Snickerdoodle Cupcakes and a Fun Way to Package Cupcakes for Gifts
I got to work on a fun (and delicious) project this week. At the Bible study I attend, there are many young moms with young children. We provide child care for them so volunteers are needed to take care of the kids. About 20 volunteers spend 2 hours of their time each week out of the goodness of their hearts for the entire year. I am just so amazed at their generosity and faithfulness to serve. Even though we can never thank them enough, each month we like to give them a small token of our gratitude. It was my turn this month so I decided to make cupcakes. These cupcakes are not much to look at as they are kind of all one beige color, but what they lack in color, they sure make up for in taste. They taste just like a snickerdoodle cookie and are some of the most delicious cupcakes I’ve ever eaten. If you like snickerdoodles, you will love these!
This cupcake has a fine crumb and is so moist and full of cinnamon flavor. The frosting just melts in your mouth. It also contains cinnamon as well as brown sugar, and is fluffy and soft. It was amazing! I just wanted to eat it by the spoonful….I may or may not have eaten it by the spoonful….Okay, I ate it by the spoonful so you can believe me when I tell you it is good! It was purely sacrificial on my part so I could give you an accurate description….Okay, there was a lot left after I frosted the cupcakes, and I couldn’t help myself! 🙂
Since the cupcakes were being given to 20 different volunteers in different rooms and had to survive a car ride or two, I had to figure out how to package them. These short, clear plastic cups worked out really well to protect them. I just used a clear plastic treat bag to slip over the cup and wrapped a twist tie around it to keep them fresh. I wanted to express our appreciation so added a tag with a saying that tied the cupcake and volunteering together. I think this particular saying would work out well for lots of occasions. For instance, you could make cupcakes for a friend’s birthday and say something like, “As a friend, you take the cake!” I can also see doing this at Christmas time with red or green cupcake papers and ribbon as teacher gifts. I have a gift tag hole punch which comes in handy for things like this. I printed out the saying about 20 times, punched them out individually, and attached them with some twine around the twist tie.
Lastly, ribbon to match the cupcake paper was tied to hide the twist tie and the twine. It was very easy to do. I have just a couple tips for success. Be sure the cupcakes are cold while you are slipping them into the cups. There is less chance of damaging them or denting the frosting. Bake the cupcakes in a neutral color cupcake paper, and then when ready to put them in the cup, place the cupcake in another brightly colored cupcake paper first, then slide it into the cup. The clean cupcake paper helps the cupcake to slide into the cup more easily, and also is nice and bright in color and makes for a better presentation.
One thing I love about cupcakes is they freeze so well. That way you can make them ahead of time, and just thaw them out whenever you need them. It is also a bad thing. I can’t be trusted with cupcakes in my freezer. Or cookies. Or ice cream. Or….well you see my dilemma. I have a love/hate relationship with dessert. And I definitely love these cupcakes. Good thing there aren’t any left! I guess I will just have to make some more. So that I can put them in the freezer and try to keep myself from eating them. I know, I don’t understand me either! 🙂
For the Cupcakes:
- 1 1/2 c all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 c cake flour
- 1 Tbsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
- 2 sticks (1 cup) butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 3/4 c granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
- 1 1/4 c whole milk, warmed to room temperature
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Line cupcake pans with 24 liners.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar on medium speed until fluffy and pale in color.
- Beat the eggs into the butter mixture one at a time, fully incorporating each egg and scraping down the bowl between each addition.
- Add the vanilla to the butter/egg mixture, beating until incorporated.
- Add about 1/3 of the milk to the mixture, beating until mixed, then 1/3 of the flour mixture, again beating until mixed. Repeat this process, scraping down the bowl as necessary, until all of the milk and flour are added and mixed in evenly.
- Divide the batter evenly between 24 cupcake liners, approximately 3/4 of the way full.
- Bake cupcakes for 17 to 18 minutes (mine took 17), checking with a toothpick to make sure they are done. For moist cupcakes, it is important you watch them carefully at the end, and don’t overbake.
- Let the cupcakes cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then transfer to a baking rack to finish cooling.
For the Frosting:
- 4 1/2 sticks (2 1/4 cups) butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 c light brown sugar, packed (make sure it is very fresh and not hardened at all)
- 1 to 2 tsp. ground cinnamon (I used 1)
- 8 to 9 cups powdered sugar (I used 8)
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/2 c of half and half, plus more if needed (I used 1/2 cup)
- Beat together the butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon until fluffy and pale in color.
- Add 6 cups of the powdered sugar and beat, starting on low and moving up to high, until fully incorporated.
- Scrape down the bowl and add the half and half. Beat to incorporate again.
- Add another 2 cups of the powdered sugar and beat, starting on low and moving up to high, until mixed. Check the consistency of the buttercream. If it needs to be thicker, add the remaining confectioner’s sugar. If it is too thick, add more half and half a teaspoon at a time, beating after each addition, until it reaches the consistency you like. (I did not have to add any more powdered sugar or half and half after the 2 cups).
- Frost cupcakes by hand or with a piping bag. I used a large star tip.
- Serve immediately. If not eating right away, cover and place in refrigerator. Let sit out 1 hour prior to serving so cupcake will be soft.