Super Bowl Cupcakes: Not All Cupcakes Have To Be Pretty

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SUPERBOWL CUPCAKES
This Jan. 4, 2012 photo shows Super Bowl cupcakes in Concord, N.H. These cupcakes are big, bold, manly and totally down for a Super Bowl spread. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead)

These are not your girlfriend's cupcakes. There is no frilly pastel frosting piped on top. They are not delicate. They are not pretty.

They are big, bold, manly and totally down for a Super Bowl spread.

Since ease is key for Super Bowl feasts, we decided to start with a chocolate cake mix. To man-it-up, we made them big and added beer. And instead of pretty buttercream frosting, we're dabbed and smeared whiskey frosting all over them. And to really take it up a notch, bacon. Of course, salted peanuts, pretzels or crushed malted milk balls also would also be terrific.

If you want, you also could make giant cupcakes; you just need an oversized muffin pan (sold at most kitchen shops). You'll need to cook larger cupcakes longer (timing will vary depending on the size).

But whatever you do, don't you dare add sprinkles.

Super Bowl Cupcakes

Start to finish: 1 hour (30 minutes active)

Cupcakes

250 ml (1 cup) dark beer, such as stout

75 ml (1/3 cup) sour cream

125 ml (1/2 cup) vegetable or canola oil

3 eggs

1 pkg moist chocolate cake mix

Frosting

250 ml (1 cup or 2 sticks) unsalted butter

750 ml (3 cups) powdered sugar

50 ml (1/4 cup) whiskey

10 ml (2 tsp) vanilla extract

Toppings (use any or all)

Crisp cooked bacon

Salted peanuts

Pretzels

Crushed malted milk balls

Heat oven to 180 C (350 F). Spray 24 muffin regular cups with cooking spray.

In a large bowl, mix together beer, sour cream, oil, eggs and cake mix. Mix until thoroughly combined and smooth, about 2 minutes. Spoon into prepared muffin cups and bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted at the centre comes out clean. Let cool for 5 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to finish cooling.

While cupcakes cool, make frosting. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat together butter, sugar, whiskey and vanilla until smooth and fluffy, 4 to 5 minutes.

When cupcakes have cooled, add a smear of frosting to tops, then sprinkle with your choice of toppings.

Makes 24 servings.

Nutrition information per serving (not counting toppings) (values are rounded to the nearest whole number): 280 calories; 150 calories from fat (51 per cent of total calories); 17 g fat (6 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 50 mg cholesterol; 32 g carbohydrate; 2 g protein; 1 g fibre; 190 mg sodium.

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