at work this past week, we had a luau party. it was so so much fun! we decorated our conference room and everyone brought in food to share and we even had some games for everyone to play. it was so nice to just take a break and enjoy ourselves after a super busy year. so to stay in the tropical theme, i thought it would be appropriate to whip up some pina colada cupcakes.
i’ve seen many different recipes online and i found one that looked good. it was a pineapple cupcake with coconut frosting. sounds good right?
it was going fine until i took them out of the oven and saw that they weren’t quite cooked. so i baked them for 15 additional minutes. but they were caved in and didn’t really look quite right.
then when i looked inside the cupcake, it was mushy. yuck! i couldn’t serve these to my coworkers. no way jose!
after being annoyed for quite a bit, i realized what i did wrong. first i added too much pineapple because i bought a bigger can of crushed pineapple than was called for in the recipe. but then i also remembered that acid affects the leavening in cake batter and since pineapple juice is pretty acidic it probably kept the cupcake from rising properly too. well since those cupcakes didn’t work out, i had to start all over again.
this time around, i decided to make a white cupcake, filled with a fresh pineapple filling, topped with a coconut swiss meringue buttercream. finally, it’s decorated with a slice of pineapple, a maraschino cherry, and just a sprinkling of toasted coconut.
i definitely preferred this version much better than my first attempt at the pineapple cupcakes. there was still lots of pineapple flavor from the pineapple filling and it paired perfectly with the coconut buttercream. although it didn’t taste exactly like a pina colada, they were still tasty and looked kind of like a pina colada cocktail. perfect for our luau!
first bake up some white cupcakes. you could also make some coconut cupcakes to up the coconut flavor. then make the pineapple filling. just combine some chopped fresh pineapple, sugar, lemon juice, and cornstarch.
cook it until it’s nice and thick and then cool it completely.
once the cupcakes are cooled, fill each cupcake with the pineapple filling using the cone method.
next make the coconut swiss meringue buttercream. i just used a regular swiss meringue buttercream base and then added some coconut milk. once the buttercream is ready, frost each cupcake. i used a large closed star tip.
now it’s time to decorate the cupcakes! add a slice of fresh pineapple and a maraschino cherry.
finally, sprinkle a little bit of toasted sweetened, shredded coconut onto each cupcake.
yay! the pina colada cupcakes are ready! they are the perfect treat for a summer party. aloha!!!!!!!!!
Pina Colada Cupcakes
- 1 1/2 cups fresh pineapple, chopped
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 box white cake mix plus ingredients called for on the box
Coconut Swiss Meringue Buttercream
- 4 large egg whites, at room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 3 sticks (1½ cups) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3/4 cup coconut milk
- To make the pineapple filling, in a small sauce pan, combine all of the ingredients and bring to a boil over medium-high heat; set aside to cool.
- Prepare and bake cupcakes as directed on the box.
- Allow cupcakes to cool completely.
- Using the cone method, use a small paring knife to cut a cone out of the center of each cupcake.
- Add some filling to the cupcake and replace the top portion of the cone, slicing off the tip to leave room for the filling.
- To make the coconut buttercream, combine the egg whites and sugar in a heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water. Heat, whisking frequently, until the mixture reaches 160° F and the sugar has dissolved.
- Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form and the mixture has cooled to room temperature, about 8 minutes. (The bowl should be cool to the touch.)
- Reduce the speed to medium and add the butter, 2 tablespoons at a time, adding more once each addition has been incorporated. If the frosting looks soupy or curdled, continue to beat on medium-high speed until thick and smooth again, about 3-5 minutes more (or longer – don’t worry, it will come together!)
- Blend in the coconut milk until smooth and completely incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Pipe frosting on to cupcakes as desired and garnish with slice of fresh pineapple, maraschino cherry, and toasted coconut.
Printer Friendly Recipe: Pina Colada Cupcakes