Fatten up your Mardi Gras with king cake cupcakes!

One of my favorite Food Network shows was Semi-Homemade. I loved Sandra's shortcuts to make recipes quick and easy. Inspired by Sandra, I used a cake mix and added a few ingredients to make these delicious king cake cupcakes!

Cake: Prepare your cake as directed (I used Duncan Hines Yellow Cake mix) and add 1 teaspoon of vanilla and 1 teaspoon of almond extract. Mix 1/2 cup of brown sugar, 1 tablespoon cinnamon and 1 tablespoon of sugar in a separate bowl. Line cupcakes with colorful cupcake liners and fill halfway with batter. Sprinkle 2 teaspoons of the sugar mixture over each cupcake. Top with additional batter so each cup is 2/3 full. Bake as directed on the mix. Cool cupcakes before frosting.

Frosting: Cream 8 oz softened cream cheese with 4 tablespoons of softened unsalted butter. Mix in 1 pound of powdered sugar. Add 1 teaspoon of vanilla. Mix well. Divide frosting in half. Using food coloring, color one half green and the other half purple. 

Frost each cupcake and swirl the colors together. Top with a Mardi Gras cupcake topper (download designs here).

Laissez le bon temps rouler!


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