Mocha Cookies and Cream Cupcakes by BakingdomWelp, Halloween is the day after tomorrow. You guys have any big plans?? We don’t. I tried really hard to find a party for us to go to (only so we could wear our Carl and Ellie costumes again), but then I remembered I live in the Netherlands and Halloween just isn’t a thing here.

Also, I remembered I don’t really like parties. I’m wild and crazy and would rather curl up on the sofa with my boys and watch Hocus Pocus than try to make small talk with people who don’t understand my weird. Which is why, come Friday, there will be Carl and Ellie, couch surfing with a furry, four-legged version of Russell…because it’s the best of both worlds. I get to wear my costume again (and convince Hubs to wear his), and enjoy the unawkwardness that is my own living room.

I will, of course, be making treats, because there is some stupid unspoken rule that adults can’t trick-or-treat (and the whole Dutch thing again). I really think trick-or-treating should be age-limitless. At what age is trick-or-treating ever not fun?? (The answer is never. It’s never not fun.)

Anyway. I’m throwing these cupcakes together again, because they were amazing, and because they’re much easier than they look – even with the spooky-fun cameos on top. :)

Skull Cameo Mocha Cupcakes by BakingdomI didn’t have an actual skull cameo mold, so I used this one and drew the skull design freehand. I think they turned out pretty good, but if you want a much more skull-like look, then this mold is perfect (although, it only makes one candy at a time).

If you’re interested in the ruffled liners, they’re from Wilton. :)

Skull Cameo Chocolate Cupcake Toppers by BakingdomOn some of the cameos, I decided to add a pop of red, and used red candy for the flowers. I think both cameos are pretty, but I do love that punch of red, especially to add to the creepy elegance factor.

Mocha-filled Cookies and Cream Cupcakes by BakingdomOk, now these cupcakes. These cupcakes. Oh sweet baby Jesus, these cupcakes. I love it when I make a new recipe and I’m all, “New top 5″. I probably have about 23 cupcakes in my top 5. But I mean, really…who’s counting?

As if it’s not enough that these are rich, moist (yes, I said moist…because it applies…move on, people), and chocolatey, they’re topped with amazing frosting. I mean, it’s not just cookies and cream OR espresso…it’s both. You’re welcome. AND the cupcakes have an amazing espresso cream filling. There are no bad things happening here. None.

Skull Cameo Cupcakes by BakingdomIf you’re having a fun grown-up Halloween party this weekend, or aiming for something a little more classy-creepy than gory-scary, these cameos are the perfect addition. The cupcakes are fantastic for Halloween, not just because of how delicious they are, but because the decorations can easily be modified with gravestones for a graveyard theme, or with gummy worms for a bit more ickiness.


And be sure to swing by my friend, Tina’s over at Sugar Bean Bakers. She has some seriously cute and tasty Mummy Munch popcorn mix. It’s really, really ridiculously adorable.

Mocha Cookies and Cream Cupcakes
Makes about 10 to 18 standard cupcakes


1/2 cup (4 ounces or 125 ml) strong brewed coffee, hot
3/4 cup (42 grams) cocoa powder
1/2 cup (4 ounces or 125 ml) hot milk

1 1/2 cups (191 grams) all-purpose flour
1 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick or 113 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup (200 grams) sugar
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon (5 ml) vanilla extract

1/4 cup ( ml) heavy cream
1 teaspoon, plus a pinch of instant espresso powder

1 cup (2 sticks or 226 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 lb. (about 4 cups or 500 grams) confectioners’ sugar (powdered sugar)
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons (10 ml) vanilla extract

10 oreos, finely crushed


To make the cupcakes: In a medium bowl, or a two cup measuring cup, stir the coffee and cocoa powder together until dissolved. Stir in the milk. Set aside until cooled to room temperature, or place in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes.

Once the cocoa/coffee mixture has cooled, preheat oven to 350 degrees (180 C). Line a muffin pan with cupcake liners; set aside.

In a medium bowl sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt; set aside.

In a large bowl, or the bowl of a standing mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, and mix until combined; stir in the vanilla. Sprinkle 1/3 of the flour mixture over the bowl and mix until just combined. Add 1/2 of the chocolate mixture, mixing again until just combined. Repeat with reamining flour and chocolate mixtures, ending with flour. Mix only until flour is just incorporated. Do not over mix.

Place 3 tablespoons of batter in each cupcake liner. Bake for 20-23 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few crumbs clinging to it. Allow to cool completely before frosting.

To make the frosting/filling: In a small bowl, heat the heavy cream in the microwave until hot, about 30 seconds. Stir in the one teaspoon of espresso powder. Set aside to cool

Once the heavy cream mixture has cooled, in a large bowl, or the bowl of a standing mixer, beat the butter for 3 minutes. Beat in the sugar and salt until combined. Add 2 tablespoons of the heavy cream mixture and whisk on high for 4 minutes, until light and fluffy. If the frosting is too thick, add more cream, 1/2 teaspoon at a time, until desired consistency is reached. Divide out about 1/2 cup of the frosting to act as the filling (you will not mix the crushed cookies into this). Stir in about 1/2 cup of crushed cookies into the remaining frosting until evenly distributed.

For the filling, stir in the extra pinch of espresso powder and 1 to 2 teaspoons of the heavy cream mixture to soften the frosting slightly. Stir until thoroughly combined.

Assemble: Remove a small core of cake from each cupcake. Fill the resulting hole with the espresso filling. Replace a bit of the cake to act as a cap on the filling, if desired. Frost the cupcakes with the cookies and cream frosting, rolling the cupcakes in any extra crushed cookies, if desired.

Stir in the vanilla and food coloring.

Recipes by Darla


Friday, October 17, 2014

My Adventure Book Purse Cover Tutorial

by Darla

My Adventure Book Purse Cover Tutorial by BakingdomWhile we were visiting Walt Disney World back in September, the Hubster and I were fortunate enough to get to attend Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party for the second time, thanks to my Tina from Sugar Bean Bakers. She surprised me with tickets to the party just before we left for Florida, and I’m so happy she did!

I really wanted to go, but I wasn’t sure if we would, because last time we went, it wasn’t great. It was crowded, crowded, crowded, and frankly…boring. The lines for the trick-or-treat areas were ridiculously long – oftentimes filled with only adults…which always confuses me, because if you can afford MNSSHP tickets, you can definitely afford to go buy a bunch of Halloween candy, rather than tying up the lines for kids. But I digress…the lines were long, so we didn’t even trick-or-treat last time. It was no great loss, since we can get candy any old time, but I was looking forward to going trick-or-treating again! I haven’t been since I was a kid. Turns out, adults don’t like giving candy to other adults. ;) There were also very few people – adults or children – dressed in costumes. In fact, the majority of them weren’t even dressed in Halloween-themed clothes. For me, half the fun is seeing people’s creativity shine through in their costumes/costume choices.

Anyway, this year was wonderful! It wasn’t over crowded, more people were in costume, and everyone loved our Carl and Ellie costumes! It really adds to the fun when people keep telling you how great you look, or how much they love your costume, not gonna lie.

In fact, one of the first things to happen when we arrived at the party was the photo you see above. Before leaving for the party, we tried everything to get our hands on a blue balloon to complete the Hubster’s costume. You’d think balloons would be readily available at Disney, but no such luck. We threw in the towel and headed to the park to party. When we first arrived, we immediately headed over to a Photopass Cast member to have our photo taken in costume, and just as she was about to take our picture, another Cast Member selling balloons asked if we wanted to hold them in our photos!! It was the best thing ever, and started off the whole night fantastically. [read more→]


Glorious Layered Desserts: Salted Caramel Brownie Trifle {Giveaway} – Updated!

Thursday, October 2, 2014
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A couple of months ago, I got my very own copy of a beautiful new book that is basically the best cookbook idea ever. The book is a Glorious Layered Desserts, and it’s the best idea ever, because layered desserts have it all. Seriously, you get layers of goodies. Usually there’s something like ice cream or […]...

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Florean Fortescue’s Chocolate Chili Ice Cream and a Diagon Alley Trip Report!

Friday, September 19, 2014
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I know, I haven’t posted in forever and a day. Again. And you probably thought I was gone. Again. But I’ve been really busy you guys, you don’t even know. You don’t. Really. Okay, whatever. If you’re gonna be like that, fine. By ‘busy’, what I really mean is ‘lazy’. Whatever. It was nice. I […]...

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Salted Dark Chocolate Ritz No-bake Cookies

Wednesday, August 13, 2014
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Well, this is probably a really silly confession to make, because it’s pretty obvious by how little I’ve been posting, but I’m going to confess it anyway: I haven’t been in a very ‘blogging’ mood lately. Actually, I think a more accurate confession would be that I have a tremendous case of writer’s block right […]...

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Strawberry Brownie Sundae Bites

Wednesday, July 2, 2014
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Did you know that July is national ice cream month? It’s like the best idea for how to spend a month that anyone has ever thought of. Except maybe chocolate month. That’s awesome, too....

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Super Mario Bros. Mini Cakes

Thursday, June 5, 2014
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I made Super Mario Bros. cakes! I could probably just stop right there, say no more, and it doesn’t matter. Because Super Mario Bros. cakes. These are kind of my Father’s Day tribute this year, because when I was a kid, we got the original Nintendo system when it first came out, and my dad […]...

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Easy Ranunculus Cookies

Thursday, May 8, 2014
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The Hubster is currently teaching me to play chess. I mean, I basically know how to play…you know, all the pieces and the moves they can make, but that’s about it. Here’s the thing, though…I’m hating it. Not because I don’t like playing. And not because I think it’s boring or anything like that. It’s […]...

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Summer Berry Maple Roulade

Friday, May 2, 2014
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I watched Steel Magnolias today, and somehow, that led me down a rabbit hole of random fact hunting. What? I don’t know. I’m an IMDber. It’s who I am. First of all, I kinda wish big southern hair was in again. Not a fact hunting discovery or anything, just…you know…I mean, it’s kinda awesome. Second, […]...

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Grilled Nutella S’more Sandwiches with Shortbread Cookie Fries

Friday, April 25, 2014
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I want a baby goat. I know you wanted to know that. Because baby goat. Seriously, have you ever seen a baby goat? Ridiculous. I’m not sure there’s anything in the whole wide world that’s cuter than a baby goat. They are like cuteness overlords. You bow down to the squee-worthiness that is baby goats. […]...

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