I’ve been working on several Easter Day dessert plates, and it just wouldn’t be a family get-together if I didn’t bring cupcakes at some point. I really wanted to make something creative this time, something that would not only taste good but would be visually stunning as well. And, of course, very Easter themed. So as I was pouring through one of my favorite cupcake decorating books, I came across the perfect idea for Easter cupcakes: a great Easter egg hunt.
Easter Egg Hunt Cupcakes
Yields 12 cupcakes
For the cupcakes:
4 tbsp. (57 grams) butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla extract
4 tbsp. baking cocoa
1/2 cup milk
1 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup sour cream
For the chocolate buttercream frosting:
1 stick (113 grams) butter, at room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 tbsp. baking cocoa
For the vanilla buttercream frosting:
3 sticks (339 grams) butter, at room temperature
3 cups powdered sugar
1 tbsp. vanilla extract
Green food gel
For the candy decorations:
Colored jelly beans/candy coated eggs
10 white candy coated chocolates
Pink royal icing/gel icing/frosting (for the rabbit paws)
5 Oreos, finely crushed
Start by making your cupcakes. You can really use any flavor of cupcakes you want here since the end product is going to be covered with frosting and candies. To make the chocolate cupcakes I used, preheat your oven to 350* Fahrenheit (175* Celsius) and line your cupcake pan(s) with liners, preferably green (to blend into the “grass” frosting). In a large bowl, cream the butter until smooth and add the granulated sugar. Mix until small, sugary lumps form. Add the egg, baking soda, vanilla extract, and milk. Mix until all ingredients are well combined. Add the cocoa powder and beat, slowly, until the powder is thoroughly incorporated. Add 1/2 cup flour, the sour cream, and the final 1/2 cup flour, mixing between each new addition. Mix until the batter is completely smooth and there are no lumps. Pour the batter into the lined cupcake pan(s) and bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cupcakes comes out clean.
While the cupcakes cool, you can whip up your chocolate buttercream frosting for the rabbit hole cupcakes. In a small bowl, cream the butter until smooth. Add the vanilla extract, powdered sugar, and baking cocoa, and mix until the mixture is smooth and all the ingredients are well combined. Using a butter knife, spread the frosting on four of the cooled cupcakes. Try to create a smooth mound with the frosting. Roll the cupcakes, frosting side down, in the finely crushed Oreos. Take two of your white candy coated chocolates and cut them in half to create four tails. Using a little leftover frosting as glue, attach the halved chocolates as tails and the whole chocolates as feet. Pipe a few dots of pink icing on the feet to make the pads of the rabbit’s feet.
Once the rabbit cupcakes are finished, you can move on to making your “grass” cupcakes. In a medium bowl, cream the butter for the vanilla buttercream frosting until smooth. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla extract, and mix until the mixture returns to a smooth, creamy state. Divide the frosting into two equal portions and color them two shades of green. This will give the “grass” some dimension and keep it from all being the same, boring, uniform green. Once you’ve gotten your frostings to the desired shades of green, spoon one frosting into the corner of one half of a plastic bag, and the other frosting into the other half of the same bag. Twist the end of the bag closed, and clip the tip into an “M” shape using two small “v” cuts. Pipe the remaining eight cupcakes with “grass” by applying pressure to the bag of frosting, and releasing the pressure as your pull away.
Decorate the top of the “grass” cupcakes with small jelly beans and candy coated eggs.
Design adapted from Hello, Cupcake!