Friday, September 21, 2012

Caramel Apple Cupcakes!

Hi everyone!  Tomorrow is the first day of fall.  Real fall….not just "Courtney’s declared it’s fall", fall.  Yay!  Chris still won’t let me put out my Halloween decorations (boo), but he has given me the go-ahead to put out my scarecrow and some other fall décor.  What’s funny about that is my scarecrow has been out for a week.  Observant he is not.

To celebrate the season that you all know by now is my favorite, I have made some delicious cupcakes.  Not only do they taste great, they are also just about the cutest things ever.  I call them Caramel Apple Cupcakes…..you will notice they have a stick in them….like a caramel apple.  My cleverness knows no bounds;)  The cupcake is a spiced apple cake, and the frosting is caramel cream cheese.  Are you dying?

Anyhoo, they are super simple to make, as I used a boxed cake mix, and your friends and family will love them.  You could even make them for a bake-sale.  Everyone would thing you are a genius, and I will totally let you claim the idea.  Sell those bad boys for $2!

Here is a sneaky peak….


Do you love them?  I love them so much, I ate nearly all of them.  I love with my stomach, people.


For this recipe, I used a boxed spice cake mix.  I also used eggs and oil, just like the box told me too.  Instead of water, I used a jar of Gourmet Rooster Whiskey Apple spread and buttermilk.

Do you have to use Gourmet Rooster or can you use any kind of apple butter.  Well, if you want to remain my friend, use Gourmet Rooster.  If you are on the fence about our friendship, go ahead and use whatever you can find;)

And why buttermilk, you ask?  Buttermilk adds a nice tang and makes the cake really rich tasting.  But don’t let the name fool you…..it actually isn’t too high in fat.  So you get the whole richness thing, without the whole million grams of fat thing that whole milk would give you.


In this bowl is the cake mix, oil and eggs.


In the measuring cup is the jar of apple spread and enough buttermilk to hit 1 1/3 cups.


I blended this all together with a hand mixer.

I love spice cake.  Have I ever told you that?  A spice cake usually contains cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg, etc.  All of the “Holiday” spices.  Or at least that is what I call them.  I love the taste of these spices and of course, I love the smell.  Spice cake is a great base for apples, pumpkins, pears, etc.  Jazz that puppy up!

Could you make a spice cake from scratch and still use the buttermilk and apple spread?  Of course!  I applaud your Martha Stewart-ness.  And I am jealous of your free time.


I scooped the batter into red cupcake liners.  I am going for the whole “caramel apple” thing, so only red will work.

I baked these according to the box directions.  They cooked for about 20 minutes.  I let the cupcakes fully cool before I frosted them.  Let me show you how I made the frosting.


For this frosting, I used cream cheese, butter, caramel sundae topping and powdered sugar.  I would normally use a brick of cream cheese as opposed to this, but I sent Chris to the store for the cream cheese.  I’m just happy he brought home any kind of cream cheese.  The grocery store is still kind of a foreign country for Chris.


To start the frosting, I blended together the softened butter and softened cream cheese.  I mixed this until it was smooth.


Next, I blended in the caramel.


When that was all mixed in, I slowly blended in the powdered sugar. 

This frosting will be pretty loose because of the liquidy caramel.  It could stand a quick trip into the fridge.  That will stiffen it right up.


I made sure to give each cupcake a ton of frosting.  The frosting is always the best part anyway.


As you can see, I drizzled on even more caramel, and I stuck a popsicle stick in each cupcake.  The sticks are purely decorative.  You can’t eat your cupcake off the stick.


You know when I said the frosting was the best part?.....Like two seconds ago?  The frosting does rock, but the cake is pretty amazing too.  The spice cake works so well with the apple spread.  Not to give away my secret recipe of 11 herbs and spices…..my apple spread is seasoned pretty similarly to the spice cake, so the two are BFF’s.

You have to try this recipe.  If not for yourself, then for the good of mankind.

Caramel Apple Cupcakes

1 boxed spice cake mix

3 eggs

½ cup oil

1 jar Gourmet Rooster Whiskey Apple Spread (about 1 cup)

1/3 cup buttermilk


1 stick butter, softened

8 ounces cream cheese, softened

½ cup caramel sundae topping

About 4 cups powdered sugar

Caramel for drizzling

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and place 24 cupcake liners in 2 muffin tins.

In a large bowl, blend together cake mix, oil, eggs, apple spread and buttermilk with a hand mixer.  Blend on medium speed for 2 minutes.

Fill each cupcake liner with batter.  Bake cupcakes for about 18 to 20 minutes, or until done.  Set aside to cool.


In a large bowl, blend together, with a hand mixer, softened cream cheese and butter until smooth.  Slowly blend in caramel.  Finally, slowly blend in powdered sugar until desired consistency is reached. 

Frost cooled cupcakes.  Drizzle cupcakes with caramel and insert a popsicle stick.

Makes 24

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