Semi-Homemade "Hostess" Cupcakes


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Happy New Year! I know January is a big month for New Year's resolutions like losing weight, getting in shape, eating healthier, starting a new, nutritious lifestyle, and other such various health-fitness-wellness-minded goals. But I had to share this Betty Crocker® recipe I found—and tested!—for Homemade "Hostess" Cupcakes! As someone who's grown up with a father who loves his Hostess cupcakes, I've had my fair share of the store-bought confections, and I can honestly say: I think these semi-homemade cupcakes are way better. Not too time-intensive or expensive, these monogrammed treats are kind of fun, too. Of course, with all the time on my hands over the holidays (insert coughing-into-hand "Yeah, right" laugh here), I had hoped to get around to finally trying the Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes we featured in the Spring 2011 issue of WV LIVING magazine! But as fate would have it, I ran out of time to really pursue my Flour Power, so Homemade Hostess-inspired Cupcakes it was!

Betty Crocker® Monogrammed Cream-Filled Cupcakes

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 35 minutes
Yield: 24 cupcakes

Cupcakes
1 box Betty Crocker® SuperMoist® devil's food cake mix
Water, vegetable oil and eggs called for on cake mix box

Filling
1 cup Betty Crocker® Whipped vanilla frosting
½ cup marshmallow creme

Frosting
1 cup Betty Crocker® Whipped chocolate frosting
½ cup semisweet chocolate chips
2 teaspoons corn syrup
3 tablespoons Betty Crocker® Whipped vanilla frosting

Heat oven to 350° (325° for dark or nonstick pans). Place paper baking cups in each of 24 regular-size muffin cups. Make and bake cake mix as directed on box for 24 cupcakes. Cool in pan 10 minutes; remove from pan to cooling rack. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.

With end of round handle of wooden spoon, make deep, ½-inch-wide indentation in center of each cupcake, not quite to the bottom (wiggle end of spoon in cupcake to make opening large enough). In small bowl, mix 1 cup vanilla frosting and the marshmallow creme. Spoon into small resealable food-storage plastic bag. Cut 3/8-inch tip off 1 bottom corner of bag. Insert tip of bag into each cupcake and squeeze bag to fill.

In small microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate frosting, chocolate chips and corn syrup uncovered on High 30 seconds; stir. Microwave 15 to 30 seconds longer; stir until smooth. Dip top of each cupcake into frosting. Let stand until frosting is set.

Spoon 3 tablespoons vanilla frosting into small resealable food-storage plastic bag. Cut tiny tip off 1 bottom corner of bag. Pipe initials or a squiggle shape on each cupcake. Store loosely covered.

Tips

- If you have a melon baller, use it to make the indentations in the cupcakes.
 - Dipping the cupcakes into frosting is easiest if there’s plenty of frosting, so you may have frosting left. Frost graham crackers with the rest of it for a treat later.
 - If you have only one pan and a recipe calls for more cupcakes than your pan will make, cover and refrigerate the rest of the batter while baking the first batch. Cool the pan about 15 minutes, then bake the rest of the batter, adding 1 to 2 minutes to the bake time.

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