Maple Bacon Cupcakes

Maple Bacon CupcakeHave you ever come across something that just didn’t sound like it would taste good?  Maybe you saw it on a restaurant menu or a friend mentioned it, but you thought…wow, that sounds really awful!  Well, that was my first reaction when I heard about Maple Bacon Cupcakes.  I was living in Atlanta at the time, and Atlanta has become somewhat of a foodie mecca, and the chefs there seem to often push the boundaries a bit.  (One of my favorites was always the hamburger between two Krispy Kreme doughnuts…talk about another dish that makes you second guess it’s taste!)  But back to the Maple Bacon Cupcakes.  I have a serious sweet tooth problem, so cupcakes are up there at the top of my list.  And bacon makes everything better, right?  Everything?  Even a cupcake?  Yes!

Maple Bacon CupcakeOnce you get past the initial thought of combining bacon and maple in a cupcake, it actually makes a lot of sense.  After all, maple-cured bacon is delicious.  And the combination of sweet and salty can be quite addicting.  (My favorite candy bar is Take Five…mainly because of the combination of sweet and salty together in one bite.)  So after the internal debate on the intrinsic merits of this cupcake, I bit the bullet and had one.  Holy cow…it was delicious!

Maple Bacon CupcakeNow Maple Bacon Cupcakes have become more or less well-known across the country.  (Note: I’m not claiming that Atlanta invented this cupcake…but it is the first place I discovered it.)  I always associate Autumn with maple flavors, so I spent some time in the kitchen this week recreating my own version of the Maple Bacon Cupcake.  For those of you who are still a bit unsure of this combination, I chose to just stick a piece of bacon in the top of the cupcake.  That way it can easily be removed if you’re a little wary of bacon in your frosting.  But I still challenge you to try something different in the coming week…and these Maple Bacon Cupcakes are a great place to start!

Maple Bacon Cupcakes

Ingredients

    For the Cupcakes
  • 3 cups King Arthur all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk
  • 6 pieces of bacon, cooked (for garnish)
  • For the Maple Frosting
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions

    For the Cupcakes
  1. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Stir until well combined. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a countertop mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and both sugars until well combined, approximately 3-5 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla extract, and mix until fully absorbed.
  3. Add approximately ½ of the flour mixture to the bowl and mix until fully combined. Add ½ cup of milk and mix until fully combined. Repeat this step with the remaining flour and milk.
  4. Pour batter into lined-muffin tins and bake at 350°F for 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Allow cupcakes to cool before frosting.
  5. For the Maple Frosting
  6. In the bowl of a countertop mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the cream cheese and butter.
  7. Add powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time. Mix after each addition until well combined.
  8. Add maple syrup and vanilla; mix until fully incorporated.
  9. Frost each cupcake and garnish with 1/3 slice of bacon.
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Comments

  1. My initial reaction a few years ago was also ‘uhmmm, bacon in my cupcake?” And I’ve still not tried it. But I must…what a bad foodie I am lol! Plus this version is maple rich (I love that) and bacon decorative!!

    • I know! It took me a while to try this idea…but I’m really glad I did. I mean, we put maple syrup on pancakes with bacon right next to it, so why is it so strange to put bacon in maple frosting?? Thanks, Zainab!

  2. What tip do you use for piping on your frosting? Looks so cute.

    • Thanks so much, Lisa! I used Ateco tip #809 for these cupcakes. It’s a very large (11/16″) round pastry tip, and you can really fly through all of the decorating with it! Let me know if you have any other questions. :-)

  3. These look interesting.
    You know the old saying:
    “Bacon is to men
    what chocolate is to women.”
    :-)

  4. I love sweet and salty, especially when bacon is involved!! Delicious.

  5. Made these for a co-ed baby shower today, wanted a manly cupcake at the party too! I also melted chocolate and dipped the bacon before garnishing the cupcakes.

  6. Who could ever doubt the awesomeness of maple and bacon together? LOVE!

  7. Great recipe that I definitely want to try, but one question, how many cupcakes does this make? (Sorry if you posted it on here and I just missed it)

  8. Made these and they are DELICIOUS! Took it a step further – candied the bacon by baking it and brushing the slices with maple syrup.

    • What a great idea, Barbara! I love using candied bacon in salads, but I didn’t even think about candying the bacon for these cupcakes. Now I’m craving cupcakes…haha! :-)

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