Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Zebra and Cheetah Cupcakes

I will admit that with everything else going on this year I just did not have the energy to tackle the unique birthday cakes that I love to make for my kids.  I wanted to for my daughter's zoo party because the possibilities were endless but there just was no time.  So when I saw these fun animal print cupcake wrappers with picks and then found Duff Goldman's zebra cake mix I was thrilled.  

Now, don't get me wrong, Duff's cake mix is super tasty and perfect for making a batch of these zebra cupcakes so if you can find it locally then I absolutely recommend it.  But let me spill the beans here and say that there is nothing special about this mix that magically makes zebra cake...  I don't know what I was expecting but I was kinda disappointed in the simplicity actually.  Its how you spoon the separate batters into whatever container you are using that makes the stripes...  For the cupcakes, I just used a large soup spoon and starting with the chocolate batter, I dropped one glop at a time in the very center of the cupcake liner.  As you add each spoonful, the batter will spread toward the edge and sink in the center a bit to make those wavy zebra strips.  We topped these off with whipped white store-bought frosting and gold sprinkles.

For the cheetah cupcakes my daughter picked confetti cake mix but you could get the cheetah spots effect by using yellow cake mix as your first batter and chocolate cake mix as your second and adding it to the liners in small globs of alternating mixes.  For the frosting we used the Duncan Hines Frosting Flavor Creations packet in caramel.  These are so much fun for the kids - my daughter had fun mixing the flavor packet into the can of starter frosting - the result was delicious.  We added white pearl candies to the top.

These were not the fanciest birthday treat I have ever made but they were quick, easy, and super tasty (so tasty I got distracted and forgot to take a picture of the inside of the zebra cake for you!).  And best of all - we had fun making them together!

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