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've 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 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)
For the cupcakes:
1 cup dark beer, such as stout
1/3 cup sour cream
1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil
18.5-ounce package moist chocolate cake mix
For the frosting:
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
3 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup whiskey
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the toppings (use any or all):
Crisp cooked bacon
Crushed malted milk balls
Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray 24 muffin regular cups with cooking spray.
In a large bowl, mix together the beer, sour cream, oil, eggs and cake mix. Mix until thoroughly combined and smooth, about 2 minutes. Spoon into the prepared muffin cups and bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted at the center comes out clean. Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to finish cooling.
While the cupcakes cool, make the frosting. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat together the butter, sugar, whiskey and vanilla until smooth and fluffy, about 4 to 5 minutes.
When the cupcakes have cooled, add a smear of frosting to the tops, then sprinkle with your choice of toppings.
Nutrition information per serving (not counting toppings) (values are rounded to the nearest whole number): 280 calories; 150 calories from fat (51 percent of total calories); 17 g fat (6 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 50 mg cholesterol; 32 g carbohydrate; 2 g protein; 1 g fiber; 190 mg sodium.