Eyeball Cupcakes

Gabe and I are busy preparing to host a Halloween party that’s happening in, oh, less than three hours, and we’ve made a smorgasbord of treats. Creepy stuff like this isn’t usually my forte, but I saw these cupcakes and just had to make them. (Perhaps I was channeling my ophthalmologist father who obviously doesn’t find eyeballs creepy?) Kudos to Gabe for the awesome blood-vessel-piping skills!

This was, believe it or not, my first vanilla cupcake that didn’t come from a boxed mix. In the spirit of “make-it-from-scratch-osity” I decided to go super homemade. These little babies delivered. Gabe pronounced them “better-than-Magnolia’s.” At least, I think that’s what he said. His mouth was full of cupcake.

P.S. Here’s a sneak peek of another spooky treat we’re serving tonight! Recipe to follow!


Eyeball Cupcakes


  • 3 cups cake flour (or 2 2/3 cups flour plus 1/3 cup cornstarch)
  • 1 Tbs. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 2 sticks (16 Tbs.) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1¼ cups buttermilk
  • 1 Tbs. vanilla extract

Buttercream Frosting

  • 2 sticks (16 Tbs.) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 Tbs. vanilla
  • 2 Tbs. milk or heavy cream

Prepare the cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350° F. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the cake flour, baking powder and salt. Whisk together and set aside. In separate bowl, beat butter on medium-high speed for 3-4 minutes, until light and creamy in color.

Add the sugar to the butter mixture, ¼ cup at a time, beating 1 minute after each addition.  Mix in the eggs one at a time until incorporated. Combine the buttermilk and the vanilla extract in a liquid measuring cup. With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture alternately with the buttermilk mixture, beginning and ending with the flour and mixing just until incorporated.

Pour the batter into paper-lined muffin tins, filling each about 2/3 of the way full. Bake 18-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Allow to cool in the pans 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.

Prepare frosting: Beat the butter on medium-high speed until smooth, about 1-2 minutes. Beat in vanilla. Gradually add powdered sugar, beating well on medium speed. Add milk or cream and beat until fluffy, about 3-4 minutes.

Frost cooled cupcakes with buttercream. Take out 1/2 cup of frosting and tint with red food coloring. Pipe blood vessels on the cupcakes with the red frosting and top with a life saver gummy and a black M&M.

Makes about 30 cupcakes.

Source: Cupcake decorating idea from Annie’s Eats. Cupcake recipe from Annie’s Eats. Frosting adapted from Wilton.


3 thoughts on “Eyeball Cupcakes

  1. Hope you have some leftovers to stock your cupboards in preparation for the Frankenstorm. I wonder if your sister is an expert on Frankenstorms……..hmmm.

  2. Pingback: Super Bowl Recap | Lingonberry Jam

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