I am so thrilled that July 4th is just a few days away! Our little beach town is known to have multiple block parties each year we stick our little American flag on our beach cruiser bikes and make the rounds. Hula rides with us in Joe’s bike basket and she always turns out to be the summer mascot!
So for this weeks #SundaySupper festivities, one of my favorite blogger gals, Jennie is hosting the #SundaySupper Summer BBQ Party and I am pretty excited to see all the BBQ treats and sweets that everyone is bringing!
And… you’re going to laugh. I actually made these cupcakes LAST year! With the annual July 4th party, our block also throws the annual Ice Cream and Dessert Contest. It’s pretty ligit and serious if you ask me. Huge tables are filled with themed and patriotic sweets and everything is timed to perfection until the call for the ice cream comes. Then everyone on our block runs to their homes and grabs their award-winning ice cream. I’m tellin’ ya, I totally live in Mayberry by the Beach.
My contribution to the desert challenge were these festive and colorful cupcakes. I am really glad I saved the photos for 1 whole year so I can share these super fun and totally adorable patriotic treats with you!
Now if you know me, you know I rarely if ever eat processed foods and colored-candied treats, but ya know…once in a while for some fun is never a bad idea. I did color the icing and the cupcake batter using gel dye. But honestly, it was like a few drops. I have also used organic dye and it just doesn’t produce the same color that I was looking for, not for this creation.
For toppings you can have as much fun as you want! The sand is made out of ground graham crackers and the “sea” is a wavy blue icing. I stuck a little cute gummy bear dude on his private island and gave him a life saver if he wanted to hit the waves. Someone else suggested a rolled up fruit roll-up as his beach towel and I think that is an awesome idea!
Buttercream frosting adapted from Joy of Baking
- 2 1/4 cups cake flour
- 1 Tbl baking powder
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1 1/4 cups whole milk, room temperature
- 4 large egg whites, room temperature
- 1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1 vanilla bean (cut in half and scraped)
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup chocolate chips
- 1 lemon, zested
- Red and Blue gel food coloring (few drops)
- 2 cups confectioners sugar, sifted
- 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 Tbl milk
- Blue food gel (few drops to make a light blue)
- Gummy bears
- Life saver candies
- Ground graham crackers
- Blue sugar
- Drink umbrellas
- Start making the cupcake batter. In a large bowl, sift the flour, baking powder and salt.
- In another bowl, whisk together milk and egg whites.
- Using your stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat together the butter, sugar and vanilla bean seeds until everything is well mixed and light. Add the vanilla extract.
- On low speed alternate adding the flour mixture and milk/egg mixture, about 1/3 of each at a time.
- So add 1/3 flour, then 1/3 milk, flour, milk and end with the flour. Mix until well incorporated. Then add the chocolate chips and mix until just combined.
- At this point you can divide the batter into 3 bowls evenly. Using your dye, color 1 bowl with red dye until desired color and another bowl with blue.
- Line cupcake pan with liners use a large tablespoon to scoop each one of the different colored batters. So start with red, white and then blue batter and alternate until batter is about 3/4 full.
- Bake cupcakes at 350 degrees F for about 18-20 minutes or until you can stick a toothpick in a cupcake and it comes out clean. When done, cool on wire rack.
- In a stand mixer, cream the butter until very smooth (this may take a while) and then add the vanilla extract.
- With the mixer on low speed, slowly add in the confectioners sugar until blended and scraping down the bowl as needed.
- Add the milk and beat on high for about 3-4 minutes until butter becomes light and fluffy. Add a few drops of blue dye to get the color of the "sea".
- Coat the cupcakes with a light layer of frosting and top half of cupcake with ground graham crackers. Use a cake spatula to add more frosting to the other side of the cupcakes and make "waves" with the frosting.
- Top with a gummy bear dude, life saver and umbrella.
Check out what the other #SundaySupper peeps brought for the Summer BBQ!
Hot Off the Grill:
- Best Grilled Pork Chops by Hezzi-D’s Books & Cooks
- Bleu Cheese Burgers by Juanita’s Cocina
- Korean Grilled Flank Steak by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Swedish Blonde Burgers by Eat, Move, Shine
- Hawaiian Hot Dogs by La Cocina De Leslie
- BBQing the Whole Hog, Cuban Style by Webicurean
- Meat Stuffed Jalapenos by The Urban Mrs
- St. Louis Ribs by Bobbi’s Kozy Kitchen
- Fish Kebabs with Mint Chutney by Soni’s Food
- Jalapeno Bacon Burgers by Cookin’ Mimi
- Cheddar Cheese Stuffed Bacon Burgers by In the Kitchen with KP
- Curried Pork Sliders with Peanut Sauce & Apple Slaw by Foxes Love Lemons
- Grilled Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken Breasts by Sustainable Dad
- Ditch Dogs by Daily Dish Recipes
- Bison Kabobs by Noshing With The Nolands
On the Side:
- Spicy Baked Beans by The Messy Baker
- Wisconsin Roasted Corn by Curious Cuisiniere
- German Potato Salad by The Foodie Army Wife
- Grilled Baby Potatoes With Peppers And Onions by Kudos Kitchen by Renee
- Sausage Potato Salad by girlichef
- Lightened Up Fully Loaded Baked Potato Salad by Peanut Butter and Peppers
- Homemade Mustards by A Stack of Dishes
- Spicy Grilled Corn Salad by Magnolia Days
- Layered California Pasta Salad by The Weekend Gourmet
- Grilled Potato Salad by In Fine Balance
- Spicy Bacon and Corn Salad by Hip Foodie Mom
- Three Corns with Japanese Accents by Ninja Baking
- Cucumber Bruschetta by Healthy. Delicious.
- Grilled Zucchini by Supper for a Steal
- Chicken Spinach & Pasta Salad by Family Foodie
- Red, White & Blue Parfait by Country Girl in the Village
- Root Beer Float Sandwich Cookies by Chocolate Moosey
- Gluten Free Brownies by Blueberries & Blessings
- Grilled Stone Fruit Parfait by Pescetarian Journal
- Blueberry Sorbet by Shockingly Delicious
- Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes by The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen
- Tres Leches Cake by Happy Baking Days
- Beach Cupcakes by The Little Ferraro Kitchen
- Grilled Banana Dessert Bar by Home Cooking Memories
- Berries & Cream Pie by Treats & Trinkets
- Raspberry Lemonade Frozen Yogurt Pops by Runner’s Tales
- More S’mores by Growing Up Gabel
- Blackberry Peach Cobbler by Neighborfood
- Cornbread Cookies by Pies & Plots
- Funfetti Fluff Cheerio Treats by What Smells So Good?
- Pineapple Pudding by Granny’s Down Home Sassy Southern Cooking
In the Cooler:
- Cherry Caipiroska by Vintage Kitchen Notes
- Mint Tea Slushes by Cindy’s Recipes and Writing
- Prickly Pear Margaritas by Ruffles & Truffles