There’s no denying it: perfect cupcakes are an art form. They’re also a great way to begin your baking journey since they’re a delicious and low-risk way to get your feet wet.
As you get started, though, the stakes might be high. Cupcakes are a popular way to celebrate birthdays, baby showers, and other fun events. If you’re responsible for a culinary masterpiece, what can you do to ensure you bake amazing cupcakes?
Whether you’re wondering how long to bake jumbo cupcakes, or why your cupcakes keep turning out dry and crumbly, we’ve got you covered!
1. Can I Mix With A Spoon?
It’s tempting to grab the closest spoon and whip your cupcakes together when you can’t find the beaters, or your mixer is dirty. This is especially true if you’re working with a cake mix.
The purpose of mixing is to combine the ingredients together, of course. But you’re also trying to introduce air into the mixture. This is done by mixing at high speeds for the right amount of time.
A mixer does this more effectively than hand-stirring with a spoon. Besides, how often have you stopped when the ingredients look combined?
Check the back of that cake mix! Most suggest that you stir for a full two minutes, which is something that many aspirational cooks don’t do.
2. How Should I Prepare My Ingredients?
When you’re learning how to bake cupcakes, they always take a combination of wet and dry ingredients.
If you’re using ingredients like milk and eggs, set them out on the counter ahead of time. You’ll want to wait until they are at room temperature. When ingredients are cold, it makes them more difficult to mix.
When this happens, you can run into a few issues. Have you ever bitten into a cupcake and gotten a mouthful of flour? That’s because the batter didn’t combine properly.
Difficult mixing often prompts overmixing, which will make your cupcakes dense instead of light and fluffy. To make the best cupcakes, have patience and let your ingredients warm up a little first.
3. Can’t I Overfill My Pan?
Everyone loves a huge cupcake. But when you bake cupcakes, it’s important to tailor your appetite to the size of the pan that you’re working with.
Fill each cupcake paper about halfway through, and use a scoop to make sure that the batter level all matches. This ensures that your cupcakes look uniform when you display them.
When you don’t overfill the papers, your cupcakes will bake evenly. There won’t be overcooked bits or raw spots in the middle.
4. What Ingredients Do I Need?
Following a recipe to get the ingredients that you’ll need is easy. But it’s important to invest in high-quality ingredients.
Gauge the quality in comparison to the occasion and what you can afford. If you’re making some cupcakes to satisfy your sweet tooth, you might not need to make sure you’re sourcing organic butter.
But if it’s a special baby shower and you’re making buttercream frosting for those cupcakes, the butter quality makes a huge difference.
5. How Should I Measure Ingredients?
If you can afford to invest in a kitchen scale, it can revolutionize your work in the kitchen. It’s worth it for cupcakes and beyond!
Consider how you usually go about measuring ingredients. You dip a measuring cup into a bag of flour, shake it till it looks level, and dump it in the bowl. If you’re feeling fancy, you might even level it off with a knife.
This might be why you’re getting inconsistent results. If a recipe turns out fine one time and doesn’t the next—even if it’s the same recipe with the same ingredients—consider how you’re measuring.
A scale allows you to be highly precise, which is always worth it when it comes to baking.
6. Wondering How Long to Bake Jumbo Cupcakes?
When baking, check the estimated time in the recipe. Then, set a timer to check your cupcakes a few minutes before that time is up.
Opening and closing your oven door can cause your cupcakes to fall, so e quick! Use a toothpick to check for doneness.
If it comes out clean, you’re good to go. But once you have a little more experience, you can use your fingers.
With this method, tap your fingertip against the top of a cupcake. If it springs back, this batch is done baking. If the indentation from your finger remains, then they aren’t done yet.
7. How Can I Frost Them?
Whether you’re making the best cupcake towers or a cute plateful for a tea party, frosting can make or break the entire experience.
However, you might feel intimidated. If crumbs start pulling up and making a mess, it’s hard to salvage your cupcakes after that.
The first tip is to let your cupcakes cool completely. Even if you’re in a rush, it’s worth it. If your cupcakes are too hot, the frosting will melt and run right off.
If they’re too warm, the surface could get ripped up when you start applying a base coat of frosting.
If you’ve let them cool to room temperature, and your cupcakes are still turning into a mess when you frost them, don’t worry!
Pop your batch of cupcakes into the freezer. Once they’re frozen, frost them with room-temperature frosting. The cupcake tops won’t crumb because they’re frozen solid.
How to Bake Amazing Cupcakes
It’s been said that cooking is an art, while baking is a science. We’d like to challenge that statement: baking, especially when it comes to cupcakes, is both!
Mastering it takes some time, though. If you don’t feel confident yet in your cupcake baking skills, take it slow with a basic recipe. Everyone loves chocolate cupcakes with chocolate frosting, even if they do turn out a little sloppy on your first attempt.
If you need to troubleshoot, try our tips above. Whether you’re wondering how long to bake jumbo cupcakes or need a new frosting recipe, there’s plenty to learn.
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