Bac’un Cupakes!

Bacon CupcakesBacon is the newest culinary craze, chefs are putting it in ice cream, candy bars, popcorn, salt, I even did a review of bacon soda (all vegan of course) this time last year. Paula Deen takes the cake with her Wilbur’s cupcakes (which I have affectionately renamed Bac’un cupcakes), soft chocolaty cupcakes topped with bacon buttercream. Needless to say cutting down the calories on these confections was just as easy as taking out the bacon, but what to do to add that bacony flavor back without completely alienating my taste buds? Liquid smoke to the rescue. I used a mix or hickory and mesquite liquid smoke to get the flavors just right. I can’t believe it but, I’m actually in love with these cupcakes.

Original Recipe Nutrition Analysis:
Per Cupcake (without frosting): 156 Cal (20% from Fat, 8% from Protein, 73% from Carb); 3 g Protein; 4 g Tot Fat; 2 g Sat Fat; 1 g Mono Fat; 30 g Carb; 2 g Fiber; 20 g Sugar; 62 mg Calcium; 1 mg Iron; 139 mg Sodium; 33 mg Cholesterol

Per Cupcake (with frosting): 347 Cal (30% from Fat, 6% from Protein, 64% from Carb); 6 g Protein; 12 g Tot Fat; 6 g Sat Fat; 4 g Mono Fat; 58 g Carb; 3 g Fiber; 46 g Sugar; 74 mg Calcium; 2 mg Iron; 288 mg Sodium; 49 mg Cholesterol

Veganized Recipe Nutrition Analysis:
Per Cupcake (without frosting): 147 Cal (18% from Fat, 4% from Protein, 77% from Carb); 2 g Protein; 3 g Tot Fat; 1 g Sat Fat; 1 g Mono Fat; 30 g Carb; 1 g Fiber; 19 g Sugar; 47 mg Calcium; 1 mg Iron; 158 mg Sodium; 0 mg Cholesterol

Per Cupcake (with frosting): 279 Cal (19% from Fat, 3% from Protein, 78% from Carb); 2 g Protein; 6 g Tot Fat; 3 g Sat Fat; 2 g Mono Fat; 57 g Carb; 2 g Fiber; 45 g Sugar; 50 mg Calcium; 1 mg Iron; 189 mg Sodium; 0 mg Cholesterol

Cupcakes:
1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon baking soda
2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons Earth Balance Margarine, softened
1 ½ cups sugar
¼ cup vegan sour cream
¼ cup unsweetened applesauce
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¾ cup + 1 tablespoon plain almond milk

Bac’un Chocolate Frosting:
¼ cup Earth Balance Margarine, room temperature
1/3 cup unsweetened  cocoa powder
1/3 cup plain almond milk
¼ teaspoon hickory liquid smoke
¼ teaspoon mesquite liquid smoke
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 ½ cups confectioners’ sugar
Preheat oven to 350°F.

Line a muffin pan with paper liners. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cocoa and salt. Set aside.

With a standing or electric mixer, cream together the Earth Balance and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the sour cream then applesauce, beating well with each addition, then stir in the vanilla. Add the flour mixture alternately with the almond milk; beat well after each addition. Fill the muffin cups 2/3 full.

Bake for 15 to 17 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. When cool, frost with Bac’un Chocolate Frosting.

Bac’un Chocolate Frosting:
In the bowl of a standing mixer, beat margarine and cocoa together until combined. Add almond milk, hickory and mesquite liquid smoke and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Gradually beat in confectioners’ sugar until desired consistency is achieved. Adjust with more milk or confectioners’ sugar if necessary. Frost chocolate cupcakes and devour.

The original recipe is for Wilbur Cupcakes and can be found at http://www.pauladeen.com/recipes/recipe_view/wilburs_cupcakes/

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