Today was my first day baking in the kitchen in my dorm building. It wasn’t as terrible as I thought it would be, but it’s still two floors up from my room. And I have a lot of stuff that I can’t leave unattended. Also, there was no timer on the oven. I had to use the microwave timer, so any cupcakes I post for the next few months might have the times listed a little off because this is the weirdest oven ever. No worries though, I plan on baking about twice a month, which is a bit slower than I’ve done so far, but I’m in college. I have a life that doesn’t always give me time to bake. Anyways, on to today’s cupcake!
If you don’t like root beer floats, there must be something slightly wrong with you. I can’t get enough of the strong flavor of root beer mixed with creamy vanilla ice cream. And I just love root beer in general. In fact, I’m sitting here with a bottle of it as I’m writing this. I tried to make a root beer cake once before, but it was basically just taking root beer and using that instead of water for a box mix. It didn’t taste like root beer at all. So, I’ve been searching the internet (which, in my opinion, is the best way to find new cupcakes) for a better recipe. And I found it. I altered it a little because the original recipe calls for chocolate cake, but I’m hesitant to pair chocolate and root beer. I also decided to make mini cupcakes, so I didn’t fill them like the original recipe called for. But they’re still absolutely adorable and delicious. I ended up making a root beer cake that doesn’t actually taste like root beer, it just uses it in the recipe (yes, it’s the recipe for cherry limeade cake but with root beer instead). I then made a root beer frosting. This frosting belongs on every cake ever made. It’s delicious. (Thanks go to Jessica over at www.howsweeteats.com). The recipe for the frosting, which I ended up altering slightly, can be found here. Make sure your audience likes root beer because this cupcake is absolutely full of it!
Root Beer Float Cupcakes
Makes 45 mini cupcakes
For the cupcakes:
2 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 cup root beer, whatever brand you prefer
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
Preheat oven to 350 F. Beat sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating until well combined. In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda. Add about 1/3 of the dry mixture until well combined, then about half of the root beer. Continue adding, alternating between dry and wet, ending with dry. Scoop batter into cupcake cups. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool completely before frosting.
For the frosting:
1 1/2 sticks butter, softened
3-4 cups powdered sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
2 tablespoons milk
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon root beer extract
Cream butter until smooth. Add powdered sugar, one cup at a time (I ended up using 3 cups, not 4, so use your best judgment here). Add milk and vanilla and beat until smooth. Add root beer extract, starting with 1/4 teaspoon, then adding until you reach the desired flavor. Be careful, this stuff is quite strong. Pipe frosting onto cupcakes.
And here’s a whole tray of them! Aren’t they adorable?