Chocolate Owl Cupcakes

October 31, 2012 § 2 Comments

BOO! I have come back from the dead. I can’t even remember how long it’s been since I blogged…but I figured I would make a comeback with an extra cute recipe. Seriously, cutest photo shoot ever.

Summer travels, laziness, football season, a new job, and multiple other things have been keeping me busy. But I will try to be good and post more than once every…5 months? Is that how long I’ve been gone/

I saw these cupcakes on Food Gawker and couldn’t resist. Soooo cute! And way easier than making meringue ghosts or some other adorable festive things that I saw. We were celebrating October and November birthdays at work, and in typical Maya fashion I went totally overboard and baked these cupcakes and a pumpkin roll. When I could have offered to bring a)nothing b) donuts c) juice d) anything easier and quicker than baking 2 goods from scratch on a school night. Yes I still say school night at age 29.

The great thing about these is that you can make them with any cupcake recipe- or even a boxed mix if that’s what you choose. The toppings that make up this cute owl are really all that matters. They are seriously so cute Andrew caught me talking to them….weirdo.

I used this recipe, but like I said it will work with any cupcakes; next time I’ll probably use a different one. These were yummy, but I like my cupcakes more moist….I know people hate that word but it’s really the only one that works!  The ganache though….I always err on the side of ganache. We will be dipping leftover Oreos and cookie dough balls in the ganache until we eat it all up. I do omit corn syrup from my ganaches…it scares me to own that.

Ingredients (makes 12-15 cupcakes)


  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup chopped Oreos


  • 5 oz chocolate chips (just shy of a cup)
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

Owl Faces

  • Oreo cookies (or similar): 2 per cupcake
  • Junior Mints (or a similarly sized chocolate covered candy): 2 per cupcake
  • MnM’s or similar: 1 per cupcake


Preheat your oven to 350° and line a muffin pan with liners.

Whisk together your apple cider and milk. Let it sit for a few minutes. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add sugar, oil, and vanilla to your milk and and whisk until foamy. Add dry ingredients in 2 batches to the liquid ones. Beat together until the clumps are gone. Fold in your crushed up cookies.

Fill your liners 3/4 of the way with batter. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool completely.

Make your ganache. You can do this in a double boiler, but I just did it in the microwave this time. Put your chocolate chips and cream in a microwave safe bowl. Heat for 1 minute, then stir well. Heat for 15 seconds at a time, stirring after each time, until the mixture is dark and smooth…and DELICIOUS. Let it cool; I put it in the fridge. Don’t cool it so much so that it’s hard, it should be spreadable and still kind of liquidy.

Meanwhile, prepare your owl faces. You have to get all the cream on one side of the Oreo. I did this by heating 5 cookies at a time for 5 seconds, and then twisting apart.

Once your cookies are twisted apart, press a Junior Mint into each cream side- you can position these however you want them to make the super cute faces. Keep all your little eyeballs ready to press on the cupcakes.

With the non-cream side, break each one in half. They obviously will not break exactly in half; you’ll be using the smaller halves for the owls’ ears, so go ahead and snack on the bigger halves while you do this. I realize these are not actually “halves” but that is what I’ll continue to call them.

Once the ganache and cupcakes have cooled, coat each cupcake generously with ganache. Press 2 eyes into each owl and use the MnM to give him a beak. Then, stick your “skinny halves” in as the owl’s ears; the round parts should be facing each other internally.

And now you have 12-15 new friends.


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