!

One problem, though: I’ve never been able to master the cream cheese frosting. I dread it when I get an order for it, actually. I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong, but it never really sets up the way I want- it’s always kind of runny. It doesn’t run off the cupcake, and it tastes delicious, but it just doesn’t pipe like I’d like.

Maybe I’m too hard on myself. Or maybe I’m just used to buttercream. Or maybe a little of both.

Regardless, these cupcakes are a delightful way to enjoy the flavors of fall. Get on it.

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting
Recipe from Brown Eyed Baker
Makes 32 cupcakes

Cupcake Ingredients:
4 cups cake flour, sifted
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg (I used 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg)
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 sticks butter, room temperature
2 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
4 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 cups canned pure pumpkin

Frosting Ingredients:
2 sticks butter, room temperature
12 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
3/4 teaspoon vanilla

Directions:
To make the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake tins with liners and set aside.
Sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves. Set aside.
With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, cream together the butter and the brown sugar until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition until fully incorporated and scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Reduce the speed to low. Alternate adding the flour mixture and the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture, mixing just until combined.
Add the pumpkin and beat just until combined.
Fill the liners 3/4 full and bake for 15-18 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through. Let cool in the tins for a few minutes, then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

To make the frosting: With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat the butter and cream cheese until fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Reduce the speed to low. Add the sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, and then the vanilla. Mix until smooth and combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.  Pipe onto cooled cupcakes.

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Vanilla Chai Cupcakes with Cinnamon Buttercream

It’s almost been a month since my last post! Lots going on in my world…

Miss me?

Don’t worry: just because I haven’t been blogging doesn’t mean I haven’t been baking! Got a lot of posts coming your way so stay tuned.

First up: Vanilla Chai Cupcakes.

I made these for an order I had and I was really excited to try them because I, like many people, am obsessed with Vanilla Chai Lattes from Starbucks (in fact, baking these reminded me I haven’t had one in far too long!). These cupcakes were good, but I won’t say they necessarily reminded me of chai tea. In fact, the cake part was more spice cake-y than chai tea-y. Still, good. And the frosting was delish!

Vanilla Chai Cupcakes with Cinnamon Buttercream
recipe from The Culinary Enthusiast
Makes 18-20 cupcakes

Chai Spice Mix Ingredients:
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cardamom
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Cupcake Ingredients:
1 stick butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste (or vanilla)
2 eggs
2 teaspoons chai spice mix
1 1/4 cups flour, sifted
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

Frosting Ingredients:
2 sticks butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste (or vanilla)
2 cups powdered sugar
remainder of chai spice mix
1 tablespoon of milk if needed (to thin out the frosting)

Directions:
To make the chai spice mix: Mix all ingredients into a small bowl or plastic baggie. Set aside.

To make the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line cupcake tins with 18-20 cupcake liners and set aside.
With an electric mixer on medium speed, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Reduce the speed to low and add the vanilla bean paste and the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
Stir in 2 teaspoons of the chai spice mix. Fold in the flour and buttermilk alternately and stir just until combined.
In a separate bowl, mix together the baking soda and vinegar and add it to the batter, mixing until combined.
Fill the liners 3/4 full and bake 17-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Let cupcakes cool in the tins for a few minutes, then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

To make the frosting: In a stand mixer on medium speed, beat the butter until  it is creamy.Reduce the speed to low and add the vanilla bean paste and the rest of the chai spice mix. Slowly add the powdered sugar, about 1/2 cup at a time. Once all of the sugar is added, you may add the milk if it is too thick. Pipe onto cooled cupcakes.

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Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes

Yes…another pumpkin recipe.

You should go ahead and get used to it. There are tons more coming. Besides, who doesn’t love pumpkin?!

Plus, these are ah-mazing. Light and fluffy spice cake with a little pumpkin thrown in for good measure and topped with an airy Cool-Whip-based pumpkin frosting. What’s not to love?

I don’t want to brag, but I took these to my date the other night and he said they were the best cupcakes he’s ever had.

So there.

Sorry- this is the only picture I took of them. I was in a hurry to take them to my date and forgot! Blame him. :)

Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes
makes about 20 cupcakes
cupcakes adapted from a recipe by The Domestic Rebel
frosting adapted from this recipe

Cupcake Ingredients:
1 box spice cake mix
4 eggs
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup oil
1 cup pumpkin
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

Frosting Ingredients:
1 small box pumpkin instant pudding
half of the milk called for on the package (should be 1 cup)
1 small carton Cool Whip

Directions:
To make the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 cupcake tins with about 20 liners (original recipe says 18, but I got 20). Set aside.
In a large bowl, combine all of the cupcake ingredients. Mix on low for 30 seconds, then on medium for 2 minutes. Divide cupcake batter among the liners, filling each one about 2/3 full. Bake for 14-16 minutes or until the tops are springy when touched. Let cool in the tins for a few minutes, then place them on wire racks to cool completely.

To make the frosting: In a medium bowl, mix the pudding mix with the milk and stir well. Add Cool Whip until you reached the desired consistency. (I added the whole tub of Cool Whip. I suggest doing it a little at a time because mine, though it was DELICIOUS, wasn’t quite as thick as I’d like.) Mix well and pipe onto cooled cupcakes!

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Slime Cupcakes

It’s almost Halloween, y’all. Can you believe it?

I don’t know what my son is going to do when Halloween is over. He is loving all of the decorations, costumes, and clothes everywhere we go. Every store is “the Halloween store.”

I made these “Slime Cupcakes” the other night (they were originally “Slime Monster” cupcakes. I didn’t want to spend $4 on candy eyes. Sue me. I just changed the name. It works). When I showed them to my nephew and my son, they went nuts (what little boy wouldn’t?!).

If you have a little Halloween-loving slime monster running around your house like I do, these cupcakes are a must. So simple to make, yet so yummy! Or, take them to a Halloween party and impress your friends. They’ll think you’re so creative.

Slime Cupcakes
makes about 24
Original recipe from The Domestic Rebel

Cupcake Ingredients:
(You can use a box cake mix, if you’d like. I made mine from scratch, using this recipe. Just the chocolate part, obviously.)
1 (3.4 ounce) box instant vanilla pudding
2 cups cold milk
Wilton Leaf Green gel food coloring

Frosting Ingredients:
2 sticks butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
about 4 cups powdered sugar
Wilton Leaf Green and Lemon Yellow gel food coloring

Directions:
To make the cupcakes: Follow the directions for your favorite box mix or from-scratch chocolate cake recipe (the one linked above is really good). Let cool completely.
Once cooled, core your cupcakes. You can do this using a small paring knife or apple corer. Discard (or eat) the middles.

To make the “slime” filling: In a medium bowl, whisk the pudding mix and milk for about a minute. Add enough of the food coloring to make your desired shade of slime. (A little bit goes a long way!) Refrigerate for 5 minutes.
Fill your cupcakes with the pudding “slime”- careful not to fill too full. Set them aside (or refrigerate them until ready to frost).

To make the “slime” frosting: In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and vanilla until creamy. Gradually add the powdered sugar, about a cup at a time, until frosting is light and fluffy. (If frosting gets too thick, add milk a tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached.)
Tint your frosting a slime color by adding a little green and yellow gel food coloring to it. You will not need much, and you will need more green than yellow.
Pipe onto cooled and filled cupcakes, and add extra “spooky” touches, if you’d like. Candy bugs, bones, eyes, and sprinkles are all adorable. (Hop over to Haley’s page to see how she did it!)

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Pumpkin Pie Pop-Tart Cupcakes

So.

Are you familiar with these? Because up until last week I didn’t even know they existed. They’re a “Target-exclusive” item, and they’re totally awesome.

Wanna know what else is awesome?

Chopping these up and shoving them into some cupcakes.

First, let me just say that the cupcakes alone are amazing. Add some of these yummy Pop Tarts to the batter and you have something that will completely blow your pumpkin-loving mind.

Also? Pumpkin cream cheese frosting. Mmm…

Truth be told, I actually had issues with the frosting. It was very runny and gooey and despite my adding more powdered sugar than was called for, it just wouldn’t get to a good piping consistency. So I just smeared some on the tops and called it a day. The problem may be that I used fat-free cream cheese (for those of you that don’t know, that’s kind of a no-no. You may be tempted to use fat-free varieties of sour cream or cream cheese in some of these recipes, but don’t. Just go all out and use the real stuff). That’s the only thing I can think of, since I followed everything else to a “T”. Someone make these and use real cream cheese and let me know, mmmk? Thanks.

I promise you won’t be sorry!

Pumpkin Pie Pop-Tart Cupcakes
makes 12 cupcakes
Recipe from Cookies and Cups

Cupcake Ingredients:
1 1/2 sticks butter, room temperature
3/4 cup light brown sugar
2 eggs, room temperature
1 1/3 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
6 Pumpkin Pie Pop-Tarts

Frosting Ingredients:
1 (8 ounce) block of cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup canned pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
5 cups sifted powdered sugar

Directions:
To make the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a cupcake tin with liners and set aside.
Beat the butter on high speed until soft, about 30 seconds.
Add the brown sugar and beat on medium-high until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Add the eggs one at a time, mixing thoroughly between each addition.
In a seperate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
In a liquid measuring cup, measure the milk and add the vanilla.
Alternate adding the flour mixture and the milk mixture to the butter mixture, beginning and ending with the flour mixture (beat thoroughly between each addition).
Cut the crusts off of the Pop-Tarts and discard (or eat) them. Next, cut each Pop-Tart into about 12 pieces.
Fold the Pop-Tarts into the batter.
Fill the liners about 3/4 full and bake for 15-20 minutes or until the tops are springy when pressed or a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool for a few minutes in the tins, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

To make the frosting: Cream the butter and cream cheese together on medium speed until smooth and creamy. Add the pumpkin and vanilla and mix well. Slowly add the powdered sugar and pumpkin pie spice on low speed, then mix on medium for 1 minute, until smooth. Pipe onto cooled cupcakes.

I think, given the fact that there are Pop-Tarts in these bad boys, that they count as breakfast. You have my permission to have one (or two) in the morning.

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