Monday, July 2, 2012

Cupcake Fun and a Giveaway!

I had a lot of fun sharing different cake decorating tips last week, and thought I would turn my attention to my favorite form of cake: cupcakes!

I had the opportunity to go to one of my favorite cupcake cafes when I was in St. Louis last week, The Cup. Their cupcakes are gorgeous in a really simple way, and also delicious. Check out this baby:

When I took the cake decorating class a few years back, I was most excited about our last class, which focused entirely on cupcakes. It was so much fun to see the different things that you can create, simply by changing out the tips on the piping bag. I usually focus more on taste than toppings, but it is really fun to see what you can create. Here are a few:

This ladybug was just a smooth layer of red icing, a line and a few dots with chocolate icing, and then a chocolate drop and some white dots, which you can get at the craft store.  

 You can also bake cupcakes into an ice cream cone, and then top with frosting using a 1M tip (the big star). Topped with some sprinkles and a cherry = awesome! The 1M tip is the one that makes the nice big icing swirl on top of the cake. Much prettier than plopping down icing with a spatula.

Our instructor also made a delicious chocolate mint mousse-like icing for this one, which is my "ice cream." She also used this as a cupcake filling. It was surprisingly easy to fill cupcakes without making a mess, using the Bismarck tip. Give it a try!

So I will own that I didn't make this one, the instructor did. She showed us how to do a bunch, and then let us take her examples home. This sunflower was made with a leaf tip and yellow icing, followed by some small dots of chocolate. You could also do mini chocolate chips for the center. That leaf tip is great for making a lion face too.

Another fun tip for cupcakes is the grass tip, which can either do something like this...
From Lace Bakery
Or you can make muppet fur!
From Bake Factory UK
Pinterest is a great source of inspiration for cupcake decorating. Here are a few of my favorite pins that I would love to try. I have a lot of cupcake recipes saved for different flavors, these are more focused on the decorating piece.
Minion Cupcakes (made with twinkies) from Do It and How

Caramel Frappuccino Cupcakes from Pixie Crust

Stuffed Carrot Cupcakes from Cupcakes Take the Cake (The carrot is actually a chocolate covered strawberry!)

I am inspired to get my bake on.

So, for all of you blog readers out there, it is time for another giveaway! And if you haven't guessed it, this one is all about cupcakes!

The Goods: To help you decorate some cupcakes of your own, this giveaway comes with four essentials:
  •  Wilton 12-piece Cupcake Decorating Set. Includes star tips 1M (rosettes, stars, drop flowers), star tip 22 (zigzags, pull-out stars), round tip 12 (outlines, dots, messages) and Bismarck tip 230 for exciting filled cupcakes, plus 8 disposable bags, and an instruction booklet.
  • Wilton 4-pack of couplers. (Couplers hold your tip onto the piping bag, and are super helpful.)
  • Wilton Garden-Tone 4-icing gel colors set. Colors include Buttercup Yellow, Aster Mauve, Delphinium Blue and Juniper Green in 1/2 oz. jars. These are the best colors to use to create vibrant icing.
  • Festive plaid cupcake wrappers. These will make some happy cupcakes. : )
(picture of the giveaway coming soon - had some trouble uploading pictures last night)
How to Enter:
This is where you have to come out from the shadows. I know you are there readers, but you will have to make yourselves known to enter. There are two ways:

1. Follow/subscribe to my blog (click Join This Site on the right), and shoot me a comment so I know you are subscribing (I can't always tell if you are a new follower, plus this helps me know that my current followers who are also interested) - Counts as one entry!

2. Add a second comment on this post with a recipe for your favorite cupcake, or one you plan to try (links are cool) - Counts as one entry! (Make sure I have your name too)

I will draw a winner next Monday and make arrangements to get this fun little kit to you. No worries, you can still enter if you live outside of Milwaukee, but in the United States. Sorry, no international shipping.

Know that I love things like random number generators, so I promise that all drawings will be totally legit. No funny business.

Good luck! 


  1. So, this is a recipe that I have been wanting to try for years. (It screams Ann Miller, doesn't it?)
    You have inspired me to 1)actually do it 2)look into some fun classes of my brewing could always get better...
    ps- I thought I was a follower before but just in case I did do the 'Join this Site' :)

  2. I just started following - these cupcakes are so cute!!

  3. Oh and I really want to try these cupcakes -

    I am going to have to get much better at decorating before I can makes ones that cute though...I made some cupcakes last night with a new frosting recipe, and it did not turn out so well!

    1. I'm outside the US and in eligible for this particular giveaway, but it is a topic, so I had to leave a note. My favorite cupcakes lately have been out of the Hummingbird Bakery books. My favorites are their alcoholic mini-cupcakes, which come in piña colada, strawberry daiquiri, and mojito. Mojito is my favorite since it adds in mint and a nice rum cake.

  4. Kirstin, you found my weakness, sugar!

    For me cupcakes are all about the frosting, and if it has cream cheese in it, it's a winner. If I'm making cupcakes at home I just use a box cake mix, but I jazz it up a little. Here is my favorite:

    Chocolate Mint:
    1 box devil's food cake mix (bake as directed, but don't add any of the ingredients called for on the box)

    Add these ingredients to the mix instead...
    1 cup buttermilk
    1/2 cup vegetable oil
    4 large eggs
    3/4 cup chopped mint chocolates (fold chocolates into batter)

  5. First comment - love all these cupcakes! I've spent a lot more time decorating cookies and cake pops so I'll have to start on cupcakes! Recipe coming...

  6. Recipe: I thought you might appreciate this one. Based on the first time I made these, the recipe needs a little tweaking but it's fun!

    Butterbeer cupcakes!

  7. Hi Kirstin! Love that you're still perfecting your cupcakes! Looks like fun!

    1. Thanks Kim! Still working on them. And making a whole lot this week!


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