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Homemade Hostess Cupcakes Recipe

May 12, 2017

Getting their start on this day in 1919, Hostess Cupcakes date back almost 100 years, .... but in 2012 this iconic American snack was feared lost forever.  High fructose corn syrup be damned, moms and dads who'd been dutifully serving their families organic, whole, fresh and local foods rushed out to purchase a box of this nostalgic childhood favorite. Those already sitting on a box or two, contemplated whether to savor or sell. Ebay bids soared.  


At the eleventh hour, Hostess Cupcakes made it back from the brink, but not before crafty bakers sussed out a DIY recipe.  With hydrogenated oil out and hot brewed coffee in, you can feel good about serving up this A-MAZING homemade treat.   


Here's the recipe as shared with us by one of Northern Virginia's best bakers (and one of LP!'s favorite collaborators), Jang Van Vranken

Homemade "Hostess" Cupcakes (makes 12 cupcakes)



1/2 cup + 6 tablespoon all purpose powder

1 cup sugar

6 tablespoons cocoa powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup buttermilk 

1/4 canola oil (cold pressed, non-GMO)

1 large egg

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup hot brew coffee


Buttercream icing (recipe follow) * save 1/2 cup for the last decoration 

Chocolate Ganache (recipe follow)



Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 24 cupcake liners on cupcake pans. 

Add flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer and mix on low speed until combined. Then add buttermilk, oil, eggs, vanilla. Mix until combined. Then stir in hot coffee. Scoop the batter to the cupcake liners, fill just 3/4 full and bake for 15-18 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool completely.


Put Wilton piping tip #M1 then the buttercream icing in the piping bag. Gently poke half way in the cupcakes and gently squeeze in the buttercream in the cupcake until you see the buttercream come up close to the top of cupcake. 


Then dip the cupcakes in the warm ganache and let it set. Repeat the dipping one more time and let it set again.


Once the cupcakes are all set. Put the Wilton #2 tip in the piping bag with the remaining buttercream icing. Decorate as Hotess Cupcake design on each cupcakes. 


Pro Tip: Learn from our mistake... the signature swirl has seven loops. 

Buttercream Icing 

1 cup unsalted butter, softened

3 teaspoons vanilla extract

4 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted

4 tablespoons milk


Cream room temperature butter in the mixer about 3 minutes. Gradually add in confectioners sugar until fully incorporated. Add in vanilla extract.
Pour in milk and beat for an additional 3-4 minutes or until smooth. * Save 1/4 cup for the last decoration.


Photo by Annalise, Completely Delicious

Click on the photo to find out Annalise's secret to a perfect buttercream frosting

Chocolate ganache

9 ounces bittersweet chocolate, 

1 cup heavy cream


Heat cream until hot then pour on chocolate. Stir until combine and let cool for about 5 minutes.


Photo by Michelle Lucas, Recipe Geek



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