DIY: Camp Cupcakes
Whether embarking on a camping adventure or returning home from summer camp, these cupcakes are a perfect treat around this time of year. As I mentioned in the original post, I was inspired by my childhood summer camp and all things nature when brainstorming some fun cupcake ideas. I’ve included a fairly detailed written how-to for you below so you can follow along. Feel free to leave a comment with any specific questions that may have gone unanswered.
I’ve provided a fairly detailed description below of each cupcake, so that you can pick and choose which cupcake(s) you want to make. Have fun!
- A batch of pre-baked cupcakes
- Nutella® frosting:
- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup Nutella®
- 3 cups confectioner sugar
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 cup of semi-sweet white chocolate chips
- Ready-to-use fondant (I prefer the Wilton® brand)
- Processed Graham Crackers or Teddy Grahams®
- Icing dye: Blue, Brown, Green, Red, Ivory
- Kit Kat® bar
- Lollipops (at least some of the red, orange, and/or yellow variation)
- Optional: Edible Markers
FOR THE CUPCAKE BASES:
Step #1: Bake your cupcakes.
Step #2: Once your cupcakes are baked, make your icing. I used a delicious Nutella® frosting for mine (which you can find the recipe for above), but any dark-colored frosting will work. For the Nutella® frosting, cream the butter and Nutella® together; slowly add the sugar, mix until combined; pour in the heavy cream and beat until fluffy (3-4 minutes).
Step #3: Process the grahams in a food processor until semi-fine and transfer them to a bowl.
Step #4: Frost 3 of your cupcakes completely and set 1 of them aside (the arrow cupcake). Grab another cupcake and only frost the center (this will be the camp fire cupcake). For the tent, camp sign, and camp fire cupcakes dip them into the grahams. Now, you have your base for 4 out of 5 of the cupcakes.
Step #5: For the canoe cupcake, melt 1 cup of white chocolate chips on medium heat in the microwave on 15 second intervals, stirring in between. Once melted, add in some blue dye, swirling to mix to create a marbelized (water) appearance. Working quickly, coat your last cupcake into the blue-dyed chocolate and use a spatula to smooth.
FOR THE CAMP FIRE CUPCAKE:
Crush up lollipops and break apart the Kit Kat® bar. Add lollipop pieces (the flames) to the center of the cupcake with the Kit Kat® bar bits (the logs) placed around the edge.
FOR THE ARROW CUPCAKE:
For the arrows, sculpt the pieces out of fondant. As you’ll see I used ivory dye for the shafts, red for the vane, and brown for the points. Work just a drop of dye into your white fondant to achieve each desired color. Use a toothpick and/or a knife to make minor details. Once you’ve sculpted the arrows, lay them diagonally on top of your frosted cupcake.
FOR THE CANOE CUPCAKE:
Once you have your marbleized chocolate water, sculpt a canoe and a paddle out of fondant using the green and ivory dyes. For the paddle, you can use the edible markers to add little details. See the closeup photo below to replicate the shape. Once finished with the sculpting, allow to dry overnight. Once dry, apply a drop of water to the bottom of the fondant canoe and adhere to the chocolate base.
FOR THE TENT CUPCAKE:
Sculpt the tent into a 3-d triangle shape out of ivory-dyed fondant. Roll out a thin strip of fondant, cut to the length of your tent, and place over the top of your triangle. Cut little doors in the front of your tent and add any other details at this time. Once finished, set your tent atop the cupcake, applying a drop of frosting to the bottom of the tent to secure.
FOR THE CAMP SIGN CUPCAKE:
Dye your fondant a rich brown color and roll one piece into a log shape. Stick a toothpick into the bottom of the log, leaving 1.5″ of your toothpick out (to later stick into your cupcake). Using the same color of fondant, roll out a rectangular shape for the sign and unevenly cut the sides to create the appearance of wood. Using one of the brown edible markers or brown dye, add streaks of dark brown to the sign and the log. Set aside to dry (harden) overnight. Once hard, use frosting to glue the wooden sign to the log. Use edible markers, royal icing, or white fondant to personalize your sign.