Cupcake Nirvana

So, even though I’m (mentally) trying to eat healthy(er), I still love me some cupcakes.  This weekend for the Superbowl I was initially going to attend a party in West Palm and was asked to make football‑themed cupcakes/cake to go with the two teams playing.  I still hadn’t decided what I was going to attempt as a decoration theme when Sam and I decided to go to his parents’ instead for the day.  This worked in my favor for two reasons: 1) I wouldn’t have to actually watch the TV and pretend I cared about what down it was or who was winning – I could read a book comfortably on the couch instead, and 2) my cupcakes weren’t limited to yellow/green/black.

Knowing Geoff (Sam’s dad) doesn’t really like sweets and that his mom, Pauline, is trying to eat healthier, I tried my hand at “healthy” cupcakes.  To do so, I started with a carrot cake mix as my base (why try to re-invent the wheel by baking completely from scratch for a few cupcakes?).  I substituted applesauce for the oil and egg whites for the whole eggs; filled them with a low-fat coolwhip and applesauce; and topped them with a low-fat cream cheese frosting made from scratch.  Ohh, and sprinkled them with brown sugared graham cracker crumbs.  I’m pretty certain these cupcakes were my best tasting yet.  Unfortunately, the papers pulled away from the cake a little bit around the top and stuck to the cake around the bottom, so I’m slightly disappointed in how they looked. But, they tasted amazing! The pictures could be better, but I used the camera (phone) I had handy.

CAKE RECIPE

1 carrot cake mix

1 tablespoon of flour

3 egg whites

1/3 cup applesauce

1 1/3 cup of water

Instructions:  Sift cake mix and flour together.  Add all other ingredients.  Mix with mixer for 2 minutes.  Pour into cupcake papers.  Bake at 325°C or 350°C (depending on your pans) for 15 to 20 minutes (again, depending on your pans).

FROSTING RECIPE

1 stick salted butter

8 oz. reduced fat cream cheese

2 tsp. vanilla (extract)

2-4 cups of powdered sugar

Instructions:  Cream butter and cream cheese together until fluffy.  Add 1 cup powdered sugar.  Add 1 tsp. of vanilla.  Continue to mix.  Add 1 cup powdered sugar.  Add 1 tsp. of vanilla.  Taste.  Add powdered sugar until desired sweetness and “fluffy” level are reached.

Cupcake on its lonesome on my desk.

A pile o’ cupcakes (with some missing) in the carrier I brought to the office.  It just happened to be my new boss’s birthday yesterday, so it worked out really well that I had these on hand.

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