Frequently Asked Questions

I really enjoy when readers email me with their compliments and questions so I thought I’d start a section for the ones that people ask the most. Please feel free to E:contact me if you have any questions, comments and/or suggestions.

iheartcuppycakes [at] gmail [dot] com

Where do you buy your cupcake holders? And do they work better than the usual ones we all use?

They are called party nut cups or souffle cups depending on where you buy them. I buy mine at Smart&Final, 250 for $5. I wouldn’t say “better” is the right word but I would say more economical b/c I bake cupcakes so much. I do like that they are more rigid than regular cupcakes liners so I can bake more than 12 at a time since I do not need a cupcake/muffin pan to hold them in place. I just put them on a baking sheet. My baking sheet can hold 24 at a time.

What are the sizes of your cupcake holders? regular and mini?

The regular size is 3.25oz and the mini is 2oz.

What is your go-to chocolate cupcake recipe?

I am a big fan of Cupcake Bakeshop by Chockylit and her chocolate cupcake recipe.

How do you make your frosting swirls?

It depends on if you want a swirl or round shape.

My favorite “star” tip is the Wilton 1M and Magic Tip 7ST. My favorite “round” tip is the Wilton 1A and 2A.

what is fondant?

Fondant is a sugar paste (sugar and water). You can think of it like an edible playdough. I am not particularly fond of fondant’s taste but alot of friends have told me that marshmallow fondant recipe tastes better!

Here’s the link for the recipe: MMF (scroll down)

What are the silver ball decorations you use? Where do I find them?

Those silver balls are called dragees. They are some of my favorite decorations b/c they are simple, elegant and edible. They come in many different colors besides silver too. You should be able to find them in baking aisle at your local grocery store or cake supply store with the other sprinkles. Unfortunately they are “illegal” where I live so I have a covert dragee operation and mine get shipped from various states in the US. Vive le dragees!

Can I add a link from my blog to yours as a favorite?

I am so flattered. OF COURSE!



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  1. What constitutes the perfect cupcake? How should it look? How should it taste? What should be the consistency of the frosting and the cake?

  2. JEANMARC, I wouldn’t say that I am an expert like some cupcake-ers out there since I’ve really only been doing this as more than just a hobby for about 6 months but I can tell you what I think is most important to me.

    1. Presentation – decor, colors, creativity
    2. Flavor combinations/Taste – moist vs dry, ratios of ingredients, ingredients that compliment rather than detract etc.
    3. Eatability
    4. Overall package

    I firmly believe you eat with your eyes first so presentation is very important. Who’s gonna eat it if they think its ugly right? I tend to go for the less is more approach so there doesn’t have to be ALOT of components in presentation. I think my main goal for cupcakes is eatability so if the cupcake is over-decorated (even though its pretty) I tend not to think it has the overall package.

    Hope that helps!

  3. Hi CB! What tip did you use for the yellow/blue cupcakes in the photo above? I’ve been looking for a tip that gives the “whipped cream” effect.

  4. DENISE, The blue+yellow frosting was made with a Wilton 1M star tip. Hope that helps!

  5. I really love where you designed “I heart cupcakes” on the top of the
    page! I do a little Incredimail tag designs, and I was wondering –is
    this an actual cupcake font, or your own design? Would love to share if
    it’s an actual font! I’m a cupcake fanatic too, but it’s hard for me, as
    I have blood sugar problems :-))

  6. Oh gosh no. I have no design skills! HA HA! It’s a free font you can download >> http://www.fontcubes.com/KR-Cupcake.font

  7. Hi Clara,
    I can’t seem to find Magic Tip 7ST. Is it a Wilton tip?
    Can you tell me where you got yours.
    Thank you so much.

  8. Magic Tip is another brand like Wilton. I found mine at my local cake supply store. Do you have one near you? Try to do a google search for your local cake supply store. HTH!

  9. Hello, Clara! A belated thank you for the wonderful from-scratch funfetti recipe — it has been a hit with my classmates and choir alike :)

    I know that the typical 12-cavity muffin/cupcake pan holds 3.25 ounces, but does that mean the scoop you use is 3.25 ounces/#12? Or do you use a 3.75 ounce/#10 scoop?

  10. Eek! Now you’re getting too technical for me. Honestly I just bought a regular ol ice cream scoop at Target and kinda estimate how much batter I scoop into each cupcake liner. I’ll take your word that an individual cupcake cavity holds 3.25oz so I assume you want something that will fill it about 1/2-2/3 full, not the whole volume. Sorry that wasn’t a great answer. Glad you enjoyed the Funfetti cupcakes!

  11. Hi Clara! I LOOOVE cupcakes too but I only started baking last year and I am still learning heaps and making lots of mistakes. I’m just wondering if you could give me a list of the best and most-used piping tips and bags so that I could just order them straight up! I keep finding myself short of one tip/bag or another! I am also intending to make macaroons and have no idea what piping tip would be best for that! Help meeee.. PS You have the best cupcake blog EVER!

  12. Thanks for kicking my butt! I’ve had my “must-buy list” in my post draft queue for a while but I just haven’t been motivated to finish it yet. I think it’s fabulous that you are getting into cupcake baking. I’m all about inspiring ppl to get creative with cupcakes! I think as you continue you’ll find yourself buying lots of different “accessories” but I definitely recommend getting 2 sizes star tip (rec: Wilton 1M and Magic Tip 7ST) and 2 sizes of round tip (rec: Wilton 1A and Magic Tip 9PT). I use 12-inch disposeable piping bags. I’m personally not a fan of buying the reuseable b/c I don’t wanna wash them but I do have one 16-inch reuseable that I rarely use. Thanks for your sweet compliments! Hope that helps!

  13. Thanks for being so prompt in your reply Clara! I’m off to the store armed with my little list :) Keep it coming with the oh-so-entertaining blogs xo

  14. Hi Clara,
    I’m looking to buy the paper souffle cups that you use for your cupcakes. I checked out the Solo ones and it states that they are heavy duty paper with a rolled wax trim. I know the Wilton ones have wax on them…
    The Solo cups are listed for holding condiments without seepage.
    So what brand do you use?

  15. I buy the 250 pack of 3.25oz and 2oz from Smart&Final. It’s called Genpack paper souffle cups. Hope that helps!

  16. Thanks :)

  17. Hi Clara,
    I’m not very experienced at decorating with icing but have managed to master using the 1M Star tip (thank go it was easy). Can you please explain how to use the 1A round tip to make the puffy icing on the other cupcake you have pictured. Also, which size tip did you use, 1A or 2A?

  18. Honestly I think the frosting consistency has more to do with it than the tip. If the frosting is too runny, piping won’t be very fluffy or have volume. When I pipe, I tend to go in a circle from the outside perimeter towards the center but I know other cupcake-ers that do it the opposite way and that’s ok too. Do whatever is more comfortable for you. For the cupcake picture on this page, I used the smaller round tip, Wilton 2A but if you want to see an example of the Wilton 1A >> Click here. Hope that helps!

  19. Thank you so much. I will try using my round 1A. Also, can you tell me what the difference is between the Wilton 1M and the magic tip 7st or the Wilton 1A and the magic tip 9pt?

  20. The differences between them are slightly different size tips. Wilton 1M is a smaller star tip than Magic Tip 7ST. Magic Tip 9ST is a bigger round tip than the Wilton 1A.

  21. Thanks. I’ll start searching for that now! :)

  22. What a lovely FAQ with so dang cutey pics…specially the silver balleys…thanx a ton for the great info….

  23. Hello! Love all the recipes/pics youve put up! I just found your site, and i dont know if someone had asked this or youve already answered this, but what is the coning method & where do I find it? Thanks!

  24. Thanks for sweet compliments! To “cone” a cupcake is to create a hold in the middle of the cupcake so you can add a filling to it. There is a great picture tutorial from Nicole of Baking Bites (here). Hope that helps!

  25. Oh thank you! I tried using a Wilton 230 tip and for some reason my filling would leak AROUND the tip and not thru the hole :( So it was frustrating and my filling was pretty solid so I dont know what I did wrong! But I shakk try this method! Thanks again!

  26. I am having problems with my cupcakes being flat or not fully “round out of the liner” (check out some pics on my blog).. I tried mixing the egg with the sugar first but still didn’t get the full “round” top.. What is the best tool to use to fill the liners the right amount?? I always seem to over fill or underfill..Help???

  27. Hi Shannon! Are they sinking in the middle? or just flat? Ironically I love flat cupcakes b/c it makes decorating them easier IMO but if your cupcakes are sinking in the middle you might be underbaking them. Make sure you allow your cupcakes to bake uninterrupted for at least 15 minutes. During this time the baking is giving them the structure they need and disrupting them earlier could can cause them to rise and fall too fast. If you are a looking for the “dome” maybe increasing the oven temperature (375-400F) will help create the “steam” environment to induce rising. Obviously if you are increasing the oven temperature you’ll have to adjust your baking time accordingly. I’m tempted to tell you to increase the baking powder in the recipe too since it really helped to make these cupcakes (here) dome but you always wanna be careful when you play with ingredient ratios in a cupcake recipe. HTH!

  28. Found your blog yesturday and love it! Is there a place to see all the wonderful recipies in one place?

  29. Hi and thanks for the blog compliments! What a cowinky dink! I’m in the process of putting together a recipe list. Keep checking back!

  30. Hey, I’m fairly new to baking, but my wonderful boyfriend just bought be a stand mixer for my birthday, and when I asked him for his first request it was…CUPCAKES. Lemon Poppyseed cupcakes to be exact. Any chance you have a recipe you might be willing to share? Also, and perhaps more importantly, he’s asked for a “light vanilla frosting”. He hates cream cheese frosting (I’m not sure what’s wrong with him), so I wondered if you might have suggestions for what might work best with a lemon poppyseed cake. I’d REALLY appreciate it!

  31. I wanted to ask a question about the paper cups, are they easy to open? I didn’t know how hard it would be to tear them off. I was just wondering and wanted to know before I buy them.

    Thank you so much!!

  32. Putting your freshly baked cupecakes into some nice wrappers certainly finishes them off. However to make them extra special there is
    nothing like making your very own cupcake wrappers. These can be personalised to the individual and the event, plus they are so easy to
    make. I share my free templates over at http://bestcupcakewrappers.com.

  33. Putting your freshly baked cupecakes into some nice wrappers certainly finishes them off. However to make them extra special there is nothing like making your very own cupcake wrappers. These can be personalised to the individual and the event, plus they are so easy to make. I share my free templates over at http://bestcupcakewrappers.com.

  34. My partner and I stumbled over here coming from a different web page and thought I might as well check things out.
    I like what I see so now i am following you. Look forward to exploring your web page again.

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