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Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Cupcake Tip

Matt's mom (aka Gigi) is hosting a home group for our church tonight, and I volunteered to help her out by making cupcakes. We thought we'd do a little Halloween theme since there will be some little ones there, and since it was sort of last minute, Gigi picked up a package mix and frosting.

I made the cupcakes... then stared at the frosting container. I mean, store-bought frosting is ok. But I'm just not ok with ok.

So I got online and did a search... "how to make store-bought frosting better." I got everything from add cream cheese to a container of whipped topping to mini chocolate chips. I didn't have any of those things. Awesome. Then I ran across a site that suggested adding a little vanilla extract, a touch of half and half, and butter. Yay! I had all that!

I dumped the frosting in my mixer then added a teaspoon and 1/2 of vanilla extract, a tablespoon of butter (just call me Paula Deen), a tablespoon of half and half, and then a handful of powered sugar to get the consistency right. I mixed it all together, then transferred it into a large ziploc bag. I cut a hole in the corner and used the bag to pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes.

I was amazed at the difference in taste and appearance. I'd say there's a 85% chance they could pass for homemade. Maybe 86%.

I did a side by side of a cupcake topped with the "jazzed up" frosting and one topped with the store-bought stuff. Big difference.

And just for the kids, I added a fun touch... a piece of candy corn and sprinkles.

Do you have any ideas on how to jazz up store bought items? I'd love to hear it. This girl loves her shortcuts.


Kate (Southern-Belle-Simple) said...

what an awesome idea! you know how i love a cupcake! i make homemade tomato soup with a jar of gourmet-ish spaghetti sauce, chicken stock, heavy cream and balsamic vinegar. it's pretty good! maybe i'll do a blog post about it sometime. xoxo

Kelsey said...

Those look great!! I use store bought sugar cookie dough with store bought cream cheese icing and I am always asked if they are homemade! I'm going to try the icing trick for Thanksgiving festivities! Love the little things that seem to make things taste that much better!

Brandy Matchett said...

you should get the cookbook...The Cake Doctor. it takes ordinary cake mixes and makes them neat....right up your ally angela :)

Erica said...

I have an amazing recipe for homemade cinnamon rolls, but never have the time for all the dough rising. So... I use crescent rolls. Separate them like you normally would. Smear softened butter all over them. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon. Roll them up like you normally do a crescent roll. Put them in a buttered pan with a couple extra pats of butter here and there and bake according to package directions. My fam loves cream cheese icing, so I whip some up with cream cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla. Top the cinnamon rolls with the homemade cream cheese icing. Enjoy! They are a hit at my house!! They aren't quite homemade, but much more so than the regular pillsbury cinn rolls straight out of the can ;)

Cindy said...

They look YummY!! Great idea!

BTW: Mark is having surgery today:

Thank you for your prayers!

bella<3edward said...

Great idea! Looks like it took 2 minutes to seem like you spent an extra 30 to make homemade frosting. Go Mom!

mer@lifeat7000feet said...

That's awesome! I read another tip this week about freezing cupcake batter. You fill the liners and put the whole muffin tin in the freezer. THEN, you take the frozen, filled liners out and pop them in a ziploc. When you're ready to bake the cupcakes, you just plop the frozen cupcakes in the muffin pan and bake. How cool is that? (But when or why would I EVER have extra cupcake batter?) :)