Salted Caramel Cupcakes

Okay, I know I am little late with my Mother’s Day post; however, like most of you out there sometimes life just gets in the way of things we enjoy doing…. for me that would be blogging! May is always one of busiest months at work and sometimes I have a hard just keeping up with everything.  Luckily, things have begun to settle down and now I can get back to the things I enjoy! 

There are a few reasons that I know I am my Mother’s Daughter — and one of the biggest reasons is our shared love of caramel. There are a few great ways to eat caramel — directly eating spoonfuls out of the jar (yes, we do that!), drizzling it over the top of ice cream, inside candy bars, along with inside and on top of  cakes and cupcakes.  

I was excited for this Mother’s Day because we were having dinner with a large group of friends that evening — all celebrating our Mother’s.  Everyone knowing how much I love to bake asked me to bring dessert and since it was Mother’s Day I asked my Mom if there was anything specific she would like me to make.  Her response, “CARAMEL CUPCAKES”!!!  

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I have had a few different caramel cupcake recipes on my list to bake for a while now; however, making caramel cupcakes when I have no where to take them, and they just lay around the house for Mark and I to enjoy is never any good for our waistlines — so I was excited to have this opportunity.  

These cupcakes are the perfect cupcakes for caramel lovers!  The base is a fluffy homemade yellow cupcake and the frosting is a delicious-rich caramel buttercream.  When frosting these cupcakes, do not go to heavy with the frosting as it is heavy and rich — a little frosting goes a long ways with these cupcakes.  

Everyone at dinner just loved these cupcakes and I hope you enjoy them as much as we all did!  

Salted Caramel Cupcakes

Salted Caramel Cupcakes
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Ingredients:
For the Cupcakes:
1/2 cups (1 stick) Unsalted Butter, softened
4 ounces Cream Cheese, softened
1 1/4 cups Sugar
3/4 cup Dark Brown Sugar
1 tablespoon Canola Oil
4 Eggs
3 cups All-Purpose Flour
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1 cup Buttermilk

For the Buttercream Frosting:
1/2 cup (1 stick) Unsalted Butter, softened
4 ounces Cream Cheese, softened
2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
1 pound Confectioners’ Sugar
4 tablespoons Milk (divided)
6 tablespoons Caramel Syrup

Caramel Candies for topping, if desired
Sea Salt, if desired

Directions:
For the Cupcakes:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 24 muffin cups with paper cupcake liners and set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer (fitted with the paddle attachment) cream the butter, cream cheese, sugar, brown sugar and canola oil together until light and fluffy, which will take between 3-4 minutes. Add each egg individually, mixing well after each one has been added. After two eggs, stop the mixer and scrap down the sides of the bowl before adding the remaining two eggs.

Next, add the vanilla, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; and mix until well combined.

Beginning and ending with the flour, add the flour alternately with the buttermilk; mixing between each addition. (Do not over mix the batter! Just mix the ingredients until incorporated.)

Using a cupcake (or cookie) scoop, distribute the batter evenly among the 24 muffin cups. Bake for 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Allow the cupcakes to cook in the muffin tin for 2 minutes before removing them to cool completely on a wire rack.

Frost with the Salted Caramel Buttercream frosting and garnish with a slice of caramel candy and a sprinkle of sea salt, if you so desire!

For the Buttercream Frosting:
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the butter, cream cheese, and vanilla until the mixture is light and fluffy, which will take between 3-5 minutes. Add the confectioners’ sugar along with 3 tablespoons of the milk.

Beginning on slow speed and gradually increasing to medium speed beat the mixture until well combine and smooth, which will take about 2-3 minutes. Add the caramel and mix until combined. At this point, add more confectioners’ sugar or milk to make the frosting the consistency you desire.

Source: slightly adapted from The Kitchen is my Playground.

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