Saturday, November 5, 2011

Leftover Halloween Candy Cupcakes

Can't stop eating the Halloween candy? Me neither. So, I figure if I bake it into something and send it to work with my hubby, I can't eat it all.

Introducing the Leftover Halloween Candy Cupcakes with Leftover Candy Icing and Leftover Candy Sprinkles. I used at least 30 candy bars & mini packages of M&Ms to make these babies!

What You Need:
1 box Chocolate Cake Mix
3 eggs
1 1/4 cup buttermilk (or milk w/ 1 Tbsp. vinegar added)
1 tsp. vanilla
2 Tbsp. cocoa powder
1/2 cup butter, melted
15-20 leftover chocolate Halloween candies (coarsely chopped)

For the Icing:
2-3 cups buttercream icing (or whatever icing you want... even canned would be fine)
8-10 leftover chocolate Halloween candies (finely chopped)

It all starts with the candy, of course. To chop it easier, especially the sticky ones like Snickers, Mounds, etc., I put them in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes. If you do the freezer, I've found that you end up just chipping all of the chocolate off. Getting them cool means they're easier to cut, and they don't stick to each other as much, so they're better spread out in the batter. And as a personal preference thing, I kept my M&Ms whole in the cupcakes (chopped them up for the icing & topping though).

 To make the cupcake batter, I do my usual 'doctoring' of the cake mix by using butter and buttermilk instead of water and oil. But you could also just make a regular cake mix. Whatever works for you. I start by mixing up the eggs until they're light and foamy.

Then, add the rest of the ingredients, and mix according to the box. (30 seconds on low. Scrape down bowl. 2 minutes on medium.)

To get the candy inside the cupcakes, you want to start with a heaping Tablespoon of batter in each cupcake liner. I then used a fork to spread it and make sure the batter covered the bottom of the cup (to help keep the sticky stuff off the bottom of the cupcake).
Try to pretend you don't notice how old and well-loved my cupcake pan is.

Then I scoop about a teaspoon or so of the candy crumbles into each cup.

Add another Tablespoon of batter over the top, again using a fork to spread out the batter to cover up the candy.

Finish them off with a few more pieces of candy. Don't put too much on the top here, or they just get really messy.

Bake at 350-degrees for about 15 minutes. Aren't they pretty?

While the cupcakes cool, make the icing. Here's where I learned a little lesson... if you want the icing to come out of the pretty icing tip (1M) to make a swirl on the cupcake, you're going to have to probably use a food processor to get the pieces teeny tiny. Even though I chopped mine fine, there was no chance they were getting through the tip.

Whip up a batch of your favorite icing. (I used some leftover decorator's buttercream because this was all about the leftovers after all.) After you've gotten the icing all mixed up, add your candy crumbs and mix well.

I made an icing bag bullet to help make cleanup easier. (Click the link to see the full tutorial and the beauty of the icing bullet.)

Then, because the tip plan didn't work, I just cut the end off of a disposable decorating bag. Even this way, I will tell you that there were lots of times that the icing would get stuck, then kind of blow out on to the cupcake, which is why they look all uneven and weird. But, I figure in the end, it adds to the charm... right?

I sprinkle the top with even more candy crumbs, and send them on their way. There you go. A nice dent in the Halloween candy stash.

Click the Links Below to See:
Other Fall/Halloween/Thanksgiving Ideas
Other Cupcake Ideas

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  1. How much butter and buttermilk do you use to doctor the cupcake mix? Does whole milk work? Can you do something similar for cookies? Is there a whole post on this I missed? Why do I need to ask so many questions?

  2. Caroline, I'm working on a whole post about it. But if you look at the top of this post in the "what you need" list, you can see my amounts. For a chocolate cake, I usually use 1 1/4 cups of buttermilk (or milk with vinegar added to sour it), 1 stick of butter, melted, then 1 tsp. vanilla and 1-3 Tbsp. Cocoa powder, depending on how chocolatey the mix is, and how chocolatey I want it to be.
    I have not ever used the cookie mixes, so I can't speak to those. Sorry. =)

  3. Making a giant cupcake (~6" in diameter) I just made a heap of frosting on top and then sculpted it with a small offset spatula. It should work with "lumpy" frosting and a normal size cupcake. Great idea, more interesting than mine (chop candy, mix into crispy bars.)


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