Crazy for Cupcakes

Grand Prize Winner from the magazine's popular national recipe contest appears on "The Early Show" on CBS

Cover Image

Cover Image


Bethany Bradley
Public Relations, Taste of Home


Kaymi Malave
Krupp Kommunications


Grand Prize Winner from the magazine's popular national recipe contest to appear on "The Early Show" on CBS

Millions of cupcakes will be baking in ovens coast to coast when Taste of Home's 3.5 million readers open their April/May 2007 issue. Winners of the magazine's national Cupcake Challenge recipe contest lead a sweet parade of handheld treats including a special online "Cupcake of the Week" newsletter.

The Grand Prize, selected from more than 1400 entries, went to Mary Bilyeu of Ann Arbor, Michigan for her Special Mocha Cupcakes. Mary will demonstrate how to bake her luscious confections—made with cocoa, coffee and a fluffy mocha frosting—alongside Taste of Home's editor-in-chief Catherine Cassidy on CBS's "The Early Show" on April 17, 2007.

"Our contests bring out the best in our readers and the passion they feel for their food," says Cassidy. "We get tens of thousands of contest entries every year and the home cooks who win are like our 'celebrities.' Their recipes get to be seen by millions of people like them in the magazine, online, and on TV on CBS."

To choose the cupcake prizewinners, the Taste of Home Test Kitchen staff made more than 700 cupcakes and 71 cups of frosting. They ranged from fruity and filled to iced and spiced, showcasing flavors including banana, maple, chocolate, lemon, pumpkin, peanut butter and gingerbread. Some of the cupcakes were topped with nuts or sprinkles, others with berries or even small cookies.

Bonus On-Line Treats!

Competition was so keen that Taste of Home's sweet-toothed judges could not stop at the dozen winners and runners-up chosen for the contest; eight additional runner-up recipes and fun and easy decorating ideas can be found in the subscriber-only "Cupcake Cupboard" at

And if like the Taste of Home readers you still can't get enough cupcakes, there's the free "Cupcake of the Week" newsletter filled with hints, tips and gorgeous full-color photos. By the time you finish baking, another one is on the way. Sign up at www.tasteofhome/cupcake.

In addition to the contest winners, the new Taste of Home issue also rounds up some clever cupcake "critters." For a bake sale or class party, googly-eyed Monkey Cupcakes will be a sure hit. And for a lighthearted birthday treat, cupcakes decorated as chicks, pigs and the bright sun surround a red barn cake for a "barnyard bash."

To enter the current contests, simply go to or pick up the April/May 2007 issue.

Savory Ideas Round Out the Menu

While the award-winning cupcakes are the cover story, there's much more in the recipe-packed April/May issue of Taste of Home. "Seven Tasty Twists on Ground Beef" features readers' top-notch main dishes, and "Nothin' Beats Mom's Cookin'" shares home-style entrees and side dishes treasured by readers.

A spread of Kentucky Derby party foods will make for a delicious race day. And, the issue's savory appetizers and snacks were picked with graduations and other spring occasions in mind.

Every one of the outstanding 79 recipes in the Taste of Home April/May issue, like all Taste of Home recipes, are accompanied by a mouth-watering photo and has been tested by the Taste of Home Test Kitchen's professional home economists, guaranteeing success every time.

Taste of Home is the world's most popular cooking publication. Since 1993, it has offered a friendly exchange of family-favorite recipes, cooking tips and personal stories from real home cooks in its flagship magazine and other publications, in cookbooks and on its web site, Today, Taste of Home is part of the Reader's Digest family and the circulation of all Taste of Home magazines, including Simple & Delicious, Light & Tasty and Cooking for 2, totals 6.7 million.

Here's a great Cupcake Challenge finalist:

Chocolate Cream Cheese Cupcakes cupcakes

PREP: 30 min.
BAKE: 25 min. + cooling

I got the recipe for these moist, filled cupcakes from a dear friend about 25 years ago. I have made them many times for my family and for church functions. They're irresistible. —Vivian Morris, Cleburne, Texas

1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
1-1/2 cups sugar, divided
1 egg
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup baking cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon white vinegar

3-3/4 cups confectioners' sugar
3 tablespoons baking cocoa
1/2 cup butter, melted
6 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup chopped pecans

For filling, in a small mixing bowl, beat cream cheese and 1/2 cup sugar until smooth. Beat in egg and 1/2 teaspoon salt until combined. Fold in chocolate chips; set aside.

In a bowl, combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and remaining sugar and salt. In another bowl, whisk the water, oil and vinegar; stir into dry ingredients just until moistened.

Fill paper-lined muffin cups half full with batter. Drop filling by heaping tablespoonfuls into the center of each. Bake at 350° for 24-26 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in cake comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.

For frosting, in a large mixing bowl, combine confectioners' sugar, cocoa, butter, milk and vanilla; beat until blended. Frost cupcakes; sprinkle with pecans. Store in the refrigerator. Yield: 20 cupcakes.

Craving Even More Cupcakes?cupcake cookbook

There are many more luscious choices in Taste of Home Cupcakes & Muffins, a new 96-page softcover collection available wherever magazines are sold from April 10, 2007 through July 9, 2007. It includes more than 150 recipes, plus baking tips and handy decorating ideas.