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Santa's Workshop Cupcakes

 Santa's Workshop Cupcakes
Created by our Test Kitchen home economists, these whimsical Christmas cupcakes are sure to charm young and old alike. And you can easily assemble these yummy goodies yourself following the simple, step-by-step directions here.
24 ServingsPrep: 3 hours

Ingredients

  • Cupcakes and miniature cupcakes of your choice
  • 1 to 2 cans vanilla frosting (16 ounces each)
  • New paint brush, pencil, paper and waxed paper
  • BEACH BALLS:
  • Fruit Roll-Ups
  • Sour fruit hard candy balls
  • BLOCKS:
  • Alphabet cinnamon-graham cookies
  • Assorted food coloring
  • CAR PULL-TOY:
  • Life Savers Gummies and circus peanut candy
  • Candy-coated sunflower kernels
  • Red shoestring licorice
  • DOG:
  • Tootsie Roll Small Midgees
  • Fruit Roll-Up
  • Dragee
  • DRUM:
  • Fruit Roll-Up
  • Dragees
  • PRESENTS:
  • Fruit Roll-Ups
  • Starburst candies
  • TEDDY BEAR:

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Santa's Workshop Cupcakes (continued)

Ingredients (continued)

  • Tootsie Roll Small Midgees
  • Fruit Roll-Up
  • TRAIN:
  • Individual cream-filled sponge cake
  • Sprinkles of your choice
  • Candy-coated milk chocolate miniature kiss and black licorice coin
  • Vanilla wafer and miniature peanut butter-filled sandwich crackers
  • Dragees
  • SANTA AND ELVES:
  • White and chocolate candy coating
  • Ivory and blue paste food coloring
  • Red and green sprinkles
  • Red shoestring licorice
  • Candy-coated sunflower kernels
  • Starburst candies
  • Miniature marshmallows
  • Corn syrup
  • White nonpareils
  • Dots candies and M&M's® Brand Chocolate Candies
  • LIST:
  • Ready-to-use white rolled fondant
  • Food writing pen

Directions

  • For beach balls: Cut wedge shapes from Fruit Roll-Ups. Position on
  • each hard candy ball; press to attach.
  • For blocks: Attach four graham cookies with frosting to form the four
  • sides of a box; attach another cookie to the top. Using a paint
  • brush, brush food coloring over cookies to color as desired.
  • For car pull-toy: Using frosting, attach Life Savers Gummies to
  • circus peanut, forming tires. Insert a sunflower kernel into center
  • of each tire. For pull-rope, loop a 4 in. piece of shoestring
  • licorice; insert into peanut.
  • For dog: Place two Tootsie Rolls on a small piece of waxed paper;
  • microwave on high for 5-7 seconds or until softened. Break off
  • desired amount for body; roll into a rounded triangle shape. Roll
  • two smaller pieces into legs; press onto front of body to attach.
  • Roll another piece into an oval shape for head; attach two small
  • pieces for ears. Press head onto body; attach a small piece for
  • tail.

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Santa's Workshop Cupcakes (continued)

Directions (continued)

  • For collar, wrap a thin strip of Fruit Roll-Up around neck. Form
  • another strip of Fruit Roll-Up into a bow; press onto collar to
  • attach. Attach a dragee to center of bow with frosting. Pipe a small
  • amount of frosting for eyes.
  • For drum: Remove a miniature cupcake from paper liner. Place cupcake
  • upside-down. Spread frosting over the top and sides. Decorate drum
  • with thin strips of Fruit Roll-Ups. Using frosting, attach dragees
  • as desired.
  • For presents: Cut a Fruit Roll-Up into thin strips. Place two strips
  • widthwise around desired amount of Starburst candies; press together
  • at base to attach. For bow, form two Fruit Roll-Up strips into
  • figure eights; press together in center and press onto wrapped
  • candy.
  • For teddy bear: Place a Tootsie Roll on a small piece of waxed paper;
  • microwave on high for 5-7 seconds or until softened. Break off
  • desired amount for the body; roll into a rounded oval shape. Roll
  • two smaller pieces into arms and two pieces into legs. Press onto
  • body to attach. Roll another piece into a ball for head; attach two
  • small pieces for ears and one for nose. Press head onto body.
  • For bow, wrap a thin strip of Fruit Roll-up around neck. Form another
  • strip of Fruit Roll-Up into a bow; press onto ribbon to attach. Pipe
  • a small amount of frosting for eyes.
  • For train: Cut a thin slice from one end of sponge cake to allow it
  • to stand. Frost top and sides of sponge cake; coat with red
  • sprinkles. Stand on serving platter. Frost one cupcake; dip the top
  • in red sprinkles. Place cupcake bottom against the flat side of
  • sponge cake.
  • For smokestack, attach a miniature kiss to top of cupcake with
  • frosting. Attach licorice coin to center of cupcake. Attach a
  • vanilla wafer to sponge cake for large wheel.
  • For train cars, frost desired amount of miniature cupcakes; dip the
  • tops in sprinkles. Arrange on their sides behind the engine car.
  • Place a sandwich crackers at the base of each car. Pipe window and
  • wheel details with frosting; decorate with dragees as desired.
  • For Santa and elves: With a pencil and paper, draw a beard, mustache,
  • eyes, eye brows, ears and hair pieces. Melt white and chocolate
  • candy coatings in separate microwave-safe bowls; stir until smooth.
  • Divide white coating into three portions; tint one portion ivory and
  • another blue. Transfer each to a resealable plastic bag; cut a small
  • hole in the corner of each bag. Place waxed paper over the drawings.
  • Working quickly, pipe coating over designs. Using chocolate coating,

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Santa's Workshop Cupcakes (continued)

Directions (continued)

  • pipe a small dot into the center of each eye. Refrigerate until set.
  • Frost a cupcake; dip the top in red sprinkles. For each elf, frost a
  • miniature cupcake; dip the top in green sprinkles. Tint a small
  • amount of frosting ivory. Using ivory frosting, frost a cupcake and
  • a miniature cupcake for each elf. Lay each ivory cupcake on its side
  • on top of each sprinkled cupcake; secure each with a toothpick.
  • Gently lift candy features from waxed paper; arrange on cupcakes.
  • Form smiles with shoestring licorice; use sunflower kernels for
  • noses.
  • For Santa hat, place four red Starburst candies on a small piece of
  • waxed paper; microwave on high for 3-5 seconds or until softened.
  • Place candies side by side, using a rolling pin, roll candies
  • together to 1/8-in. thickness. Cut into a triangle; form into a cone
  • shape. Press seam to seal; gently form around a small ball of
  • plastic wrap into a hat shape. Repeat for elf hats using three
  • candies for each hat.
  • For pom-poms, cut marshmallows in half; roll each half in corn syrup
  • then in nonpareils. Press onto the tip of hats and around brims.
  • Attach Dots candies, M&M's or additional pom-poms to elves to form
  • collars. Remove plastic wrap from inside hats; attach to heads with
  • frosting.
  • For list: Roll out fondant; cut a strip to form list. Write names
  • with food writing pen. Keep covered until ready to use.
  • Finishing touches: Arrange cupcakes on tiered serving platters.
  • Decorate with balls, blocks, cars, dogs, presents, teddy bears and
  • additional assorted candies as desired; gently drape list down
  • tiers. Yield: varies.
Editor’s Note: This recipe was tested with Newman's Own alphabet cinnamon-graham cookies.