Saturday, March 24, 2012

Elmo Cupcakes

For Alex's "almost 2 playdate", I made him Elmo cupcakes. I think every kid born post-1999 has probably been obsessed with Elmo, so I figured they would be a hit. Sugar and kid-world, I don't think it gets much better than that.

I didn't really have a clue on I was going to make them and I knew that I wasn't going to buy all sorts of fancy-schmancy equipment. Enter the fabulous world of Pinterest. If you're not Pinteresting, you have absolutely no idea what you're missing. It's like sugar & Elmo for grown-ups. :) Anyway, I searched Pinterest for "Elmo Cupcakes" and found this DIY post as my inspiration...and then promptly decided not to do it anything like that. Okay, not really. But I basically saw how she did it and then made up my own version.

I ended up making 16 cupcakes and used the leftover batter to make a mini cake for Aaron. I haven't been keeping much dessert in the house lately, so I start to feel bad for him after a while. I made the Delicious Chocolate Cake {yes, that's really what it's called!} from one of the best cookbooks ever, the Mennonite Country Style Recipes cookbook and a powdered sugar frosting from the same cookbook. With a few modifications, of course. {like using coconut oil and dark cocoa}

I should have thought to do what all the professionals do and take a picture of all the ingredients used, but alas, I am no professional. However, this is what you need:

cupcakes {any type you choose}
oreo cookies
unholy amounts of red dye
large marshmallows
chocolate chips
orange jelly beans

While your cupcakes are cooling, this is a good time to prepare the eyes & mouth. Cut your marshmallows in half, each Elmo will need a total of one marshmallow. Next, I separated the oreos, then used a knife to try to cut them in half. The ones that came out fairly well got used, the broken pieces got eaten. :) There's got to be an easier way to do it than that, but it worked.

Once the cupcakes cool, spread a thin layer of frosting over the cakes. Not a lot, just enough so things will "stick". It doesn't even have to be red at this point. Next, take 2 halves of a marshmallow and place cut-side down on the frosting to create the eyes.  Then add an orange jelly bean for the nose, then pick a piece of cookie that looks good size-wise and add it for the mouth.

Once I attached the facial parts, I needed to dye the rest of the frosting. My mom said you can purchasee a red dye paste that works well, because with red liquid dye, things often come out more pinkish. Well, these came out pretty you can imagine the amount of red dye I added. And with every guilt-ridden drop {or squeeze!!} I tried not to think about this. At this point, you could have gotten all fancy schmancy and bought a bag & tip to make the "fur", but if you're cheap like me, a sandwich bag will work just fine. I loaded in the frosting and snipped off a tiny piece of one corner. Then start squeezing & dabbing the frosting all around the cupcakes and the pre-attached eyes, nose, & mouth. You can make it look fur-ish without having a special tip.

Once all the cupcakes had fur, then I needed to put on the eyes. I melted some chocolate chips with a little bit of milk, then loaded into a sandwich bag the same way I did with the frosting. I placed a dab of chocolate on each marshmallow then added a regular chocolate chip. The dab of melted chocolate was just to make the chocolate chip eyeball stick.

Voila! Elmo cupcakes! It had been warm here, so I stored them in the fridge overnight on cooling racks. It worked perfect to do it that way since I was leaving the house fairly early to run an errand go to a consignment sale before heading to the park. Since I'd put them in the fridge, and packaged them in some Tupperware in a cooler, they didn't melt all over the place before we got to eat them.

It was so much fun to do a "mommy thing" for Alex. He's finally at that point where I think he will start to appreciate these kinds of things. And it was extremely rewarding that when I showed him the cupcakes, he said, "ELMO!" :) {instead of, "huh?!"}


  1. Avery would go crazy over those - she loves some Elmo. Those are adorable as is your sweet little family! :)

    1. You're so sweet. :) Avery can come over and go Elmo-crazy with Alex anytime!!