Saturday, June 4, 2011

How to make the PERFECT cupcake! Seriously...., I'm not really a baker.  But it's that time of year...last day of preschool was yesterday and I volunteered to make cupcakes.  What was I thinking?  Actually, unless I don't have 457,000 things going on at precisely the same time, I'm really not happy.  Did I mention that we rent our beach condo and I had a 2 hour window to get out there and clean after our renters left in the morning and the others arrived after lunch?  Oh yeah, I had to pick up Happy Meals for the kids at school during that window too!  I know, I'm crazy!  But I love it!  I always wanted to be THAT know the one.  The mom that volunteers in the classroom, bakes the cupcakes from scratch, sews the kids clothes all while having perfectly manicured nails and wonderfully coiffed hair.   Whatever!
So, since I'm not THAT mom...I needed some easy cupcakes without copping out and buying them at Publix.  These are really the easiest cupcakes EVER!

First, gather your supplies:
Cake Mix of your choice (I told you I'm not THAT mom!)
Cupcake liners (did I mention that I love Jo-Anns?)
Eggs, Oil, Water, Sugar, Cream of Tartar, Vanilla Extract

Follow the directions on the box, sort of.  Instead of heating your oven to 300 degrees, heat it to 400.  I use a 1/4 cup measuring cup to dole out the batter...perfectly measured little cakes.  You could also use an ice cream scoop that holds approximately 1/4 cup.  Fill your cupcake liners.  I only had enough batter for 22 cupcakes...but that's OK.  I only needed 12 to take to school and I get to eat the rest myself!  MR. Company will probably help too.
Here comes the best part.  When you have your liners filled, pop them in the oven for 5 minutes.  Then lower the temperature to 325 and bake the cupcakes for approx 5-8 more minutes.  They are done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Here's the scoop:  when you start baking at a high temperature, the outside gets done quickly and then as the inside cooks more slowly, there's only one way for the batter to go - UP!    What you get is a perfectly domed cupcake ready for frosting!

Next, the frosting.  My 2 year old can't eat traditional frosting...makes him sick every time. So I decided to make a 7 minute frosting.  Don't let the name fool really takes about 20 minutes, but it is SO yummy.  Tastes like Marshmallow Fluff.  Here are the directions:  7 minute Frosting.  You can flavor it with any extracts...lemon, coconut, almond.  YUM, YUM, YUM!!!!
My cupcakes turned out really cute (if I do say so myself) and I imagine I'll be doing this again baby's turning one this month. UGH.


  1. Thanks for the tip about using 1/4 measuring cup to fill liners (I always put what looks like same amount but my cupcakes came out all different sizes) and I love tip for oven at 400 for 5 min, then 325 for 5-8 more minutes to get nice looking DOMED cupcakes! Will try Paula Deen's 7-Minute Frosting - thanks for that link. I use cake mixes from the box too. :-)

  2. Terri, thanks for the comment...that 7 minute frosting is to die for! However, I would recommend cutting the recipe in half...the whole recipe makes a BUNCH of frosting. Unless of course you want to finish it off with a spoon! :-) And another tip...add a small amount of food coloring to match your theme and then get a can of Wilton color Mist food color spray and mist the tops of the pretty. I'll post pictures of the June Bug's Cupcakes later today!