Building a snowman is perhaps the ultimate winter activity, but it doesn’t have to be snowing to make one. These jolly snowman cupcakes are the perfect seasonal baking project for snowy (or sunny) days. Kids will love transforming marshmallows into snowmen, and they can help make the cupcakes, too.
Make and Bake Cupcakes
One of our favorite yellow cupcake recipes is the base for the snowman cupcakes. Get the kids involved from the beginning: have them line the muffin tins and help stir the batter. (Older kids can help with measuring and mixing too.) Show them how to fill each muffin tin using a measuring cup or cookie scoop.
Get Creative: If you’re not feeling like a yellow cupcake, use one of our Classic Cupcake Recipes. Just remember you will need 2 dozen cupcakes.
Pro Tip: Let the cupcakes cool completely before frosting them. This way the frosting won’t melt.
Make the Frosting
A snowy white frosting is just the right base for the snowmen. Our food editors love the meringue-based buttercream that’s part of the Snowman Cupcakes recipe. It’s creamy and white, with a silky texture. Plus, it's not quite as sweet as other buttercreams. But we understand there are quicker (and easier) frostings. Try our crowd-pleasing Cream-Cheese Frosting or our Basic Vanilla Buttercream.
Frost the Cupcakes
This is a fun activity for kids; remember the cupcakes don’t have to be perfect—a little wonkiness adds character to a real-life snowman or a snowman cupcake. Spread about 1/4 cup buttercream on each cupcake. Save the extra frosting for assembling the snowmen.
Make a Snowman
Set up a snowman assembly line, then show kids how to make one snowman and let them do the rest.
For the snowman’s body, gently press one whole marshmallow into the center of each frosted cupcake. The buttercream acts like glue to keep the marshmallow in place.
Next, make the snowman’s head: Using kitchen shears, cut about 1/4 inch off the top of 12 marshmallows. Using your fingers, squish down the top and sides of each marshmallow, condensing it into a smaller size.
For the coal eyes, dip one end of a toothpick in water. The water prevents the toothpick from sticking to the marshmallow. Then poke two holes into the squished marshmallow and push one chocolate sprinkle into each hole to make eyes.
And that carrot nose? Orange-colored candied sunflower seeds make the most adorable carrot-like nose. Using the wet toothpick, poke a hole for the nose in the side of each marshmallow. Then press the thicker side of the candied sunflower seed into the hole, leaving the thin side sticking out.
Pipe a small dollop of buttercream on the underside of the head and adhere it to the whole marshmallow on the cupcake.
The Grand Finale
Pipe another small amount of buttercream on top of each snowman's head and finish with a chocolate-covered mint candy for a beret-like hat. Repeat for the remaining cupcakes.
Extra Credit: Serve the cupcakes with Hot Chocolate.