Friday, May 20, 2011

Bun in the oven cupcakes

I love babies.....

I love presents......


Babies + Presents = Baby shower = fun.

Who knew I was good at math?!

My sweet co-workers, Izzy and Marta, are both having babies over the next few months. One boy and one girl! Perfect!

We had a joint shower for them, hosted at the home of one of our doctors. My job was to take care of dessert. I decided to make cupcakes, but I wanted to do something a little different than regular cupcakes. During one of my Greenlake runs (where I do my best thinking) I decided to bake cupcakes and fill them with frosting. Each cupcake would have a sweet surprise, just like our moms-to-be.

Bun in the oven cupcakes were born!


Both girls said they like the classic cupcake combinations, chocolate and vanilla.
When I was at the Home cake store, I found some great cupcake accessories! Papers, sanding sugars in pink and blue, and some adorable little trinket pink and blue of course.


For the vanilla cupcakes, I decided to try a recipe I have looked at several times:
Billy's vanilla cupcakes, featured on Martha Stewart. I followed the recipe, but made one small change...I had to add my beloved vanilla bean paste...just one little tablespoon.
While the cupcakes were baking I whipped up a batch of buttercream frosting (also from Mr. Billy) I have made this buttercream so many times and I love it. Just four little ingredients and you'll be licking the bowl clean!


Once the cupcakes had cooled, I began my filling. I used a small knife and cut out a little circle from the middle of each cupcake


They also have fancy little gadgets that you can buy that will do this for you. I found the knife method very easy. Some people may replace the cake chunk over the filling. I just discarded it...okay, I ate a lot of it.

I filled a pastry bag with my delicious buttercream frosting. Do you know the easiest way to fill a pastry bag?


That's right, put your pasty bag in a glass to fill it up. That way you can use two hands! Thanks to BFF Kory for teaching me this! Use a regular round cake tip with your pastry bag. No pastry bags? Just use a ziploc bag with a hole cut in one of the corners.

Each little cupcake was filled to the top with yummy buttercream..
Cover the cake with additional buttercream and then decorate!

Next I had to make my chocolate cupcakes. I used a classic recipe from Hershey's with just a few adjustments:
Their recipe calls for 1 cup milk. I used 1 cup buttermilk.

Hershey's says 1 cup boiling water. Alex says 1/2 cup boiling water, 1/2 cup freshly brewed coffee!

The boiling water is added last and it will make your cake batter very runny. This also makes your cake batter a little messy when filling your cupcake papers, just FYI.


The coffee made the chocolate cake look very dark, almost black.


When it came time to fill my chocolate cupcakes I had an epiphany!!!
Frosting is more dense than cake. Therefore, I don't necessarily need to make room for the frosting inside the will create it's own room! Yay!
(math and science, all in one baking post)
No need to spend time cutting the middle from each cake
I grabbed my star cake decorating tip and stuck it right in the middle of the cupcake and filled it up until the star tip was pushed back out. So easy!

One thing I didn't cake innards for me to eat!

That's okay.

Less waste and ...

Less waist.


I was really happy with these little cakes and had a lot of fun decorating them!



Vanilla cupcakes
adapted from Billy's vanilla vanilla cupcakes

* I got about 30 cupcakes out of this batter*
  • 1 3/4 cups cake flour
  • 1 1/4 cups AP flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup butter, cut into cubes
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • my addition, 1 Tbsp vanilla bean paste
Preheat oven to 325 and prepare your baking pans.
In a large bowl (use your stand mixer if you have one) whisk together flours, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add your butter, mix until it is slightly coated with flour.
In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, and vanilla. (and vanilla bean paste if you are adding it)
Add the wet ingredients to the flour mixture in 3 parts, scraping bowl after each addition. Mix until completely combined.
If making cupcakes, fill them about 2/3 full. They will bake up nice and fluffy. I have a feeling this would make a delicious layer cake. Bake for 15-20 mins. Transfer to a rack to cool and then have fun frosting!

I think this is the best vanilla cupcake I have ever made! The vanilla flavor was so intense and delicious. I will definitely make these again. The buttercream frosting is a great compliment!

Chocolate cupcakes
adapted from

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups flour
  • 3/4 cups cocoa
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk ( I used buttermilk)
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup boiling water ( I used 1/2 cup coffee, 1/2 cup boiling water)
Heat oven to 350 and prepare your baking pans.
In the bowl of your mixer stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder and soda, and salt.
Add eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla. Beat on medium for 2 minutes. Lastly, stir in you boiling water (and/or coffee)
Bake for 20-25 minutes

Buttercream frosting
  • 1 cup softened butter
  • 6 cups powdered sugar ( you can use up to 8 cups)
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract ( or use vanilla bean paste!)
In the bowl of your mixer, cream butter until smooth. Carefully add your powdered sugar, vanilla and milk. Mix until fluffy and delicious!

*With this frosting you'll definitely have enough for 30 cupcakes. I had to double it to frost and stuff all my cupcakes....okay, and I ate some, right from the bowl*

The shower was so fun and these moms-to-be received some very special gifts. It was very fun celebrating them and I can't wait to meet their own little cupcakes. Love you both!