I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of bacon stealing the spotlight. Bacon this, bacon that. Where is pepperoni in all this? Let’s get pepperoni in the spotlight. You can start with these Candied Hormel Pepperoni Cupcakes!
I know what you’re thinking: what??? But that’s just the bacon brainwashing you into thinking that it is the only meat you can use in desserts. WRONG! These moist, fluffy cupcakes topped with a light, airy frosting and a crisp, spicy, candied pepperoni are surprisingly addictive. I’m thinking of making brittle at Christmas. It’s that serious.
Plus? As a bonus, they are easy. A boxed cake mix plus a can of soda and a tablespoon or two of molasses, a five-minute frosting, and a candied pepperoni topping that takes 5 minutes in the oven. BOOM. This is like an episode of Chopped or Cupcake Wars come to life. People are going to want to try these cupcakes because: PEPPERONI ON A CUPCAKE.
I based the candied pepperoni recipe off this one from I Am the Maven but added cayenne and cinnamon to embrace the spice and balance the rich sweetness of the molasses cupcake. Why hide the spicy, hearty flavor of the pepperoni? Embrace it. The cayenne brings out the spice and the light frosting provides balance and a great link between the cupcake and its topping. There is a rich, nutty flavor that brings to mind southern comfort.
Forget bacon. Try these Candied Pepperoni Cupcakes at your next party! You will wow people with the taste and they will have something to talk about. Trust. I gave previews on Facebook as I tested the recipe and people were curious, scared, and excited. That’s a good thing in a cupcake.
- 15-20 Hormel Pepperoni
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- a few shakes of cayenne pepper (approximately 1/8 tsp)
- 1 box yellow cake mix
- 1 can soda (I used Dr Pepper)
- 1 T unsulphured molasses
- 1/3 cup heaving whipping cream
- 1/3 cup sour cream
- 8 oz cream cheese
- 1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil, sprayed with nonstick spray. Preheat oven to 425. Line the pepperoni out on the sheet, evenly spaced and not overlapping. In a bowl, mix the brown sugar, pecans, and spices. Sprinkle evenly on the sheet of pepperoni and bake for 5-6 minutes. Let cool completely.
- Preheat oven to 350. Mix the box of cake mix with the can of soda and the molasses. Using a 1/3 cup measuring cup, pour into baking cups. Bake for 15-18 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean from the center. Let cool.
- Beat the whipping cream 1-2 minutes until it starts getting fluffy, then add the sour cream and cream cheese by the spoonful, still mixing. Add the vanilla and the powdered sugar and beat on medium speed for about two minutes.
- Top the cupcakes with the frosting and then a candied pepperoni.
Bacon is so 2000s. We’re in the 2010s and it’s time for pepperoni to shine. Don’t believe me? Try these Candied Hormel Pepperoni Cupcakes at home. You’ll find yourself going back for seconds. And thirds.
Want to step out into a creatively weird world and be totally (pleasantly) surprised? Make a pepperoni cupcake. I dare you.(Tweet this!) Then come back to let me know how you liked it!!