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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Halloween Candy Mini Cupcakes (a.k.a. the PERFECT Halloween treat)

I'm not even going to insult you by quipping, "Oh, these are great to make with all that leftover Halloween candy!"  Because it's pretty specific - you need mini Reese's cups and candy corns.  Candy corns, okay, you might have some of those left over.  But who has Reese's cups sitting around?  They are the first to go at my house.  (For the true Halloween leftovers, we need a recipe that uses things like Laffy Taffy, Jolly Ranchers and Sweet Tarts - anyone?)  So you have to go out and buy - or carefully save out - the candy for these.  You can do that. 

I will also not insult you by pointing out the only Halloweeny thing about these is the candy corns.  You can - and should - make these any time of year with just the Reese's, or with any relevant holiday accent atop.  Cadbury mini eggs, Christmas color M&M's, etc.  But Martha Stewart called these "Mini Triple-Treat Cupcakes" and I thought that name was dumb, so I changed it.

OK, so you've got a peanut butter batter, one delicioso Reese's mini cup which fits in there perfectly, and a candy corn on top.  Pretty much the PERFECT Halloween treat and I'll tell you why:
  1. They are bite-size, maybe 2-3 bites for smaller kids.  Imagine you're at a school or church Halloween party and the sugary spread is massive.  Do you or your kids really want an entire marshmallow-ghost cupcake when there is so much sugar to be had?  Better to go smaller.
  2. They are festive - you know, Halloween colors and all that.  Plus everyone loves a surprise filling, no one more than me.
  3. They are EASY.  We already know baking is my thing; decorating is not.  I want my food to look nice and appetizing without hours of multi-color piping if I can avoid it.  Plopping a candy corn on top is my kind of decorating.
  4. They are peanut butter and chocolate, only the best candy combination EVER.
 And those are just a few of the reasons.  Make up your own if you need more. 
 Halloween Candy Mini Cupcakes (print recipe)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp fine salt
1/2 cup natural peanut butter
6 T unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
1 large egg, plus 1 large egg yolk
1/4 cup buttermilk
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
48 miniature Reese's peanut butter cups
48 pieces candy corn, for decorating

1.  Preheat oven to 350, with racks in upper and lower thirds.  Line two 24-cup mini muffin pans with paper liners.  In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.  In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat together peanut butter, butter and brown sugar on high until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes.  Beat in egg and egg yolk, scraping down bowl as needed.  With mixer on low, beat in flour mixture, buttermilk and vanilla until combined.

2.  With the large end of a melon baller (or extra small cookie scoop), place 2 tsp batter into each muffin cup, then press a peanut butter candy into each center until batter aligns with the top edge of candy.  Bake until puffed and set, about 10 minutes, rotating pans halfway through.  Immediately place a piece of candy corn on top of each cupcake; let cool completely in pans on wire racks.  Makes 48 mini cupcakes.
Recipe from Everyday Food, October 2011


kat said...

hello chili cook-off. we have found our dessert option. thanks again for saving the day.

Disco Mom said...

Yay! You know I love playing the hero.

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