Vanilla Marshmallow Cupcakes with Chocolate Peppermint Frosting

This was such a leap of faith! Made Billy's Vanilla Vanilla Cupcakes and threw in...literally a cup and a half of mini-marshmallows...just for something different. Brave, wasn't I??

Then, I made Billy's Chocolate Buttercream frosting and threw in some peppermint stuff. They turned out great! I heaped the frosting on to them.

Then, I love the "little people"... found them at the hobby store a few months ago...remembered them and thought it would be funny to have them skiing and skating on these holiday cupcakes!

I hope that you all have happy holidaze!

Rock On!


Vanilla Vanilla Cupcakes with Snowmen

I've been so busy on a project at work that I've hardly had time to think about cupcakes! However, I was in Whole Foods last week and found the cutest cupcakes and decided that I would try to make one that looked just liked them...And, they came out perfectly. What great therapy!

I used Billy's Vanilla Vanilla cupcake and frosting recipes. It took some time to get the frosting to the right has to be pretty airy.

The project I've been working on is for the Univeristy of Maryland. Every year my office produces the president's holiday e-card. This year our group came up with a pretty funny idea that meant we had to go out and photograph all over the place! You'll see what I mean when you check it out on's the link to the end result of our project: Click here!

And, what would cupcakes be without Layla...she loves the cupcake! More cupcakes this weekend!

Rock On!


Dark Dark Chocolate Holiday Mini-Cupcakes with Peppermint Bark Frosting...Yummie!

I simply love peppermint bark...I'm not kidding...I can't wait for the holidays when it shows up at Crate and Barrel...and my hand instinctively reaches for that box every time I go in this year I decided to experiment with some on a dark, dark chocolate cupcake. I "found" (ahem) Ghirardelli's Limited Edition Peppermint Bark Squares at the World Market this weekend when I got home I put some in the freezer for about 10 minutes, I crushed them up and put them on top of my pink buttercream frosting. They were a huge hit for dessert this evening...a sweet, little taste of holidaze coming our way!

This experiment was pretty easy because I used a dark dark chocolate CAKE MIX! I added some sour cream's the real kick...a cup of white chocolate chips...I know it sounds crazy but it all worked out just fine!

I made the mini cupcakes this time because I figured these would be kind of "rich"...and they were...and I wanted to pile on the frosting. You can check out the rest of the "Bark" cupcakes on my flickr web page at:

I also did a few without the bark...and used white nonpareils because I have one particular person who doesn't like mint...and I like to keep all my peeps happy! You can buy the nonpareils at Michaels or order them from Wilton's web site. Now I'm gearing up for a REAL holiday cupcake in the next couple of weeks. Are you whipping up anything special? Let me know!

Rock On!


My New Uggs: Tattooed with a Cupcake!

Last winter I really wanted a pair of Uggs...I have a pair of Uggs slippers that Layla tried to chew up and they are still so cozy. But I didn't buy the Uggs last winter. So, when I was in Nordstom's in Montgomery Mall (newly named Westfield Mall but everyone still calls it Montgomery Mall) a couple of weeks ago...I got the Ugg's Bugg and decide to bite the bullet and get a pair!

I decided on a pair of "classic" short Uggs in Chestnut. The sales person told me that I could get a tattoo for my new friends...a promotion that day meant the tattoo was I went over to the table and met the artist Phill...Nordstrom's commissioned him to customize the UGGs they sell. Phill sometimes sits in the Nordstrom shoe department for seven or eight hours. He uses Prisma Color pens, up to twelve takes him 30 minutes to two hours to decorate a pair of boots, depending on the design. And, he's very cute!

So I asked him if he could do me a cupcake and he said yes! I haven't worn them yet ... it's still pretty warm here in D.C....hopefully, it will get cold soon so that I can wear my cupcake UGGS! If you go to Nordstroms to get your new UGGS and see Phill, tell him the Cupcake Queen says Hey!

Now go Rock on,


Here they are....the Super-Duper Cupcakes Cookbook Winners!!!!

Here are the Super-Duper Cupcakes cookbook winners, pulled randomly...or is that randomly pulled?...out of the hat today...anyway...they WON!! Now, go say hi to them~

Melanie Hess—Here's her blog: My Ramblings


Surcie—Here's her blog: Surcie...A Little Treat, Just Because

Ladies, please send your addresses to so that I can send you your autographed books!

Great job, everyone!


Worm Cupcakes with "Dirt" Buttercream Frosting for the Worm and Don't Forget to Enter the SUPER-DUPER CUPCAKES BOOK CONTEST!!

Update Nov. 13: Contest winners will be announced at 7:00 p.m. (EST) today...Not at 4:00 as previously sated.

Update Nov. 12, 2006—These Worm Cupcakes (inspired by Elaine Cohen's Super-Duper Cupcakes) are pretty cute and very easy to create! I made them today for my daughter-in-law, Amanda, because one of her nicknames is "Worm"....don't even ask me to's just too convoluted, but it really is an affectionate term, believe me...and today is her birthday...
Happy Birthday, Worm! The first thing she said was "That's GROSS!" But, then she got right into the spirit of things. Right now, she's out shopping her little heart out with Catherine! Amanda has a blog, too...check it out here.

I warned you that November is a very busy birthday month...including my boss, Terry Flannery, last brother-in-law...the list goes on and the month isn't even over yet! BTW...have you seen all the holiday decorations out already? I do have to admit that I've already listened to Starbuck's new "Santa Baby" cd! I know, I just can't help it.

Layla thought that the worms were cool. She wants to remind you that tomorrow (Monday) at 3:00 p.m. (EST) is the deadline to enter the Super-Duper Cupcakes Cookbook on below to see how to enter!

Rock on, CQ

Chu Chu Vanilla Heaven Cupcakes with Green Buttercream Frosting

I was so inspired by Elaine Cohen's Super-Duper Cupcakes book that I had to go out and buy all this really cool candy at the BIG K just so that I make these cute train cupcakes. I used Skittles, Twix, AirHeads Extremes Sour Belts, DOTS, and licorice...but...well...I bought a whole lot more than that (the bag must have weighed 50 lbs at least) just...for...a...future projects!

And, these cupcakes are actually appropriate because two more people in my family have birthdays this week: my brother-in-law, Jim...he lives in West Point, VA...and my sister-in-law, Mary Harvill...she lives in Spokane, Washington. AND, I heard somewhere that Elaine Cohen's birthday is Nov. 8th! November is a very busy birthday month!

Okay...back to the cupcakes...and the NEW CONTEST...I made Elaine's Vanilla Heaven Cupcakes and also her Vanilla Buttercream Frosting. Her book is so's all about having fun...see, right here on page 13 where she talks about cupcakes...she says there are three types of cupcakes you could use... Homemade... Cake Mix... Pre-made... Same with the frosting ...Homemade ...Frosting Mix ...Packaged .... that's the best because it gives you permission to sometimes not actually make cupcakes yourself or the frosting...then you (and your kids) can have more fun decorating! This is right up my alley because I think that the most fun is in the decorashun!

Layla was interested only in this almost-non-decorated cupcake...she has very simple desires....and now comes the very best part....ANOTHER CUPCAKE COOKBOOK CONTEST....

Elaine has sent me TWO...hmmmm maybe I'll just keep one copy for myself....just kidding...of her books...autographed!! for the November contest...Here's all you have to do to enter the contest: Wish Elaine a Happy Birthday in a comment on this post...and before you can say gimme anothere're entered. If you make an "anonymous" comment, add your first name to the comment so that you can be identified for the drawing.

The contest begins at 3:00 p.m. (EST) Monday, Nov. 6...that's today!!! And, it ends, at 3:00 p.m. (EST) Monday, Nov. 13. Winners will be announced at 4:00 p.m. that day.

Now...get out there and VOTE!...I mean wish Elaine a Happy Birthday!

Rock On,


Happy Virtual Halloween Birthday Cupcake to Kim Leffler in Spokane, WA!

My one of those Halloween babies...well, she's not a baby anymore...the BIG day was October 31, 1960...yikes, she's getting up there...but I thought that these Williams-Sonoma Halloween Pumpkin Patch Petite Cakes would just be the perfect virtual celebration for Kim! She lives in Spokane, Washington, and is a real sweetie. Don't tell her I told you this, but I'm the one who potty trained her. CQ loves ya, Kim!

Layla, however, only loves cupcakes! She waited a long time yesterday to get her treat for staring at these babies, so I just has to give her something special. One of her favorite treats is doggie ice cream. I know...I know...bad mommy...but she really loves Frosty Paws. They have two flavors: original and peanut butter. And, you can even order a Frosty Paws Party Kit for your dog's birthday party! Layla hasn't has one of these yet...but her birthday isn't until January....hmmmm

If you want to make the pumpkin patch petite cakes, you're going to need Williams-Sonoma's "Pumpkin Patch Pan."

Here's the recipe:

For the cakes--
3 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 3/4 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. baking soda
2 1/4 tsp. salt
5 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 tsp. ground ginger
1 3/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
1 tsp. ground allspice
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
14 Tbs. (1 3/4 sticks) unsalted butter
1 2/3 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
1 2/3 cups granulated sugar
4 eggs
1 cup milk
1 2/3 cups pumpkin puree [I used a can of pumpkin]

For the frosting--
8 oz. cream cheese
8 Tbs. (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 cup confectioners' sugar, sifted
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
Food coloring as desired

Have all the ingredients at room temperature.

Position a rack in the lower third of an oven and preheat to 350°F. Generously grease and flour the wells of a pumpkin patch pan; tap out excess flour.

To make the cakes, over a sheet of waxed paper, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice and cloves; set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy and smooth, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the brown and granulated sugars and beat until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the milk and beginning and ending with the flour. Beat each addition just until incorporated, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the pumpkin puree and beat until incorporated. Remove the bowl from the mixer.

Divide half of the batter between the wells of the prepared pan and spread evenly. Bake until a toothpick inserted near the center of a cake half comes out clean, 18 to 22 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let the cake halves cool upright in the pan for 15 minutes.

Gently tap the pan on a work surface to loosen the cakes. Invert the pan onto the rack and lift off the pan. Let the cakes cool completely before decorating. Wash and thoroughly dry the pan, grease and flour the wells and repeat with the remaining batter.

Meanwhile, make the frosting: In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat the cream cheese on medium speed until smooth, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the butter and beat until combined, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the confectioners' sugar and vanilla and beat until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in food coloring as desired.

To assemble the cakes, using a bread knife, cut off any portion of each cake that rose above the rim of the pan. Place a cake half, flat side up, on a cake stand or plate and spread the frosting on top. Place its matching cake half, flat side down, on top. Repeat with the remaining cakes. Refrigerate for 30 minutes, then decorate as desired.

For unassembled cake halves, decorate the exterior of each half as desired.

Makes 24 cake halves or 12 assembled cakes.

from the Williams-Sonoma Kitchen

Here's hoping you have a scary Halloween...don't you wish it was your birthday, too?



Eat, Drink and Be Scary Pt. Deux: Here Come the Halloween CupKin PumpCakes!

The Halloween Cupcakes Scene was going strong in our house today ...waiting for the CupKin PumpCake to come out of the oven ...and it did! And, it was made out of pumpkin and cranberries and some chocolate, too!

These pumpkin and cranberry cupcakes were based on Julie Hasson's 125 Cupcakes books..remember the first cupcake book contest? I added cranberries instead of the raisons she suggested.

The and white...was Billy's Vanilla Vanilla never fails me! I'd been collecting Halloween items here for most of the year. Whenever I went on a trip I found some little thing that I thought might work for Halloween party cupcakes...have you noticed how much Halloween stuff there is for sale now...not as much as holiday stuff, of course, but pretty close.

I think I like the skeleton ones the best ...they look like someone drowning in black goo! The skeletons are made out of plastic ...unedible ...but cute!

I also found some Halloween Oreos with bright orange frosting...I broke them up and used them as topping for some of the cupcakes. And, of course, Halloween wouldn't be complete without a photo of Layla and some bones!

Hope you have a blast on Halloween!

Rock on!


Halloween Cupcakes

Holey Cupcakes...It's the Great Cupkin Pumpcake

I'm getting my stuff ready for Halloween cupcakes...aren't you? Preparing to unveil my scary cupcake scene next weekend...the 22nd...I've been collecting all kinds of fascinating items for the cupcakes...My partner in slime, Margaret, and I decided it would be fun to make a Halloweenie 52 Cupcakes type t-shirt (see design above)! She illustrated the Great Cupkin Pumpcake and I came up with the rest of the design. I think I'll order one for my niece, Kim...Halloween is her birthday!

We have several versions up on CafePress...long sleeved, short sleeved...well. you know!

Check in HERE to see the Eat, Drink and Be Scary shirts.

BIG NEWS: Elaine Cohen, author of the new book, Super, Duper Cupcake, wrote and told me about an event she is having in NYC on Saturday, October 21st. It's a FREE HALLOWEEN CUPCAKE DECORATING EVENT and book signing. It makes me wish I lived in New York City.....

Here are the details:
Cupcakes and frostings for children to decorate and eat.
- Where: in NYC at Broadway Panhandler at 65 East 8th Street (between Broadway and University)
- October 21st, 2:00 pm

AND, Elaine has agreed to donate two autographed copies of her new book to 52 cupcakes for the November contest!!! More about that later!

Now, get out there and an scare someone...just kidding...Whew! My Halloween evil twin keeps popping out...I think I need a nap!

Rock On!


Dora the Explorer Birthday Cupcakes...and Layla Meets Dora!

Today was the perfect day for the Dora the Explorer Birthday Party...out came the sun and the birthday cupcakes! Of course, the first matter of business was to go to the PARTY store...Yay! Was it ever halloweenie today...I just had to buy some spider web stuff for the Halloween cupcake scene..what fun. I was terribly tempted to purchase this little package or tiny little rubbery rats...oh and there was the bag of squishy eyeballs...pretty amazing what they can do nowadaze! I did pick up a cute skeleton ring that has glowing eyes. You never know when you might need something like that....

The next stop was the grocery store to pick up the Dora the Explorer Animals Crackers...I don't know why they call them Animals Crackers, I always thought they were simple Animal Crackers.......neways, these include Dora and her friends: Boots, Swiper Map, and Backpack, of course.

But, I digress..the Doras cupcakes were inspired by the Yellow Cupcakes recipe in another new cupcake book: A Baker's Field Guide to Cupcakes. It's a lovely book Crazy About Cupcakes...teaches you all types of fun things to do. Dede Wilson is the author and she her "field guide" includes major holiday cupcakes, wedding cupcakes, graduation cupcakes, and Kids' Bake Sales cupcakes!

And, this is the first time that I've used Wilton's Color Mist Food Color Spray, and I must admit it unleashed something wild in me...After I was finished with the cupcakes, I wanted to go out and graffitti something! Whew!
Layla was so happy to be attending the the Dora the Explorer birthday party. She had never met Dora and her friends before and...picture thhis...right now she's sitting smack in front of the tv just waiting for her new friend Dora to appear!

Adios, CQ

We Have Two Winners!

Sorry I'm real job got in my way!

But, can you believe this? We actually have two winners of Crazy About Cupcakes: Queue and Sylvie! What fun!

Queue's blog is soon as I figure me out...Sylvie's blog is Soul Fusion Kitchen.

Sylvie: Please send your address to me at I already have Queue's info.

To all of you who entered and made comments: Thanks! You are all so sweet...just like cupcakes...Keep your fingers crossed for the next's coming in December!

And, don't forget to Rock On!


Milky Way Cupcakes for Frenchie Picnic...Bulldogs, That Is!

How can you resist that face? This weekend we had the great experience of attending our first French Bulldog picnic held annually by Karen and Jeff Robertson of Rock N' Roll Frenchies near Shamokin, Pa.. It was so much fun...there were at least 25 Frenchies there!

I made Milky Way cupcakes...both chocolate and vanilla...another fun and easy recipe to try out!

Layla was present for the frosting of the you can see. She actually ate one when we weren't was one of those crazy Friday nights trying to do too many things at one time. You've been there, haven't you? Layla could not attend the picnic...she's an American Bulldog and only Frenchies were allowed!

This what they looked like when they went in the oven....I had just left the milk way bar on top and the batter covered it over a bit. it didn't sink that much.

And, this is what they looked like when they came out! When I did the chocolate batch I actually pushed the candy bar piece all the way down into the batter and it ended up at the bottom of the cupcake. I like the way the vanilla ones turned out better. Then I just put some nice vanilla frosting, sometimes combined with chocolate frosting, on top and we were ready for the picnic!

This is very happy, tired, French Bulldog...on his way home from the picnic. He was exhausted!

BTW, don't forget to enter the contest...the post below this one...It is over tomorrow (Wednesday night, October 4th at 11:59 p.m.!

Rock on, Cupcake Lovers~


R U Ready for the Crazy About Cupcakes Cookbook Contest??

Well, ready or not, Krystina Castella...she's the author of Crazy About Cupcakes...has awesomely (is that a word?) offered The Cupcake Queen an autographed copy of her new book for this contest. You will simply love this cupcake cookbook! I know from my own experience that I do. The cupcakes I made last Sunday...the Madras...were based on Krystina's recipe for her Seabreeze cupcake. She truly inspires creativity!

Oh yeah... this is about the contest: To enter, all you have to do is make a comment to this post. That's it. Only one comment per person, please.

The contest begins on September 27th...YOU CAN ENTER RIGHT NOW... And, it will end at 11:59 p.m., Wednesday, October 4th, one week from today! I will put all the entries in a hat and pull out one winner...will you be the one? I hope so! I'll announce the winner Thursday morning at 9:00 a.m. (EST) on this blog. Krystina will mail her book to the winner!

If you're leaving a comment as anonymous...please put in some sort of identifying name in your comment...otherwise, we won't be able to tell one anonymous cupcake lover from another!

So, what are you waiting for? Let's hear from you!