owl cupcakes

Owl cupcakes

Owl cupcakes

Hannah has spent the past term learning all about owls at school so we decided to do our own bit of owl fun and make some owl cupcakes. They are a really easy but fun bake for kids – there’s no tricky piping involved, as you simply use some chocolate buttons to make the owls.

Cupcakes can be a great bake for little kids who don’t have a huge attention span. Because you have to make the cupcakes, wait and then decorate them you might find your kids want to help with one step and not the other. My kids, lost a bit of interest making the cupcakes today, but really enjoyed getting to decorate them and make their own little owls.

They’re also really tasty to eat. I was worried that with all the extra chocolate on top they would be a bit much, but the cupcakes themselves aren’t too sweet and the decoration adds a lovely bit of crunchy texture.

These would be perfect for any woodland party or any kid who loves birds – or even just fun and cute cupcakes!



Ingredients

For the chocolate cupcakes
4tbsp water (boiling)
40g (1/3 cup)cocoa powder
3 eggs, large
175g butter, unsalted
165g (¾ cups) golden caster sugar
115g (1 cup) self raising flour*
1 tsp baking powder

For the chocolate buttercream
60g butter, unsalted
60g cocoa powder
250g icing/confectioners sugar
3 tbsp milk

To decorate
1 x 120g pack Giant chocolate buttons
2 x 70g pack chocolate buttons
1 x 70g pack white chocolate buttons
24 small chocolate balls,
12 red smarties

* If you don’t have any self raising flour you can use plain/all-purpose flour – for every 1 cup of flour, add 1.5 tsp of baking powder and ½ tsp of salt.

How to make owl cupcakes

Preheat your oven to 180C / 170C Fan / 350F and get your kids to line a muffin tin with paper cases

Make a chocolate paste

Get your kids to measure the cocoa powder into a small bowl. Add the boiling water and mix together until you have a chocolate paste. Set it aside for now.

Mix the eggs and sugar.

Measure the sugar and butter and add them to a large bowl or freestanding mixer. Using a hand held mixer or the k paddle of your mixer to beat them together until it has turned light and fluffy.

Add the eggs

Crack the eggs into a small bowl and then add them to your mixture. When the kids crack eggs, I find it safer not to add them straight in. I also have a spare bowl handy for the shell otherwise they tend to make a bit of a mess.

Mix the eggs into your mixture until it is well combined.

Add the flour and baking powder

Get your kids to measure the flour and baking powder out and add them to your mixing bowl. If your kids are too young to do the baking powder by themselves, you can measure it into the spoon and get them to level it with their finger. Then give it another mix until it has all come together.

Add the chocolate paste

Finally, add the chocolate paste you made at the start and mix everything together one final time, so that there are no lumps or bits. If you need to, use a spatula to scrape down the sides, to make sure nothing is stuck at the bottom.

Bake your chocolate cupcakes

Spoon the cupcake batter into each of your cupcakes cases so they are about ¾ full. We find the easiest way of doing this is with an ice-cream scoop – it adds just the right amount with a lot less mess than a regular spoon – so it’s the perfect tool to use if you have one.

Bake the cupcakes in the oven for around 12-15 minutes. They are ready when they have risen a little, made a slight crust on top and a skewer poked in the middle should come out clean.

Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for a few minutes, then pop on a wire rack to cool completely.

Ice the owl cupcakes

To decorate the cupcakes, first you need to make the chocolate buttercream. Measure the butter and cocoa powder and add it to a mixer. Beat them together until it’s nice and smooth.

Add the icing sugar and start to beat it in really slowly. If you have a lid, make sure it’s on otherwise, this makes a huge mess! Add the 3 tbps of milk so your mixture is less dry and comes together into a smooth buttercream.

Decorate the owl cupcakes

To make the owls, get your kids to spread the buttercream on the cupcake with a palette or butter knife.

Let your kids arrange the small chocolate buttons over one half of the cupcake to look like the owl’s feathers. If you start with one edge of the cupcake then you can overlap the next layer, and the next if there is space.

Add the owl’s eyes – we used a little of the chocolate buttercream to stick a white chocolate button on to a giant one, and then stuck a chocolate ball on top. Then add them to your owl.

Finally, turn a Smartie on it’s side and push it down into your cupcake for the owls’ beak.

If your kids want, they can always add their own decorations on top. Mine went to town on a few, which just adds to their character I think!

owl cupcakes
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Owl cupcakes

These cute owl cupcakes are really easy to make and a huge hit with kids! Simply use some chocolate buttons to decorate your favourite chocolate cupcakes!
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Decorating time30 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Afternoon tea
Cuisine: American, British
Keyword: chocolate, cupcake
Servings: 12
Author: cookingwithmykids

Ingredients

  • 4 tbsp water boiling
  • 40 g (1/3 cup) cocoa powder
  • 3 eggs large
  • 175 g (3/4cups) butter unsalted
  • 165 g (¾ cups) golden caster sugar
  • 115 g (1 cup) self raising flour*
  • 1 tsp baking powder

For the chocolate buttercream

  • 60 g (0.25 cups) butter unsalted
  • 60 g (1/2 cup) cocoa powder
  • 250 g icing/confectioners sugar
  • 3 tbsp milk

To decorate

  • 1 x 120g pack Giant chocolate buttons
  • 2 x 70g pack chocolate buttons
  • 1 x 70g pack white chocolate buttons
  • 24 small chocolate balls
  • 12 red smarties

Instructions

Preheat your oven to 180C / 170C Fan / 350F and get your kids to line a muffin tin with paper cases

    Make a chocolate paste

    • Measure the cocoa powder into a small bowl. Add the boiling water and mix together until you have a chocolate paste. Set it aside for now.

    Mix the eggs and sugar.

    • Measure the sugar and butter and add them to a large bowl or freestanding mixer. Using a hand held mixer or the k paddle of your mixer to beat them together until it has turned light and fluffy.

    Add the eggs

    • Crack the eggs into a small bowl and then add them to your mixture.  Mix the eggs into your mixture until it is well combined.

    Add the flour and baking powder

    • Measure the flour and baking powder out and add them to your mixing bowl. Then give it another mix until it has all come together.

    Add the chocolate paste

    • Finally, add the chocolate paste you made at the start and mix everything together one final time, so that there are no lumps or bits. If you need to, use a spatula to scrape down the sides, to make sure nothing is stuck at the bottom.

    Bake your chocolate cupcakes

    • Spoon the cupcake batter into each of your cupcakes cases so they are about ¾ full.
    • Bake the cupcakes in the oven for around 12-15 minutes. They are ready when  they have risen a little, made a slight crust on top and a skewer poked in the middle should come out clean.
    • Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for a few minutes, then pop on a wire rack to cool completely.

    Ice the owl cupcakes

    • To decorate the cupcakes, first you need to make the chocolate buttercream. Measure the butter and cocoa powder and add it to a mixer. Beat them together until it's nice and smooth.
    • Add the icing sugar and start to beat it in really slowly. Add the 3 tbps of milk so your mixture is less dry and comes together into a smooth buttercream.

    Decorate the owl cupcakes

    • To make the owls, spread the buttercream on the cupcake with a palette or butter knife.
    • Arrange the small chocolate buttons over one half of the cupcake to look like the owl's feathers starting at one edge and overlapping the next line on top.
    • Add the owl's eyes – we used a little of the chocolate buttercream to stick a white chocolate button on to a giant one, and then stuck a chocolate ball on top. Then add them to your owl.
    • Finally, turn a Smartie on it's side and push it down into your cupcake for the owls' beak.
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    4 Comments

    1. These are so cute! I’d definitely rather see more cupcakes like these than impossibly perfect buttercream swirls – they’re just adorable this way!

      • Thanks. We think so. I was worried they’d end up too chocolatey, but the chocolate buttons actually add a nice little bit of texture.


    2. I know what you mean by kids losing interest half way through the baking as my youngest does that a lot (he usually gets too busy eating something as we are in the middle of baking)! These cupcakes are super cute and perfect for the little rascals to decorate. I will have to show them to my kids especially as they are both really into nature and birds and both read “Owl Babies” in reception which they loved. Thank you so much for sharing these with #BakingCrumbs 🙂

      • Yes, quite often once they’ve licked the spoon a few times they’ll find something else to do! Mine loved Owl babies too!

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