Cupcakes fit perfectly into a busy mom’s birthday schedule, and they are ideal for school or daycare parties. For the quickest fix and the speediest cleanup when making these cute cupcakes, use a packaged cake mix and cupcake liners.
Top each kid-size cake with some of our dreamy, creamy fluffy frosting — easily adaptable to your child’s favorite flavor. Then go crazy!
Decorate using one of the designs shown here or invent your own.
In large bowl with electric mixer, beat cream cheese and butter until combined. On low speed, beat in confectioners’ sugar, 1/3 cup at a time, until light and fluffy. Mix in vanilla extract. Makes about 2-1/2 cups, enough to frost 24 cupcakes or one 2-layer cake.
Cute cupcakes: Recipe variations
CHOCOLATE: Blend 2 oz unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled, with the cream cheese and butter. Stir in 2 to 3 teaspoons milk.
CITRUS: Substitute 1 to 2 tsp fresh lemon or orange juice for the vanilla, and stir in 1 teaspoon grated lemon or orange peel.
PEANUT BUTTER: Substitute 1/3 cup smooth peanut butter for the butter. Stir in 2 to 3 teaspoons milk.
PEPPERMINT: Substitute 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract for the vanilla. Stir in 1 teaspoon milk and 1/3 cup crushed peppermint candies.
Cute cupcakes with gumdrop balloons
Sliced gumdrops (sliced across) to make the colorful balloons, and frosting for the strings
Cute cupcakes that have a wafer cookie car
Cut up wafer cookies with decorator icing and assorted candies, including Life Savers and m&ms
Cute cupcakes with bears and sprinkles
Chocolate graham bears (like Teddy Grahams) with colored sprinkles and a birthday candle
Chocolate wafer with assorted candies and confectioners’ sugar
Cute cupcakes with little gifts
Decoration made with candy-coated chewing gum (like chicklets) and decorator icing
Cute cupcakes with a little candy boat
Plue-tinted frosting, decorator gel, cut-up fruit chew candies (like Starburst)
Marshmallow daisies (not shown)
For each flower, dop scissors in water. Cute across the flat side of 1 miniature marshmallow to form 5 petals. Arrange the petals on waxed paper in a daisy design, cut (sticky) side up, slightly overlapping the centers. Sprinkle with colored sugar to coat the cut side of the petals. Remove from waxed paper and place on top of a frosted cupcake.