Apple Spice Cupcakes

Total Time

Prep: 25 min. Bake: 20 min. + cooling


2 dozen

Updated: Jun. 27, 2023
Not only do these adorable cupcakes complement our apple theme, but they're super sellers at bake sales, too. A spice cake mix makes the moist treats a snap to stir up and a fast frosting helps them stand out from an orchard of goodies.


  • 1 package spice cake mix (regular size)
  • 1-1/4 cups water
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/3 cup applesauce
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cups confectioners' sugar
  • Red paste or liquid food coloring
  • 24 pieces black licorice (3/4 inch)
  • 12 green spice gumdrops


  1. In a large bowl, beat the cake mix, water, eggs and applesauce on low speed for 30 seconds. Beat on medium for 2 minutes.
  2. Fill paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Bake at 350° for 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
  3. In a small bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla until fluffy. Gradually add sugar, beating until smooth. Stir in food coloring.
  4. Frost tops of cupcakes. Insert licorice into centers for apple stems. Cut gumdrops in half; flatten and pinch to form leaves. Place one leaf next to each stem.

Nutrition Facts

1 each: 241 calories, 8g fat (4g saturated fat), 48mg cholesterol, 222mg sodium, 39g carbohydrate (31g sugars, 0 fiber), 3g protein.

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