Many different recipes exist for St. Patrick’s Day cupcakes. This simple recipe utilizes pistachio pudding mix to give the cupcakes a pretty pastel color and a mild flavor, and handcrafted gummy shamrocks made from green gumdrops top off these festive treats. In addition to the ingredients listed below, you’ll need a rolling pin and a small heart-shaped cookie cutter (about 1 ½ inches across) to craft the green shamrocks. Whether it’s your turn to make the class party treat or contribute to the holiday bake sale, or if you just want to make something fun for your family to enjoy at home, these St. Patrick’s Day Shamrock cupcakes are sure to delight.
The directions for this recipe for St. Patrick’s Day Shamrock Cupcakes are presented in three parts below. You’ll have time to prepare the cream cheese frosting and shamrocks while your cupcakes are baking or cooling. This recipe makes one dozen cupcakes, but you can easily double or even triple your ingredients to make more of these fun, festive goodies.
St. Patrick’s Day Shamrock Cupcakes
Total prep time: 1 hour, plus cooling
Active time: 40 minutes
Inactive time: 20 minutes, plus cooling
Yield or number served: 12 cupcakes
1 ¾ cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup sugar
1 (3.4-ounce) package instant pistachio pudding mix
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 ¼ cup 2% milk
1 cup plus 3 tablespoons canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For cream cheese frosting and shamrocks:
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
¼ cup butter, softened
1 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Green food coloring, optional
Green gumdrops, for shamrocks
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Place 12 muffin cups in a greased muffin tin and lightly grease the cups.
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, Pistachio pudding mix, baking powder, and salt and stir to mix.
3. In a small bowl, beat the eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, stirring just to combine.
4. Fill each muffin cup three-fourths full and place the pan in the oven to bake 18-22 minutes, or until the cupcakes have set and a toothpick comes out clean.
5. Remove the cupcakes from the oven and let cool in the pan for about 10 minutes. Remove the cupcakes from the pan and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
6. Frost cupcakes using prepared cream cheese frosting.
For the frosting:
1. Cream the cream cheese and butter in a medium mixing bowl using an electric mixer until the mixture is light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Stir in the vanilla, then gradually add in confectioners’ sugar and stir until blended.
1. Using a rolling pin, flatten 3-4 gumdrops. If candies are sticking, sprinkle a little sugar on rolling pin.
2. Cut a heart shape from each flattened candy using the cookie cutter.
3. Arrange the green candy hearts together on the top of a frosted cupcake to create a shamrock. Use 3 hearts for a traditional shamrock or 4 to create a lucky four-leaf clover.
4. Using a sharp knife, cut a small stem from the excess flattened candy, and position below the hearts.
5. Repeat this process until all 12 cupcakes have candy shamrocks.