SugarHero https://www.sugarhero.com/ Thu, 01 Dec 2022 23:53:25 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=6.0.3 Spice Cupcakes with Cinnamon Buttercream https://www.sugarhero.com/spice-cupcakes/ https://www.sugarhero.com/spice-cupcakes/#comments Wed, 30 Nov 2022 22:43:52 +0000 https://www.sugarhero.com/?p=46869 Photo of Spice Cupcakes on a wooden tree slice with chocolate feather decorations.

Spice cupcakes are moist, fall-flavored cupcakes made with brown sugar and tons of warm, cozy spices. Finish them off with a big swirl of cinnamon buttercream and a beautiful chocolate feather!]]>
Photo of Spice Cupcakes on a wooden tree slice with chocolate feather decorations.

Spice cupcakes are moist, fall-flavored cupcakes made with brown sugar and tons of warm, cozy spices. Finish them off with a big swirl of cinnamon buttercream and a beautiful chocolate feather!

Spice cupcake on a wooden platter topped with cinnamon buttercream and a chocolate feather.

 🍂 These Moist Spice Cupcakes Taste Like Fall

When plain vanilla cupcakes just won’t do, spice up your life by adding a heaping spoonful of cozy, flavorful spices to transform regular cupcakes into spice cupcakes!

These cupcakes are made with buttermilk, which keeps them ultra-moist, and are flavored with a generous amount of cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. To keep the spice theme going, we’ve topped them with cinnamon buttercream, but they would be equally good with cream cheese frosting or even a light dusting of powdered sugar — check out a list of frosting suggestions below.

If you love the sound of these cupcakes, don’t miss some of our other favorite fall recipes, like Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes, Cranberry Sauce Cake, and Apple Cider Fritters.

Close-up of Spice Cupcake with cinnamon buttercream and a chocolate feather on top.

🧁 Cupcake Tips for Success

Nothing is more disappointing than spending time making a recipe, only to have the recipe not turn out! Here are some of our top tips for making amazing cupcakes, every time:

  • Have your ingredients at room temperature. The refrigerated ingredients (butter, eggs, and buttermilk) should be taken out and left to sit on the counter for about 30-45 minutes before baking, so they can come to room temperature. They will blend and incorporate better when they are not cold.
  • Weigh your ingredients when possible. If you have a kitchen scale, use that to measure out ingredients instead of measuring cups. Weight measurements are faster and more accurate than volume measurements. (If you don’t have a scale, no worries – we provide both weight and volume options in the recipe card!)
  • Don’t over-mix. Electric mixers are super convenient, but their speed and power also makes it easy to over-mix batters and doughs. When the batter is mixed too long, the cupcakes lose their light and fluffy texture and instead become dense and heavy.
  • Use a cupcake scoop. A cupcake scoop makes it easy to scoop uniformly sized cupcakes, and it’s neater than using a spatula or regular spoon, too!
  • Fill the cupcake pan 2/3 full. Don’t overfill your cupcakes – 2/3 is the perfect amount for a generously sized cupcake.
  • Bake just until done. Bake until the cupcakes spring back when lightly pressed with your fingertips.
Piping a ruffled swirl of cinnamon buttercream on a spice cupcake.

🍯Frosting Options

We’ve paired the spice cupcakes with a creamy cinnamon buttercream, but if you want to experiment, you can try all sorts of other frosting types and flavors. Here are a few of my favorite frosting recipes to try:

Spice Cupcake with a fall-colored cupcake wrapper and a chocolate feather on top.

🪶 Decorating Options

These cupcakes are decorated with Chocolate Feathers – a beautiful and easy edible decoration that’s perfect on cakes or cupcakes! You can find our full tutorial showing how to make chocolate feathers here. Here are a few other suggestions for how you can decorate these cupcakes:

  • Chocolate Leaves: Use leaves from your own backyard to make these gorgeous chocolate leaves.
  • Flower petals: Read this flower cupcake tutorial to learn how to make easy flower petals.
  • Chocolate shavings: Take a vegetable peeler to a block of chocolate to quickly create pretty chocolate curls!
  • Rosettes: Swirl multi-colored buttercream into pretty frosting rosettes with this tutorial.
  • Keep it simple: Sometimes all you need is a light dusting of freshly ground cinnamon to finish things off!
Three Spice Cupcakes on a wooden platter with fall-colored cupcake wrappers.

💭 Variations and Substitutions

  • To add even more flavor to these cupcakes, consider adding 1-2 tsp of an extract that pairs well with cinnamon, like almond or maple. You can add the extract to the cake batter, frosting, or both!
  • If you want to simplify the ingredient list a bit, swap in 1.5 tablespoons of pumpkin pie spice in place of all of the individual spices.

Make your own buttermilk

This recipe calls for buttermilk. If you don’t have buttermilk, make your own by mixing together 1/2 cup of milk and 1/2 tsp lemon juice. Let it sit for 5 minutes before using it in the recipe.

If you don’t want to make your own, you can swap in an equal amount of sour cream that’s been thinned with a bit of regular milk.

Group of Spice Cupcakes on a wooden platter.
Chocolate Feathers
Chocolate feathers are a beautiful way to add a touch of drama to any dessert. You can add these easy edible feather decorations to cakes, cupcakes, tarts, and much more!
Get the recipe!
Cake with an assortment of blue and green chocolate feathers affixed to the side.
Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes
These easy Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes have a light, fluffy texture and are loaded with pumpkin spice flavor. Top them with cream cheese frosting for the ultimate fall dessert.
Get the recipe!
Three pumpkin spice cupcakes, the one in the front has a bite taken out of it.

Leave a review!

If you make this recipe, let us know! Leave a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating on the recipe below, and leave a comment, take a photo and tag me on Instagram @elabau, or use #sugarhero on IG!

Photo of Spice Cupcakes on a wooden tree slice with chocolate feather decorations.
Print

Spice Cupcakes with Cinnamon Buttercream

Spice cupcakes are moist, fall-flavored cupcakes made with brown sugar and tons of warm, cozy spices. Finish them off with a big swirl of cinnamon buttercream and a beautiful chocolate feather!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword cinnamon, pumpkin cupcakes, pumpkin dessert, Thanksgiving
Dessert Type Cupcakes
Prep Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 50 minutes
Servings 18 cupcakes
Calories 382kcal

Ingredients

For the Spice Cupcakes:

  • 6.37 oz all-purpose flour (1.5 cups)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 TBSP ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 6 oz butter (1.5 sticks), at room temperature
  • 3.5 oz granulated sugar (1/2 cup)
  • 3.75 oz brown sugar (1/2 cup), packed
  • 3 large eggs at room temperature
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 fl oz buttermilk (1/2 cup), at room temperature

For the Cinnamon Buttercream:

  • 3 fl oz pasteurized liquid egg whites
  • 12 oz powdered sugar (3 cups)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 12 oz unsalted butter (3 sticks), at room temperature
  • 1 TBSP vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon

To Decorate:

Instructions

To Make the Spice Cupcakes:

  • Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line cupcake pans with 18 paper liners.
  • Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices in a small bowl, and whisk them together. Set aside for a moment.
  • Place the butter and both sugars in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  • Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition, then add the vanilla extract.
  • Turn the mixer speed to low and add about a third of the dry ingredients. Once the dry ingredients are incorporated, add half of the buttermilk and mix it in.
  • Add half the remaining drys, then the rest of the buttermilk, and finish with the remaining dry ingredients. Stop the mixer when just a few streaks of flour remain. Finish mixing by hand with a rubber spatula, scraping the bottom and sides of the mixing bowl well.
  • Scoop the batter into 18 cupcake liners. Bake for about 20 minutes at 350 F, until the tops spring back lightly when touched. Cool completely.

To Make the Cinnamon Buttercream:

  • Combine the whites, powdered sugar, and salt in the bowl of a large stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Mix everything together on low speed, until the sugar is moistened and no dry patches remain.
  • Turn off the mixer, scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl with a spatula, then turn the mixer to medium speed. Beat on medium for 5 minutes.
  • After 5 minutes, turn the mixer to medium-low and start adding the softened room temperature butter, a few tablespoons at a time. Once all of the butter is incorporated, add the vanilla extract and cinnamon and mix it in. Stop the mixer and scrape down the bottom and sides once more.
  • Turn the speed to medium and beat the buttercream for 10 minutes. At the end, you’ll have a frosting with a wonderfully light and creamy texture. It can be used right away, or stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks, or the freezer for up to two months. If you have chilled the frosting, let it come to room temperature and then beat it for several minutes to smooth it out and restore its texture before using it.

To Assemble:

  • Fit a piping bag with a large open star tip, and fill it with cinnamon buttercream. Pipe a big dollop of frosting on top of each cupcake, and if desired, add a few gold sprinkles. Finish by gently place a chocolate feather on top of each cupcake.

Nutrition

Calories: 382kcal | Carbohydrates: 39g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 88mg | Sodium: 179mg | Potassium: 67mg | Fiber: 0g | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 760IU | Vitamin C: 0mg | Calcium: 38mg | Iron: 0.8mg
Photo of Spice Cupcakes with text overlay for Pinterest.

About Elizabeth LaBau

I’m Elizabeth, but you can call me SugarHero! I’m a former pastry chef turned blogger, cookbook author, and baking instructor, and I consider myself sugar’s #1 fan. Learn more from my About page, or connect with me on social media:

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https://www.sugarhero.com/spice-cupcakes/feed/ 6 Spice Cupcakes Spice Cupcakes Spice Cupcakes Spice Cupcakes Spice Cupcakes Spice Cupcakes Cake with an assortment of blue and green chocolate feathers affixed to the side. Three pumpkin spice cupcakes, the one in the front has a bite taken out of it. Photo of Spice Cupcakes on a wooden tree slice with chocolate feather decorations. Spice Cupcakes
Chocolate Feathers https://www.sugarhero.com/chocolate-feathers/ https://www.sugarhero.com/chocolate-feathers/#comments Mon, 28 Nov 2022 19:47:00 +0000 https://www.sugarhero.com/?p=19401 Cake with an assortment of blue and green chocolate feathers affixed to the side.

Chocolate feathers are a beautiful way to add a touch of drama to any dessert. Add these easy edible feather decorations to cakes, cupcakes, tarts, and much more. ]]>
Cake with an assortment of blue and green chocolate feathers affixed to the side.

Chocolate feathers are a beautiful way to add a touch of drama to any dessert. You can add these easy edible feather decorations to cakes, cupcakes, tarts, and much more.

Cake with an assortment of blue and green chocolate feathers affixed to the side.

 🎂 Chocolate Feathers for Cake Decorating

Cake decorating doesn’t have to be complicated to be beautiful. Sometimes, the simplest techniques are the most striking and effective. Some of our favorite cake decorating hacks include:

These chocolate feathers, like my chocolate leaves, are made from chocolate candy coating or tempered chocolate, and brushed with edible luster dust to make them glimmer and shine. They can be made weeks or even months in advance if stored properly, so I always make a few extra to have on hand when I want to whip out an impressive dessert with minimal effort.

Chocolate feathers can be used to decorate any dessert, but I think they would look especially beautiful on fall-themed recipes like Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes, Brown Sugar Cranberry Cake, and Pumpkin Pound Cake.

Two cupcakes on a blue plate with blue-green chocolate feathers on top.

🧾 What You’ll Need

The ingredient & equipment are minimal, but there are a few things you should know to get the best results! Here’s what you’ll need: (Links are affiliate links and I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.)

Candy Coating (vs Chocolate)

Yes, I call these “chocolate feathers,” but in most cases I do recommend using candy coating instead. Here’s why:

Real chocolate (like chocolate bars, or many types of chocolate chips) cannot simply be melted and used for decorations. It needs to be “tempered,” which is a process of heating and cooling the chocolate to certain temperatures so it stays hard and shiny once set. (Read more about how to temper chocolate here.) If chocolate is not tempered, it will most likely be soft, dull, streaked, or even grayish. That tastes fine, but it’s not appetizing! Tempering solves this problem, but it adds a lot of time and effort.

Candy coating, on the other hand, is designed to be used for dipping and decorations. It sets hard and shiny without the need for tempering, and can be re-melted and re-used again and again. It comes in a variety of colors, and is typically either vanilla flavored or chocolate flavored. I recommend Merckens, Ghirardelli, or Wilton brand.

Cupcake on a blue plate with a blue-green chocolate feather on top.

There’s no doubt that real chocolate tastes better than candy coating, and for recipes where chocolate is the star, I would definitely recommend tempering real chocolate. But for chocolate feathers, which are most often used sparingly as a garnish on another dessert, I think candy coating is an easier, cheaper substitute, and that is why I recommend it in this tutorial.

If you prefer to use real chocolate, I recommend using at least 12 oz, because it is difficult to temper small amounts of chocolate. You will have extra chocolate left over after making the feathers. You can use it to make other decorations, like Chocolate Leaves, or make homemade chocolate bars, or dip truffles, or just pour it out on parchment and let it set, then re-use it another time.

Brushing teal luster dust on a chocolate feather, with blue and green chocolate feathers scattered around.

Edible Luster Dust

Luster dust is optional, but really makes these feathers pop! “Luster dust” typically refers to a type of powdered coloring with a metallic sheen (hence the name). Not all luster dust is created equal, however. If you want your feathers to be edible (as opposed to simply decorative) make sure you use edible luster dust. My favorite edible luster dust comes from The Sugar Art. Some dusts are not intended for consumption or are labelled “non-toxic” but not edible, so make sure you purchase the right dust for your needs.

Food-Safe Paintbrush

You don’t have to buy a specific set of “food paintbrushes,” but you should use a clean brush that has not been used with real paint or other non-edible substances. I have a regular set of paintbrushes that I keep in the kitchen and use exclusively for food and decorating. Most craft stores sell individual brushes that you can pick up for a few dollars, or this affordable Wilton 5-piece set is specifically designed for decorating desserts.

Close-up of blue and green chocolate feathers on a cake.

📋 How to Make Chocolate Feathers

Once you’ve gathered everything, making chocolate feathers is a fast process. Grab a printable version of these instructions in the recipe card below.

Hands stirring melted candy coating.

Melt the candy coating

  • Place the candy coating in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave in 30 second increments, stirring regularly, until melted and smooth.
Two photo collage showing how to paint chocolate for Chocolate Feathers.

Paint a feather shape

  • Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. Dip your paintbrush in the melted coating or chocolate, and lightly sketch out the length of the feather.
  • Start making small brushstrokes out from the center. Use less pressure at the end of your strokes to create a feathered look. Once you’ve done the length of one side of the feather, repeat for the other side.
  • Repeat this process several times to create a thick layer of chocolate.
Two photo collage showing how to pipe chocolate feathers.
  • While the chocolate is still wet, use a toothpick to scratch at the ends of the feathers to make them more ragged.
  • Pipe a line of chocolate down the center of the feather, extending a bit from the end.
  • Once all of the feathers have these lines, refrigerate the tray to set the chocolate, for about 10 minutes.
Two photo collage showing how to paint chocolate feathers with luster dust.

Decorate with luster dust

  • If you want to add some sparkle to your feathers, use a dry brush to brush edible luster dust over the feathers once the chocolate is set.
  • Handle the feathers with care! It’s easiest to move them when cold (so they are sturdier). Use a spatula so the heat of your hands doesn’t soften the chocolate.
Chocolate feathers painted with blue and green luster dust on a silver platter.

💡 Tips and FAQs  

Cake with blue and green sprinkles and chocolate feather decorations.

💙 What to decorate with chocolate feathers

So you’ve made your chocolate feathers — now what? Use them as decorations on one of these desserts!

Chocolate Leaves
Chocolate leaves are an easy cake decoration that add a beautiful touch to any fall dessert.
Get the recipe!
Variety of dark and milk chocolate leaves on a white plate.
Easy Chocolate Flower Cupcakes
These sweet flower cupcakes are simple, fun, and perfect for any party! Learn how to make chocolate flowers from candy melts, and use them as cake or cupcake toppers.
Get the recipe!
Close up of a blue chocolate flower cupcake sitting on a pink and purple doily.

Don’t miss the step-by-step tutorial showing how to make Chocolate Featherscheck out the web story here!

Leave a review!

If you make this recipe, let us know! Leave a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating on the recipe below, and leave a comment, take a photo and tag me on Instagram @elabau, or use #sugarhero on IG!

Cake with an assortment of blue and green chocolate feathers affixed to the side.
Print

Chocolate Feathers

Chocolate feathers are a beautiful way to add a touch of drama to any dessert. You can add these easy edible feather decorations to cakes, cupcakes, tarts, and much more!
The exact yield depends on the size of your feathers, but you can estimate getting about 2-3 feathers (5-6" long) per ounce of candy coating.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword chocolate feathers, chocolate toppings, cupcake frosting
Dessert Type Cupcakes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 10 feathers
Calories 64kcal

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the chocolate candy coating in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave it in 30-second increments, stirring after every 30 seconds to avoid overheating. Stir until melted and smooth.
  • Dip a food-safe paintbrush in the melted coating and lightly sketch out a line the desired length of your feather on the parchment.
  • Dip the brush in chocolate and start making small brushstrokes out from the center of your guideline. Dip in the chocolate as often as necessary, using less pressure at the end of your strokes to create a feathered look. Once you've done the length of one side of the feather, repeat for the other side.
  • One coat of chocolate will not be enough, so repeat this process several times, brushing over your earlier layers, until the chocolate is a thicker layer and no longer translucent.
  • While the chocolate is still wet, use a toothpick to scratch at the ends of the feathers to make them more ragged. You can also remove larger sections of feather to create the natural gaps that many feathers have.
  • After you have made all of the feathers you need, transfer the remaining melted coating to a paper cone or plastic bag with a small hole snipped in the corner. Pipe a line of chocolate down the center of the feather, extending a bit from the end. Once all of the feathers have these lines, refrigerate the tray to set the chocolate, for about 10 minutes.
  • Optionally, to add some sparkle to your feathers, use a dry brush to brush edible luster dust over the feathers once the chocolate is set.
  • These feathers are very delicate, so they need to be handled with care! Remove them from the tray when they are fresh from the refrigerator—the cold chocolate will be more sturdy than room temperature chocolate. I find it easiest to lift up the parchment with one hand underneath, and with the other, run a metal spatula under the feather and lift it from the parchment that way.

Video

Nutrition

Calories: 64kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 0g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 0mg | Sodium: 3mg | Sugar: 8g

About Elizabeth LaBau

I’m Elizabeth, but you can call me SugarHero! I’m a former pastry chef turned blogger, cookbook author, and baking instructor, and I consider myself sugar’s #1 fan. Learn more from my About page, or connect with me on social media:

]]>
https://www.sugarhero.com/chocolate-feathers/feed/ 17 Chocolate Feathers - SugarHero Chocolate feathers are a beautiful way to add a touch of drama to any dessert. You can add these easy edible feather decorations to cakes, cupcakes, tarts, and much more. Chocolate Recipes,Fall Recipes,Thanksgiving Recipes,Chocolate Feathers Chocolate Feathers Chocolate Feathers Chocolate Feathers Chocolate Feathers Chocolate Feathers Chocolate Feathers Chocolate Feathers Chocolate Feathers Chocolate Feathers Chocolate Feathers Chocolate Feathers Variety of dark and milk chocolate leaves on a white plate. Close up of a blue chocolate flower cupcake sitting on a pink and purple doily. Cake with an assortment of blue and green chocolate feathers affixed to the side. Chocolate Feathers
Cranberry Sauce Cake https://www.sugarhero.com/cranberry-sauce-cake/ https://www.sugarhero.com/cranberry-sauce-cake/#comments Tue, 22 Nov 2022 20:53:26 +0000 https://www.sugarhero.com/?p=46609 Slice of Cranberry Sauce Cake topped with whipped cream, on a white plate.

This Cranberry Sauce Cake is an easy Thanksgiving cake recipe. It features two orange-scented cake layers and cranberry orange sauce filling, for the perfect combination of sweet-tart fall flavors.]]>
Slice of Cranberry Sauce Cake topped with whipped cream, on a white plate.

This Cranberry Sauce Cake is an easy Thanksgiving cake recipe. It features two orange-scented cake layers and cranberry orange sauce filling, for the perfect combination of sweet-tart fall flavors.

Gold pie server removing a slice of Cranberry Sauce Cake from the whole cake.

 🦃 The Easiest Thanksgiving Cake You’ll Make

Looking to do something different for your Thanksgiving dessert this year? Skip the pie recipes and make this delicious Cranberry Sauce Cake instead! It’s easy to make, comes together quickly, and it keeps well, so you can make it several days in advance and minimize your holiday baking stress.

Logistics aside, this cake will win you over with its taste and texture. The cake is tender, with a crackling sugar crust on top, and a tart-and-tangy filling that goes perfectly with the citrusy sugar cookie flavor of the cake layers.

Slice of Cranberry Sauce Cake on a white plate, with a bite taken out by a gold fork.

Sugar Cookie? Or Cake?

Although I call this a “cake,” the cake layers more closely resemble a sugar cookie (which is a plus in my book!) It starts with a thick dough that is chilled, rolled out, and pressed into a cake pan. A generous layer of cranberry sauce in the middle keeps the cake moist for days, and balances out the cake’s sweetness with a bracing tart flavor.

This cake is charming in its simplicity, and it’s a refreshing change from some of the heavier, more indulgent holiday cake recipes.

I’ve made a version of this cake with a raspberry-kumquat layer before, and it was equally delicious, so don’t be afraid to play around with the filling! Here are a few other unconventional holiday favorite I think you’ll love: Dulce de Leche Pumpkin Pie, Persimmon Almond Rosette Tarts, and Chocolate Raspberry Almond Truffle Tarts.

Slice of Cranberry Sauce Cake on a white plate, with a gold fork in the background.

🧾 What You’ll Need

Overhead shot of ingredients needed to make Cranberry Sauce Cake.

Ingredients

Here’s what you need to know as you gather your ingredients:

  • Cranberry Sauce: As the name suggests, cranberry sauce is the star of the show, so make sure you use a delicious cranberry sauce you enjoy eating. This is not the time to skimp and use a dusty can of sauce from the back of the pantry! I love and highly recommend my homemade cranberry sauce, but a good-quality store-bought sauce will also work.
  • Butter: You’ll want your butter to be room temperature before beginning, so it mixes easily into the cake layers.
  • Eggs: We’re using one egg and one egg yolk in this recipe. Here’s my full guide to separating egg yolks and whites if you need a refresher, and don’t forget to save the egg white for a future batch of Meringue Cookies or buttercream!
  • Orange zest:One of my FAVORITE things about this recipe is the subtle but ever-present orange flavor, and that comes from rubbing orange zest into the sugar at the start of the recipe. This releases the orange oil and disperses the citrus fragrance everywhere. You can omit it if orange isn’t your thing, or use lemon zest instead.
Slice of Cranberry Sauce Cake with a gold fork about to take a bite out of it.

Equipment

You don’t need much in the way of special equipment to make this cake, but there are a few things that will make your baking life easier: (Links are affiliate links and I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.)

  • Cake pan with removable bottom: This is optional, but HIGHLY recommended! A cake pan with a removable bottom makes unmolding this cake a breeze. You can also use a springform pan, if you have one, or check the Notes section in the recipe card for suggestions if using a standard cake pan.
  • Microplane: I find a microplane to be the easiest way to zest the orange. If you don’t have one, you can also use a cheese grater.
  • Mixer:You’ll want a stand mixer (fitted with a paddle attachment), or a hand mixer to make this recipe.
Slice of Cranberry Sauce Cake on a white plate with a mound of whipped cream on top.

📋 How to Make Cranberry Sauce Cake

Here’s a photo walkthrough of how to make this cranberry cake. You can find full printable instructions in the recipe card down below.

Two photo collage showing how to make the dough for Cranberry Sauce Cake.
  • Here’s the secret to super-intense orange flavor in your cake! Before you begin the mixing process, rub orange zest and sugar together between your fingertips, until the sugar has the texture of damp sand and it is very fragrant.
  • Add butter to the orange sugar and mix for a minute, until light and fluffy.
  • Add the egg, yolk, and vanilla extract and mix well.
Two photo collage showing how to roll out the dough for Cranberry Sauce Cake.
  • With the mixer running on low, slowly stream in the dry ingredients until just a few streaks of flour remain. Finish mixing by hand.
  • Divide the dough in half and chill until firm.
  • Roll out half of the dough into a 9-inch circle.
Two photo collage showing how to assemble a Cranberry Sauce Cake.
  • Line a cake pan with parchment, and press the dough circle into the bottom of the pan.
  • Spread a thick layer of cranberry sauce on top of the dough.
Two photo collage showing how to add top layer of dough to Cranberry Sauce Cake.
  • Roll out the second half of the dough and place it on top of the cranberry sauce.
  • Lightly brush the top of the dough with water or beaten egg, and sprinkle granulated sugar on top.
  • Bake until puffed and lightly golden.
Whole Cranberry Sauce Cake on a fluted white plate, on rustic wooden planks.

💭 Variations

There are so many ways you can customize this recipe and make it your own! Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Try different fruit: swap in a chunky jam for the cranberry sauce. Cherry and berry jams work particularly well. You can check out my Raspberry Kumquat Sugar Cookie Cake if you want some raspberry inspiration!
  • Use pie filling: apple, pear, or peach pie filling would also be delicious. Make sure the filling is quite thick, not watery, so the texture of the cake isn’t negatively affected. If necessary, drain it for awhile before adding it to the cake.
  • Use other citrus: Instead of orange zest, try lemon zest or grapefruit zest.
  • Spice it up: add cinnamon or a pumpkin pie spice blend to the dough, and sprinkle the top with a generous layer of cinnamon-sugar.
  • Make ’em mini: make individual cakelets in muffin tins for the ultimate cute single-serving dessert!
Gold pie server removing a slice of Cranberry Sauce Cake from the whole cake.

💡 Tips and FAQs  

Slice of Cranberry Sauce Cake on a white plate, with a bite taken out by a gold fork.
Cranberry Orange Sauce
This easy cranberry-orange sauce is made with orange juice, orange zest, and fresh or frozen cranberries, for the perfect sweet-tart flavor that goes with both sweet and savory recipes.
Get the recipe!
Homemade cranberry sauce in a white bowl with a gold spoon.
Cranberry Curd Almond Cake
This Cranberry Curd Almond Cake is a new way to enjoy cranberries! The soft almond cake has wonderfully chewy edges and is filled with a sweet-tart cranberry curd. Add this to your Thanksgiving menu this year!
Get the recipe!
Cranberry Curd Almond Cake on a brown plate with a slice being removed.

Leave a review!

If you make this recipe, let us know! Leave a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating on the recipe below, and leave a comment, take a photo and tag me on Instagram @elabau, or use #sugarhero on IG!

Slice of Cranberry Sauce Cake topped with whipped cream, on a white plate.
Print

Cranberry Sauce Cake

This Cranberry Sauce Cake is an easy Thanksgiving cake recipe. It features two orange-scented cake layers and cranberry orange sauce filling, for the perfect combination of sweet-tart fall flavors.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword cranberry, Fall desserts, Thanksgiving
Dessert Type Cake
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Chilling Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes
Servings 10 servings
Calories 374kcal

Ingredients

  • 11.25 oz all-purpose flour (2.5 cups)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 7 oz granulated sugar (1 cup)
  • 1 TBSP orange zest from 1 large orange
  • 6 oz butter (¾ cup), at room temperature
  • 1 egg at room temperature
  • 1 egg yolk at room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 20 oz cranberry sauce (about 1 3/4 cups)

Instructions

  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt, and set aside.
  • Combine the sugar and orange zest in the bowl of a large stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Rub them together between your fingertips, working the orange zest into the sugar until it’s evenly dispersed and very fragrant.
  • Add the butter to the sugar in the bowl, and mix together on medium speed for a minute, until light and fluffy.
  • With the mixer running on low, add the egg. Once it’s incorporated, add the yolk, and then the vanilla extract.
  • Continue to mix on low speed and gradually stream in the flour mixture. Stop when just a few streaks of flour remain. Finish mixing by hand, scraping down the bottom and sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula to make sure everything is well-mixed.
  • Divide the dough in half – if you are using a kitchen scale, you should get two 13-oz portions. Form the dough into disks and wrap each disk in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 minutes, until chilled and firm.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 F (175 C). Line a 9-inch cake pan or springform pan with a circle of parchment paper, and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Roll out one half of the dough into a 9” circle, and carefully transfer it into the cake pan. Use your fingers to push it into place and mend any rips or tears.
  • Spoon the cranberry sauce onto the dough, and spread it out to the edges of the cake in an even layer.
  • Roll out the second half of the dough into another circle, and place it on top of the cranberry sauce.
  • Lightly brush the top of the dough with water or beaten egg, and sprinkle granulated sugar on top.
  • Bake the cake at 350 F for 35-40 minutes, until puffed and lightly golden.
  • Let the cake cool at room temperature for 20 minutes, then remove it from the pan and let it cool completely on a wire rack. (See Note below for unmolding instructions if you are using a cake pan without a removable bottom.)
  • Cranberry Sauce Cake can be kept, well-wrapped, for 3 days at room temperature and up to a week in the refrigerator. You can also freeze it for up to 3 months. Let it defrost in the refrigerator overnight, and let it come to room temperature before serving. Serve plain, with whipped cream, or with a scoop of ice cream on top!

Notes

It is easiest to unmold the cake if you use a cake pan with a removable bottom or springform pan. If you are using a cake pan without a removable bottom, let it cool completely in the pan before attempting removal. Run a small metal spatula or knife around the edge to loosen it, then place a cake cardboard or plate directly on top of the cake. Flip the pan upside-down, so the top of the cake rests on the board, and remove the pan. Peel off the parchment paper. Place your serving plate on the bottom of the cake, and flip it over again so the cake is right-side up on the plate.

Nutrition

Calories: 374kcal | Carbohydrates: 56g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 235mg | Potassium: 97mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 29g | Vitamin A: 489IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 2mg
Picture of Cranberry Sauce Cake with text overlay for Pinterest.

About Elizabeth LaBau

I’m Elizabeth, but you can call me SugarHero! I’m a former pastry chef turned blogger, cookbook author, and baking instructor, and I consider myself sugar’s #1 fan. Learn more from my About page, or connect with me on social media:

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https://www.sugarhero.com/cranberry-sauce-cake/feed/ 10 Cranberry Sauce Cake Cranberry Sauce Cake Cranberry Sauce Cake Cranberry Sauce Cake Cranberry Sauce Cake Cranberry Sauce Cake Cranberry Sauce Cake Cranberry Sauce Cake Cranberry Sauce Cake Cranberry Sauce Cake Cranberry Sauce Cake Cranberry Sauce Cake Cranberry Sauce Cake Homemade cranberry sauce in a white bowl with a gold spoon. Cranberry Curd Almond Cake on a brown plate with a slice being removed. Slice of Cranberry Sauce Cake topped with whipped cream, on a white plate. Cranberry Sauce Cake
Cranberry Orange Sauce https://www.sugarhero.com/homemade-cranberry-sauce/ https://www.sugarhero.com/homemade-cranberry-sauce/#comments Tue, 22 Nov 2022 02:00:00 +0000 https://www.sugarhero.com/?p=28762 Homemade cranberry sauce in a white bowl with a gold spoon.

Say hello to your new favorite cranberry sauce recipe! This easy cranberry-orange sauce is made with orange juice, orange zest, and fresh or frozen cranberries, for the perfect sweet-tart flavor that goes with both sweet and savory recipes.]]>
Homemade cranberry sauce in a white bowl with a gold spoon.

Say hello to your new favorite cranberry sauce recipe! This easy cranberry-orange sauce is made with orange juice, orange zest, and fresh or frozen cranberries, for the perfect sweet-tart flavor that goes with both sweet and savory recipes.

Fresh cranberry sauce in a white bowl with a gold spoon taking a scoop of sauce.

You’ll love this easy cranberry sauce recipe

Cranberry sauce is the little black dress of the holiday menu. It’s versatile, can be dressed up or down, and goes with absolutely everything. Sweet or savory, every dish can be improved with the sweet-and-sour punch of fresh cranberry sauce.

If your only experience with cranberry sauce is the gelatinous “cranberry” “sauce” that wiggles out of a can, get ready for your life to change!

Homemade cranberry sauce in a white bowl with a gold spoon.

REAL cranberry sauce, THIS cranberry sauce, is tart and tangy, with a vibrant berry taste that is boosted with orange juice and orange zest. It’s equally at home on turkey, goat cheese, or a buttery tart base, and the best part is, it’s SO easy to make!

This simple cranberry sauce recipe needs only 5 ingredients and 15 minutes to come together. It can be made with fresh or frozen cranberries, so you can stockpile berries when they’re in season, and enjoy this recipe all year long!

Cranberry lovers, don’t miss some of our favorite cranberry recipes, including Cranberry Curd Almond Cake, Apple Cranberry Gouda Puff Pastry Roses, and Cranberry Orange Trifle!

🧾 What You’ll Need

Overhead shot of ingredients for homemade cranberry sauce.

Ingredients

I promised simple, and it doesn’t get much more simple than this! Here’s what you’ll need to make my cranberry orange sauce: (Links are affiliate links and I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.)

  • Orange zest and orange juice: you just need one large orange for both the zest and the juice.
  • Cranberries: Fresh or frozen cranberries will both work, and you don’t even need to defrost the frozen berries before you begin!
  • Granulated sugar: If you want to add a deeper, richer caramelized flavor, swap the white sugar for brown sugar instead.
  • Vanilla extract and ground cinnamon: both the vanilla extract and the cinnamon add warmth and flavor depth, which works to balance out the tartness of the cranberries. These are optional but highly recommended.

Equipment

You just need a couple basic pieces of equipment for this recipe. (Links are affiliate links and I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.)

  • Saucepan: I use a 3-quart saucepan which is plenty big to fit all of the ingredients. If you’re doubling or tripling the recipe, you’ll want to use a larger one.
  • Microplane: I find a microplane to be the easiest way to zest the orange. If you don’t have one, you can also use a cheese grater.
  • Citrus Juicer: a citrus juicer makes it so much easier to get all the juice out of the orange.
Homemade cranberry sauce in a white bowl with a piece of cranberry cake behind.

📋 Instructions

Got 15 minutes? Then you’ve got cranberry-orange sauce! Here’s a quick rundown of the procedure, and you can find full instructions in the recipe card down below.

Two photo collage showing how to zest and juice an orange.

Zest and juice the orange

  • Start by zesting a large orange with a microplane.
  • Once zested, juice the orange and measure out 1/3 cup of juice. (Any remaining juice is for the cook to drink!)
Two photo collage showing how to combine ingredients to make Cranberry Sauce.

Combine and cook

  • Combine all of the ingredients — cranberries, sugar, orange juice, orange zest, vanilla, and cinnamon — in a medium saucepan.
  • Turn the heat to medium, and stir with a spatula to mix the ingredients well.
Two photo collage showing how to cook cranberry sauce.
  • Continue to cook the cranberry sauce, stirring frequently, until the cranberries pop and the mixture thickens, about 15-20 minutes.
  • Once most of the cranberries have popped, remove the pan from the heat and let it cool a bit before serving.
Homemade cranberry sauce in a white bowl with a gold spoon and cranberry cake in the background.

🍽 How to Serve Cranberry Sauce

Cranberry Sauce is traditionally considered a seasonal Thanksgiving recipe, but once you taste the sweet-tart citrus and cranberry flavor of this easy sauce, I think you’ll agree that it should be in regular rotation year-round. Here are just a few ways you can use this versatile recipe:

  • Dinner side dish (aka the customary use): The bracing acidity is great for cutting through rich and salty foods at your next Thanksgiving or Christmas feast. A forkful of mashed potatoes, gravy, and cranberry sauce is pure heaven.
  • Appetizer: Pair your cranberry sauce with crackers and your favorite cheese as part of a holiday charcuterie board.
  • Cake filling: I’ve added cranberry sauce to everything from dense chocolate truffle cake to a striking brown sugar layer cake. It’s also the star of the show in my Cranberry Sauce Cake! It improves any cake recipe you pair it with.
  • Mousse topping: I love this light and airy orange mousse topped with tangy cranberry sauce, but you don’t have to stop there. Adding it to chocolate mousse or pumpkin mousse would also be delicious.
  • Tart filling: Spread a thick layer of cranberry sauce on a chocolate tart, pistachio tart, or almond tart.
  • Jam substitute: Sub in cranberry sauce anywhere you would use a chunky jam: linzer cookies, swirled brownies, or even PB&J sandwiches.
Overhead shot of homemade cranberry sauce in a small white bowl with cranberry cake in the background.

💭 Variations

This cranberry sauce is so good as it is, but here are a few different ways you can switch things up:

  • Smooth it out: My personal preference is a thicker, chunkier cranberry sauce, so that’s how this recipe is written. However, if you prefer a thinner, more jam-like sauce, you can add up to 1 cup of orange juice, and blend the sauce with a blender for a smoother texture.
  • Swap the sweetener. You can swap the granulated sugar out for brown sugar for a deeper, more caramel-y taste. You could also use maple syrup or honey to add additional flavor.
  • Add nuts. If you prefer a cranberry sauce with a little bit of crunch, try mixing in toasted or candied pecans or walnuts.
  • Change citrus: you can make this recipe with lemons instead of oranges. I recommend diluting the lemon juice with some water so it’s less sour, but you could also keep the lemon juice full strength and play with the amount of sugar to compensate.
Homemade cranberry sauce in a white bowl with a gold spoon sticking out.

💡 Tips and FAQs  

Close up of cranberry sauce in a white bowl with a gold spoonful of sauce hovering over bowl.

❤ More Cranberry Recipes You’ll Love

Check out more of my delicious recipes using cranberries!

Strawberry Sauce
This homemade strawberry sauce couldn’t be easier–or more delicious! This three-ingredient recipe is bursting with fresh strawberry flavor.
Get the recipe!
Glass jar of Strawberry Sauce with blue spoon sticking out.
Blueberry Sauce
This blueberry sauce is made using fresh or frozen berries and has a hint of lemon. Use it on your favorite dessert for a burst of berry flavor!
Get the recipe!
Close up of blueberry sauce in a glass mason jar with a gold spoon in it.

Leave a review!

If you make this recipe, let us know! Leave a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating on the recipe below, and leave a comment, take a photo and tag me on Instagram @elabau, or use #sugarhero on IG!

Homemade cranberry sauce in a white bowl with a gold spoon.
Print

Cranberry Orange Sauce

Say hello to your new favorite cranberry sauce recipe! This easy cranberry-orange sauce is made with orange juice, orange zest, and fresh or frozen cranberries, for the perfect sweet-tart flavor that goes with both sweet and savory recipes.
This recipe yields about 1 lb of cranberry sauce (1.75 cups) which is roughly seven (1/4-cup) servings.
Course Sauce
Cuisine American
Keyword cranberry, orange, Thanksgiving
Dessert Type Sauce
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 7 servings
Calories 140kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 TBSP fresh orange zest from 1 large orange
  • 1/3 cup fresh orange juice from 1 large orange
  • 12 oz cranberries (3 cups), fresh or frozen
  • 7 oz granulated sugar (1 cup)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon

Instructions

  • Zest one large orange, and set the zest aside.
  • Juice the orange, and measure out ⅓ cup of juice. If you don’t have quite enough, add water to make it ⅓ cup liquid.
  • Combine the orange zest, orange juice, cranberries, sugar, vanilla and cinnamon in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat.
  • Cook the mixture, stirring frequently, until the cranberries pop and the mixture thickens, about 15-20 minutes. Once most of the cranberries have popped, remove the pan from the heat and let it cool completely before using.
  • The cranberry filling can be made up to a week in advance and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to use.
  • Variation: if you like a smoother cranberry sauce, you can add additional liquid (up to 1 cup of orange juice), and blend the sauce after it has cooked using a stick blender or regular blender.

Notes

The cranberry filling can be made up to a week in advance and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to use. 

Nutrition

Calories: 140kcal | Carbohydrates: 36g | Protein: 0.3g | Fat: 0.2g | Saturated Fat: 0.01g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.03g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.01g | Sodium: 1mg | Potassium: 65mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 31g | Vitamin A: 56IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Calcium: 10mg | Iron: 0.2mg
Photo of Cranberry Orange Sauce with text overlay for Pinterest.

About Elizabeth LaBau

I’m Elizabeth, but you can call me SugarHero! I’m a former pastry chef turned blogger, cookbook author, and baking instructor, and I consider myself sugar’s #1 fan. Learn more from my About page, or connect with me on social media:

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https://www.sugarhero.com/homemade-cranberry-sauce/feed/ 19 Cranberry Orange Sauce Cranberry Orange Sauce Cranberry Orange Sauce Ingredients Cranberry Orange Sauce Cranberry Orange Sauce Cranberry Orange Sauce Cranberry Orange Sauce Cranberry Orange Sauce Cranberry Orange Sauce Cranberry Orange Sauce Cranberry Orange Sauce Glass jar of Strawberry Sauce with blue spoon sticking out. Close up of blueberry sauce in a glass mason jar with a gold spoon in it. Homemade cranberry sauce in a white bowl with a gold spoon. Cranberry Orange Sauce
Pear Pie In A Jar Recipe https://www.sugarhero.com/pear-pie-in-a-jar/ https://www.sugarhero.com/pear-pie-in-a-jar/#comments Mon, 21 Nov 2022 21:26:00 +0000 https://www.sugarhero.com/?p=19350 Assortment of Pear Pies on a wooden surface.

Pear Pie In A Jar is a fun twist on traditional pie. These cute mini pear pies in glass jars make great gifts or desserts for the holidays!]]>
Assortment of Pear Pies on a wooden surface.

Pear Pie In A Jar is a fun twist on traditional pie. These cute mini pear pies in glass jars make great gifts or desserts for the holidays!

Assortment of Pear Pies In A Jar on a wooden surface.

 🍐 Fall in love with this pie in a jar recipe

There is something so satisfying about a self-contained single-serving dessert! Even if you end up eating two or three of them (ahem…guilty as charged) it still feels socially acceptable because of their adorable size.

These mini salted caramel pear pies are no exception. In addition to being cute, they’re easy AND delicious! Don’t be fooled by their small size, because they are still big on flavor, with a buttery flaky crust and a warm caramel-pear filling. Bake them right in mini glass jars and finish them off with a cute ribbon for the ultimate edible gift.

Here’s how easy it is:
Find some cute mini mason jars (or pick up these glass ones that I used), line them with crust, fill with fruit filling, and watch the tops puff up to perfection while baking. Once cooled, decorate for someone you love, set them out at the end of your Thanksgiving meal, or dive in all by yourself! You can dress these little babies up with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, or thick salted caramel sauce.

For more mini dessert inspiration, check out our Red Velvet Cake In A Jar, Mini Pecan Pies, Easter No-Bake Mini Cheesecakes, and Mini Oreo Icebox Cakes.

Assortment of Pear Pies In A Jar on a wooden surface.

🧾 What You’ll Need for Mason Jar Pies

Ingredients

Gather your ingredients to make these mini pear pies! Here are a few tips to keep in mind. (Links are affiliate links and I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.)

  • Pears: Look for firm pears that have just a little give when you squeeze them. If they are too soft, they will become mushy when you bake them. Bartlett, Anjou, and Bosc pears are all good choices.
  • Cornstarch: Cornstarch is used to thicken the pie filling. Mix it with cold water to avoid lumps, then stir it into the hot filling and let it cook and thicken down.
  • Brown sugar: Depending on the sweetness of your pears and caramel sauce, you might want to skip the brown sugar in the filling. If your pears are not very sweet, go ahead and include it.
  • Salted caramel sauce:Homemade or store-bought caramel sauce both work. If going the store-bought route, look for a thick, spoonable sauce in jars, not the thin kind that comes in squeeze bottles. My personal favorite is Trader Joe’s Caramel Sauce.
  • Pie crust: to keep these as simple as possible, I’m recommending using a high-quality frozen pie crust here. (A second shout-out to Trader Joe’s is in order, because I love their frozen crust!) You can absolutely make your own if you’d like, here is my favorite pie crust recipe.
Close-up of pear pie baked in a small glass jar, with fresh pears in the background.

Equipment

  • Mini jars: This recipe is written for 4-ounce glass jars, similar to these. You can use 6- or even 8-ounce jars, but your yield and baking time will need to be adjusted.
  • Round cutter set: A large round cutter makes it easy to get the perfect size pie crust tops.
  • Heart cookie cutters: Necessary? No. Adorable? Heck yes! Use a mini heart cutter to cut a little heart from the center of each pie crust topper to really gild the lily.
  • Pastry brush: No baker should be without a pastry brush. Here, we use one to brush beaten egg on top of the pie crusts so they brown while baking.

📋 How to Make Mini Pear Pies

Here’s a quick overview of how to assemble these mini pies! Grab printable instructions in the recipe card down below.

2 photo process picture of lining jars with crust and filling with pears for Pear Pies in a Jar.
  • Roll the pie crust out into a very thin layer. (This is important: a thicker crust won’t crisp properly and will be soggy!)
  • Line mini glass jars with that thin crust.
  • Fill with cooled pear pie filling.
2 photo process picture of making the top for Pear Pies in a Jar.
  • Use a large round cutter to cut out circles of dough 2 inches wider than the top of the jars. Cut a heart shape (or other shape) from the center of each circle.
  • Brush a bit of beaten egg on the dough that’s at the top of the jar, and press the circle of dough on top, sealing them together. Crimp the edges, then brush the top with more beaten egg and sprinkle granulated sugar on top.
Baked pear pies in mini glass jars on a wooden cutting board.
  • Bake until the tops are puffed, golden brown, and the filling is visibly bubbling.
  • Let the pies cool until they’re warm but not hot before serving. 

💭 Variations

  • Try other fruit fillings: apple, raspberry, triple berry, cherry, and blueberry are all delicious options!
  • Make ’em cute: Use your creativity to embellish the jars with ribbons, little pendants or gift tags to match any special occasion or holiday.
  • Customize: the cut out shape on top.
  • Spice it up: sprinkle the top with cinnamon sugar instead of just sugar.
  • Serve: with ice cream, whipped cream, Cinnamon Syrup, or your favorite dessert sauce.
Top view of the crust of the Pear Pie in a Jar.

💡 Tips and FAQs  

If you have extra pie filling after assembling the pies, don’t throw it away! (And don’t eat it all plain…) Save it to top up the baked pies later. The filling will shrink down after baking, leaving a hole between the crust and filling, and you can spoon a little more filling in the top if you’d like.

If you are trying this with other fruit fillings, keep in mind that the baking time is too short to thoroughly cook harder fruits like apples and pears. For these and similar fillings, I recommend pre-cooking the fruit (like in this recipe!) for best results.

Close up of a Pear Pie in a Jar with a fork lifting out a bite.
Strawberry Rhubarb Pie
This strawberry rhubarb pie is a summertime classic! A flaky, buttery crust is filled with the perfect combination of sweet, juicy strawberries and tart rhubarb.
Get the recipe!
Overhead shot of a baked strawberry rhubarb pie with a lattice crust top.
Peanut Butter Chocolate Pie
This Peanut Butter Chocolate Pie has a chocolate cookie crust, a thin layer of chocolate ganache, and a thick layer of peanut butter mousse.
Get the recipe!

Don’t miss the step-by-step tutorial showing how to make Pear Pies in Jarscheck out the web story here!

Leave a review!

If you make this recipe, let us know! Leave a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating on the recipe below, and leave a comment, take a photo and tag me on Instagram @elabau, or use #sugarhero on IG!

Assortment of Pear Pies on a wooden surface.
Print

Pear Pie In A Jar

Pear Pie In A Jar is a fun twist on traditional pie. These cute mini pear pies in glass jars make great gifts or desserts for the holidays!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword Fall desserts, mini desserts, pear, Thanksgiving
Dessert Type Pies
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 2 hours
Servings 8 mini pies
Calories 441kcal

Ingredients

  • 3.5 lbs fresh pears (about 7 large)
  • 1 oz butter (2 TBSP)
  • 2 TBSP cornstarch
  • 2 TBSP cold water
  • 5 oz salted caramel sauce (1/2 cup)
  • 3 TBSP brown sugar
  • 2 frozen roll-out pie crusts
  • 8 glass jars (4 oz size)
  • 1 egg lightly beaten
  • 2 TBSP granulated sugar

Instructions

To make the filling:

  • Peel the pears, core them, and chop them into ½-inch cubes.
  • Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat, then add the pears.
  • Whisk together the cornstarch and cold water in a small bowl, until there are no lumps of starch, then add the corn starch mixture, caramel sauce, and brown sugar to the pears.
  • Simmer everything for about 20 minutes, until the pears soften, take on a light caramel color, and the liquid reduces to a thick syrup.
  • Cool the filling completely before assembling the pies. The pear mixture can be spread out on a baking sheet and placed in the refrigerator to speed the chilling process, if desired.

To make the pies:

  • Preheat the oven to 375 F.
  • Follow the pie crust instructions for defrosting and unrolling the crusts.
  • My jars were tall and narrow, and I found it easiest to roll one crust very thin, and cut it into wide vertical strips. Cut a strip into rectangles, and press one rectangle all the way around the inside of the jar, pressing the crust even thinner as you place it in the jar. Cut out a circle of dough and press it into the bottom of the jar, sealing it to the edges of the sides so that the entire inside of the jar is covered with crust. Repeat until all of the jars have an inner crust layer.
  • Fill the jars with the cooled pie filling. I used about 4 oz of filling for each pie. If you have extra left over, reserve it for later.
  • Unroll the second crust and use a large round cutter to cut out circles of dough about 2 inches wider than the top of the jars. Cut a heart shape (or other shape) from the center of each circle.
  • Brush a bit of beaten egg on the dough that’s at the top of the jar, and press the circle of dough on top, sealing them together. Crimp the edges, then brush the top with more beaten egg and sprinkle granulated sugar on top.
  • Place the pie jars on a baking sheet lined with parchment or foil. Bake the pies for about 40-45 minutes, until the tops are puffed, golden brown, and the filling is visibly bubbling. If the top crusts seem to be getting too brown, cover them loosely with tented foil.
  • Let the pies cool until they’re warm but not hot before serving. If you have extra pear filling, you can use it to “top up” the pies, since the filling will shrink down after baking, leaving a hole between the crust and filling.
  • Serve the pies with ice cream or whipped cream, and caramel sauce.

Nutrition

Serving: 8g | Calories: 441kcal | Carbohydrates: 71g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 28mg | Sodium: 289mg | Potassium: 298mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 25g | Vitamin A: 180IU | Vitamin C: 8.5mg | Calcium: 40mg | Iron: 1.8mg
Photo of Pear Pie In A Jar with text overlay for Pinterest.

About Elizabeth LaBau

I’m Elizabeth, but you can call me SugarHero! I’m a former pastry chef turned blogger, cookbook author, and baking instructor, and I consider myself sugar’s #1 fan. Learn more from my About page, or connect with me on social media:

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https://www.sugarhero.com/pear-pie-in-a-jar/feed/ 19 Pear Pie In A Jar Pear Pie In A Jar Pear Pie In A Jar Pear Pie in a Jar Pear Pie in a Jar Pear Pie In A Jar Pear Pie In A Jar Pear Pie In A Jar Overhead shot of a baked strawberry rhubarb pie with a lattice crust top. Assortment of Pear Pies on a wooden surface. Pear Pie In A Jar
Apple Cider Fritters https://www.sugarhero.com/apple-cider-fritters/ https://www.sugarhero.com/apple-cider-fritters/#comments Mon, 21 Nov 2022 18:18:00 +0000 http://new.sugarhero.com/?p=3544 3 Apple Cider Fritters cooling on brown paper.

These homemade Apple Cider Fritters are crisp on the outside, tender on the inside, and bursting with caramelized apples. ]]>
3 Apple Cider Fritters cooling on brown paper.

These homemade Apple Cider Fritters are crisp on the outside, tender on the inside, and bursting with caramelized apples.

3 Apple Cider Fritters cooling on brown paper with apples in the background.

🍎 An Apple Fritter Recipe You’ll Love!

Homemade Apple Fritters are the perfect fall dessert or breakfast! They’re indulgent enough to pass for dessert, but since they’re a cousin of the doughnut, they also get grandfathered into the breakfast category.

Enjoy them for brunch with a mug of hot apple cider or Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate. Warm them up and top with a scoop of ice cream and Cinnamon Syrup for dessert. Or do what I do — eat them plain, in great wolfish bites, before the rest of your family gets wise and you’re forced to share. However you eat them, you are going to LOVE them!

Apple Cider Fritter with cut away section showing inside dough and apple chunks.

❤ Why You’ll Love These Fritters

These aren’t just apple fritters — they are apple CIDER fritters, meaning they have double the apple flavor, and are the perfect combination of apple cider doughnuts and apple fritters. Imagine, if you will, that apple cider doughnuts and apple fritters had a baby. A beautiful, delicious, fluffy, super flavorful, apple-packed baby. Now imagine that babies are socially acceptable to eat. Yeah, they’re like that.

Close-up of Apple Cider Fritter on brown parchment paper on wooden surface.

Apple Fritters vs Apple Doughnuts

Many apple cider doughnut recipes are cake-based, not yeast-based. And most apple fritters don’t have cider in the dough, they just rely on the apple chunks to provide flavor. So this fritter recipe is the best of both worlds: it’s a yeast dough recipe, so it’s wonderfully light and fluffy, and it also has really concentrated apple cider in both the dough and the glaze on top, so even the bites without chunks of apple have a nice apple undertone.

And the apple chunks! Caramelized in butter and brown sugar, with a hint of cinnamon, they’re literally bursting out of every surface of these fritters. They make these fritters shine, so absolutely don’t skip the caramelization steps in the recipe.

I really can’t think of a more perfectly fall food. It reminds me of apple picking, falling leaves, and crisp mornings. But, if you need more apple inspiration, check out our Salted Caramel Apple Pear Pie, Caramel Apple Cake, and Mile High Apple Pie!

Apple Cider Fritters | From SugarHero.com

🧾 What You’ll Need

Ingredients

A few ingredients and you’ll be all set to make Apple Cider Fritters. Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you gather the ingredients. (Links are affiliate links and I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.)

  • Apple cider: I recommend using fresh apple cider in this recipe. Apple cider is made from pressed fresh apples, and has a much stronger flavor than apple juice. It’s less sweet, and it gives these fritters a very realistic and vibrant apple taste. However, it can be hard to find outside of autumn months, so if you can’t source any, you can substitute apple juice in its place. Apple juice tends to have a weaker flavor and is much sweeter, so I do recommend using cider whenever possible.
  • Yeast: This recipe calls for active dry yeast. I use and recommend Bob’s Red Mill yeast, or Red Star Yeast. If you are comfortable working with yeast and want to substitute rapid rise yeast you can, but you will need to make changes to the rising procedure following the package directions. In most cases I recommend sticking with active dry yeast.
  • Milk: Whole milk will give you the most tender dough, but any fat percentage will work. I have only tested this recipe with dairy milk, so cannot advise on non-dairy alternatives.
  • Egg yolks: We’re only using egg yolks in this recipe, so save those whites to make Meringue Cookies or buttercream! Here’s my full guide to separating egg yolks and whites if you need a refresher.
  • Spices and salt: Feel free to modify the spices to suit what you have. I love using a spice blend like pumpkin pie spice or apple pie spice, but even sticking with cinnamon will give you great results!
  • Frying oil: You can use canola or vegetable oil for frying the fritters.
  • Apples: Look for firm apples that hold their shape when cooked. I’ve used SweeTango, Gala, and Honeycrisp with great success. I prefer a sweeter apple in this recipe, but if you like tart apples, Granny Smith is also a good choice.
3 Apple Cider Fritters cooling on brown paper.

Equipment

You won’t need much in the way of specialty equipment to make these fritters–just a few frying basics! (Links are affiliate links and I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.)

  • Bench scraper or large knife: A bench scraper like this is infinitely hand in the kitchen! If you work with yeasted doughs much, you’ll find it’s invaluable for cutting dough and scraping down your work surface.
  • Deep fry thermometer: If you’re going to be deep frying, an accurate thermometer is a MUST. You don’t need to spend a fortune on one, though — a basic model like this is perfect.
  • Fry tool or slotted spoon:You’ll need a wire strainer or similar slotted tool to turn the fritters and remove them from the oil.
  • Pastry brush: A pastry brush is used to add the sweet glaze after frying.
Apple Cider Fritters | From SugarHero.com

📋 How to Make Apple Fritters

This assembly method might seem a little fiddly, but there’s a method to the madness! The basic idea is to try and work the apple pieces deep into the layers of dough, so they’re randomly distributed and tucked into pockets of dough here and there, which will yield the signature craggy bumps and edges that make apple fritters so delicious and so unique.

Here’s a photo guide to the fritter process, and full instructions are included in the recipe card down below.

Two photo collage showing how to fold the dough for Apple Cider Fritters.
  • Gently pat or roll your dough into a thin layer about 1/2-inch thick.
  • Spread half of the apples over half of the dough, and fold the dough over on itself. Press down gently to seal the apples into the middle of the dough.
Two photo collage showing how to fold the dough for Apple Cider Fritters.
  • Press the dough out into a thin rectangle again. Add the rest of the apples on half of the dough.
  • Fold it over itself again. This process helps distribute apples randomly throughout the dough layers.
Two photo collage showing how to cut and shape the dough for Apple Cider Fritters.
  • Pat the dough back into a thin rectangle.
  • Use a bench scraper or large sharp knife to cut the dough into small squares, about 1 1/2″.
Two photo collage showing how to form Apple Cider Fritters into dough balls..
  • Gather together about 4-5 squares (total weight 2.5-3 oz) and press them together into a patty, pinching them at the top to help secure them.
  • Place formed fritters on a baking sheet.
Apple Cider Fritters being glazed on parchment paper.
  • Let the fritters rise, then deep-fry them until crispy and golden.
  • Brush warm (but not hot!) fritters with a sweet apple cider glaze, then devour!

💡 Tips and FAQs  

Apple Cider Fritters cooling on brown paper with cider and apples in the background.
Chocolate Blackout Doughnuts
These doughnuts are chocolate overload! Chocolate doughnuts, filled with chocolate pastry cream, topped with a chocolate glaze and chocolate sprinkles.
Get the recipe!
Creme Brulee Doughnuts
The combination of fluffy fried doughnuts, vanilla bean pastry cream, and a crackly caramelized sugar crust is unreal!
Get the recipe!

Leave a review!

If you make this recipe, let us know! Leave a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating on the recipe below, and leave a comment, take a photo and tag me on Instagram @elabau, or use #sugarhero on IG!

3 Apple Cider Fritters cooling on brown paper.
Print

Apple Cider Fritters

These homemade Apple Cider Fritters are crisp on the outside, tender on the inside, and bursting with caramelized apples.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword apple cider, apple cider fritters, finger-food
Dessert Type Pies
Prep Time 4 hours
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 20 minutes
Servings 15 fritters
Calories 314kcal

Ingredients

For the Fritters:

  • 2.5 cups apple cider
  • 2.25 tsp active dry yeast (1 packet)
  • 0.75 cup whole milk at room temperature
  • 14.66 oz all-purpose flour (3.25 cups)
  • 1 oz unsalted butter (2 tbsp), at room temperature
  • 1 oz shortening (2 tbsp)
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 2 TBSP brown sugar
  • 1.5 tsp cinnamon
  • 0.75 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 6 cups canola oil for frying

For the Apple Filling:

  • 2 lbs apples (about 5 medium apples)
  • 2 oz unsalted butter (1/4 cup)
  • 1.88 oz brown sugar (1/4 cup)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar (or lemon juice)

For the Glaze:

  • 1/4 cup apple cider concentrate (made during the doughnut preparation)
  • 8 oz powdered sugar (2 cups)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Instructions

To Make the Apple Cider Concentrate:

  • Pour the apple cider into a medium saucepan, place the pan on medium heat, and bring it to a low boil.
  • Continue to cook the apple cider until it reduces down to 3/4 cup, which might take 45-55 minutes. This step can be done ahead of time and the apple cider concentrate can be stored in the refrigerator until you're ready to use it.
  • Divide up the 3/4 cup apple cider concentrate: Pour 1/4 cup of it into a small bowl. Pour another 1/4 cup of it into the bowl of a large stand mixer, and reserve the remaining 1/4 cup to make the glaze later.

To Make the Fritters:

  • Heat the small bowl of 1/4 cup apple cider concentrate in the microwave in short 10-second bursts, until it is warm but not scalding—it should be around 105-110 F, so barely hotter than body temperature.
  • Sprinkle the yeast on top, stir it in gently, and let it sit for about 5 minutes, until the yeast foams up. Important: if you do not see foaming or any change in your yeast, do not proceed! This means your yeast is dead. This could be because the cider was too hot, or your yeast is old and no longer active. If you proceed with the recipe, it will not rise and you will be disappointed. Try again with fresh yeast and carefully measured apple cider concentrate, until you see it foam up, then proceed.
  • To the large mixing bowl with the apple cider concentrate, add the milk, butter, shortening, sugar, yolks, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Pour the yeast mixture into the large mixing bowl as well, then add half of the flour (7-1/3 oz, or 1-2/3 cups). Mix with the paddle attachment for 3-5 minutes, until very smooth.
  • Add the rest of the flour (7-1/3 oz, or 1-2/3 cups) and mix with the paddle for another 2 minutes. Switch to the dough hook and mix for 5-7 minutes, until the dough forms a soft, smooth ball around the hook and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. If it seems very sticky while it’s mixing, add a touch more flour, but only another tablespoon or two. Let the mixing do most of the work and resist the temptation to add too much flour, or else you will have tough doughnuts. When the dough is smooth, supple, and pulling away from the sides of the bowl, turn off the mixer. It will still be a bit soft and sticky!
  • Generously oil a large bowl and turn the doughnut dough into the oiled bowl. Cover loosely with a cloth and set it in a warm place to rise for 1 hour, until doubled in size.

To Make the Apple Filling:

  • While you wait for the dough to rise, prepare the apple filling. Peel, core, and chop the apples into small pieces about 1/2-3/4" wide.
  • Place a large saucepan over medium heat, and melt the butter. Add the sugar, and stir it in until the sugar melts. (The mixture will be sandy and grainy.) Add the apples, cinnamon, vanilla, salt, and apple cider vinegar.
  • Cook the apples, stirring occasionally, until they are golden and caramelized, and almost all of the liquid has evaporated from the pan. The time required depends on your pan and your apple variety, but 15-20 minutes is a rough cooking estimate.
  • Scrape the apples into a shallow pan or bowl, and refrigerate them until they're room temperature or cooler. (Apples can be made ahead of time and kept in the refrigerator until ready to use.)

To Assemble:

  • After an hour, dust your work surface with flour, punch down the dough, and turn it out onto your work surface. Gently pat it or roll it into a thin layer about 1/2-inch thick. Spread half of the apples over half of the dough. Fold the dough over on itself, and press down gently to seal the apples into the middle of the dough.
  • Press the dough out into a thin rectangle again, flour it as necessary to keep it from sticking. Add the rest of the apples on half of the dough, and fold it over itself again. (This process helps distribute apples randomly throughout the dough layers.) Pat the dough back into a thin rectangle.
  • Use a bench scraper or large sharp knife to cut the dough into small squares, about 1 1/2" or so.
  • Line two baking sheets with parchment , and dust them lightly with flour. Gather together about 4-5 dough squares (total weight 2.5-3 oz) and press them together into a patty, pinching them at the top to help secure them. Don't worry if the patties seem to have a ragged appearance, or if apples poke out—this assembly method produces the beautifully craggy and randomly-shaped signature apple fritter appearance! Place a fritter on a baking sheet, then repeat until all of your fritters are formed. You should get about 15 fritters from this recipe.
  • Cover the fritters loosely with cloths and let them rise in a warm place until nearly doubled, about 30 minutes.

To Fry and Finish:

  • Toward the end of the fritter rise time, pour the frying oil into a medium-large saucepan, and insert a deep fry thermometer. Turn the heat to medium and heat until the oil reaches 350 F. During the frying process, keep a close eye on the thermometer and adjust the heat if necessary to keep the oil near this temperature at all times.
  • Once the fritters have risen and the oil is the right temperature, gently place 2-3 fritters at a time in the oil and fry them for about 2 minutes per side, until they are puffed and golden brown.
  • Once cooked, remove them from the oil using a slotted spoon or frying tool, and place them on a paper-towel lined wire rack to cool. Repeat with the remaining fritters. Periodically remove any stray apples or dough bits that are floating in the oil.
  • To make the glaze, whisk together the reserved 1/4 cup apple cider concentrate along with the rest of the ingredients.
  • Try brushing some on a warm (but not super hot!) fritter. It should brush easily, and start to melt into the outside of the fritter. If it is too thick, and looks more like frosting than glaze, add a little apple cider or milk, a small spoonful at a time, to get the right consistency. Brush the glaze on the fritters, or spoon it on and spread it around with the spoon. Repeat until all of the fritters have been glazed.
  • Let the glaze set for about 20 minutes, then serve! These fritters are best on the day they are made, but they will keep for several days in an airtight container at room temperature.

Nutrition

Calories: 314kcal | Carbohydrates: 56g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 53mg | Sodium: 226mg | Potassium: 185mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 31g | Vitamin A: 248IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 41mg | Iron: 2mg
Photo of Apple Cider Fritters with text overlay for Pinterest.

About Elizabeth LaBau

I’m Elizabeth, but you can call me SugarHero! I’m a former pastry chef turned blogger, cookbook author, and baking instructor, and I consider myself sugar’s #1 fan. Learn more from my About page, or connect with me on social media:

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https://www.sugarhero.com/apple-cider-fritters/feed/ 104 Apple Cider Fritters Apple Cider Fritters Apple Cider Fritters Apple Cider Fritters | From SugarHero.com Apple Cider Fritters Apple Cider Fritters | From SugarHero.com Apple Cider Fritters Apple Cider Fritters Apple Cider Fritters Apple Cider Fritters Apple Cider Fritters Apple Cider Fritters 3 Apple Cider Fritters cooling on brown paper. Apple Cider Fritters
How to Make Chocolate Leaves https://www.sugarhero.com/chocolate-leaves/ https://www.sugarhero.com/chocolate-leaves/#comments Wed, 16 Nov 2022 19:37:24 +0000 https://www.sugarhero.com/?p=33152 Variety of dark and milk chocolate leaves on a white plate.

Chocolate leaves are easy cake decorations that add a beautiful touch to any fall dessert. Learn how to make and decorate chocolate leaves for your next baking project.]]>
Variety of dark and milk chocolate leaves on a white plate.

Chocolate leaves are easy cake decorations that add a touch of natural beauty to any dessert! Learn how to make edible chocolate leaves, plus tips on making marbled or swirled leaves, and decorating them with luster dust.

Variety of dark and milk chocolate leaves on a white plate.

🍂 Easy Chocolate Leaf Decorations

Chocolate leaves are one of my favorite ways to decorate fall desserts. They’re easy to make, beautiful, and (as the name suggests) you need just two basic supplies – chocolate (or candy coating) and leaves!

They can be left plain, or dressed up with a bit of marbling or a brush of luster dust. Stick one on a cupcake, or ring a whole cake with a wreath of chocolate leaves – however you use them, they’re a gorgeous decoration! And, if you enjoy making easy chocolate decorations, try my Chocolate Feathers tutorial.

Looking for some fall dessert inspiration? Pair your chocolate leaves with our Brown Sugar Cranberry Cake, Pumpkin Pound Cake, Festive Fall Layer Cake, or Pumpkin Chocolate Mousse Cake!

Cake with red to yellow ombre frosting and chocolate leaves in the border.

🧾 What You’ll Need

The ingredient & equipment may seem self-explanatory, but there are a few things you should know to get the best results! Here’s what you’ll need:

Supplies needed for chocolate leaves: chocolate in glass bowls and green leaves laid out on a wooden table.

Candy Coating (vs Chocolate)

Yes, I call these “chocolate leaves,” but in most cases I do recommend using candy coating instead. Here’s why:

Real chocolate (like chocolate bars, or many types of chocolate chips) cannot simply be melted and used for decorations. It needs to be “tempered,” which is a process of heating and cooling the chocolate to certain temperatures so it stays hard and shiny once set. (Read more about how to temper chocolate here.) If chocolate is not tempered, it will most likely be soft, dull, streaked, or even grayish. That tastes fine, but it’s not appetizing! Tempering solves this problem, but it adds a lot of time and effort.

Candy coating, on the other hand, is designed to be used for dipping and decorations. It sets hard and shiny without the need for tempering, and can be re-melted and re-used again and again. It comes in a variety of colors, and is typically either vanilla flavored or chocolate flavored. I recommend Merckens,  Ghirardelli, or Wilton brand.

There’s no doubt that real chocolate tastes better than candy coating, and for recipes where chocolate is the star, I would definitely recommend tempering real chocolate. But for chocolate leaves, which are most often used sparingly as a garnish on another dessert, I think candy coating is an easier, cheaper substitute, and that is why I recommend it in this tutorial.

Chocolate leaves brushed with luster dust around the edges, arranged on a chocolate cake.

Leaves

The two most important things to consider when choosing leaves are: 1) food safety, and 2) ease of use.

Food safety: Because these leaves will come into contact with food, it’s important that they don’t have traces of pesticides, preservatives, or other harmful chemicals sprayed on them. I recommend using leaves from a source you trust: either from a plant you grow yourself, or from a trusted friend or neighbor. Be sure to wash the leaves well and dry them thoroughly before using them.

Ease of use: The best leaves to use are sturdy and have a pronounced pattern of veins on the back. Citrus leaves, like lemon leaves, are some of my favorites. They’re easy to use and produce gorgeous chocolate leaves. Most other leaves will work, but some are more delicate and prone to tearing than others. It’s also nice to have a mix of shapes and sizes, so don’t hesitate to use several different kinds of leaves for your project.

Golden chocolate leaves arranged around the edges of a bundt cake.

Edible luster dust

Luster dust is optional, but really makes these leaves pop! “Luster dust” typically refers to a type of powdered coloring with a metallic sheen (hence the name). Not all luster dust is created equal, however. If you want your leaves to be edible (as opposed to simply decorative) make sure you use edible luster dust. My favorite edible luster dust comes from The Sugar Art. Some dusts are not intended for consumption and are labelled “non-toxic,” so make sure you purchase the right dust for your needs.

Food-safe paintbrush

You don’t have to buy a specific set of “food paintbrushes,” but you should use a clean brush that has not been used with real paint or other non-edible substances. I have a regular set of paintbrushes that I keep in the kitchen and use exclusively for food and decorating. Most craft stores sell individual brushes that you can pick up for a few dollars, or this affordable Wilton 5-piece set is specifically designed for decorating desserts.

📋 Instructions

How to Make Chocolate Leaves

Once you’ve gathered everything, making chocolate leaves is a fast process. Grab a printable version of these instructions in the recipe card below.

Stirring melted chocolate in a glass bowl.

Melt the candy coating

Place the candy coating in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave in 30 second increments, stirring regularly, until melted and smooth.

Brushing the back of a leaf with melted chocolate.

Paint the leaves

Brush an even layer of melted coating on the underside of the leaf (the side with pronounced veins.) Make sure that the chocolate extends all the way to the edges, and that there are no translucent spots where the chocolate layer is thin. 

Setting a chocolate-covered leaf down on a parchment-covered baking sheet.

Set the leaf on a parchment-covered baking sheet and repeat with remaining leaves.

Swirling milk and dark chocolate together.

To make marbled leaves:

If you want to make multicolored leaves, you will need at least one contrasting color of melted candy coating. Pour the different colors of candy coating onto a large plate, drizzling and swirling them together in random patterns.

Dragging a leaf through swirled chocolate and pulling it out of the chocolate.

Hold a leaf by the stem and drag the top of the leaf through the chocolate puddle, creating a marbled design. Check the leaf to make sure there are no transparent areas, then clean off the sides of the leaf for a smooth edge.

Peeling a green leaf off of a molded chocolate leaf.

 Place the tray of chocolate leaves in the refrigerator to set for. Once set, carefully peel the leaves from the chocolate.

Brushing luster dust on a chocolate leaf.

You can use them right away, or paint the leaves with edible luster dust to make them really pop!

Golden chocolate leaves arranged around the edges of a bundt cake.

💡 Tips and FAQs  

Close-up of yellow and red chocolate leaves in a buttercream cake border.

🍁 What to decorate with chocolate leaves

So you’ve made your leaves — now what? Use them as decorations on one of these desserts!

Pumpkin Pound Cake
This Pumpkin Pound Cake recipe is a moist, tender pumpkin bundt cake with a cinnamon swirl. Top it with a brown sugar glaze for maximum fall flavor!
Get the recipe!
Pumpkin Pound Cake with brown sugar glaze and chocolate leaves on top.
Chocolate Feathers
Chocolate Feathers are an easy way to add an elegant touch to any dessert! You can  place them on cakes, cupcakes, tarts, and much more. 
Get the recipe!
Cake with an assortment of blue and green chocolate feathers affixed to the side.

Don’t miss the step-by-step tutorial showing how to make Chocolate Leavescheck out the web story here!

Leave a review!

If you make this recipe, let us know! Leave a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating on the recipe below, and leave a comment, take a photo and tag me on Instagram @elabau, or use #sugarhero on IG!

Variety of dark and milk chocolate leaves on a white plate.
Print

Chocolate Leaves

Chocolate leaves are an easy cake decoration that add a beautiful touch to any fall dessert. Learn how to make and decorate chocolate leaves for your next baking project.
You can use either real chocolate or candy coating to make these leaves. If you choose to use real chocolate, I recommend tempering the chocolate beforehand, so the leaves stay hard and shiny. Candy coating is a good substitute if you don't want to temper chocolate.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword chocolate, fall, Fall desserts, leaves, Thanksgiving
Dessert Type Decoration
Prep Time 30 minutes
Chilling Time 20 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 24 leaves
Calories

Ingredients

  • 24 leaves washed and patted dry
  • 8 ounces chocolate candy coating or tempered chocolate
  • Edible luster dust to decorate (optional)

Instructions

  • Cover a baking sheet with parchment or waxed paper, and lay the washed and dried leaves on the baking sheet, vein side up.
  • Place the candy coating in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave in 30 second increments, stirring regularly, until melted and smooth.

To make single color leaves:

  • Dip a food-safe paintbrush in the melted coating, and brush an even layer on the leaf (the side with pronounced veins.) Make sure that the chocolate extends all the way to the edges, and that there are no translucent spots where the chocolate layer is thin.
  • Replace the leaf, wet chocolate side up, on the baking sheet and repeat with remaining leaves and chocolate.

To make marbled leaves:

  • If you want to make swirled or multicolored leaves, you will need at least one contrasting color of melted candy coating. (Multiple colors can also be used.)
  • Pour the different colors of candy coating onto a large plate, drizzling them together in random patterns. I recommend having a larger proportion of lighter colors, since the motion of running the leaves through the chocolate will begin to mix the colors and the lighter colors will soon turn darker.
  • Hold a leaf by the stem and drag the top of the leaf through the chocolate puddle, creating a multicolored design. Check the leaf to make sure there are no transparent areas. Clean off the sides of the leaf for a smooth edge. Replace the leaf, wet chocolate side up, on the baking sheet and repeat with remaining leaves and chocolate.
  • Place the tray of chocolate leaves in the refrigerator to set for at least 15-20 minutes. Once set, carefully peel the leaves from the chocolate. Try not to handle the leaves too much to prevent your body heat from melting the chocolate.
  • Once the leaves have been removed, the chocolate leaves can be used immediately, or further decorated with edible luster dust.
  • Store chocolate leaves in an airtight container at cool room temperature. Separate layers with parchment or waxed paper so they don’t get scuffed during storage.

Video

Photo of Chocolate Leaves with text overlay for Pinterest.

About Elizabeth LaBau

I’m Elizabeth, but you can call me SugarHero! I’m a former pastry chef turned blogger, cookbook author, and baking instructor, and I consider myself sugar’s #1 fan. Learn more from my About page, or connect with me on social media:

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https://www.sugarhero.com/chocolate-leaves/feed/ 12 How to Make Chocolate Leaves - SugarHero Chocolate leaves are an easy cake decoration that add a beautiful touch to any fall dessert. Learn how to make and decorate chocolate leaves for your next baking project. Chocolate Recipes,Fall Recipes,chocolate leaves Chocolate Leaves Chocolate Leaves How to Make Chocolate Leaves Chocolate Leaves Chocolate Leaves How to Make Chocolate Leaves How to Make Chocolate Leaves How to Make Chocolate Leaves How to Make Chocolate Leaves How to Make Chocolate Leaves How to Make Chocolate Leaves How to Make Chocolate Leaves Chocolate Leaves Chocolate Leaves Pumpkin Pound Cake with brown sugar glaze and chocolate leaves on top. Cake with an assortment of blue and green chocolate feathers affixed to the side. Variety of dark and milk chocolate leaves on a white plate. Chocolate Leaves
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread https://www.sugarhero.com/pumpkin-chocolate-chip-bread/ https://www.sugarhero.com/pumpkin-chocolate-chip-bread/#comments Mon, 14 Nov 2022 22:58:48 +0000 https://www.sugarhero.com/?p=32767 Overhead shot of a loaf of Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread on a wooden cutting board.

Pumpkin bread gets an upgrade with the addition of LOTS of chocolate! It's moist, perfectly dense, loaded with pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice, and packed with melty chocolate chips. ]]>
Overhead shot of a loaf of Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread on a wooden cutting board.

Pumpkin bread gets an upgrade with the addition of LOTS of chocolate! It’s moist, perfectly dense, loaded with pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice, and packed with melty chocolate chips.

Overhead shot of Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread on a wooden cutting board.

Homemade Pumpkin Bread with Chocolate Chips

Hear that? That is the sound of my clicking my heels and twirling like Maria in The Sound of Music, because it is finally fall! Fall means crisp leaves, cozy nights in front of the fire, and ALL the pumpkin recipes, all the time! You can pretty much count on me to be on my way to the store to buy some pumpkin puree as soon as the first leaf hits the ground.

The only thing better than pumpkin desserts are pumpkin chocolate chip desserts. True story! I’ve made pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, pumpkin chocolate chip cake, and pumpkin chocolate chip bars, so I figured it was about time I made pumpkin chocolate chip bread! Why? Because pumpkin and chocolate is ALWAYS a good idea.

If you love quick breads (and who doesn’t!) don’t miss some of my other favorites: Easy Zucchini Bread, Banana Coconut Macadamia Nut Bread, and The Best Banana Bread.

Hands slicing a loaf of pumpkin chocolate chip bread on a wooden cutting board.

🧾 What You’ll Need

Overhead shot of all ingredients needed to make Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread.

Ingredients

Here are a few ingredient notes to keep in mind for this pumpkin bread recipe: (Links are affiliate links and I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.)

  • Pumpkin puree: be sure you’re using plain pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling. They are not the same thing! Canned pumpkin pie filling has a lot of additional sugar (and other ingredients) that will mess up this recipe.
  • Pumpkin pie spice: Pumpkin pie spice is a mix of common spices used in pumpkin pie. It’s an easy way to infuse your fall baking with those classic cozy autumn flavors, without having to buy lots of individual spices. You can swap it out for an equal amount of ground cinnamon if that’s all you have on hand, or check the FAQ below for tips on making your own pumpkin pie spice.
  • Chocolate chips: I use semi-sweet chocolate chips, but feel free to use another type of baking chips if preferred. You can use milk chocolate, dark chocolate, white chocolate, butterscotch, or cinnamon chips.

Equipment

  • Loaf pan: you’ll need an 8.5 x 4.5-inch loaf pan for this pumpkin bread recipe. This is the one I use and recommend! A 9″ pan will also work, but the loaf will be more squat, and you might need to shorten the baking time.
  • Mixer: you’ll need either a hand mixer or a stand mixer to make this.
Slice of Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread on a piece of white parchment paper on a plate.

📋 Instructions

This pumpkin bread is a simple, easy-to-make recipe that comes together in no time at all! You can find easily printable instructions in the recipe card right here.

Two-photo collage showing how to beat eggs for pumpkin bread.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • In a medium bowl, use an electric hand mixer or stand mixer to beat the eggs until they’re well blended and foamy.
Two-photo collage showing how to make Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread batter.
  • Mix in the pumpkin puree.
  • Add the sugar and vegetable oil, and beat until well combined.
Two-photo collage showing how to make Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread batter.
  • In a separate bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and pumpkin pie spice.
  • Gradually add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture, then beat until well blended.
Two-photo collage showing mixing and pouring Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread into a loaf pan.
  • Add in the chocolate chips and hand mix until they’re distributed throughout the batter. Transfer the batter to a greased loaf pan.
  • Place the loaf pan in the oven and bake at 350ºF for 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Overhead shot of Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread on a wooden cutting board.

💭 Variations

This chocolate chip pumpkin bread recipe is pretty darn great as it is, but feel free to give it your own twist with any of these variations!

  • Add nuts. Sprinkle chopped nuts on top of the bread or mix them straight into the batter for some extra crunch. Pecans or walnuts would be delicious!
  • Swap the baking chips. Swap out the chocolate chips out for butterscotch chips, white chocolate chips, or cinnamon chips to give the bread a different flavor.
  • Frost it. Slather on your favorite frosting for some added sweetness. I’m sure it would be delicious with my pumpkin butterscotch frosting, or cream cheese frosting.
  • Add cinnamon and sugar. For an even sweeter flavor with a slight crunch, coat the inside of the pan with a mixture of cinnamon and granulated sugar before adding the batter. 
  • Make muffins. If you’d prefer to make pumpkin muffins instead of pumpkin bread, use a standard sized muffin tin lined with muffin liners and bake for 15-25 minutes.
  • Add glaze. Make a quick homemade glaze using milk and powdered sugar. Start with 1 cup of powdered sugar, then whisk in a dash of milk at a time until it reaches your desired texture. Once it’s ready you can drizzle it over the bread.
Hand removing a slice of pumpkin chocolate chip bread from the rest of the loaf on a wooden cutting board.

💡 Tips and FAQs

Here are a few of my tips for making the best pumpkin bread!

  • Use pumpkin puree. Be sure you get canned pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling. They are not the same thing. Pumpkin pie filling has added ingredients while the only ingredient in pumpkin puree is pumpkin. 
  • Want a more mild pumpkin pie spice flavor? Use just 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice. Prefer a stronger pumpkin spice flavor? Use 2 ½ teaspoons. 
  • If you want chocolate chips on top of the bread like I do in the photos, wait until after the bread is baked to add them, otherwise they will melt. Once the loaf is removed from the oven, immediately place the chocolate chips on top. They will melt a little from the heat but should maintain their shape.
Hand holding a slice of pumpkin bread studded with melted chocolate chips.

🎃 More Great Pumpkin Desserts

If you love pumpkin spice as much as I do, check out my collection of pumpkin dessert recipes! Here are just a few of my favorites:

Don’t miss the step-by-step tutorial showing how to make Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Breadcheck out the web story here!

Leave a review!

If you make this recipe, let us know! Leave a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating on the recipe below, and leave a comment, take a photo and tag me on Instagram @elabau, or use #sugarhero on IG!

Overhead shot of a loaf of Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread on a wooden cutting board.
Print

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

Pumpkin bread gets an upgrade with the addition of LOTS of chocolate! It's moist, perfectly dense, loaded with pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice, and packed with melty chocolate chips.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword pumpkin, pumpkin bread, pumpkin chocolate chip
Dessert Type Quick Breads
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 423kcal

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • In a medium bowl, use an electric hand mixer to beat the eggs until they’re well blended.
  • Put the pumpkin puree in the bowl and beat again until well combined.
  • Add the sugar and vegetable oil and beat until well combined.
  • In a small bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and pumpkin pie spice. Gradually add this dry mixture to the pumpkin mixture. Again, beat until well blended.
  • Add the chocolate chips and hand mix until they are dispersed throughout the batter.
  • Pour the batter into a greased (8.5 x 4.5 x 2.5) glass loaf pan. Put the loaf pan in the oven and bake for 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  • Cool before cutting. Enjoy!

Nutrition

Calories: 423kcal | Carbohydrates: 53g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 63mg | Sodium: 208mg | Potassium: 335mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 27g | Vitamin A: 4513IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 81mg | Iron: 3mg
Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread picture with text overlay for Pinterest.

About Elizabeth LaBau

I’m Elizabeth, but you can call me SugarHero! I’m a former pastry chef turned blogger, cookbook author, and baking instructor, and I consider myself sugar’s #1 fan. Learn more from my About page, or connect with me on social media:

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