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Halloween Poke Cake Cupcakes

Oct 2021

Sinkology is proud to present Emily Schuermann, our food-loving guest blogger who runs Food for a Year. Emily is here to share some recipes she has created exclusively for the Sinkology blog that reflect her view of a copper sink: simple, timeless, affordable, and beautifully rustic. 


I am not a skilled cake decorator and honestly – baking isn’t my favorite. So Halloween treats are often a little stressful for me and that’s exactly why I’m sharing this poke cupcake recipe. It’s so cute, it’s festive, it requires very little effort and it’s so, so good. But, before I start breaking down the steps of this recipe for you, please know ::

— a boxed white cake mix and canned frosting will work nicely too. So feel free use both. – anyway, the real star of the show for these cupcakes is the “POKE”. 

A Classic White Cupcake Recipe

But, in case you want a really delicious, tender and simple white cake recipe, let me tell you about this one. This cake recipe came from my grandma’s 1979 Betty Crocker Cookbook, originally entitled “Silver White Cake”.  It’s a “one-bowl” cake recipe that instructs the baker to add all but the egg whites to the bowl of a stand mixer, mixing to combine. Then add in the egg whites, mixing until fluffy.

Scoop the cupcake batter into a prepared cupcake pan and bake at 350° for 17-20 minutes. 

Poking the Cupcakes

Whether using a boxed cake mix or homemade – here’s what makes this recipe special – the POKE. After the cupcakes are baked and cooled, use a chopstick to poke 6-8 holes into each cupcake, then prepare the gelatin mixtures. The next step is where the fun begins – drizzle 2T of the gelatin mixtures into the pokes of each cupcake (1 T of each flavor of gelatin).

poke cupcake

Once the cupcakes are poked and drizzled with gelatin, refrigerate to allow the cupcakes to “set”. 

In the meantime, prepare the fluffy buttercream.

Basic Fluffy Buttercream

This buttercream is really easy! Add all the ingredients to one bowl, whip to combine and add additional milk (slowly) to reach desired consistency.

Decorating the Poke Cupcakes

Sprinkle festive sprinkles over the frosted cupcakes and call yourself a baker!
decorated halloween cupcakes

I love the addition of orange and lime gelatin poked into these cupcakes! The citrus flavors are classic and the colors make it clear – the party has begun. Hope this makes your Halloween party chores a little more delicious and a little less stressful!

cupcake is served

Halloween Poke Cupcakes
  • simple homemade cake 

    • 2 c AP flour
    • 1.5 c sugar
    • 3.5 t baking powder
    • 1 t salt
    • 0.5 c shortening
    • 1 c milk
    • 1 t vanilla
    • 4 egg whites
    • (2) 3 oz boxes gelatin, orange and lime
    • 2 c boiling water divided
  • simple homemade buttercream

    • 3 c powdered sugar
    • 1/3 c salted butter, softened
    • 1 t vanilla
    • 2 T milk, more to desired consistency as needed
  • Halloween sprinkles (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°. Line a cupcake baking pan with cupcake liners and spray with nonstick spray.

In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, combine first 7 cake ingredients. Mix on medium speed (with a stand mixer or hand-held mixer) approximately 30 seconds to combine.

Add egg whites and mix on high speed, scraping the sides and bottom occasionally, for 2 minutes.

Scoop the batter into the lined cupcake pan, filling the liners 2/3 full. Bake 17-20 minutes, checking for doneness at 17 minutes by looking for an even golden color on the top and inserting a toothpick (that when removed, comes out clean).

Allow cupcakes to cool for 10 minutes.

While cupcakes are cooling, combine 1 packet of gelatin and 1 c boiling water (do this separately for the orange and lime gelatin). Stir the mixture to dissolve the gelatin into the water. Allow gelatin mixtures to cool for 10 minutes.

Use a chopstick to gently poke 6-8 holes into each cupcake.

To prepare the simple buttercream, place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and beat, starting on low-speed and increasing to high-speed for 3 minutes (scraping the sides and bottom to evenly incorporate). Add additional milk to reach desired, stiff but fluffy consistency.

After gelatin mixtures have cooled, pour 1 T orange gelatin in half of the cupcake holes and 1 T lime gelatin in the other half of the holes (so that each cupcake has both lime and orange gelatin added). Allow cupcakes to “set” for 30 minutes in the refrigerator before frosting.

Top with prepared buttercream and sprinkles and serve.

Makes 15


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