The other day I was commuting to work and was trying to think of a new cupcake flavor combo that I would like to try. It’s October, so of course my mind went straight to the usual fall flavors…pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice, spiced apple, cinnamon, clove, ginger, etc. I happened to drive past a Starbucks and it occurred to me…DUH…I need to make a Pumpkin Spice Latte cupcake!
I’m sure I’m not the first person to think of translating the famous Starbucks beverage into a delicious dessert, but I had to give it a try. I knew that I would start with a pumpkin spiced batter for the cupcake base. I wasn’t exactly sure how I would incorporate the coffee/espresso flavor though. I went back and forth on whether or not the cupcake should be coffee flavored and I could make the frosting pumpkin instead, but I just didn’t like the idea of that. I finally decided that the buttercream needed to be coffee flavored.
Originally I was going to make a traditional coffee flavored American buttercream but I was nervous that it would be too heavy and too sweet. The only other option I could think of that would complete what I wanted was a Swiss meringue buttercream. Now, I’ve never made SMB before and I knew that it was a whole different ballgame compared to making its American counterpart.
I won’t go into too much detail but my first attempt flopped and luckily I got it my second go-round. I am now a HUGE fan of SMB. It is so light and fluffy and delicately sweet! I definitely recommend you give it a go if you ever have the chance. A couple pointers: Make sure your butter is soft but still slightly chilled. My first attempt failed because my butter was too warm. BE PATIENT and trust the process. I thought my second attempt failed too because it was so loose after adding the butter. Just keep beating the mixture…I promise it will come together!
After putting on the coffee SMB I decided my “lattes” needed some “foam”. For that I made some fresh whipped cream. I made sure to keep it only heavy whipping cream and some vanilla extract so it wouldn’t be sweet. I did not add any powdered sugar like I normally do.
Overall I think they came out great! My son thinks they are yummy too although he has only had the cake portion. LOL.
What do you guys think of this cupcake flavor combo? Let me know below!