Last week I attend my second blogging conference and guess what? It was ONLINE. That’s right! I could have attended from the comfort of my couch in my pajamas. Perhaps the second best part, the conference only cost $30!!! I found out about the conference, which is called “Online Blogcon”, during my visit to Blogher Food in June. The conference is actually run by some of my favorite bloggers Dorothy at Crazy for Crust and Ashton at Something Swanky.
The conference was beyond amazing. Each day, three different topics were posted and discussion in regards to each post took place. They offered three different “tracks” of the conference you could follow. It was some of the most valuable information I have learned. It was so well organized, informative and interactive. Who knew attending a conference Online could be so successful? Through the conference, I have met new bloggers, expanded my reach, and joined in new Link Parties and Facebook groups. I have seen huge growth over the past couple of months and I could not be more excited.
I am approaching my one- year blogiversary and I can’t even believe it. It took me all summer last year to get the motivation to actually start my blog. I had no idea what I was getting into. This blog has re-ignited a spark of creativity in me. I love baking and creating new desserts. Keeping up with it is extremely challenging at times. With winter quickly approaching, I hope I can still deliver with the same frequency that I have been!
So I made more cupcakes today! I actually think cupcakes are my most favorite thing to bake. The flavor combinations are endless. The “bite-sized” factor is right up my alley. I made the same Pumpkin Cupcakes that I used for my Double Pumpkin Poke Cake and then I topped it with a Caramel Cream Cheese Frosting. The frosting is so decadent. It is thick enough to where it holds a good shape. It’s smooth enough that it practically melts in your mouth and has the sweetness of gooey caramel. I topped these off with some toffee bits and caramel drizzle. Caramel on top of caramel equals win. I brought these to the pumpkin patch at the beginning of the month and they were a huge hit from the toddlers to the adults.
- For the cake:
- 1 box Spice cake mix
- 1 pkg Instant pumpkin spice pudding (3.4 0z)
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp Pumpkin pie spice
- 3 Large eggs
- 1/2 C Oil
- 3/4 C Milk
- 1/2 C Low-fat sour cream
- For the Frosting:
- 1 C (2 sticks) Unsalted butter- softened
- 1 pk (8oz) Cream Cheese- softened
- 3 tbsp Caramel sauce
- 4-5 C Powdered sugar
- 2 tbsp Heavy whipping cream
- Toffee bits for topping (optional)
- Caramel for drizzling (optional)
- For the Cupcake: Preheat the oven to 350° F and line a cupcake pan with liners.
- Prepare the cupcake batter first. Mix all dry ingredients in your mixing bowl and mix slightly to combine.Add eggs, oil, milk and sour cream. Beat on medium speed until well combined.
- Fill lined cupcake pan 2/3 full.
- Bake at 350° F for 12-16 minutes until golden brown on top.
- Check for doneness by inserting a toothpick in the middle of the cupcake. If the toothpick comes out clean, your cupcakes are done. Allow to cool completely.
- For the Frosting: Allow the butter and cream cheese to come to room temperature so they are soft but not melted.
- Beat the butter and cream cheese in mixer on medium speed until smooth and creamy.
- Add the caramel sauce and mix until combined.
- Slowly add the powdered sugar 1 cup at a time while continuing to beat on medium speed. Frosting will become slightly thick. (I used 5 cups of powdered sugar for an extra thick frosting).
- Add heavy whipping cream last and increase mixer speed to high to whip frosting until smooth and creamy.
- Frost cupcakes after completely cool. Top frosted cupcakes with toffee bits and caramel.It’s best to keep cupcakes refrigerated in an airtight container after frosted.
- Refrigerate for at least an hour – see notes section.
I always refrigerate my cream cheese frosting before actually frosting my cupcakes. This allows the frosting to get more stiff, which helps with piping the frosting, but also allows the frosting to hold its shape longer.
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