Chocolate Cupcakes

In January, I was honored to make a cake and cupcake tower for my little brother’s wedding. 

cupcake tower

However, after making close to 200 cupcakes, I did not want to look at another one for a looong time!  And I hadn’t until I saw that one of my favorite blogs, Your Cup of Cake, released its first cookbook.  Of course I had to have it.  What is so great about Lizzy is that she starts all of her recipes with box cake, but jazzes it up with additional ingredients and flavors.  You would never know it’s a box cake and all of the recipes are so easy!!!  Also, what’s great about the book is it is hardcover with a spiral binding.  I know, I’m a dork!

My sister in law recently had a little get together and asked me to bring some cupcakes.  From the book, I made chocolate cupcakes with chocolate frosting.

chocolate cupcakes

Look at how pretty!  And of course they tasted delicious.

one chocolate cupcake

If you love desserts but need something quick and easy that looks complicated, definitely check out the blog Your Cup of Cake and pick up this awesome cookbook!!!

Pumpkin Cupcakes

Earlier this week I made pumpkin cupcakes.  I can’t even tell you what day I made them.  That’s the type of week it’s been.  And I can’t even remember what I originally wanted to say about them.  But I still want to share, because they are easy and delicious.  And what’s great about these cupcakes is even though they are pumpkin, there is no actual pumpkin puree in them.

Each fall, I normally make the classic pumpkin cupcakes with the spice cake mix and Libby’s canned pumpkin.  You can find that recipe here.  While these are easy and delicious as well, I wanted to do something a little different.  I came across these cupcakes on one of my favorite blogs Your Cup of Cake.  You can find this recipe here.  This is also where I got the recipe for those amazing coconut nutella cupcakes.

So for these pumpkin cupcakes, I decided go big and make them in my large cupcake pan.  Who doesn’t like a giant cupcake?  It’s a great way to trick yourself that you are still eating only one (when really it’s two).

I mentioned that there is no actual pumpkin puree in the batter.  Along with some other additions to the cake mix, I just added a bit of pumpkin spice to get the flavor.

Now for this amazing frosting.  In the original recipe, this is where you see a little pumpkin puree.  However, I stumbled upon this pumpkin butter at Trader Joe’s a couple of weeks ago and impulsively bought it.

I simply replaced the pumpkin puree with the pumpkin butter and it worked out perfect.

I love how these cupcakes came out.  And I love how even though you start with a cake mix, it is enhanced with other ingredients to make it taste so much better.  I did bring these cupcakes to work and they were a hit.  I think some ate them for breakfast.  You could always tell yourself it is a pumpkin muffin right?  Don’t forget the check out the recipe if you want to give these a try!

Coconut Nutella Cupcakes

Nutella, coconut, and chocolate.  All amazing by themselves.  Even more amazing when they are combined.  And when I say combined I mean in a cupcake.  This is a recipe that was posted by Your Cup of Cake earlier this week.  This is a blog I love to follow but the first recipe I have made from it.  And after this one, it definitely won’t be the last.  She is so creative and her recipes are so easy.  Every time I see a new one I say to myself, “Why didn’t I think of that?!”  Actually, I think that every time I see a great recipe on a blog.  I need to work on creating more original desserts.

This recipe starts with a box cake mix but is enhanced with sour cream, milk, and vanilla extract.  And you sift the cake mix first.  I have never done this before and what a difference it makes!  It starts with a chocolate cupcake topped with chocolate Nutella ganache.  Once that is set, you top it off with a coconut cream cheese frosting and garnish with shredded coconut.  You can find the recipe for the Nutella Coconut Cupcakes here.

This is no doubt one of the best cupcakes I have ever had.  And I love that the base is made with a cake mix but easily enhanced to greatness.  Yes, to greatness because it is that good.

My in-laws had us over for dinner so I brought them for dessert.  They got rave reviews and was told they taste like a Mounds candy bar.  You can’t go wrong with that.  Then my parents had us over for lunch the next day so I brought the other half.  I am happy to say they were a hit there as well!  Thanks Lizzy from Your Cup of Cake! 🙂