Apple Pie Cupcakes - With A Tutorial On How To Frost Them

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WOW HOW EXCITING! A CUPCAKE THAT LOOKS LIKE A PIE! ...and they taste like both! These cupcakes have a cinnamon cake base, filled with yummy apple pie filling and topped with a Salted Caramel Buttercream Frosting. Perfect for a Friendsgiving or Thanksgiving get together. Gotta love the holidays, right? Okay let's get going.

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***In addition to the cinnamon cupcake ingredients and the salted caramel buttercream ingredients, you will also need 2 frosting tips: #7 & #12 AND apple pie filling. You can make the filling yourself or buy it from the store- I chose store bought because it's so darn good and saves plenty of time!

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INGREDIENTS:

For the cupcakes:

6 Tablespoons (3/4 stick) salted butter, at room temperature

1 Cup Granulated Sugar

2 Large Eggs, at room temperature

1 Cup Vanilla Yogurt (I used non-fat)

1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil

1 Tablespoon Vanilla Extract

1+3/4 Cups All-Purpose Flour

1+1/2 Teaspoons Baking Powder

1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda

3/4 Tablespoon Ground Cinnamon

1/4 Teaspoon Salt

 

For the Salted Caramel Frosting frosting:

1 Cup (2 sticks) salted butter, at room temperature

1 Teaspoon Butter Extract

5 to 6 Cups powdered sugar, depending on how stiff you like your frosting. I used 5

1/4 Cup Salted Caramel Sauce (I used Trader Joe's Brand)

1/2 Teaspoon Sea Salt

 

DIRECTIONS:

For the cupcakes: (Makes about 16 cupcakes)

1.  Preheat oven to 350F. Line a muffin tin with cupcake liners and set aside.

2. In a large mixing bowl or a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar for at least 1 minute, until smooth. Add the eggs one at a time and mix until incorporated, scraping down the sides as needed. Then add the the yogurt, vegetable oil and vanilla extract. 

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Slowly add the flour mixture into the wet mixture. Careful not to over-mix.

4. Spoon the batter into cupcake liners about 2/3 full and bake for 12-14 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven and transfer cupcakes to a wire cooling rack. Let cool completely before frosting.

 

NOTE*** If you want to make this batter into a cake, bake for 20-22 minutes for 2 8-inch rounds.  

 

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For the Salted Caramel Buttercream frosting:

1. In a stand mixer with a whisk attachment or in a large mixing bowl, whisk together the butter until creamy. Add the butter extract and salt. Then, slowly add one cup of powdered sugar at a time- whisk on low so it doesn't blow up in your face. Then once it's all incorporated, add the salted caramel sauce. Whisk for at LEAST 3-5 minutes. This helps the frosting become light and fluffy. Set aside.

 

NOW FOR THE EXTRA FUN PART!!

Here is how to frost these bad boys:

Step 1: Grab a beautifully baked cinnamon cupcake- make sure its completely cooled!

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Step 2: Core part of the top off- I tilted my knife slightly down while cutting and left about 1/4 inch of cake towards the liner for room to frost. 

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Step 3: Fill the cute little cake with about 1 Tablespoon of apple pie filling. I had to chop up the apples a bit because they came in large chunks.

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Step 4: Put your frosting in a piping bag with the smaller tip (#7) and draw three lines across the top of the cake. Then slightly turn your cupcake and frost three more lines so they make an X shape. NOTE** If you do not have piping bags or frosting tips- HAVE NO FEAR! You can use a plastic sandwich bag. Been there, done that!

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Step 5: Now use the #12 frosting tip and squeeze & wiggle the frosting around the rim of the cupcake until it reaches where you started. Easy as pie, right? 

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I hope you all have a happy Thanksgiving! Don't forget to share this recipe with friends and family!!  

Healthy Zucchini Blender Brownies With A GF Cookie Dough Frosting

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Guys. I've created something beautiful.

These brownies are by far my favorite healthy creation. They're dairy-free, gluten-free and made without refined sugar. Instead, I used coconut sugar (which you can't even taste the coconut) and apple sauce! And the best part? I made the batter in under 10 minutes. The fastest, best tasting brownies ever. AND THEY'RE HEALTHY. What?!

These babies are incredibly moist from the water content in the zucchini and the chocolate chips give them the perfect balance of  sweetness and sin.. Without the guilt!

Now the frosting on the other hand is made with butter (which can be substituted with coconut oil) and brown sugar so if you're really trying to go the healthy route, the brownies are incredible enough to eat without it.  

 

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INGREDIENTS:

FOR THE BROWNIES:

 3/4 Cup of coconut sugar 

1/4 Cup unsweetened applesauce  

1 Teaspoon vanilla extract  

2 large eggs

1 Cup Gluten-Free Flour

1/2 cup sifted Cocoa Powder (I prefer Trader Joes brand) 

2 Teaspoons Baking Soda

a large pinch of salt

1 large zucchini, shredded (about 2 cups)  

3/4 Cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

FOR THE COOKIE DOUGH FROSTING: 

1/2 Cup of salted butter, room temperature (can be substituted with room temperature coconut oil)

3/4 Cup organic dark brown sugar  

1+1/4 Cup Gluten Free Flour

1 Teaspoon salt

2 Tablespoons non-dairy creamer (I used French vanilla)

2/3 Cup semi sweet chocolate chips

 

DIRECTIONS

FOR THE BROWNIES

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8X8 OR 8X11 inch baking dish with foil and spray with a nonstick spray. 

2. Place all ingredients EXCEPT CHOCOLATE CHIPS in a blender and blend just until smooth. Don't over mix!! 

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3. Pour batter into the pan and sprinkle chocolate chips on top. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a Toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool while you make the frosting. 

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FOR THE FROSTING

 

1. In a stand mixer or in a large bowl with a whisk, mix together the butter and brown sugar until fluffy. Then add the flour, salt and creamer and mix until smooth. It should be a frosting consistency. If it's too watery, add more creamer.  

2. With a large spoon fold in chocolate chips. Try not to eat it all before it's done!

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Vanilla Cupcakes With Peppermint Buttercream Frosting

Hey people!!

Lets kick off Sunday Funday the right way- with cupcakes!

These cakes are my go-to vanilla cake/cupcake recipe because I have ever had a person try it and tell me anything other than "SO GOOD!!" They are light and fluffy with a slight buttery flavor that is just irresistible. 

I topped these cupcakes with a peppermint frosting (tis' the season, right?) And garnished it with a peppermint candy. If you were wondering how bakeries get their buttercream frosting light and creamy- here is the secret. You must, must, must whip the frosting for at least 5 minutes. This allows air to get into the frosting and it will almost double in size in your stand mixer. It's amazing how quickly the buttercream changes from dense and heavy to light and fluffy! 

What dessert are you most excited to make around the holidays?  

INGREDIENTS:

For the cupcakes:

6 Tablespoons (3/4 stick) salted butter, at room tempterature

1 Cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs, at room temperature

1/3 Cup vanilla non-fat yogurt

1/4 Cup vegetable oil

1 Tablespoon vanilla extract

1+3/4 Cups all-purpose flour

1+1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

2/3 Cup buttermilk

 

For the peppermint frosting:

1 Cup (2 sticks) salted butter, at room temperature

1 teaspoon peppermint extract

5 to 6 Cups powdered sugar, depending on how stiff you like your frosting. I used 5

3 Tablespoons milk

 

DIRECTIONS:

For the cupcakes: (Makes about 16 cupcakes)

1.  Preheat oven to 350F. Line a muffin tin with cupcake liners and set aside.

2. In a large mixing bowl or a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar for at least 1 minute, until smooth. Add the eggs one at a time and mix until incorporated, scraping down the sides as needed. Then add the the yogurt, vegetable oil and vanilla extract. 

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Slowly add the flour mixture into the wet mixture. Careful not to over-mix. Then slowly add in the buttermilk and mix until smooth.

4. Spoon the batter into cupcake liners about 2/3 full and bake for 12-14 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven and transfer cupcakes to a wire cooling rack. Let cool completely before frosting.

 

NOTE*** If you want to make this batter into a cake, bake for 20-22 minutes for 2 8-inch rounds.  

 

For the peppermint frosting:

1. In a stand mixer with a whisk attachment or in a large mixing bowl, whisk together the butter until creamy. Add the peppermint extract. Then, slowly add one cup of powdered sugar and 1 Tablespoon of milk at a time, alternating between the two until you have used all of it.  Whisk for at LEAST 3-5 minutes. This helps the frosting become light and fluffy. Frost cupcakes and enjoy!

 

Red Velvet Cake With Cream Cheese Frosting

Cheer up your rainy day blues with a Red Velvet Cake from scratch!

This cake is amazingly moist with a light and fluffy frosting that is sure to make anyone smile. In this cake batter, I use vinegar, cocoa powder and coffee (yeah, I said coffee!) The vinegar gives it a slightly tangy, "true red velvet" flavor while the coffee enhances the rich cocoa powder flavor so it is packed full of chocolate-y, velvety amazingess. 

Actually, did you know red velvet cakes were originally made with beets which is what gave them such a rich red-ish color? Say what!? That's crazy talk!! and one day I hope to make a cake like that.. But for now, I give you this perfect cake made with red food coloring.  Go ahead, try to resist it. 

INGREDIENTS:

For the red velvet cake:

1 Cup vegetable or canola oil

1 Cup buttermilk OR plain yogurt 

2 eggs, at room temperature

2 teaspoons white vinegar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 Tablespoons red food coloring

2+1/2 Cups all purpose flour

2 Cups granulated sugar

1 teaspoon salt

2 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (I used Trader Joes brand)

1/3 Cup strong, hot coffee

 

For the cream cheese frosting:

1 8oz container of cream cheese frosting, at room temperature

1 stick (1/2 Cup) salted butter, at room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

6 Cups powdered sugar, measured carefully

2-3 Tablespoons milk

 

DIRECTIONS:

For the cake:

1. Preheat your oven to 325F. Grease two 8-inch pans and set aside.

2. In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, mix together your vegetable oil, buttermilk and eggs just until combined. Then add in the vinegar, vanilla extract and food coloring and mix again until combined. 

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, salt and cocoa powder. Slowly pour the wet ingredients from the stand mixer into the dry ingredients in your separate bowl. Whisk together just until smooth (making sure not to over-mix!) Once they are just combined, slowly add the hot coffee while whisking. 

4. Pour the batter evenly into the 8-inch pans and place on the center rack of your oven. Bake for 35-40 minutes, depending on the strength of your oven. Check by inserting a toothpick into the middle of a cake. If it comes out clean, it's done! Remove from the oven and let cool.

 

For the cream cheese frosting:

1. Whisk together the cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add the vanilla extract and whisk away! Then, slowly add about half of the powdered sugar, then add 2-3 tablespoons of milk (depending on how stiff/runny you liked it) mix, and then add the rest of the powdered sugar. Whip for at least 3-4 minutes! This allows air to get into the frosting and it tastes much better! Once your cake is completely cooled, frost it and you're done! 

 

NOTE** The reason I add coffee is to enhance the cocoa powder, like I do in my Chocolate cake recipe HERE

Also, it is important to alternately add the powdered sugar and milk because it makes it a heck of a lot easier- if you add all of the milk at once, it gets everywhere and creates a big mess. Yikes!

Lastly, if you want to make cupcakes, fill the liners 3/4 full and bake them for about 16-20 minutes (also depending on the strength of your oven. The toothpick tells all!!)