Maple Bacon Cupcakes

Let me guess, I had you at bacon? 😉 Happy Valentines day!

They say that the way to a love’s heart is through their belly, maybe these will be a hit? Haha, truthfully, I cannot eat these myself, however they are a HUGE favourite among my friends, family and colleagues. I’ve made them a few times over the years, including a huge batch to fund raise for Child Rescue, an absolutely brilliant charity – make sure to check them out!

Whilst I was spending some time at Mum and Dad’s before I headed overseas, Dad practically begged me to bake these, even posting on Facebook asking people to vote in favor of me baking them. The recipes themselves aren’t difficult, so Dad, if you get a craving again, here is the recipe so that you can make them yourself! (I also left a printed copy on the kitchen bench 😉 ).

Also, these work great with gluten free flour, and can be made completely dairy free by using margarine.

Cupcake ingredients:
Makes 12
115 g butter, softened or soft margarine (I use Olivani)
115 g castor sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
115 g self raising flour

Buttercream ingredients:
150 g unsalted butter, softened or soft margarine
1 tsp vanilla
280 g icing sugar
3 tbsp maple syrup (or more, depending on taste!)

Bacon topping ingredients:
A couple rashers of streaky bacon
Maple syrup

Step One: Drench the bacon in maple syrup and set aside.
Step Two: Preheat your oven to 180C / 350F and put 12 papers into a cupcake/muffin tray.
Step Three: Put the butter/margarine and castor sugar into a cake mixer bowl, beat together till the mixture is pale, light and fluffy.
Step Four: Gradually beat in the eggs, then add vanilla.
Step Five: Sift flour into the mixture and gently mix through until incorporated.
Step Six: Spoon the mixture into the paper cases, filling them about half way.
Step Seven: Bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes until the cupcakes are risen and firm to the touch (15-20 minutes is what the recipe states, but in our oven they only take 12 minutes, so watch them carefully!) Leave in the tray for about 10 minutes then gently transfer to a cooling rack.
Step Eight: Whilst cooling either fry or put the bacon under the grill till cooked & caramelised, set aside to cool.
Step Nine: Clean your cake mixer! You’ll need it to make the buttercream.
Step Ten: Place butter/margarine, vanilla extract and maple syrup into the cake mixer bowl and beat until very soft and pale.
Step Eleven: Gradually sift in the icing sugar, beating well after each additions. Tip: the more you beat at this stage, the lighter a fluffier the frosting will be (it’s true, I’ve tested it!). If you find the buttercream is still quite wet once you’ve added all of the icing sugar, slowly add a little more until it’s at your desired consistency.
Step Twelve: Pipe onto cooled cupcakes, chop bacon finely and garnish!

Recipes adapted from Love Food’s “The Cupcake” recipe book, “Basic Vanilla Cupcakes” and “Vanilla Buttercream”.

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