Valentine cupcake recipe

Treat yourself or someone else with this sweet recipe



The cupcakes are stuffed with pink frosting, then frosted, drizzled and topped with candies.

MINDY MALONE, Evergreen copy chief

Typically I’ll look around until I find the perfect recipe for the occasion, but I had a box of red velvet cake mix in my cupboard and I really needed something to do with it.

It took me a bit of thinking to figure out what I wanted to do with that cake mix — how I would make it unique and Valentine-themed without being cheesy, or cute without being too sweet. I tossed around the idea of lemon curd or cranberry filling, or a raspberry buttercream frosting. Then I decided to go with a classic.

I used a cream cheese frosting recipe I found from Allrecipes to frost the cupcakes and fill them. The recipe makes enough frosting for 12 cupcakes, so I doubled it to match the number of cupcakes the box mix gave me. I used food coloring to dye the frosting pink. Note: it takes way less food coloring than you think it will.

Make the frosting while the cupcakes are baking to save time, or you can wait until they’re out of the oven and cooling down. The frosting doesn’t take much time if you’ve softened the ingredients beforehand.

There’s a good red velvet cupcake recipe from Cleobuttera if you prefer from-scratch. Note: if you’re going to use box mix, absolutely do not put it in for the temperature and time it recommends. My box said 14-19 minutes at 325 degrees Fahrenheit, so I did that and 35 minutes later they were done.

Without removing any of the dough, I used a piping bag to fill the cupcakes with frosting until they were a little puffy and the frosting stuck out the top. You have the option of using a decorating tip to frost your cupcakes but I opted not to. I decided ahead of time I would drizzle some non-dyed frosting on with a spatula, and I didn’t like the visual of the perfect decorating tip pattern under the haphazard drizzle.

I was going to buy pomegranate seeds to top off the cupcakes, but I fell on the way to my car and skinned a large section of my leg and I didn’t really feel like going to the store after that. So I used some cinnamon candies I had in my cupboard and they worked just as well.

I’m a much bigger fan of sour than I am of sweet, but I have to admit these cupcakes are fantastic. If you’ve got time to kill or a group of people you want to surprise with baked goods, I suggest trying this recipe out.

Cupcake mix:

Prepare according to box instructions, or following the recipe on Cleobuttera’s website.

Cream cheese frosting:

1/2 cup butter, softened

8 ounces cream cheese

4 cups confectioners’ sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract


1. Beat softened butter and cream cheese until well-blended.

2. Add powdered sugar and vanilla. Beat until creamy.

3. Pour roughly 3/4 of the frosting into a measuring cup and dye pink with food coloring. Leave the remaining 1/4 as is.

4. Pour the colored frosting into a piping bag. Insert the bag into

5. Use a knife or decorating tip to frost the cupcakes with the remaining pink frosting.

6. Use a spatula to drizzle the plain cream cheese frosting across the top of the cupcakes. You may need to warm it up first.

7. Sprinkle cinnamon candies or pomegranate seeds on top.