Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Rainbow Cupcakes

It's birthday time again... well, sort of. Nolan will be turning 5 this summer - July 1st. His Pre-K class celebrates every kids' birthday throughout the year by allowing the kid to bring some sort of sweet treat - it's all healthy snacks every other day of the year. They get to enjoy the goodies together, the child wears a crown that day in class, the kids all sing to you & you get special *birthday hugs* from the three teachers! It's a pretty big deal when you're 4-turning-5!

Well, to be fair to the kids with summer birthdays, they celebrate them the last couple of weeks of school. And since next Wednesday is their last day, tomorrow will be Nolan's celebration day! And what better way to celebrate than with Rainbow Cupcakes!!??

Start out with a box of cake mix (I'm usually a from-scratch kind of a girl but this is a somewhat time consuming project so I like to trim some time off the front end!) Whatever your prefer - white or yellow. Get it all mixed up and then split it evenly into however many bowls/colors you'd like to use. A standard box of cake mix usually yields between 4-6 cups of batter - mine was 5 this time around so, for ease of math, I went with 5 colors! One cup of batter per bowl.

Then add your color. I prefer to use gel dye. So much richer than the 4-color box of drops I grew up on! Wilton makes a great 12-color variety box.

Now get your cupcake pan all set with the liners & start adding the batter! Carefully layer a small amount of each color into the cups. Use the back of the spoon to gently move the batter to cover evenly.... or don't! If you DO, you'll end up with a rainbow arch. If you DON'T you'll get more of a tie-dye look.

Once you get through the process of filling them all (about 2/3 full) just pop them into the oven (set to the temp on the cake instructions) & set your timer (for however long the box told you!!)

Mmmmmmmmm.... DO YOU SMELL THAT!!??

There you have it! A very impressive looking treat that will amaze toddlers & grown-ups alike! Experiment with the colors - having a sports-event party? Dye them the colors of your favorite team! Easter? Go pastel & dust them with a little powdered sugar to look like eggs. Or, if you've got the patience of a saint & the urge to channel your inner Martha you can bake each color individually in a 9-inch round pan, stack all 5 layers with a little frosting in between & turn out a pretty cool cake! Whatever you do, just make sure you have fun & have a bite for me!

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