Spiced Christmas cupcakes with marzipan frosting

Spiced Christmas cupcakes with marzipan frosting
Twas the night before the School Christmas Fayre and all through the house, not a creature was stirring…except mummy, who was stirring cake batter furiously while rifling through the spice cupboards in a panic. Yep, I somehow thought it was a good idea to volunteer to make four boxes of Christmas cupcakes.

This recipe was made with a good helping of guesswork but ended up making a really light, crisp, spiced sponge and a moreish white chocolate marzipan icing that pipes quite soft and sets quite firm.

Here’s what to do to make 12.



  • 200g caster sugar
  • 200g dark soft brown sugar
  • 180g butter
  • 1sp vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 400g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2-4 tbsp cold black tea


  • 550g icing sugar
  • 180g butter, softened
  • 2 tsp almond extract
  • 200g white chocolate
  • Up to 2 tbsp water
  • assorted toppers such as holly and silver sugar pearls


  1. Starting with the sponge, beat together the sugars and butter until pale and fluffy
  2. Beat in the eggs and vanilla
  3. Sieve in the flour, mixed spice and cinnamon and fold through
  4. Stir in 2 tbsp of cold black tea – if the batter seems to stiff, add up to 2 more tbsp of black tea
  5. Line a 12-hole muffin tray with paper cases and divide the batter evenly between them
  6. Bake at 200C (180C fan assisted) 20-30 mins until softly browned and springy
  7. Cool completely on a wire rack
  8. Meanwhile, prepare the icing by gently melting the chocolate over a bowl of steam and then allowing to cool but not set
  9. Beat together the butter, icing sugar and almond extract by adding the sugar bit by bit until pale, smooth and fluffy, then beat in the white chocolate
  10. Beat in 1 tbsp of water – if the icing is still too thick to pipe, beat more water drop by drop
  11. Pipe the icing over the cupcakes and then top with festive decorations

I hear they went down pretty well at school, so that’s a relief!

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  1. Jenny Paulin says

    Mmmmm, me like the sound of these! Infact please can you go and pass me one now while I go out the kettle on? Thanks. X