15 Cupcake Recipes That Are Just Right for a Baby Shower

passion fruit filled cupcakes
Photo: Mike Krautter

Whether topped with swirls of frosting or a shiny glaze, decorated with flowers or piped lettering, cupcakes are the ultimate dessert for a party to celebrate a mom-to-be.

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brownie cupcakes martha bakes cupcakes
Mike Krautter

Planning a party for someone who's expecting a baby is a great opportunity to have a little fun with desserts, and cupcakes are the perfect basis. They're portable, easy to serve to guests, and most can be made ahead of time. We also appreciate that you don't need to serve them with anything, although a simple fruit salad is always welcome. Last but not least, there's something kid-like about them, which feels just right when you're celebrating the impending arrival of a new little one.

But what makes a cupcake baby shower-worthy? The net is wide, yet a few pitch-perfect themes do bubble up: flowers, fruits, and cute animals. All of them convey a happy feeling that's definitely on-point for an event like this. If flowers are the mom-to-be's fancy, you'll find some inspiring options in the slides ahead, including cupcakes topped with real flowers, like the Brownie Cupcakes with Sugared Pansies pictured here. We also have diminutive cakes decorated with frosting made to look strikingly like real chrysanthemums and sunflowers, but you may want to do a test run first to get the technique down (none of them require professional skills, so a little practice will make perfect).

For fruit-lovers, there are Passion Fruit-Filled Cupcakes and Nectarine Cupcakes, as well as our Vanilla Cupcakes with Fruit Glaze made with cherries and raspberries (though you can use other fruits, too, like peaches or plums). And on the adorable animal front, we've certainly got you covered with cupcakes that resemble kid-friendly caterpillars and owls.

Of course, any cupcake truly works for a baby shower if you want it to. We certainly wouldn't argue with a Cappuccino-Chocolate Cupcake or one decorated with cream cheese frosting, sprinkles, and berries.

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Chrysanthemum Cupcakes

cupcake with sunflower icing

A dazzling chrysanthemum seems to spring directly from the buttercream icing of this pretty cupcake.

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"Parade" Cupcakes

Parade Cupcakes

Simple and charming, these cupcakes feature cream cheese frosting, sprinkles, and fresh berries. Whether you line them up into a parade-like configuration or arrange them in rows on a platter, they're sure to command attention.

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Rose and Ginger Cupcakes

rose cupcakes
Johnny Miller

A glaze tinted pastel pink sets to a very smooth sheen atop these little cakes that pack a sweet gingery punch. One or two sugared rose petals make an elegant finish.

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Passion Fruit-Filled Cupcakes

Mike Krautter

Passion fruit curd in the center of these cupcakes infuses them with a sweet surprise while vanilla Swiss meringue buttercream nicely complements the fruit's sweet-tart flavor

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Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes

Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes

A fun way to serve cupcakes to a baby shower crowd, this dessert looks like a sheet cake on top but there are actually vanilla-coconut cupcakes underneath the fresh berries and fluffy whipped-cream frosting. It's easy to make and even easier to serve.

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Cappuccino-Chocolate Cupcakes

Cappuccino-Chocolate Cupcakes
Romulo Yanes

These sophisticated cupcakes consist of espresso- and chocolate-laced cake topped with fluffy white frosting. Pro tip: Finely chop the chocolate in small shards so they won't sink in the batter.

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Sunflower Cupcakes

Sunflower cupcakes
Raymond Hom

To make these happy-looking cupcakes, you use sunny yellow buttercream for the flower petals, and mini candy-coated sunflower seeds for the flower centers.

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Meringue Flower Cupcakes

Get your pastry bag ready for these lovely cakes, which feature meringue flowers and petals in a variety of shapes and sizes. You pipe them onto a baking sheet, then bake until dry. They're gorgeous atop frosted cupcakes.

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Pull-Apart Vanilla-Wafer Cupcake Cake with Berries

wafter berries cupcake cake

Fun for a baby shower, this dessert looks like sheet cake on top, but there are actually vanilla-coconut cupcakes underneath the fresh berries and fluffy whipped-cream frosting.

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Polka-Dot Cupcakes


Spell out whatever message you'd like for the parents-to-be on these cupcakes, which are flavored with orange zest, from "Congratulations" to "Oh, baby!"

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Nectarine Cupcakes

Dana Gallagher

Filled and topped with fresh stone fruit, these are the perfect dessert for a summertime baby shower.

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Owl Cupcakes

Mike Krautter

Whooooo wouldn't love these adorable owls? Twisted open Oreo (or similar) cookies form the eyes along with button-shaped candies, while sliced almonds create the feathers.

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Caterpillar Cupcake


Arranging cupcakes in a curvy line makes them look like a cute caterpillar; just position a larger one with eyes and antennae (aka mini candy canes, licorice sticks or pretzels) at the front.

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Chocolate Heart Cupcakes

chocolate cupcakes with milk-chocolate frosting
Kate Mathis

Show your love for the new parents with these decadent chocolate cupcakes, we decorated half the batch with chocolate hearts stamped out of the cupcakes with a cookie cutter, while the other half is topped with vanilla frosting hearts. You could do the entire batch one way for an equally delicious and striking look.

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