Tag Archives: cupcakes

Blue Velvet Cupcakes

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I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday and hopefully some time off of work! I’m enjoying a glorious week-long stay at my parents’ house, and we had a lovely Christmas and a too-short visit from my sister and brother-in-law. Though the big day and feast is sadly over, if you’re hosting a New Year’s get-together, I’m sure you’re already planning ahead for next week. I’m here to provide some inspiration!

You may have noticed these little cuties on the cover of my cookbook in the last post. I actually made these for my sister’s bachelorette party this past spring, but I thought they’d be just perfect for a New Year’s Eve party! With the blue, white, and silver—not to mention the glitzy silver sprinkles—aren’t they just begging to be snacked on while waiting for the ball to drop?

These little cupcakes are actually just my very favorite red velvet cake recipe with cream cheese frosting, which for some reason I’ve never gotten around to posting on this blog. Obviously, I’ve used blue food dye instead of red to get this beautiful, rich blue color. The cake itself is light, moist, and fluffy, with that subtle red velvet cocoa flavor that’s an absolute must. The cream cheese frosting is perfectly smooth and tangy, and not too tooth-achingly sweet. There’s a reason this is my absolute favorite, go-to red blue velvet cake recipe!

To make these bite-size beauties extra festive, I simply baked them in mini silver foil muffin cups (like these) and topped them with silver sanding sugar sprinkles. (I used the ones in this set.) These little bites of blue-velvety-cream-cheese heaven may make your tongue blue, but they’ll make your tastebuds happy as you ring in 2013. Enjoy!

Blue Velvet Mini-Cupcakes

Adapted from Emeril Lagasse
Yields about 4 dozen mini-cupcakes

FOR THE CAKE

  • 2½ cups sifted cake flour
  • 1 Tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 ounces blue food coloring or color of choice*
  • 1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

FOR THE CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

  • 1 (8-oz.) package cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 pound confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

FOR ASSEMBLY

  • Silver foil mini-cupcake paper liners or paper liners of choice
  • Pastry bag fitted with round or decorative tip
  • Silver sanding sugar sprinkles, optional
  1. For the cake: Preheat the oven to 350. F. Prepare four mini-cupcake pans with paper liners. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt; set aside. In a large bowl, cream together sugar and butter. Beat in eggs one at a time. Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk. Beat in food coloring and vinegar, then add vanilla. Using a Tablespoon or small cookie scoop, distribute batter among all mini-cupcake cups. Bake for 15 to 25 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Let cool in pans for 5 minutes, then remove cupcakes from pan and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  2. For the frosting: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the cream cheese and butter. Beat in confectioners’ sugar until fluffy. Beat in vanilla.
  3. To assemble: Fill a pastry bag, fitted with a round or decorative tip, with the frosting. Pipe about two Tablespoons’ worth of frosting onto each mini-cupcake. Top with silver sanding sugar sprinkles or other decoration if desired.

*Note: Depending on the darkness of your cocoa powder and the kind of food coloring you use, you may need more or less than the 2 ounces I’ve indicated here to achieve a rich, blue color.

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Sunday Sweets: Butterbeer Cupcakes

Love Butterbeer Cupcakes? Check out Golden Snitch Butterbeer Cake Pops!

Welcome to a very special edition of Sunday Sweets! If you’re new to this blog, let me explain. Sunday Sweets is a series I do every few weeks to share super indulgent recipes that wouldn’t otherwise be featured amongst my healthy, everyday eating recipes. Most days you’ll see healthy fare here, but we all need some sweets now and then, right? Onto the good stuff!
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Unless you are a Harry Potter nerd like myself, this post may require a bit of explanation. A few weekends ago, my boyfriend and I made the drive down to Orlando to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal’s Islands of Adventure park. I’m a huge fan of Harry Potter (and I don’t care who knows it!)—it’s been a part of my life for over 10 years, so when they announced the theme park, I knew I had to go. It was awesome! But since this is a food blog, let’s get to the point. Possibly the best thing about the park was the butterbeer.
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If you’ve read the books or seen the movies, you know that butterbeer is a beverage in the Harry Potter universe. There’s been a lot of speculation in the fan community over the years as to what it tastes like, and there’s been lots of recipe experimenting. However, I think that whoever developed the recipe for the park did an amazing job. I couldn’t get enough of the stuff! It was served in two forms: regular, just like soda, or frozen, like a slushie (my favorite)—both topped with a delicious, creamy, frothy, thick foam. The way I can best describe it is like butterscotch cream soda—but better.
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After I had my first glass, I immediately started formulating recipe ideas. The flavor just seemed to lend itself to cupcakes! I didn’t expect to get it right the first time, but you guys, these are so delicious. Even if you have no idea what butterbeer is or have never tasted it, you will love these. Essentially, the flavor profile is that of a buttery cream soda cake, filled with butterscotch ganache, topped with a butterscotch buttercream and drizzled with more butterscotch ganache. It sounds kind of intense, but trust me on this. They’re amazing. And I am shocked at how close the flavor is to the real stuff at Wizarding World of Harry Potter. The only thing missing is the fizz! I’m super proud of these—you should definitely try these, whether you’re a Harry Potter fan or not! Let’s get to it.
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Sunday Sweets: Snickers Cupcakes

Today’s post is another installment in my Sunday Sweets series, which is basically all those decadent treats that I don’t make too often, but need to be shared with the world despite their complete lack of any redeeming health value. These are indulgences, plain and simple. Make them for get-togethers with family and friends, for your co-workers, or for a special occasion. Don’t make them to eat as a midnight snack on a bad day. By yourself. I make stuff like this because sometimes I just get a little bored of making low-fat, whole grain, low-calorie stuff—and I just want to make something completely over-the-top and get it out of my system. I usually give away the result of these “baking binges,” but I definitely don’t give it all away without indulging a little myself! You should definitely do the same.
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I made these this past week to bring into work. Let’s just say that I brought them in at 9 a.m., expecting them not to be touched until after lunch—and they were completely gone by noon. As word traveled around the office, they started disappearing faster and faster. I’m pretty sure I put everyone into a sugar coma, but these cupcakes were a big hit. Snickers is my absolute favorite candy. If you put a big bowl of candy in front of me, I can resist most of it without too much struggle, but Snickers is like my kryptonite. The sweet and salty combo gets me every time, and I love the soft-creamy-crunchy texture. Peanuts, caramel, nougat, and chocolate. Mmm. I can’t resist it!
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When I saw these cupcakes on Annie’s Eats, I just had to find an excuse to make them. Hers are much prettier than mine (a combination of my complete lack of cake-decorating equipment and skills…and her ability to make completely gorgeous food all the time which makes me insanely jealous!), but I had to share anyway. These cupcakes are chocolate cake with a Snickers-and-caramel filling with a caramel buttercream and topped off with Snickers. Insanity, right?! Let’s do it!
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