D (’09) is turning 5 next week. He is crazy into science so we decided to have his party at the Mad Science Lab. They will be making slime, drinking slime-aide, dissolving a Styrofoam cup and making snow. So of course he wanted a magic potion/science cake. The location suggested cupcakes for ease of serving…and so the adventure began. Of course I browsed through Pinterest for inspiration and found a few ideas:
The first thing I did was cut cardboard for the cake base and covered it with aluminum foil. I recommend taping several pieces together to make a thick base to support your cupcakes. This of course I taped together using duct tape, because let’s be honest…it is AWESOME!
Then I started messing around with cupcake liners to discover a shape that I could make without too many holes. I came up with an Earlenmeyer Flask shape. It took 24 cupcakes to build my shape…lucky for me that is exactly how many cupcakes a box mix makes! I used foil cupcake liners so the cupcakes would blend into the foil-lined board.
I have a secret though, I usually doctor my box mixes (get recipe). They were a hit a hit!
After baking the cupcakes and letting them cool, I started rebuilding my shape. A rolled up piece of tape under the cupcakes helps anchor them while frosting and during transport. Just remember this when you try to pick up the cupcakes as you will have to be careful and make sure to take the tape off before passing them out.
To frost these cupcakes I used the basic Wilton Buttercream Frosting recipe and made 2 batches. One batch stayed white and I dyed the second batch green. I used mainly green gel food coloring with a little yellow so it wouldn’t be too ‘leaf green’ and would look a bit more like ‘potion’.
I bought a tube of pre-made black frosting because I didn’t need that much and black is hard to get right with food coloring as it usually looks more grey.
Using white frosting I began to outline the ‘beaker’. I used a disposable decorating bag and I just cut the tip off. Then I smoothed the frosting with a spatula. If you look close you can see an upside down empty liner in the one big gap. That was so I wouldn’t need to use as much frosting to fill the gap.
Next, using a new disposable decorating bag with the tip cut off, I added the green frosting by squirting out small amounts to give it a bubble effect.
Next I used the black to outline everything and add a few details.
Finally I found these candies on clearance at JCPenny’s. For less than $3 it was a great way to add color and cheaper than buying specialty candy.
These are similar ones you could find at the store called candy bead or candy pearls found in the baking aisle. Or you could even use something like M&M’s or Skittles in a pinch.
I think it turned out pretty good. Most importantly D (’09) thinks it is PERFECT!
Find more Pull-Apart Cupcake Cake inspiration on our Pinterest board!