Eyeball Cupcakes

Happy Halloween everyone!  I am a big fan of holidays and really get into the spirit.  I love to decorate and make various themed treats.  Ever since I saw these cupcakes last Halloween, I have been dying to make them.  Unfortunately I never found an opportunity during the past year when eyeball cupcakes would have really been appropriate, but finally the time has come again!  (Too bad I didn’t know about these during my ophthamology rotation, haha!)  I made these as a Halloween treat for the teachers at Ben’s school and I was so pleased with how they turned out.

These are supposed to be red velvet cupcakes, but for some reason I was having a very off day with food coloring.  The first tube of coloring I added didn’t turn the batter as red as I wanted, so I added some of my Wilton red gel color.  The batter was perfectly red going into the oven, but came out looking not quite brown, but definitely not red.  Well, that’s because I used icing color – not food coloring.  So, lesson learned – icing color and food coloring are not the same thing!  It didn’t matter a bit though, the cake still tastes fabulous and when it is decorated in such a fun way, I don’t think anyone cares about the color of the cake itself.  Otherwise, these were a breeze to put together and such a fun holiday treat.  I think kids would love them!

Eyeball Cupcakes
Yield: about 22 cupcakes

For the cupcakes:
2 eggs
1 ½ cups sugar
1 ½ cups vegetable oil
1 tsp white vinegar
2 ½ cups cake flour
1 tsp baking soda
3 tbsp cocoa powder
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla
5/8 ounce bottle red food coloring

For the frosting:
8 oz. cream cheese (no need to soften)
5 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
2 tsp. vanilla
2 ½ cups powdered sugar, sifted

For decorating:
additional red food coloring
Gummy Savers, assorted colors
black M&Ms

Preheat the oven to 350°.  Line two muffin pans with paper liners.  Cream the eggs, sugar, oil and vinegar.  Sift the cake flour, baking soda, and cocoa together.  Add the flour mixture to the creamed ingredients while beating.  Slowly add the buttermilk.  While still beating, add the vanilla and the food coloring.  Fill the cupcake liners about 2/3 of the way with batter.  Bake for about 18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Transfer to a wire rack and cool completely.

To make the frosting, cream the cream cheese, butter and vanilla on medium-high speed.  Add the powdered sugar to the bowl in batches, beating on low until just combined and then on high until desired consistency is reached.  For a stiffer icing, add more powdered sugar.

To decorate the cupcakes, frost liberally with cream cheese frosting.  Tint remaining frosting with red food coloring to desired shade.  Place a Gummy Saver in the center of each cupcake.  Using a pastry bag, pipe a small amount of frosting into the hole in the center of each Gummy Saver.  Place a black M&M candy (logo down) in the center of each Gummy Saver and press down to adhere to frosting.  Pipe squiggly lines of red frosting radiating out from around each Gummy Saver to create vessels.

Source: adapted from Confections of a Foodie Bride, cake from Annie’s Eats

23 Responses

  1. So cute! And so festive! 🙂

  2. These are so cute! I love your background too. I’m sure the teachers had a lot of fun with these- I’ve found that teachers love cupcakes 🙂

  3. These are awesome! I wish I had known about them sooner so I could have made them! They’ll go on the list for next year 🙂

  4. What a fun idea! I love your blog and look forward to trying many of your recipes!

  5. Those look like fun to make – and are so cool looking!

  6. Adorable! What a fun treat to share with the teachers!

  7. Those are so cute! Love ’em. I’m going to be looking forward to making those next Halloween!

  8. They are brilliant!

  9. Myson was looking over my shoulder and saw these, now he’s begging me to make them LOL

  10. those are so cute! Hope you guys had a great Halloween!

  11. love them! they look great!

  12. What lucky teachers! Those look great!

  13. these are fantastic! when it comes to cake, it could be the ugliest color ever created and i’d still devour it…eyeballs and all. 🙂

  14. LOL. These are too cute!

  15. What adorable cupcakes! I am sure they were enjoyed by everyone.

  16. Perfect! For the adults you could add some red icing for that ‘morning-after-a-halloween-party-bloodshot-eyes’ look!

  17. Annie, those look amazing! They’re the perfect Halloween treat!

  18. love these too! great job….you have been busy 🙂

  19. I made these one year and they were a hit!
    Love your photography!

  20. My Dad teaches neuroanatomy at a medical school, which hosts an annual “Men Can Bake” bake sale. I sent him the links to your blood clot brain and eyeball cupcakes — he wasn’t quite ready for the brain ones this year, but he did make the eyeball ones and won the faculty division of the contest! Thanks for the inspiration — hopefully he will start practicing the brain ones now for next year’s contest. 🙂

  21. These are wonderful, I wish I would have seen these sooner, my birthday party last year was eyeball themed (I was recovering from a cornea transplant) these would have been wonderful!

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