I really try to be healthy especially with the children, but Christmas is a time when it tends to go out the window and I’ve had cupcakes on my mind all week.
I was looking through Pintrest and there are literally thousands, your eyes start to go fuzzy. This craze of cupcakes fascinates me and I’ve pulled together a few great looking Christmas ones that I shall be making over the next few weeks.

Jam Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting from Mather Stewart

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, (spooned and leveled), plus more for pan
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons whole milk
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup seedless raspberry jam
  • 12 raspberries, for garnish

Method

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a 12-cup muffin pan, or use liners. Combine flour, baking powder, and 3/4 teaspoon salt. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat granulated sugar and 1/2 cup butter until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Beat in 1 teaspoon vanilla. With mixer on low, beat in flour mixture in two parts, alternating with 1/2 cup milk.

Divide batter among prepared muffin cups. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of a cupcake comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Let cool in pan 5 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Meanwhile, whisk together confectioners’ sugar, cocoa, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat 1/2 cup butter until light and fluffy. With mixer on low, gradually add cocoa mixture, scraping down side of bowl as necessary. Gradually beat in 2 tablespoons milk and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Beat frosting until light and fluffy, about 30 seconds.

Using a paring knife, cut a 1-inch-deep piece from the top of each cupcake (do not discard). Fill each hole with 1 teaspoon jam and replace cutout pieces. Frost cupcakes and top with raspberries.

Raspberry Cream Cupcakes from Good Food Channel

Ingredients

For the cakes:

  • 100 g soft margarine
  • 100 g caster sugar
  • 125 g self-raising flour
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 100 g raspberries

To decorate:

  • 150 g cream cheese
  • 150 g icing sugar
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 12 raspberries, to decorate

Method

For the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Line a muffin tin with 12 foil or paper cupcake cases.

Add all the cake ingredients to a bowl except the raspberries and beat until smooth. Fold in the crumbled raspberries then divide evenly between the paper cases. Cook for 15 minutes, or until golden brown and the tops spring back when pressed with a fingertip. Remove from the tin and leave to cool on a wire rack.

To decorate: Add the cream cheese to a bowl and soften with a wooden spoon. Gradually mix in the icing sugar then the vanilla until smooth. Once the cakes are cool, pipe over the top of the cakes then decorate with the raspberries and glitter flakes. Store in the fridge until ready to serve.

Tiramisu Cupcakes from Brown Eyed Baker

Ingredients

For the Cupcakes:

  • 1¼ cups cake flour (not self-rising), sifted
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon coarse salt
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1 vanilla bean, halved lengthwise, seeds scraped and reserved
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into pieces
  • 3 whole eggs plus 3 egg yolks, at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar

For the Coffee-Marsala Syrup:

  • 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon freshly brewed very strong coffee (or espresso)
  • 1 ounce marsala wine
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar

For the Mascarpone Frosting:

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 8 ounces mascarpone cheese, room temperature
  • ½ cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder, for dusting

Method

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners. Sift together cake flour, baking powder, and salt. Heat milk and vanilla-bean pod and seeds in a small saucepan over medium heat just until bubbles appear around the edge. Remove from heat. Whisk in butter until melted, and let stand 15 minutes. Strain milk mixture through a fine sieve into a bowl, and discard vanilla-bean pod.

With an electric mixer on medium speed, whisk together whole eggs, yolks, and sugar. Set mixing bowl over a pan of simmering water, and whisk by hand until sugar is dissolved and mixture is warm, about 6 minutes. Remove bowl from heat. With an electric mixer on high speed, whisk until mixture is fluffy, pale yellow, and thick enough to hold a ribbon on the surface for several seconds when whisk is lifted.

Gently but thoroughly fold flour mixture into the egg mixture in three batches; stir ½ cup batter into the strained milk mixture to thicken, then fold milk mixture into the remaining batter until just combined.

Divide batter evenly among lined cups, filling each three-quarters full. Bake, rotating tins halfway through, until centers are completely set and edges are light golden brown, about 20 minutes. Transfer tins to wire racks to cool completely before removing cupcakes.

Make the syrup: Stir together coffee, marsala, and sugar until sugar is dissolved. Let cool.

Brush tops of cupcakes evenly with coffee-marsala syrup; repeat until all syrup has been used. Allow cupcakes to absorb liquid 30 minutes.

Make frosting: With an electric mixer on medium speed, whisk heavy cream until stiff peaks form (be careful not to overbeat, or cream will be grainy). In another bowl, whisk together mascarpone and confectioners’ sugar until smooth. Gently fold whipped cream into mascarpone mixture until completely incorporated. Use immediately.

To finish, Dollop frosting onto cupcakes; refrigerate up to overnight in airtight containers. Dust generously with cocoa powder just before serving.

Christmas Tree Cupcakes from Tesco

Ingredients

For the cakes

  • 150g (5oz) butter, softened
  • 150g (5oz) caster sugar
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1tsp vanilla extract
  • 150g (5oz) self-raising flour

For the buttercream icing

  • 100g (3½oz) butter
  • 400g (13oz) icing sugar
  • edible silver balls

Method

Preheat the oven to gas 4, 180°C, fan 160°C. Line a cupcake tin with 12 cases.

Put the butter and sugar in a bowl and beat until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in the eggs and vanilla until smooth, adding a little flour if the mix curdles. Gently fold in the flour.

Divide the mix equally between the cupcake cases and bake for 15-18 minutes until firm and golden. Cool.

To make the buttercream icing, place the butter in a bowl with 1-2tsp of boiling water. Add the icing sugar and beat until smooth. Place in a piping bag with a large star nozzle and pipe the buttercream onto the cakes. Decorate with silver balls. The cakes will keep for up to a week in a cake tin.

Rudolph Cupcakes from BBC Good Food

Ingredients

For the cakes

 

  • 200g butter, cubed
  • 200g plain chocolate, broken into squares
  • 200g light soft brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 250g self-raising flour

For the icing

  • 200g plain chocolate, broken into squares
  • 100ml double cream, not fridge-cold
  • 50g icing sugar

For the reindeers

  • 12 large milk chocolate buttons (we used Cadbury Dairy Milk Giant Buttons)
  • 24 white chocolate buttons
  • 12 red Smarties
  • black icing pens
  • mini pretzels, carefully cut in half horizontally

Method

Get started: Heat oven to 160C/140C fan/gas 3. Line a 12-hole muffin tin with paper cases. Gently melt the butter, chocolate, sugar and 100ml hot water together in a large saucepan, stirring occasionally. Set aside to cool a little while you weigh the other ingredients.

Make your cakes: Stir the eggs and vanilla into the chocolate mixture. Put the flour in a large mixing bowl, and stir in the chocolate mixture until smooth. Spoon into the cases until just over three-quarters full. Bake on a low shelf in the oven for 20-22 mins. Leave to cool.

Ice the tops: To make the icing, melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of barely simmering water. Once melted, turn off the heat, stir in the double cream, sift in the icing sugar and mix well. When spreadable, top each cake with some icing.

Have fun decorating: Position a milk chocolate button on top of each cake, then 2 white chocolate buttons above it. Use a little icing as glue to stick a red Smartie onto the milk chocolate button for a nose. Then use your icing pens to draw black dots on the white buttons for eyes. Stick 2 pretzel top halves into the top of each cake for antlers, and stick the bottom half of a pretzel under the Smartie for a mouth. These cakes will keep in a sealed container for up to 3 days, but we doubt they’ll last that long!

Vegan Ginger Cupcakes from Jamie Oliver

Ingredients

For the cakes

  • 350 g plain flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 level teaspoon ground ginger, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 heaped teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 220 ml vegetable oil
  • 200 g golden syrup
  • 60 g soya yogurt
  • 120 ml soya milk
  • 2 pieces of stem ginger, in syrup

For the icing

  • 200 g icing sugar
  • 55 g dairy-free margarine
  • 200 g dairy-free cream cheese

Method

Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas 4. Line a 12-hole cupcake tray with paper cases.

Sieve the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, ground ginger, cinnamon and salt into a large bowl.

In another bowl, whisk the oil, golden syrup, yoghurt and milk together until well combined. Finely chop and add the stem ginger, along with 1 tablespoon of syrup from the jar. Fold in the flour mixture until smooth and combined.

Divide the cake mixture between the paper cases, then place in the hot oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden and an inserted skewer comes out clean. Leave to cool for a few minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Meanwhile, make the icing. Sieve the icing sugar into a large bowl, add the margarine, then beat until pale and fluffy. Add the cream cheese and whisk well until smooth and combined. Decorate the cooled cupcakes with the icing, dust with a little ground ginger, then tuck in.

Snowman Christmas Cupcakes from Annabel Karmel

Ingredients

For the cakes

  • 100g softened butter or soft margarine
  • 100g golden caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 100g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • icing sugar for dusting
  • 150g  ready to roll white icing
  • 3 tbsp apricot jam

Decoration

  • Marshmallows
  • Red Fizzy Laces for the scarves
  • Tubes of coloured Writing Icing (available in supermarkets)
  • Sugar baubles (for cake decoration) or silver baubles

Method

Pre-heat the oven to 180C/ 300F /.Gas 4/fan oven 160C. Place the softened butter or margarine, sugar, eggs, flour, baking powder and vanilla essence into the bowl of an electric mixer and beat for a few minutes, until the mixture is light in colour and fluffy.

Line a bun tin with 8 paper cases and divide the mixture between them, filling the cases about two thirds full.  Bake for about 20 minutes until the cakes are risen and lightly golden. Lift the cakes (still in their paper cases) out of the tins and leave them to cool on a wire rack.

Dust a clean working surface with icing sugar and roll out the icing to about 5mm/1/4”.  Cut out 8 circles using a small pastry cutter that is the same size as the top of your cakes.  Put the apricot jam into a small dish and stir in 1 tablespoon of hot water, then brush this over the surface of the cakes and stick the circles of icing on top.

To decorate the cakes, use marshmallows for the snowmen’s heads, black writing icing for the eyes, red writing icing for the smiles and sugar baubles for noses (stick them on with a blob of Writing Icing). Stick the heads on the cakes using a little apricot jam, then stick on the sugar bauble buttons.  Wrap Fizzy Laces around the snowmen’s necks for scarves.