I first whipped this little project up two years ago using cupcakes, Kool-Aid, and lots of sugar. This year, I’ve decided to revisit the recipe with a slightly mellower grownup version. If you’re looking to sugar up your kids, just click here for the Kool-Aid version…
Mardi Gras, if you’ve never experienced it in person, is a crazy, chaotic, wonderful hot mess. Along with the parades and beads and explosions of color, there’s a good bit of tradition, too. The king cake is a ring of twisted cinnamon-esque dough that can be plain or filled. It’s topped with icing and sugar in purple, green, and gold. There’s often a little plastic baby baked inside or nestled under the cake somewhere. If you find the baby, depending on who you ask, you:
have good luck.
are going to have a baby.
have to bring the king cake next time.
If you want to bring a little bit of Mardi Gras spirit to the office, your kid’s class, or your binge-watching Netflix night, read on for a cute, fun treat you can whip up in half an hour using store-bought ingredients!
Sanding sugar in purple, green, and yellow (or mix from plain)*
*You can throw a handful of sanding sugar in a container with a few drops of food coloring and shake vigorously to custom dye the sugar. That’s actually what I did for this recipe.
1. Cut each donut in half the same way you would with a bagel. You need a half-donut for each cupcake.
2. Use a spoon to spread a dollop of your icing onto each muffin or cupcake.
3. Plop a half-donut onto each iced cupcake.
4. Use the spoon to drizzle icing around the circumference of the donut, and then spread it around a bit with the back of the spoon. It’s fine to have some drizzle over the sides and into the middle; that’s more like what an actual king cake looks like anyway.
5. Using a pinch of each color of sanding sugar, alternate colors over the freshly-applied icing. You can do one stripe of each color or two, just depending on your level of patience/attention span. 😀
6. If you want, you can stick a little plastic baby on the cupcakes to keep with tradition.*
*Plastic babies are a choking hazard, so this wouldn’t be a good move for a classroom full of pre-schoolers.**
**Then again, what isn’t a choking hazard for a classroom of two year olds? Go for it – knock yourself out.***