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Chocolate Christmas Tree Cupcakes


Ingredients

Scale
  • Cupcake:
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup HERSHEY’S Cocoa
  • 1½ tsp baking powder
  • 1½ tsp baking soda
  • tsp salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ cup canola oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • Trees:
  • 30 pretzel sticks
  • 1 1/4 cup green candy melts
  • non-pareil sprinkles
  • Frosting:
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 6 oz cream cheese or light cream cheese, softened
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups shredded coconut

Instructions

  1. For the cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Line 30 muffin cups with cupcake liners.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  4. Then add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla to the flour mixture. Beat with a mixer on medium speed for 2 minutes.
  5. Add the boiling water and stir until well combined (batter will be thin so do not be alarmed).
  6. Scoop batter into prepared muffin cups, filling 2/3 full with batter. Bake at 350 for 22 to 25 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
  7. For the trees, melting the candy melts according to package directions. Transfer the mixture to a piping bag.
  8. Place the pretzel sticks on a wax paper or parchment paper-lined baking sheets, spacing them 2 to 3 inches apart. Pipe the candy melts over the pretzel sticks in the shape of a tree then immediately top the trees with the sprinkles. Allow the trees to sit until the trees have fully set.
  9. For the frosting:
  10. In the bowl, cream together the butter and cream cheese with a mixer until well blended. Add the vanilla extract and powdered sugar, beating just until combined.
  11. Frost cooled cupcakes, then sprinkle immediately with the shredded coconut.
  12. Just before serving, use an offset spatula to carefully release the trees from the waxed paper or parchment paper. Push the bottoms of the pretzel trees into the tops of the cupcakes. Makes 30 cupcakes.
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