I love spending time in my kitchen, I wish it was bigger and newer. I also wish I was better at making my food look pretty, but these things do not stop me from getting in there and trying. Sometimes it is an epic fail, lets all remember the “Donut Cake Sprinkle Incident“, and hope that it never happens again. There has been, a time or two where there are glimmers of hope for my food to taste good and look good before tasting it. Today was one of those days!
I set out to make a Irish themed cupcake because St Patties day is headed towards us, plus I could really use some spring right now with 10+ inches of snow on the ground. I have made an Irish cupcake in the past that included alcohol for a neighbors birthday one year, but I wanted something more kid friendly.
I love baking from scratch but I enjoy the convenience of boxed mixes as well, even though they do not always taste as yummy. Just stick around, because we are going to turn a white cake mix into these delicious and moist spring green cupcakes!
No one will know these cupcakes are from a box
Step 1. Look at what your mix calls for. Mine called for 3 egg whites, and a whole cup of oil. This is important, because baking is chemistry. If you change up ingredients to a pre-made mix, you need to do it with a “similar item” or food with the same properties. Whole eggs for egg whites can be easily substituted, but it will change the color of your final batter. Since I am going to be tinting my cake, I was less concerned about a bit of yellow color. If you do not feel comfortable changing up your eggs, you don’t need to. It is, after all, your kitchen. You get to choose!
For my Spring Cupcakes:
- 1 Box white cake mix
- 1/2 cup softened butter
- 1/2 cup apple sauce
- 2 Eggs (1 whole egg, 1 egg white)
- 1 box vanilla pudding
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1 tbs cocoa powder
- Food Color
Now, before you think I changed the recipe completely, lets take a look.
Still have the box of cake mix, nothing changed there.
I substituted the cup of oil for a fat (butter) and apple sauce which will give it a ton of moisture. I used exactly the same amount
Instead of breaking 3 eggs, I am using 2. 1 whole egg plus 1 egg white = 3 egg whites.
Vanilla pudding is just delicious and if you have never added pudding to your cake mix before you should totally try it!
Milk, because when you add extra dry ingredients you need something to mix it all up with
Cocoa powder, since my cake will not be white this will add a wonderful depth to the flavor.
Lets get to mixing! Start at the top and put your cake mix into a bowl. Add the softened butter and mix it up as best as you can, then add in the applesauce and eggs. Mix thoroughly. Lastly add the pudding, milk and cocoa powder. Make sure this is really mixed before adding food coloring.
The amount of food color you add is up to you. I started with a little bit of gel food color and then added more when I did not like the level of green awesomeness. You can clearly see which cupcake is more spring like. I ended up using the end of a spoon (handle side), dipped it into the gel color and thoroughly mixed it in before deciding to add a second.
Line your muffin pan with cupcake liners. I got my cute white ones with mini hearts from Oriental Trading Company. Then bake these at 350, for 8-10 minutes. Remember these are little, they will cook faster than you expect them to so set a timer. Creates 24 cupcakes (plus a bit of batter leftover)
Come back later this week for my homemade toppings and almost homemade frosting!
Also, if your new to reading my blog, I ramble a lot. If a friend calls to ask a baking question it turns into a 20-40 minute conversation about the Why’s of the answer. Usually way more info than they want to know, and I tend to do that around here. Which is why I like to put the main recipe instructions in Bold Type. Easier to find if your just wanting the recipe.
*Disclosure* I received the cupcake liners free of charge from Oriental Trading Company.