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Sunday, March 29, 2009

Sprinkles Cupcakes

I have been eyeing the Sprinkles cupcake mixes for a long while now, but could never justify spending $14 for a cake mix. But when my daughter's half birthday rolled around, I had the excuse I was looking for. I wanted to do something special, but didn't have the motivation to bake from scratch. What better time to blow $14 on a cake mix than for my daughter's (half) birthday?

I bought the mix from Williams Sonoma. They had chocolate and vanilla, I chose vanilla.

Isn't the packaging pretty? I'm a sucker for cute packaging. Especially when the packaging is chocolate brown and pink.

In the box, you will find the cupcake mix and sprinkle decorations.

You need to supply your own eggs, butter, and milk for the cupcakes. If you plan to make your own frosting, you will also need to have those ingredients on hand. The back of the Sprinkles box has a recipe for frosting which is quite good, though a little sweet for my taste.

After you mix, cream, beat and add all the ingredients, you will end up with these tasty morsels of yumminess:

Here's a closer look. I know, I know, the sprinkles make the cupcakes look a little like a part of the female anatomy.

My verdict? The cupcakes were very good. Much better than any I have made from scratch. They were moist, and sweet and tasted homemade. The decorations are absolutely horrible, though. Do not eat them! The frosting is great, too, but very, very sweet.

Here's the deal - if I am using a mix, I want the ease of a mix. I want to dump the ingredients in a bowl, mix everything together with a fork, dump the concoction in a pan and be done with it. The Sprinkles mix had me creaming butter, beating my mix with an electric mixer, and adding eggs one at a time. It was as much work as making cupcakes from scratch. The only shortcut I gained from using the mix was that I did not have to mix any dry ingredients. To me, mixing the dry ingredients is the easiest part of baking. It's the creaming and beating I can do without. So although the cupcakes tasted better than any I have yet to bake from scratch, I plan to save my next $14 and continue my search for the perfect cupcake recipe. In a pinch, a box of Duncan Hines cake mix purchased for $1 on sale will make my daughter just as happy as a $14 box of fancy mix.

For those of you keeping score, the mix and the frosting add up to two new recipes I tried recently. I am so far behind. But don't despair, I have weeks to catch up!

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