For years, my mom has made a sugar cookie with peppermint frosting as the holiday treat that is made for family functions or boxed and given away as gifts. Nothing compares to the gently spiced sugar cookie topped with a refreshingly minty, yet rich, buttercream frosting. So, since I love to make cupcakes, I decided I’d try to recreate the cookie in cupcake form just for fun. The results were equally delicious! I used Billy’s Vanilla Vanilla Cupcakes recipe (as seen in my March ’09 post) as a rough base and did some tweaking to get the right flavor.
Brown Sugar Cupcakes:
makes 24 cupcakes
- 1 3/4 cups cake flour, not self-rising
- 1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 cups light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 4 large eggs
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 325°. Line cupcake pans with paper liners; set aside. In a medium bowl, combine flours, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine brown sugar and butter, mixing until pale and fluffy.
2. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in the vanilla.
3. Add the dry ingredients in 3 parts, alternating with the milk. With each addition, beat until the ingredients are incorporated but do not over beat.
4. Divide batter evenly among liners, filling about two-thirds full.
5. Bake, rotating pan halfway through, until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 18 to 22 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cupcakes have cooled, pipe tops with peppermint frosting.
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- scant 1/2 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 16 peppermint candy canes, pulverized to a powder in a food processor
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter with the sifted powdered sugar.
- Mix in vanilla, then add milk until the icing is thick enough to be of good spreading consistency (you often won’t use the entire amount). Beat until smooth and creamy.
- Stir in crushed candy canes until well mixed, adding more milk if frosting becomes too stiff. Pipe frosting onto cooled cupcakes and enjoy with a tall glass of milk!
Thrifty Tip: The bright and shiny cupcake liners were found at Crate and Barrel in the after-Christmas clearance section last year.