Red Velvet Cupcakes w/ Cream Cheese Frosting

Red Velvet Cupcakes via bakeforcoffee.com

With Valentine’s Day approaching, I thought it would be fun to bake some Red Velvet Cupcakes! Red Velvet can be made for any occasion really, but I thought since Valentine’s Day is all about love and the color red, it would be fitting to the occasion to share red cupcakes! Plus, I wanted to try out some new sprinkles! 😉

This recipe literally only makes four cupcakes. This makes me so happy because for one, you don’t have to use a whole bottle of red food coloring to make these. Secondly, four cupcakes  are the perfect amount for a date night (such as on Valentine’s Day) or just a random dessert for a small party after dinner, or for breakfast, or just because. (Portion control). Lastly, these cupcakes take no time at all to whip up!

Red Velvet Cupcakes via bakeforcoffee.com I pretty much went overboard with the sprinkles. You can never have too many though right?

Red Velvet Cupcakes via bakeforcoffee.comThere’s just something about getting a bite that is equal parts frosting and cake. The cream cheese frosting compliments the Red Velvet perfectly!

Red Velvet Cupcakes via bakeforcoffee.comSprinkles everywhere! Love it!

Red Velvet Cupcakes w/ Cream Cheese Frosting

*Makes 4 standard sized cupcakes

**Recipe can be doubled or tripled

Ingredients:

Cupcakes

  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 Tablespoons buttermilk
  • 1 large egg white
  • 1 teaspoon red food coloring
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1/3 cup + 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch-process)
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

Frosting

  • 4 Tablespoons unsalted butter (half of one stick butter), softened
  • 4 oz. cream cheese (half of an 8oz. package)
  • 2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Cupcakes

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line muffin tin with four cupcake liners.
  2. In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, beat together the sugar, vegetable oil, buttermilk, egg white, red food coloring, vinegar and vanilla extract.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder.
  4. Gradually add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients while mixing. Stop and scrape the sides of the bowl using a spatula, then resume mixing until all ingredients are combined, about one minute.
  5. Divide the batter between the four cupcake liners, about 2/3 full. Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Mine took 21 minutes.
  6. Remove cupcakes from oven once done, and let sit in muffin tin about 5 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.

Frosting

  1. Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and cream cheese for about two minutes on medium speed.
  2. Stop and scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula.
  3. Resume mixer to slow speed, add the vanilla extract, and gradually add the powdered sugar. Once all of the powdered sugar has been added, turn mixer up to medium speed for about one minute.
  4. You can mix in 1-2 teaspoons of milk if you want a thinner consistency. Such as, if you are spreading the frosting on with a knife rather than piping.
  5. Add frosting to a piping bag with a large round tip, or any tip you choose, and pipe frosting onto your cupcakes.
  6. Drop loads of sprinkles on the frosting, you won’t regret it 😉

Enjoy!

Cupcake recipe from Dessert for Two

Dark Chocolate Orange Cupcakes

Chocolate Orange Cupcakes via bakeforcoffee.com

Last 4th of July, we had an amazing beach day with our friends. We ocean kayaked, barbequed burgers, and played frisbee. We talked and took pictures, it was so much fun! As we were packing up to leave, our friends suggested we grab ice cream from one of their favorite ice cream joints… McConnell’s Fine Ice Cream in Ventura, CA! Oh my goodness, the flavor combos were so overwhelming. I tasted about 5 flavors, then made my decision. I chose something coffee flavored, but the flavor “Dark Chocolate Orange” was one I had taste tested and swore next time, that’s what I would get. All I could think of was those Terry’s Chocolate Oranges that always wind up in our house around Christmas time!

Chocolate Orange Cupcakes via bakeforcoffee.com

This last weekend, Ben and I took a drive to Ojai, CA. The drive was so nice and refreshing, and felt so far away without being far away at all. We ended up in Santa Barbara wandering around Downtown  and came across a brand new McConnell’s Fine Ice Cream! Ice cream was totally in the cards that day, and seeing McConnell’s couldn’t have been any more perfect! There were so many amazing flavors I would have loved to have tried, but the Dark Chocolate Orange was still calling my name since last July, so that’s what I ordered! (Sorry no pics of the ice cream, had a dead cell phone and the dslr was at home… of course!)

As I was enjoying my ice cream, savoring the flavor of the rich dark chocolate and the citrusy orange combo, I had the thought that this would be an amazing cupcake flavor! A rich chocolate cupcake with a creamy, orange buttercream, topped of course, a dark chocolate orange slice!

Chocolate Orange Cupcakes via bakeforcoffee.comAll you need is one large bowl, whisk all the dry ingredients together, then add all the wet ingredients (except for the hot water) and mix until combined. When the ingredients are combined, add the hot water and mix for a minute or two. Batter will be very liquidy. As you can see, I am not pouring hot water into my bowl. Instead I used freshly brewed hot, STRONG coffee. Coffee really brings out the flavor of the chocolate, so I usually sub coffee for water in chocolate cake recipes. Using the water though is perfectly fine!

Chocolate Orange Cupcakes via bakeforcoffee.comFill the cupcake liners about 2/3 full. Bake in the oven for 15-17 minutes! While cupcakes are cooling is a great time to make the orange frosting.

Chocolate Orange Cupcakes via bakeforcoffee.comPipe the frosting, top with a dark chocolate orange slice and an orange peel, and there you have the cupcake version of McConnell’s Dark Chocolate Orange Ice Cream! Yay!

Chocolate Orange Cupcakes via bakeforcoffee.com

Dark Chocolate Orange Cupcakes Recipe

*Makes 20 standard size cupcakes

*You can add a tablespoon of orange zest to the cupcake batter for extra orange/citrus flavor!

Ingredients:

Cupcakes

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup dark cocoa powder
  • 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup milk (I used whole milk)
  • 2/3 cup hot water (I used hot coffee)

Frosting

  • 1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks)
  • 7 cups confectioners sugar, sifted
  • 1/2 cup milk (I used whole milk)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons orange extract
  • Orange food coloring

Directions:

Cupcakes

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line muffin tins with cupcake liners.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together.
  3. Add the eggs, vegetable oil, vanilla extract, and milk to the bowl with the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
  4. Pour in the hot water and mix on medium speed with the hand mixer for about 1-2 minutes.  Batter will be very liquidy.
  5. Fill cupcake liners about 2/3 full and bake in the oven for 15-17 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middles comes out clean.
  6. Remove cupcakes from oven, let cool for about 5 minutes. Then place cupcakes on a cooling rack to cool completely.
  7. Make frosting.

Frosting

  1. Cut butter into cubes and put into a stand mixer bowl fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium speed for 30 seconds.
  2. Add 4 cups of the sifted confectioners sugar, the milk, vanilla and orange extracts. Mix on low for 10 seconds so the sugar doesn’t fly everywhere, then turn mixer up to medium speed for 5 minutes.
  3. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl in case any butter stuck to bottom or sides of bowl and didn’t get mixed in. Then add the rest of the confectioners sugar and mix again on low speed for 10 seconds. Add 2 drops of orange food coloring, then up the speed to high for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Prepare your piping bag with a large round tip, fill piping bag with frosting, then pipe large dollops onto each cupcake.
  5. Top each cupcake with a chocolate orange slice and/or some orange peel, then serve!

Enjoy!

Chocolate cupcake recipe slightly adapted from bakerella.com

Chocolate-Pumpkin Cupcakes w/ Pumpkin Swiss Meringue Buttercream

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Today, we are celebrating my husband, Ben’s birthday!  What better reason than to make cupcakes!

icing

I won’t turn this post into a long, mushy, confess my deepest feelings for my husband sort of post. I do however, want to take a minute to tell you, that not only is Ben my best friend, my teammate, the absolute love of my life, etc., my list is endless, but he has been the biggest supporter in the creation of this blog. Ben is the most patient person I know. I just want to express, how grateful I am to him, and for all of his help and support with getting this blog up and running. He has encouraged me to get my voice out there, which has turned my inspiration switch on to a whole new level. So Ben, if you are reading this, thank you for everything my love!

For this recipe, I did not do a lineup of ingredients, as you may have seen I’ve done in previous posts. The cake itself calls for so many ingredients, that I figure you would get the list in the recipe list of ingredients down below anyway. I eventually want to keep the posts consistent in appearance, so you can come here and know what to expect, but for now, while I am finding my groove, you might see different styles of blog posts.

chocolate7In a large bowl, beat the sour cream, eggs, vegetable oil and vanilla extract until well combined.

chocolate3Add the pumpkin and sugars to the same bowl and stir until combined.

chocolate5Stir in flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon until combined. The batter will be VERY thick. Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full of batter, bake 20-22 minutes.

chocolate2Real life. I swear I must use every spatula, spoon, measuring cup I own every time! I secretly love these kind of messes 😉

chocolate9Let cool in muffin tin about 5 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely. While cupcakes are cooling, is a good time to prepare your buttercream!

chocolate4When buttercream is ready (see directions below), pipe onto your cupcakes however you like! I used a medium-large round piping tip, but you can use any tip, as Swiss meringue buttercream is a very piping-friendly frosting as I like to call it. Meaning it holds it’s shape very well. You can also snip the corner of a ziplock bag to achieve a similar look as the round tip.

chocolate8The buttercream…. ooooh the buttercream! Might be one of my new favorite flavors!

chocolate13Time to celebrate! Let’s light those candles and party! Happy birthday my amazing husband! I love you!

Chocolate-Pumpkin Cupcakes w/ Pumpkin Swiss Meringue Buttercream

Makes 16-18 cupcakes

Recipe:

Cupcakes

1/2 cup light sour cream

1/4 cup vegetable oil

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup pumpkin puree (such as Libby’s canned pumpkin)

1 cup granulated sugar

1/4 cup packed light brown sugar

1 & 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 cup cocoa powder (not dutch processed) – I used Ghirardelli Natural Unsweetened Cocoa

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Buttercream

5 egg whites

1 & 1/4 cup granulated sugar

1 & 1/2 cups unsalted butter (3 sticks), almost room temp but still slightly cool

1/2 cup pumpkin puree

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon pumpkin spice bakery emulsion

pinch of salt

*It is important to have a candy thermometer on hand when making this buttercream to ensure your egg whites reach an edible/safe temperature.

Directions:

Cupcakes

  • Preheat oven to 350° and put 16-18 cupcake liners in muffin tins.
  • In a large mixing bowl, beat the sour cream, vegetable oil, eggs and vanilla with an electric mixer on low until combined.
  • In same bowl, stir in pumpkin, granulated sugar and brown sugar until combined.
  • Stir in flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon until well combined.
  • Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full of batter. Bake for 20-22 minutes or until inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  • Let cool in muffin tin for 5 minutes, then transfer cupcakes to a cooling rack until completely cool.

Buttercream

  • Cut your butter into cubes, set aside.
  • Make a double boiler with either a heat safe bowl or a stand mixer bowl over a pot of simmering water. Add egg whites and granulated sugar, whisking constantly but gently, until sugar has completely dissolved and your candy thermometer reaches between 150° and 160°.
  • With the whisk attachment of a stand mixer, whip the meringue on high speed for about ten minutes until the meringue is thick and glossy. The bottom of the bowl should feel neutral, not warm. If your meringue is ready, but the bowl feels a bit warm still, place your bowl of meringue in the freezer for about 2 minutes.
  • With the paddle attachment, and mixer on low speed, add the butter cubes one at a time until incorporated. Once all the butter cubes are added, mix on medium speed until you have achieved a silky, smooth texture. If you see curdles, don’t panic, just keep mixing until it looks smooth.
  • On low speed, add vanilla extract, pumpkin spice emulsion, salt, then the pumpkin puree and continue beating on low speed until well combined.
  • Fill your piping bag with your choice of piping tip and pipe those cupcakes!

Enjoy!

Cake recipe adapted from Picky Palate

Vanilla-Pumpkin Cupcakes w/ Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

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Last fall, I made these Vanilla-Pumpkin Cupcakes just because, and then did the usual taste test of course! I immediately thought, oh man, if I don’t get these out of my house, I will sit here and eat every single one! I wouldn’t really, but the temptation was there! I ended up taking these cupcakes over to our local coffee shop to share them with our favorite Baristas, and oh my goodness, were they a hit!

I knew these would become an annual “must make” recipe, and here they are a year later! This time these went to work with my husband. I only ate one, or two…

These cupcakes are so moist, and the vanilla-pumpkin ratio is very complimenting. Then you add the cinnamon cream cheese frosting on top, oh my! These will not disappoint you, I promise!

This recipe starts with a “doctored up” cake mix. What I mean by that is, other ingredients aside from what the box cake calls for, is added to the cake mix, to make it more moist, dense, and homemade/from scratch tasting.

vanilla-pumpkin bakeforcoffee.comThe line up of ingredients.

vanilla pumpkin cupcakes bakeforcoffee.comWhisk together the cake mix and spices.

vanilla10In the same bowl, add the pumpkin, sour cream, vegetable oil, and eggs. Mix on low until combined, then beat with electric mixer for about two minutes. After all of the ingredients are combined, lean your nose to the bowl and inhale. You won’t regret it!

vanilla12Fill your cupcake liners and pop your pan in the oven! Bake about 20 minutes.

vanilla13Let cupcakes cool in pan for about 10 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack. This is a great time to make your frosting. When cupcakes are completely cool, pipe the frosting onto them however you like.

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Vanilla-Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

Recipe:

Cupcakes

1 box French Vanilla cake mix

1 & 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

3/4 teaspoon ginger

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon allspice

1/8 teaspoon cloves

1 (15oz.) can pumpkin

1 (8oz.) container sour cream

1/4 cup vegetable oil

3 large eggs

Frosting

8 oz. cream cheese at room temp.

1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), at room temp.

3-4 cups sifted powdered sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon cinnamon

pinch of salt

1-2 Tablespoons milk

Directions:

-Preheat oven to 350°. Line 22 cupcake pans with liners.

-Whisk together the cake mix and the spices (cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves)

-Add remaining ingredients (pumpkin, sour cream, vegetable oil and eggs). Mix on low until combined, then beat with an electric mixer on medium about two minutes.

-Fill the cupcake liners about 3/4 full. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until inserted toothpick comes out clean.

-Let cool for ten minutes in pan, then place cupcakes on a cooling rack until completely cool.

-To make the frosting, beat the cream cheese and butter until combined, about 4 minutes on medium speed or medium-high speed.

-Add the powdered sugar one cup at a time. adding more when completely combined. Scrape sides of bowl as needed.

-Beat in the vanilla extract, salt, and cinnamon. Add milk until you’ve reached desired consistensy.

-Fill piping bag with frosting and pipe however you like! I used a Wilton 1M tip.

-Sprinkle with sanding sugar.

Enjoy!

Cake recipe from Bake at 350