Inspired by the simple, 4-step recipes in their latest book, Make It Easy, Cupcake!, Karen Tack and Alan Richardson created this amazing owl cupcake recipe just for Sweet Paul readers. Using everyday ingredients available in home pantries and grocery stores, they prove that anyone can be an inventive cupcake designer.
Food by Karen Tack & Photography by Alan Richardson
12 spice cupcakes
1 can (16 ounces) plus 1 cup white frosting
12 mini chocolate cream-filled cookies (mini Oreos)
24 brown candy-coated chocolates (M&M’s)
9 thin scalloped spice cookies (We used Anna’s brand)
1/4 cup dark chocolate frosting
1/2 cup each, orange, yellow, and brown decorating sugars
12 pieces candy corn
- Spoon 11/2 cups of the frosting into a resealable bag and snip a small corner from the bag. Use a toothpick to make a small hole in the center of the cupcake. Stick the tip of the cut bag into the opening in the cupcake and pipe some vanilla frosting into the cupcake. Repeat with the remaining cupcakes. Transfer the cupcakes to the freezer to chill for 15 minutes.
- To make the eyes, separate the chocolate cream-filled cookies and remove (and discard) the cream. Place the cookies, flat side down, on a work surface and pipe a dot of vanilla frosting on top of each cookie. Press a brown candy into the frosting as the pupil. Using a small serrated knife, saw each spice cookie into 2 pieces with 4 scallops along the edge (you will have a small piece with a single scallop remaining to discard). Reserve 12 cookie pieces to use for the wings. With the remaining 6 cookie pieces, saw between each scallop to make 24 individual scallops with a pointed end to use for the ears (see photo).
- Spoon the dark chocolate frosting into a resealable bag and snip a very small corner from the bag. Place each color of sugar into a separate bowl. Spread some of the remaining vanilla frosting on top of a chilled cupcake and make smooth. Pipe 3 rows of wavy lines on the bottom half of a cupcake for the feathers. Gently roll the top of the cupcake in one of the sugar colors to coat. If necessary, lightly pat the top of the sugared cupcake to make smooth. Repeat to make 4 cupcakes of each color.
- To assemble, insert the round edge of two ear pieces into the top edge of the cupcake about 1/2 inch apart. Pipe dots of vanilla frosting just below the ears and attach the eyes. Pipe a dot of frosting to the left side of the cupcake and attach a cookie wing, scalloped edge toward the center of the cupcake. Add a piece of candy corn below the eyes, pointed end toward the center of the cupcake, for the beak.
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