White Chocolate Cranberry Cupcakes with White Chocolate, Cranberry, and Pistachio Cream Cheese Frosting (Art You Eat)

I’ve decided to enter a photo into the Art You Eat. Since CB won last month, she had influence in this month’s theme: Seasonal Cupcakes. I was very focused on cookies this holiday season, but I did manage to throw some cupcakes together. These cupcakes took two tries to perfect, but the outcome was worth the effort. The white chocolate is subtle but warm. I made the same white chocolate cupcake recipe that I made last year for Cupcake Hero: Coffee except this time I used dried cranberries instead of coffee. For the frosting, I made the white chocolate cream cheese frosting that I made for Cupcake Hero: White Chocolate and threw in more dried cranberries as well as some chopped pistachios.

I have to admit, these cupcakes took two tries to be edible. For the first batch, I threw some chopped pistachios in the cupcake batter as well. I made a rookie mistake (or I’m getting over confident) and didn’t taste test until all of the cupcakes were frosted with pretty swirls. Then hubby got home from work and we split a cupcake. With weird looks on our face, we just looked at each other. Neither of us wanted to say it out loud. They tasted funny… almost meaty… in fact, almost bacon-ey. How is that possible?!? I know pistachios are “meaty” nuts, but come on – how could this happen… Pistachio, cranberry and white chocolate is a very common cookie combination, so I still don’t understand how they tasted so meaty. The next morning I tried another one, hoping that the taste had gone away. No such luck. The entire batch went into the trash. That’s only the second time that has happened (the first time was with some low-fat carrot cupcakes).

For my second try, I decided to leave out the pistachios. Since the nuts seemed to cause the meaty flavor. I did want to put the pistachios in the frosting again because that was really good. The second batch is delicious. I’m a big fan of cranberries so I really enjoyed these cupcakes.

White Chocolate cupcake (from Crazy about Cupcakes) – makes 24
2/3 cup milk
1 Tbsp white vinegar
2/3 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/3 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups white chocolate chips – I melted the chocolate chips
1/3 cup water – I omitted the water
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 325. Insert liners into a medium cupcake pan.

Combine the milk and vinegar in a cup. Set aside for at least 5 minutes. Combine the vanilla extract with 1/2 Tbsp instant espresso and set aside.

In a large bowl cream together the butter and sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3-5 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition.

Combine 1/2 cup of white chocolate chips and the water in a small saucepan. Heat over low heat until melted, stirring continuously. I used a double boiler to melt the white chocolate.

Add the vanilla and white chocolate mixture to the creamed mixture.

In a separate bowl combine the flour, baking soda, salt.

Add the dry ingredients to the creamed mixture, alternating with the milk-and-vinegar mixture, beating for 1 minutes after each addition.

Fill the cupcake liners three-quarters full. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of cupcakes comes out clean. Cool cupcakes in the pan.

White chocolate cream cheese frosting – from Baking Bites
4-oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
1-oz white chocolate, melted and slightly cooled
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 tsp milk or cream
2-3 cups confectioners’ sugar
~1/2 cup chopped dried cranberries
~1/2 cup chopped pistachios

In a large mixing bowl, cream together cream cheese, butter and melted white chocolate.

Beat in vanilla and milk, then add in the confectioners’ sugar gradually until the frosting reaches your desired consistency. Stir in the cranberries and pistachios.

    Pin It

17 Responses to “M&M Cookies to Celebrate Valentine’s Day”

  1. #
    1
    Carrie — February 12, 2010 at 2:26 pm

    I love freezing dough but somehow most ends up in my tummy unbaked when I do that 🙂

  2. #
    2
    oneordinaryday — February 12, 2010 at 2:40 pm

    What a great gift! I’m thinking that would be wonderful for all sorts of occasions. Thanks for the idea!

  3. #
    3
    Carly — February 12, 2010 at 5:00 pm

    These are adorable and I love that idea! Two questions, though: 1) Were these as good as the cookies from the other recipes? and 2) When you freeze them, do you bake right from frozen?

  4. #
    4
    Jen — February 12, 2010 at 5:04 pm

    Great questions Carly – As far as comparing them to the other cookies. I enjoyed the chocolate M&M cookies the best, but they were REALLY chocolatey. The other non-chocolate M&M cookies were a bit more chewy and they had nuts in them, so they had a different vibe. This recipe was more of a classic M&M cookie for sure.

    As far as baking from frozen, you can def just go straight from freezer to oven. Bake them ~13 minutes instead of ~11 and take them out when they look done.

  5. #
    5
    Cara — February 12, 2010 at 5:18 pm

    these were delicious!

  6. #
    6
    stephchows — February 12, 2010 at 5:35 pm

    they look so cute all frozen up 🙂

  7. #
    7
    Leanne — February 12, 2010 at 6:11 pm

    I love the pink and red M&Ms. Thanks for the idea of freezing the cookie dough.

  8. #
    8
    Memória — February 12, 2010 at 8:06 pm

    I was going to ask you the same thing as Carly, well the first question. These cookies are cute. Your freezing method reminded me that I have a bunch of sugar cookies still in the freezer! Do you know how long cookies can stay in the freezer?

  9. #
    9
    Jen — February 12, 2010 at 9:32 pm

    I don’t know how long they will last in the freezer. I have a tendency to forget about things in my freezer… I’d guess a couple months? Anyone have ideas?

  10. #
    10
    nutmegnanny — February 12, 2010 at 9:43 pm

    What festive little cookies 🙂 I love them! I also like the fact that you froze them. I bet they were delicious. Make sure to enter the All Through the Year Cheer event for Valentine’s Day 🙂

  11. #
    11
    Julie — February 13, 2010 at 4:49 am

    I think that sounds like a great way to spend valentine’s day. It can be intimidating the way it’s so hyped up. The cookies look very festive, love ’em!

  12. #
    12
    Vivian - Let's Try These... — February 13, 2010 at 2:16 pm

    We don’t do “valentine’s day” either since my MIL was born on the 14th and daughter’s birthday is the 15th – besides, its more important to say you love someone everyday, not just one day out of the year. Love the idea about freezing the cookie dough in preshaped form and giving that away. Wonderful idea!

  13. #
    13
    Deborah Dowd — February 14, 2010 at 1:03 pm

    I am looking for cookies that travel well for my soldier adopted through Soldier’s Angels and these look like a winner!!

  14. #
    14
    Kerstin — February 14, 2010 at 8:00 pm

    Mmm, these were so tasty! Happy Valentine’s Day!

  15. #
    15
    Amy (Sing For Your Supper) — February 16, 2010 at 9:54 pm

    These are just too cute!! I love M&M cookies too!!

    http://www.singforyoursupperblog.com

  16. #
    16
    bcallegra — February 17, 2010 at 1:13 am

    Just had to add my two cents on the idea of giving cookie dough frozen and ready to be baked – genius! For some reason, I’ve never thought of that, even though I’ve given cookies frozen to people to be defrosted when they’re ready to eat. I love the dough idea!

  17. #
    17
    Megan — February 20, 2010 at 2:16 am

    YUM-these look absolutely delicious! I love the pink and red M&Ms!

Leave a Comment