Circus Mouth Cupcakes

July 15th, 2012 by Nora

Yesterday was the 5th Annual Cupcakes Take the Cake Cupcake Picnic.  I attended the event for the first time 4 years ago (time flies!) and introduced my Cupcake Kebab and it went viral! Although I could never live up to that unexpected response in future years, I’ve still used the event as an opportunity to share new creations like the Sangria Cupcake Stack, Dirt and Flower Cupcake and this year…Circus Mouth!

Circus what?! Allow me to explain…

I knew I wanted to make something colorful this year – and I also wanted to try baking something in a cake.  So, I went to the source and looked for inspiration at Bake It in a Cake!

Frosted Circus Animal Cookie Cupcakes in progress…

I found a recipe for Circus Animal Cupcakes and my creation inspiration had begun! I wanted to incorporate 5 layers to honor 5 years of the picnic and use all “circus food” related flavors (popcorn, licorice, cotton candy, candied apples, etc).  So I needed a filling, frosting, garnish and topper. And have all the flavors actually taste good together!

Red Licorice Filling setting up.

I found the perfect filling thanks to Cupcake Wars and their Red Licorice Filling Recipe  (ALWAYS use Red Vines – NO Twizzlers).


The frosting would come from a recipe I’ve been using for years – Cotton Candy Buttercream Frosting.

Cotton Candy Buttercream Frosting

And then it was time for the garnish…I found inspiration from a Popcorn Cake Recipe but rather than form it into a cake I simple placed it on my cupcake and used Pretzel M&M’s and chopped up Circus Peanuts in place of regular pretzels and M&Ms.

Caramel Apple Mini Cupcakes getting ready for the oven. Note: I learned to use less caramel per mini next time!

My original plan to make a Candied Apple Mini Cupcake as my topper was thwarted by the lack of red hots in the many stores I stopped at to find them.  So it became a Caramel Apple Mini Cupcake instead.  I used the caramel topping (minus nuts) used in this Betty Crocker Recipeand then added a Baked Apple Donut Hole Batter on top.  I learned a critical lesson in this step…USE LESS CARAMEL! As it baked, the caramel began to overflow which in turn caused it to land on my stove floor and set off my smoke alarm. Oops.  Thankfully not all the caramel was lost and the minis didn’t burn!

Center L-R: Cupcake filled w/ Red Licorice Filling, Plus Cotton Candy Frosting, Plus Popcorn Garnish and finally the Caramel Apple Mini on top!

After everything was cooled it was time to assemble! I originally placed vanilla wafer sticks in the center of the Caramel Apple Minis but they proved to be more trouble than they were worth as they began to wilt by the cake’s moisture and also caused some cakes to split. I decided the cakes were okay on their own!

And finally…the finished product. Circus Mouth Cupcakes – Your mouth will be full of circus food flavor w/ every bite! 🙂

Presenting the Circus Mouth Cupcake!

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