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Creamsicle Cupcakes

Creamy orange flavored cupcakes topped with a vanilla and orange cream cheese frosting take a classic summertime dessert and turn it into a party treat.

The swirl effect of the frosting is achieved more easily than you think, giving these cupcakes a sweet sophistication without additional work.

  • Cake:
  • 1 white cake mix
  • 1 3-ounce package orange Jell-O, less 2 teaspoons to reserve for the frosting
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange peel
  • Frosting:
  • 1 8-ounce package cream cheese; softened
  • 1/2 cup butter; softened
  • 5-6 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons orange Jell-O
  • 1 teaspoon orange extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350. Line cupcake pans with decorative paper liners.

In a large bowl, combine the cake mix, orange jello, water, orange juice, oil, eggs and grated orange peel. Beat with a mixer on low speed for about 2 minutes.

Fill cupcake papers about 2/3 full with batter. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack.

The frosting will be two-toned. For frosting, combine the softened cream cheese and butter and beat until smooth. Add the vanilla and orange extract and blend.  Gradually add the powdered sugar until you get the consistency you want. Divide the frosting in half and place in 2 bowls. To one of the bowls, add the 2 teaspoons of orange jello and stir well to combine. Add a little orange food coloring if you want a darker orange color. Blend well.

Set up your piping bag with a large star tip (1M). To frost the cupcakes, spoon the uncolored cream cheese frosting into one side of your decorating bag. Spoon the orange frosting into the other side.

Pipe the frosting onto the top of each cupcake, beginning along the outside edge and spiraling in toward the center.

Garnish the top of each cupcake with a candied orange slice.

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