Jessie Oleson (aka Cakespy) drops by every Monday to share a delicious dessert recipe. —The Mgmt.
I hold this truth to be self-evident: Cupcakes are better when filled. This, of course, is a lesson learned from Bake It In A Cake, which proves that there's no lack of material with which to fill them, ranging from cookie dough to dollhouse-sized pies to baklava.
But the ultimate cupcake-stuffer? Cupcakes themselves. By embedding miniature cupcakes—frosting and all—inside batter-filled standard-sized cups, you get a surprisingly delightful treat: The baby-cakes, sealed by the moisture of the cake batter, don't dry out, whereas the baked bit of frosting lightly spreads, browns, and adds a rich crunch, making for an overall taste and visual contrast which can't be beat.
Note: If you don't cover the mini cupcakes batter, the frosting will spread a bit and you might want to keep a cookie sheet under the muffin tin in case of drippage. Alternately, save a little batter and cover them completely before baking.
- 1 batch (18-24) miniature cupcakes, baked, frosted, and chilled in refrigerator for at least an hour
- 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup (4.5 ounces) cake flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup milk
- 2-3 cups buttercream frosting
- Sprinkles (optional)
Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Line two muffin tins with standard sized cupcake liners. Remove your chilled mini cupcakes from the fridge. If made using paper liners, remove the liners. Set aside.
Combine butter, eggs, sugar, and vanilla and beat with wooden spoon until thick and lightened in color, about 5 minutes. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in separate bowl. Alternately add flour mixture and milk to butter mixture in four batches, beating with spoon until smooth to incorporate after each addition.
Fill cupcake cups no more than halfway full with batter. In each half-filled cup, place one mini cupcake directly in the center. Cover cupcakes with extra batter if desired (see note)
Place in the oven with a cookie sheet underneath in case of dripping. Bake until light golden brown (about 25 minutes). The frosting from the mini cupcakes may have melted over the sides a bit, but you should still be able to see if the cake has browned.
Remove from oven and let cool. Once fully cooled, top the cupcakes with frosting.
If desired, garnish with sprinkles.