Christmas cuteness! Rudolph cupcake how-to
1 box of your favorite cake mix (and the necessary ingredients to bake as directed)
1 cup (2 sticks) of unsalted butter at room temperature
3 cups of confectioner’s sugar
¼ teaspoon table salt
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Up to 4 tablespoons milk
Blue food coloring
1. Bake the cupcakes as directed on the box. Cool completely.
2. In the mean time, make the icing. You’re going to start by making a vanilla base. First, place the butter in the bowl of an electric mixer and cream for a few minutes on medium speed. Turn the mixer down to the lowest speed possible and gradually pour in the sugar. Once the sugar is incorporated into the butter, turn the mixer back up to medium speed and add the vanilla, salt and milk. Beat for three minutes, or until you reach your desired consistency. If your icing is too stiff, slowly add more milk. If it’s too loose, add more sugar.
3. Now, divide your icing into three bowls. Put half into one bowl and one-fourth into the other two. Set one of the one-fourth bowls aside—this will be your standard white icing. Start with the other one-fourth bowl. Turn the mixer onto low speed and add the blue food coloring drop by drop until you achieve your desired color. Set this bowl aside, unplug the mixer and wipe off the beaters to remove any blue food coloring.
4. Time for a li’l chocolate! Take the bowl with half the icing in it, plug your mixer back in and slowly beat in the cocoa powder until you reach your desired color and flavor. Set aside.
5. Cupcakes cool? Time to assemble! Spread each cupcake with a layer of blue icing. Now, using either a piping bag or a small spoon, place one large dollop (the reindeer’s head) and one small dollop (the snout) of chocolate icing onto the center of each cupcake.
6. Pipe two white circles onto the “head” to serve as the whites of the reindeer’s eyes. Stick a chocolate chip, point-side in, into each.
7. Press an M&M into each nose for insta-Rudolph perfection.
8. Stick a pretzel to the back of the head (push down into the cupcake if necessary) to serve as antlers. Tada!