CINNAMON ROLL CUPCAKES

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Okay people, cinnamon rolls.  I love love love cinnamon rolls.  So the other day I was sitting at work, trying to figure out what kind of cupcake I should make this week, and I suddenly got a hankering for a cinnamon roll.  They’re so good, with their gooey icing of awesomeness, I just have to have one.  And that’s when I thought, hmmmmm how about a cinnamon roll cupcake? Brilliant! Is this possible? So I googled, and yes, a cinnamon bun cupcake is very possible.  I found a great recipe for one, you can find the original here.  Now let me tell you, I had some serious issue making these tiny mouthfuls of awesome.  The recipe and instructions were clear and easy to follow, so I followed them 100% and…well the cakes taste good but they don’t quite look as pretty as the pictures from the author’s website.  The consistency of my batter was a lot different (mine was much thicker, even though I followed the recipe down to the exact 1/2 tsp), and the icing from the original recipe didn’t quite do it for me, so I changed it, and it actually didn’t blow up in my face so hurray! This cupcake is a cinnamon roll cupcake, with a coffee flavoured icing and a cream cheese frosting. MMMMmmmmm cinnamon rolls.

INGREDIENTS

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For the cinnamon swirl:

  • 1/2 stick of unsalted butter (melted)
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

For the cupcake batter:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the coffee icing:

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened (*I used three*)
  • 1 cup  confectioner’s sugar (*plus three to four more tablespoons*)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons brewed coffee (*I used four*)

For the cream cheese frosting:

  • 4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/4 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon heavy whipping cream

*makes 12 cupcakes

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a muffin pan with cupcake papers and set aside.

First make the cinnamon swirl filling.  Combine all the ingredients together in a small bowl and set the mixture aside until it is ready to use.

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In a large bowl, or the bowl of a standing mixer, whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt.  Once combined add the baking powder.  Add the butter, sour cream, eggs, and vanilla and beat until smooth, scrapping the bowl periodically to ensure there are no streaks of flour.

Place one tablespoon of batter in each of the paper liners in the prepared muffin pan. Make a small well in the middle of each cup of batter with a toothpick. Stir the filling to make sure the butter is combined, then spoon a scant 1 teaspoon of the filling into each cup. Use a toothpick to swirl the filling and batter together. (ps for those who don’t know scant means slightly less…don’t feel bad I had to google this today hehe).  Add another tablespoon of batter to each cup and repeat the filling/swirling process.

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Bake for 18 to 22 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let the cupcakes cool completely before frosting them.

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The next step is to make the coffee frosting.  I used 3 tbsp of butter over the recommended 2 because I wasn’t able to combine all the ingredients to make a icing-like mixture.  My mixture was almost completely dry, even after I added the 1 tbsp of coffee recommended by the author.  In a medium bowl, beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Then, stir in the vanilla until combined. Add the coffee until desired consistency is reached. Even after adding the second tbsp of coffee, I didn’t find the icing actually tasted like coffee.  It just tasted like regular icing.  Which is why I added so much more coffee to the recipe.  Because of the extra 2 tbsp I added, I needed to include more icing sugar so the consistency of the icing wouldn’t be completely out of whack (mind you it was a little thinner than I would have liked but it really acted like more of a glaze, and it actually tasted like coffee, which is great).  Ice the cooled cupcakes with the coffee icing. Allow to sit for 15 to 20 minutes, then top with cream cheese frosting.

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In a large bowl, or the bowl of a standing mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter together until completely combined. Add the sugar, one cup at a time, beating well between each addition. Stir in the vanilla until thoroughly combined. Beat the mixture well, until light and fluffy, adding in the whipping cream.

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I piped my frosting onto the cakes using a Wilton 1M attachment and a piping bag.  I just can’t not pipe my frosting on, it looks so much more like an actual cupcake that way!  The author of this recipe didn’t pipe the frosting on, and it looks great like that too, so try whichever way you prefer.  And there you have it! Cinnamon roll cupcakes.  The taste was amazing! They were a lot of work for the yield I got though, so I’m not sure if these will be something I’d make on a regular basis.  I’d also like to understand why my batter was so much thicker than the authors.  Her’s looked so fabulous and mine, well, didn’t.  I found my batter looked more like a cinnamon roll and her’s looked more like a cupcake, which is what I was going for.  Maybe I over mixed it? I don’t feel like I did… anyways, I’m sure I will recreate these at another point in time to see if I can perfect them.  Speaking of things I love…red wine.  Ever heard of red wine cupcakes? Ya those exist.  Guess what’s on my list for next week’s batch.

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