Thursday, April 14, 2011

Bird's Nest Cupcakes . . . with speckled egg cookie toppers

I'm not sure why, but the idea for these little bird's nest cupcakes popped into my head one day.  I thought...wow, THAT is a really original idea.  And then, I saw these on my friend Callye's blog.  Speckled egg cookies AND anthro-inspired bunnies that are just incredible.
Oh well, so maybe speckled egg cookies aren't so original, but I really like seeing different people's methods for making things.  {Especially when it involves sugar.}
To make the cookie toppers, I just used a mini egg cutter and poked a toothpick in the dough before baking.  I always freeze my cookies for about 5-10 minutes before putting them in the oven, so that made maneuvering them with the toothpicks easy.

Once the cookies were cooled, I iced them with royal icing and let them dry overnight.
The next day, I mixed equal parts (or close to equal parts) AmeriColor Chocolate Brown food coloring with water.  (Similar to the method used to make "wood-grain.")
 
Then, with a child's paintbrush, I flicked the mixture onto the cookies.  
It was really, really fun!!!

If you have those speckled granite countertops, you are in luck.  You are about to add a few more speckles.

WARNING:  Do not wear white when doing this.  Do not let your kids see you flicking food coloring all over the kitchen with a paint brush.  If your kids DO see you, try to act like you're not having fun. ;)

Oh, and this is what you finger will look like afterward.  You know, gloves would not have been a bad thing.

OK...the cupcakes.  I'm gonna fess up.  I used a box.  A doctored up box, but still a box.  Hey....I made the cookies.

AND...(fessing up again)...I used canned icing.  Honestly, I LIKE canned icing.  I'm sorry, but it's true.

{Looking out the window nervously for the Food Police.}

The method for doctoring up a cake mix for cupcakes come directly from the book Hello Cupcake.

Use a box mix (I like Betty Crocker French Vanilla), replace the water with 1 cup buttermilk.  Use the same amount of oil and increase the eggs to 4.  Then, mix and bake like normal.

On top of the CANNED FROSTING, I used toasted coconut to make the nests.  Toasting coconut is easy.
Spread it on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and bake for 12 minutes, taking it out to stir frequently.

Frost the cupcake and sprinkle with coconut.
 
Add your cookies.

The love of canned frosting...am I alone?  Bueller? Bueller?

80 comments:

  1. LOVE THESE ADORABLE EGGS!!!
    You did a great job Bridget!

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  2. I like the taste of canned frosting as well, and I use it roughly half of the time. You're not alone, Bridget! ;-)

    These cupcakes are so adorable!

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  3. You are a genius with those toothpicks. I am going to use that!

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  4. Canned frosting is delicious. And so very easy.

    I just adore these. LOVE the eggs1

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  5. These are so cute! I just love all things Easter at the moment, and these are some of the cutest things I've seen!

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  6. These are so precious, Bridget. Those eggs are just adorable.

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  7. Absolutely adorable! I found your site from Twitter and will have to spend more time perusing it. Your photos and recipes look amazing.

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  8. I'm so relieved to hear that someone else likes canned icing too :D Everytime I read a blogger go on and on about how you must always make your own icing I cringe a little....because really I LIKE the canned stuff lol.

    Your speckled cookes are adorable! The idea of cookie toppers now has my mind reeling of fun things to use my tiny cookie cutters for!

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  9. We often have a can of frosting in our fridge for snacking on. You're not alone in your love for it.

    http://alittlenosh.blogspot.com

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  10. Bridget, these are incredible. I love the blue - you really nailed the robin's egg color!

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  11. Yay! I love canned icing too. But not the buttercream kind for some reason! Anyway...I heard that toasting coconut is complicated and that it can burn and smell really horrible. Did you bake yours at 350? Haha...bake at 350!

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  12. I love canned frosting too! These cupcakes are precious!

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  13. a SPECKLED EGG COOKIE TOPPER??
    that just beats all!

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  14. What a great use of your little egg cutters and toothpicks for the cupcake toppers! You make the "cookie pop" thing so easy, with supplies we already have at home.... Cool!

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  15. Love these Bird's Nest Cuppies, SSB! And you are not alone, I've made the terrible cake box faux pas, too... still love me? :D

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  16. Uh~
    Pardon me please while I go to my bedroom!
    I must find a bed to PASS~OUT on!
    These speckled birdy egg cookies are the cutest~
    most adorable~
    most Eastery~
    most Springy~
    most HAPPY~
    most EVERYTHING cookies I have ever ever ever seen!
    You make everything look so HAPPY Bridget!
    I LOVE toasted coconut!
    And canned frosting...and slathered on animal crackers...has long been a favorite of mine.
    I love love love love love these!
    Excuse me!
    I must go pass~out now!
    Overloads of cuteness does that to me!
    Toodles!
    xo

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  17. this is just the best - they make me smile! This is for sure something I can do with my daughter and have a blast! Thanks!

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  18. The speckles make for some gorgeous eggs!

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  19. I WAS WONDERING IF THAT WOULD WORK! So so so so pretty!

    PS-I got so many questions on my beautiful white frosting on a recent post...Gotta love Duncan Hines!!!

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  20. Who cares if it's canned frosting and boxed cake mix. You created an adorable and delicious treat and topped it all off with a pretty robin's egg blue speckled cookie egg. Doubt anyone going to leave any on their plates :)

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  21. I enjoy checking in on your blog to see what you're baking or decorating. And I always get a chuckle too. (Bueller? Bueller? Too funny.)
    Cute cupcakes. And do not feel bad for one minute that you doctored up a box cake mix and used canned frosting. After all, like you said, you did make the cookies. :)
    Loved the advice to doctor up the cake mix, I will have to try that.

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  22. Ha, I was surprised to read that you like canned frosting! I do too, and use it frequently. What's your favorite brand/type?

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  23. So pretty! I am in love with the color turquoise lately.

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  24. The egg cookies are cute enough, but nesting them in cupcakes put this over the top! So much fun for Easter!

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  25. So cute! The speckles are the best!Great idea. I love canned and boxed everything right now!!!
    I will have to try to doctor up the box cupcakes.

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  26. I loved this post! :) It made me chuckle and inspired me to rock out some Easter cookies.
    It's okay about the mix, too.
    We all do that.
    We all can't always be Martha, you know! ;)

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  27. Hey... nothing wrong with using a box now and then... Mrs. Crocker went to all that time and effort to get a great recipe, why waste your time!

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  28. These are precious and would be so cute at a Spring baby shower. ;) I'll have to keep these in mind.

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  29. Oh these are so cute, I love the speckled egg on top!

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  30. I grew up on boxed cake & canned frosting. I prefer it. Your interpretation is beautiful. I wish I had some dough in the freezer right now b/c these would go so cute with the cupcakes I'm making for Easter. Although, I have no mini egg cutter...

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  31. "I promise that is my INDEX finger."

    LOL!

    Those eggs...so darling. Inspiring post as always, Bridget.

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  32. Who doesn't like canned frosting? I mean I eat it straight out of the can for breakfast. One of these days though I will no longer be a college student and that won't be acceptable any longer.

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  33. What a beautiful treat!
    And your fear of the 'food police' cracks me up. =) I have some of the same fears when blogging about food.

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  34. No, Bridget, you are not alone in your love of canned icing!

    (looking nervously out the window for the Food Police)

    LOL

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  35. So this is about your chocolate chip cookie dough cupcakes, I made them the other day- they are DELICIOUS! I did make a few tweaks but overall used your recipe and they were a MASSIVE hit. I took them to our Wednesday night volleyball and people were in love with them and then my husband took them to work in which emails were circulating about dreams of them! Thanks for such a great recipe! I am sure I will be using it again and again. I am also probably going to make it in to a cake!

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  36. I like to make my cakes and cupcakes from scratch, but I also love canned frosting. I've tried making so many kinds of homemade frosting, and I never like them as much as the canned stuff :)

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  37. Adorable idea. :) Love the Ferris Bueller reference too.

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  38. There are som kinds of canned frosting I like, but I had to say how much I like the french vanilla box cake mix. Everyone always thinks it's something special.

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  39. I have yet to master homemade frosting, so I generally use canned and I love it!

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  40. Those speckled aggs are just the cutest! I love how you skewered them with toothpicks. :)

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  41. I have just fallen in love with those egg cookies. The speckling is just perfect and that gorgeous color blue!

    How did you get the blue so perfect, everything about them is so perfect!

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  42. You just gave me an idea. I have a tiny cross cookie cutter with the toothpicks, it's perfect. I could use it and use green tinted coconut for the grass. Thanks! Love your cookies, so easy and so yummy!

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  43. These are so adorable!! What a great idea. Love your blog.

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  44. Awesome job, these are beautiful! I've only tried the royal icing once, but it was really fun, and I can't wait to practice some more.

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  45. I saw these cookies on sugarbelle, I think your cupcakes look perfect. eventhough you used a mix ;)

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  46. While I cannot agree with you on the canned frosting, I will certainly not judge...as I have been known to *cheat* a time or two, or three, or....
    anyway these eggs are the CUTEST! Cannot wait to try this technique!

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  47. THE SWEETEST THINGS!!! This is so cute ans sweet and yummy! ^^*

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  48. These are adorable!!
    and you KNOW I'm not going to judge you....I use a doctored cake mix 90% of the time!!

    but you can keep the canned frosting....ok you and Steve can go eat your canned frosting cupcakes together! lol....he likes that stuff too.

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  49. I LOVE these! My name is Robin, and these look like little robin eggs! Heh, I'm too young to really be planning this, but if I have kids one day I want to use those cookies at a baby shower! Get it? Robin's eggs? Har har har! :D

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  50. I LOVE THESE~ COOKIES AND A CUPCAKE AT THE SAME TIME AWESOME!! THEY ARE SO CUTE~ LOVE THE EGGS

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  51. You are not alone! I'm a huge food snob about some things... but canned frosting is not one of them. I LOVE the stuff! And I would always rather use it than dirty up my mixer.

    Love this idea! The eggs are gorgeous :)

    -Carissa

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  52. Confession: We really love canned frosting, too.

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  53. there may or may not have been a time in my life when I would eat canned frosting with a spoon straight from the can.....this may or may not have been last week.....(and love the cookies)

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  54. WOw!the eggs looks absolutely fantastic!

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  55. So, so adorable! I'm a sucker for anything inspired by a robin's egg!

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  56. So cute! I featured them over at Today's Top 20!

    Amanda
    www.todaystoptwenty.blogspot.com

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  57. I LOVE canned icing. Right there with you!

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  58. Oh girl- I'm SO in love with these! The speckles are just too too cute. darling as always!

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  59. Bridget, thank u so much for sharing this! I spent yesterday making these, lots of work but the outcome was well worth it! And yes, the brown speckles got everywhere but it gave my husband and I a good laugh :)

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  60. I also love the taste of canned frosting. I like the texture better and I think the taste is better...but it always has to be Duncan Hines.

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  61. "OK...the cupcakes. I'm gonna fess up. I used a box. A doctored up box, but still a box. Hey....I made the cookies.

    AND...(fessing up again)...I used canned icing. Honestly, I LIKE canned icing. I'm sorry, but it's true."

    Are you kidding?? You made cookies, cupcakes, and toasted coconut, and assembled everything... you must have spent hours and hours doing all this!!!

    Honestly, I gotta tell ya... I am not opposed to a box mix or canned frosting either! :) I love your hoe sty and creativity and these are just SOOOOOOOO beautiful!!

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  62. Oh my word! These are the sweetest. Love them!

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  63. These are so pretty! Nice job!

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  64. These are so gorgeous! Perfect egg shell blue shading and I love how delicate the coconut nest looks. Stunning!

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  65. Bridget, your cupcakes look great! I too use the box cake mix and the plastic tub of frosting! Betty Crocker has done a great job of making their stuff taste great.

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  66. Love these ideas. If you have alot of seahorses to make it might be worth it to have a cookie cutter made in that shape!

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  67. I loves these ideas. If you have alot of seahorses to make it might be worth it to have a cookie cutter made!

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  68. those speckled cookies are amazing. they look great on top of the cupcakes!!

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  69. Beautiful! And I'm with you...there are two things I don't do from scratch - gravy and frosting. I like canned frosting, too!

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  70. OK... I'm not a baker... at all... so this post was my first introduction to royal icing. BUT I have scoured your blog learning about it and your techniques. SO here's my question: For your speckled egg cookies on top of your cupcakes, did you first pipe an outline around the edge of your cookies and then flood them with the icing? The pictures make it look like there is a little "edge" on the icing. I am going to attempt to use your sugar cookie recipe to make these. This is a huge step for me, because the only cookies I've ever made are from Pillsbury. (That's all my mom ever used to bake cookies, so I'm quite fond of them.) I've never made cookies from scratch! (Should I call 911? I don't want you to have a heart attack!) I was able to find the Wilton brand meringue powder and gel food color at our local craft store, so I'm eager to get this started tonight! Wish me luck!

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  71. Great idea, thanks for sharing

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  72. I don't use it when I'm baking, but I LOVE to eat canned icing straight from the jar. These are adorable - love the look of the eggs!

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  73. This is a good one! I love the cupcakes :D

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  74. I just have to say "love this"! I am getting quite into cake decorating; however, I was looking for a second dessert option for a party I'm doing. I'm throwing a surprise 30th birthday party for my boyfriend and the theme is "Prehistoric, But Not Extinct". Cheesy, but as a child he loved dinosaurs. I'm definitely going to do this for cupcakes!! Thanks!

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  75. haha "looking outside for the food police" don't worry I like canned icing too! very cute cupcakes!

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  76. The speckled eggs are so cute. The toasted coconut adds a great contrast to them.

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