Homemade Rapunzel Cupcakes: Dairy & Egg Free

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Hey friends!

We went to another birthday party today!!!

In case you didn’t know, that is BIG NEWS in our house. Our allergist has recommended that our daughter only go to safe parties until we get her contact reactions under control. So that means we usually cannot go to most parties, as we really don’t expect everyone to make it all safe for us. We usually go to 1-2 birthday parties a year.

We have had a busy year- we have gone to 4- count them-4!- parties outside of our house this year, y’all!

Today, our little cousin E celebrated her 4th birthday with a Rapunzel themed party. My cousin picked all safe party foods so SG could go. I made the cupcakes Rapunzel themed.

I am always up for a good baking challenge.

My go to cake is always our good ole wacky cake. I made a double batch of vanilla cupcakes. I bought 4 cans of purple Pillsbury frosting (read the labels please!), a bakery cardboard cupcake holder, fade proof cupcake liners, and downloaded the cutest Rapunzel printable PDF to top the cupcakes. Click here to see where I purchased them from and to see this lady’s other designs.

It took me less than 5 minutes to whip up each batch of cupcake mix (this is from scratch- no box mixes here!). So, 10 minutes to make enough batter for 48 cupcakes. See? You can do this, too! We got this, food allergy mamas and papas (and non food allergy friends, too!)

I always like to bake my cupcakes in advance and freeze them. That just takes the pressure off of me on the day of the party. Then I get to concentrate on icing them. You could easily do everything in one day.

So, here’s how I made these delicious- and, if you don’t mind me tooting my own horn, adorable Rapunzel cupcakes.

In advance, prepare the cupcake toppers. I chose to purchase, download, print, cut and tape toothpicks to the Rapunzel printable.

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Make a double batch of wacky cake batter and bake as cupcakes. My cupcakes bake on convection at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. (The wacky cake recipe is at the very end of this post.)

Let cupcakes cool completely and then either freeze them or move onto the frosting step.

I use this frosting tool with the pronged tip to frost the cupcakes. I started as close to the edge of the cupcake as I could and just went round and round until I hit the middle. When I stopped frosting, the frosting went up in a line. I used the tip of the toothpick to push the frosting tip down as I inserted the toothpick into my frozen cupcakes.

I also kept the decorated cupcakes in the bakery box (I bought that from Party City) in the fridge until it was time to leave for the party.

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This pic is kinda dark but I am so thrilled to have the cupcakes in this box to help them look like they came from a bakery!

Here’s my tip on the bakery box. It’s very flimsy. I’ve never used one before so I had no idea. I had a mini heart attack as I lifted my completely cupcake filled box and took two steps towards the fridge and the bottom of the box started to give way. Somehow I balanced it all- it was so wiggly. The Huzz happened to walk in right as the catastrophe was happening and he swooped in and saved the day! (And the cupcakes!) Next time, I will also purchase an extra cardboard cake thing- what do you call those? I used one for my Barbie cake. Anyway, I’ll Scotch tape the bottom of the box and also use a cardboard meant for cakes for added sturdiness. We ended up carrying the cupcake box under a cutting board. It worked. 🙂

So, that is how we made our safe Rapunzel themed cupcakes.

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I added in two extra cupcakes to fill the box that didn’t have picks.  I didn’t want the cupcakes falling over during the drive to the party.  

Here’s a random side note. Another little friend was at the party and wasn’t going to be able to eat the cupcakes until the mother found out the cupcakes were dairy and egg free. I had no idea another little friend with food allergies was there. That just blessed my heart that another little friend was able to freely and safely partake of all the food!

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So, there ya go, my friends. Another yummy, safe, and fun birthday cake.

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Here the cupcakes are in action.  My cousin also made Rapunzel Fruit Tower kabobs.  How cute!

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My cousin also made these adorable “skillet” paper plates.  She’s so crafty!

Wacky Cake
(Double this recipe if needed. Each recipe yields approximately 24 cupcakes.)

Dry Ingredients:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 6 Tablespoons of cocoa OR For Vanilla Cupcakes, omit cocoa
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Wet Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup oil (I use canola)
  • 2 Tablespoons vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla (use 1 Tablespoon vanilla if making vanilla cupcakes)
  • 2 cups cold water

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Put dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir with a wooden spoon.
  3. Add wet ingredients. Beat well until blended. (I use a stand mixer.)
  4. Pour using 1/4 cup batter per cupcake liner.
  5. Put the pans in the oven and bake for approximately 15 minutes per batch, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
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Allergy Friendly Cakes & Cupcakes

I have made a lot of cakes since becoming an allergy mom.  I’ve learned how to bake, frost and create.

I decided to scroll through my thousands (I’m serious!) of family pics and find all of the allergy friendly cakes, cupcakes and cookie cakes I’ve made and photographed.

Most of these cakes use my wacky cake recipe.  Click here for the recipe for wacky cake.  I’ve also made a few cookie cakes.  I use this recipe from Silk and instead of making lots of cookies, I shape it in whatever shape I need and bake it for 10-20 minutes.  I start checking it at 10 minutes and adjust from there.

Here are most of the cakes, cupcakes, and cookie cakes I’ve made:

Mickey Mouse Cupcakes for my Nephew

Mickey Mouse Cupcakes for my Nephew

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Spider-Man Birthday Cupcakes for my Niece’s 3rd Birthday Party

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Tinker Bell Cupcakes for SG’s 3rd Birthday Party

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Close Up.  The Ring Toppers Made the Cupcakes Look so Special!

A SpiderMan Cake for my "Baby" Brother

A SpiderMan Cake for my “Baby” Brother

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Simple Christmas Cupcakes

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Mini Vanilla Cupcakes for SG’s Friend’s Birthday Tea Party

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Frozen Cupcakes for SG’s 4th Birthday Party

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Thanksgiving Cupcakes

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Tea Party Cupcakes

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Jelly Tinted Vanilla Cupcakes Topped with Fresh Strawberries for SG’s Friend’s Birthday Party

Cupcakes for My Gigi's 85th Birthday Party

Cupcakes for My Gigi’s 85th Birthday Party

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No Frosting?  No Problem.  Just Add Coco Whip & Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips.

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A Cookie Cake for our Little Cousin’s 3rd Birthday Party

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I Included her Initials, Too.

My 1st Ever Cookie Cake!

My 1st Ever Cookie Cake!

Football Cookie Cake

Football Cookie Cake

There ya have it.  Most of the cakes I’ve made in the past few years, right here for ya in one spot.  🙂  I have made a few more but cannot find the photos.  Oh well.

Happy cake making, food allergy mamas and papas!

Homemade Barbie Birthday Cake: Dairy & Egg Free

Y’all!!! I think I need a personal chef. Or a personal organizer. Or a housekeeper.

Because I just can’t do it all lately. Do you remember that I mentioned a few posts back that we moved to South Carolina? (From Iowa.)

We closed on our house on November 3rd. Birthday party for SG was scheduled for November 21st. That’s a lot to do in a short amount of time. And the next week was Thanksgiving, which I hosted and prepared almost everything for. And then Christmas.  Let’s just say: I’ve. Been. Busy.

So SG wanted a Barbie themed birthday party. I scoured Pinterest for ideas. I found some amazing ideas. I did not want her party to be a Pinterest fail. Nuh-uh.

I was determined to make her a beautiful Barbie cake. Like the Barbie in the cake kind. I was so nervous. I didn’t even practice the cake before her party. I wanted to and planned to, but ran out of time.

I even found a Barbie box on Pinterest. One for the kids to pose inside of for pics. I had to have it! I have my graphic designer brother to thank for the Barbie box. Way to go Uncle Josh!

Here’s how the Barbie box turned out:

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The Barbie box was inspired by these pins here and here.  In the end, we looked at a few pins and my brother did his own thang.

Each of our guests took pics inside the box. It was just adorable!!!

And the cake…

Well, I’ll just show it to you:

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I still can’t even believe we made this cake!!!!!!!!!!!! (Yes, it deserves that many exclamation marks.)

Here are the pins that inspired this cake:

This one from Cakes.com.

This one from The TomKat Studio.  This one had so many inspirations!

And also this one from Blissfully Sweet.

None of those cakes were safe for us, but I knew I could do it.  Or I could at least try my hardest!

In preparation for frosting the cake, I knew it was time to finally buy a nice icing set. I scoured Amazon and the reviews convinced me to purchase this Dessert Decorator Plus. This tool was crucial in the frosting of this cake. I highly recommend it.

We browsed several Barbies in the stores and SG decided on this Barbie:

SG's choice. I liked her for so many practical reasons: pointy ballet shoes are easier to poke her into the cake, her top and hair are pretty and most importantly, she is PINK!

SG’s choice. I liked this Barbie for so many practical reasons: pointy ballet shoes are easier to poke her into the cake, her top and hair are pretty and most importantly, she is PINK!

Here’s how I made the cake. I decided to go with our handy dandy and reliable wacky cake. Otherwise known as crazy cake or depression era cake. I made two batches. I made 4 round cake pans total. Two chocolate and two vanilla round cakes.

Wacky Cake
(Double this recipe.)

Dry Ingredients:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 6 Tablespoons of cocoa (for vanilla cakes, omit cocoa)
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Wet Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup oil (I use canola)
  • 2 Tablespoons vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla (use 1 Tablespoon vanilla if making vanilla cupcakes)
  • 2 cups cold water

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Prepare your round pans. Grease with vegan butter and add a little bit of flour.
  3. Gently tap the pan to evenly spread the flour throughout the pan. Throw away the extra flour.
  4. Put dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir with a wooden spoon.
    Add wet ingredients. Beat well until blended.
  5. Pour mixture in the two round pans. Try to get the same amount in each pan. I eyeball it.
  6. Put the pans in the oven and bake.
  7. The round cakes will take approximately 20-35 minutes. I used convection bake and it baked two cakes in about 20 minutes. When I don’t use convection bake it takes a little longer. Set your timer for 20 minutes and add extra time in small increments if needed.
  8. Let cakes cool on a wire rack. Place a large plate on top of the cake and flip over. The cake should come right out. If not, you may have to gently prod the cake out.

We decided to wrap the cakes in foil and freeze them overnight. We did this because we wanted the cake to be firm for shaping it the next day.

The next morning, we unwrapped the cakes.

Here’s what we used to make the doll shaped cake.  This website was the one that convinced me I didn’t have to buy one of those big dress shaped cake pans.  I could use simple round pans to make my barbie cake dress, as I mentioned above.  Thanks for the Pinspiration!

I bought a cardboard round cake board from Party City. We wrapped that in foil. We put one round cake on the board, but used icing to “glue” it down. We put a light layer of frosting on top and used that as the glue to hold the next layer. We alternated chocolate and vanilla cake layers.

Here’s the steps with photos:

The frosting is the glue between each layer. This "cream cheese" frosting is dairy free and makes the cake even more scrumptious!

The frosting is the glue between each layer. This “cream cheese” frosting is dairy free and makes the cake even more scrumptious!

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We had to trim the puffiest part of each round cake except for the base and top layer.  Ok- I guess we trimmed 2 of the 4 cakes!

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Layer 3

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This was just tall enough for our Barbie.  Don’t forget to wrap her legs in plastic wrap!

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Barbie’s hips will be covered with frosting.

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The Huzz used the serrated knife to soften those hard angles.  We didn’t snap a pic of it before the frosting.

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We gave it a quick layer of frosting to prevent crumbs from showing through her “dress.”

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Barbie in all her glory!

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Barbie from another angle.

I started the frosting in the middle of Barbie’s dress in the front.  I made one rosette and kept going in a line horizontally until I went all the way back around.  Then I worked my way one row at a time.  When I got to to Barbie’s hips, I did a quick line around her waist to make sure the plastic wrap didn’t show.  I used 3-4 cans of Pillsbury frosting for her pink rosette dress.

We are so pleased with how the cake turned out.  SG was blown away and super happy!

I am thrilled to show the world that us food allergy mamas can rock it out!  FAM’s (food allergy mamas)- WE GOT THIS!

 

6 Easy Homemade Mixes for the Pantry: Dairy & Egg Free

There’s news of another recall involving spice mixes. Scary, isn’t it?

I try to make as much as I can from scratch. That includes spice mixes, premade pancake and muffin mixes, ranch dry mix and more.

Here are a few of the homemade mixes I have in my pantry.

1. Homemade Taco Mix
(from 100 Days of Real Food)
It’s easy to throw together with just 4 ingredients! I even made some as gifts this Christmas. This mix is very versatile and can help with other meals other than just tacos! (I feel a taco mix recipe post brewing…) 🙂

2. Dry Ranch Mix
(from Once A Month Meals)
I washed a jelly jar and use that to store this yummy dry mix. It has been very helpful for me to have the directions on a label on the back of the jar with the directions on how to make the dressing. This is another very versatile mix and it can jazz up many recipes. (Hmmm… a what to do with dry ranch mix post is also a-brewing…) 🙂

Click here to go to my “Recipe Substitutions” page for the links to the homemade taco mix and dry ranch mix recipes.

3. Homemade Popcorn Spice Mix
I keep recipes of my Dragon’s Breath popcorn seasoning in a little Glad plastic bowl. It makes movie night a snap. I just make the popcorn from scratch in the microwave with some olive oil. I sprinkle on the seasoning mix and voila! Easy and quick homemade popcorn.

4. Pancake Mix
(from Once A Month Meals)

5. Muffin Mix
Once this is mixed, it only needs two wet ingredients to make a batch of muffins! It’s just AS EASY TO PREPARE AS THE PACKAGED MUFFIN MIXES FROM THE STORE! 🙂 I love this recipe because it has ground flax. I also omit the vanilla because I use vanilla almond milk. In my latest batch, I cut the sugar back to 1.5 cups for the entire dry mix and the muffins still tasted great. I also use frozen blueberries as my add in. We use Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips for special occasions.

6. Wacky Cake Mix
I currently have a bag of all the dry ingredients for a chocolate wacky cake mix bagged and ready to go. In the link above, I’ve included how to also make this a vanilla cake. It’s more yellow in color than a white cake. Who needs boxed cake mix when you have this homemade goodness waiting and ready?

It helps to slowly stock your pantry with homemade mixes. Mix a batch a day of something from this list and in less than a week you’ll have some homemade yumminess ready to go at your fingertips. If you’re really motivated, take an hour and prepare these homemade mixes all at once. None of it is hard- it just takes a little time. The spice mixes are super easy to throw together. I’d suggest starting with the taco seasoning. Then the dry ranch mix and then the popcorn seasoning. The others require more time- maybe a max of 10 minutes each! That’s not bad at all.

Safe Dry Ranch Mix and Homemade Ranch Dressing

Safe Dry Ranch Mix and Homemade Ranch Dressing

These directions on the jar make whipping up this dressing a breeze.

These directions on the jar make whipping up this dressing a breeze.

Popcorn Seasoning, Homemade Taco Seasoning & Homemade Ranch Mix

Popcorn Seasoning, Homemade Taco Seasoning & Homemade Ranch Mix

Pancake Mix

Pancake Mix

Vegan Muffin Mix

Vegan Muffin Mix

On a side note, I’m trying to make these mixes look cuter. I’m in the process of buying glass jars and trying to figure out how to print cute labels.

Do you have any homemade mixes to share? Please share and link in the comments below. Thanks!

How to have a Dairy Free and Egg Free Birthday Party

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We recently drove a VERY long way to be apart of my precious niece’s third birthday party. I asked my sister (because she is my sister- I don’t think I could ever ask anyone else to do this!) if she would have a dairy free and egg free party for her daughter. We didn’t want to travel all that way and endanger SG’s health and also to have her cry. Yes, she cries now when she can’t have what everyone else is eating at a party…she’s just two and doesn’t quite understand why she can’t eat the same cupcakes as everyone else at parties.

My sweet sister said yes to a dairy and egg free party. Here’s how we pulled off a Spider-Man party for a precious three year old little girl. 🙂 Here’s what we did.

I baked dairy free and egg free cupcakes at my house. I didn’t want to risk cross contamination by making them at my mom’s house (our destination.) I made a batch of chocolate and vanilla cupcakes at my house and froze them. We brought them to South Carolina in our cooler. If you’re not traveling and you most likely aren’t, skip the freezing step. Unless, of course, you want to bake these puppies a few weeks in advance. That makes for a less stressful preparation the day of the party!

Thanks Kara for sharing this recipe with me!

Granny’s No Egg Cake/Depression Era Cake
Dry Ingredients:
3 cups flour
2 cups sugar
6 Tablespoons of cocoa (for vanilla cupcakes, omit cocoa)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt

Wet Ingredients:
3/4 cup oil (I use canola)
2 Tablespoons vinegar
2 teaspoons vanilla (use 1 Tablespoon vanilla if making vanilla cupcakes)
2 cups cold water

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Put dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir with a wooden spoon.
3. Add wet ingredients. Beat well until blended.
4. Line cupcake tin with paper baking cups. Add batter using 1/4 cup measuring cup. Bake approximately 18 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. You can also bake this as a cake. The time will vary. I made a smaller round cake and it took approximately 35 minutes while a much deeper heart cake took closer to an hour.

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I use Pillsbury vanilla frosting and Pillsbury chocolate fudge frosting. For the party, we used chocolate fudge frosting and my sister bought some cute Spider-Man picks made especially for cakes and we stuck these in the cupcakes to dress them up a bit. She put them on a stand and decorated the table and it looked FAB! The guests raved about the cupcakes and some even asked for the recipe! Make these. Right now. 🙂

Here are the snacks we had at the party: Oreos, a fresh fruit salad, fresh veggies with Sabra hummus, Ritz crackers, Rold Gold Pretzel Sticks, Lays Kettle Cooked Sea Salt and Cracked Pepper Potato Chips, and lemonade juice boxes for the children.

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This was the FIRST birthday party I have taken SG to that I could rest easy and not have to hover over her in fear. Thanks Sissay for being so accommodating and for having a SAFE haven for your little niece, my child.

To all of you mamas out there, food allergy parents or not, you can have a rockin’ and yummy party- DAIRY AND EGG FREE!