Cupcakes! Glorious Mini Treats
Cupcakes, those little mini cakes, that tempt and charm us, are one of the best ways to serve a crowd. Easier than having someone (probably you!) stand and cut cake for a group, these are served up on a tray or plate, and each person can choose what they want. On this page I give you the recipe for Black Bottom Cupcakes (shared from a friend years ago) and the recipe for Quick Mini-Cheesecakes for those emergency dessert needs.
Convenience and Portability
Cupcakes are easier to transport, if you’re taking them to a party or group gathering. You’re not worried about messing up a part of a big cake, and in case something does get stuck to the side of the carrier, it’s much easier to fix.
Have you ever noticed that after a meal, you feel the need to finish off with a little something sweet? If you ask the hostess, who is busily cutting the cake for a small piece, you either get one you can barely see, or a huge piece for which you really have no room. On the other hand, cupcakes are always the perfect size.
But let’s talk about the best part…how good they taste!
Cupcakes have become one of our favorite treats and not just because of their convenience, portability and perfect size. Let’s face it, the biggest attraction about a little cupcake is how good they taste. Now, I’ve tasted cupcakes that were, meh, okay. I’ve tasted cupcakes that were good. And I’ve tasted those that were outstanding. If you want an outstanding tray of cupcakes, find recipes that DO NOT begin with a packaged cake mix. You can whip up your own in the time it takes to make that packaged mix. I’ve included a recipe on this page that help you to do just that.
BONUS: I’ve also included a quickie dessert recipe, Quick Mini-Cheesecakes, also included further down on this page, especially handy when you have no time to bake.
Cupcakes Are Really Popular Now
Cupcakes are so popular, that there are even cupcake bake offs to see who can make the best ones. On television, the winners take home thousands of dollars, but many times they are professional cupcake bakers. That’s not something you need to worry about, unless it’s your particular aim in life. What you want to do is provide a great tasting, flavorful cupcake for your family or guests. Making your own batter instead of using a cake mix is not that labor intensive.
Here’s a tip to help you: save time by putting everything you need to use on the counter before beginning. Then as you work, you don’t have to stop and go get something. You’d be surprised how much extra time you save by making it a practice to put the ingredients and pans, baking racks, cupcake papers, where all you have to do is pick them up. Oh, and that includes mixer, spoons, measuring cups, measuring spoons, and so on. So since you don’t have to worry about impressing a judge, you can concentrate on pleasing your family and friends. Oh, and it’s a snap to clean up too, so it saves you time both coming to and going away from making the recipe.
Black Bottom Cupcakes, YUM!
Serves: 18 cupcakes
- 2-3 ounce cream cheese, softened
- 1 & ⅓ cup + 2 Tablespoons sugar, divided
- 1 large egg
- 6-ounces chocolate chips
- 1 & ½ cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ and 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup water
- ⅓ cup vegetable oil
- 1 Tablespoon White Vinegar
- Chopped pecans or walnuts
- Heat oven to 350 degrees.
- Line cupcake pans with 18 paper cupcake liners.
- In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese, egg, 1/3 cup sugar and 1/8 teaspoon salt until light and fluffy. Stir in the chocolate chips and set aside.
- In a large bowl, mix together the flour, 1 cup sugar, cocoa, baking soda and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Make a well in the center and add the water, oil, vinegar and vanilla. Stir together until well blended. Fill muffin tins 1/3 full with the batter and top with a dollop of the cream cheese mixture.
- Sprinkle with 2 Tablespoons sugar and chopped nuts.
- Bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until cream cheese mixture is light golden brown.
- Cool 15 minutes; remove from pans and cool on wire rack. Makes 18 cupcakes. Refrigerate leftovers, if there are any (which I doubt!)
Unexpected Guests? Not to Worry, Here’s a Quick, Satisfying Dessert
Let’s say you’re really in a pinch for time, because of unexpected guests, and you want something quick for dessert. There’s no time for baking a homemade batter cupcake. What to do? Here’s a trick you may want to try for unexpected guests or maybe you just want a quick dessert for a family dinner. These Mini-Cheesecakes are easy to make and the ingredients fit right on your pantry shelf without going bad for a long time, so you can keep them on hand for such an emergency. Not only that, but after a big meal, they’re just the right size for that bit of sweetness you crave.
- Cupcake Liners
- Box of Instant Cheesecake Mix (No-Bake Kind, follow directions on box)
- Box of Vanilla Wafers
- Your favorite topping, cherry pie filling, blueberry pie filling, apple pie filling, or get really fancy with strawberry preserves and a huge fresh strawberry sitting in the middle of the preserves. You might come up with something even better!
- Take a cupcake pan and put 18 cupcake liners in it.
- Put a vanilla wafer in the bottom.
- Stir up a box mix for instant cheesecake (any brand, just follow the box instructions). You want the instant kind that doesn’t have to be baked.
- Fill with cheesecake mixture almost to the top of the vanilla wafer. Don’t fill all the way, because you want to leave room for the topping which you will put on just before serving.
- Put the entire cupcake pan of cheesecakes in the fridge to chill and set.
- Just before serving, put the filling of your choice on top. These aren’t homemade cupcakes, but they’ll sure fill the need for a small but quick dessert very well.
Want more cupcake recipes? Here are my picks!