Bird’s Nest Cupcakes

The egg is a perfect symbol for this season. No matter which occasion you’re baking for, this recipe will suit. Easter? Yes! Passover? Totally! A Wiccan Pagan Sumerian Vernal Equinox Orgy and 50/50 raffle ? Most definitely. I don’t know your life and I don’t judge. However you celebrate sunshine, warmth, rebirth, and the earth, I salute you. These cupcakes are super cute, obviously. You can use any little egg candies you like. I chose “Robin’s Egg Whoppers,” which are a most excellent malted milk chocolate. There are plain old chocolate mottled eggs, and I also saw mini jellybeans in pretty pastels – those would be fun as well. Fill up your baskets with weird plastic grass and get out the PAAS tablets, the bendy wire thingy, and 2 dozen large white eggs, it’s time for SPRING!

Bird's Nest Cupcakes

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Bird’s Nest Cupcakes
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 24
For the tender white cake:
  • 2¾ cups unbleached cake flour
  • 1⅔ cups granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 1½ sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract
For the buttercream frosting nests:
  • 3 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 1 stick butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • Mini candy-coated chocolate eggs
For the cake:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour cupcake tins, or line them with paper cups.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, combine all dry ingredients, 2 minutes on low speed. Add butter, then egg whites, beating thoroughly after each one, then the whole egg, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula as you go.
  3. In a medium-sized mixing bowl combine milk and extracts. Slowly beat this mixture into the batter, 2-3 minutes, scraping down the sides. Ladle the batter into prepared cupcake tins and bake, 20 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow the cupcakes to cool completely before frosting.
For the buttercream frosting nests:
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, combine confectioner's sugar, butter, milk, and vanilla; mix on medium speed, about 3 minutes.
  2. In a large, dry saute pan toast shredded coconut until light brown and fragrant. Once the coconut has cooled, coat the frosting and top with mottled eggs.

This post was originally published on March 25, 2013.

Jillian Bedell

Jillian Bedell is a writer and mother living in a farmhouse in Cushing, Maine. She is very good at talking about herself in the third person. She is co-author of Eating in Maine: At Home, On the Town, and On the Road. She creates content on the internet, on subjects ranging from summer camps to semi-precious stones to the folklore of food. With Malcolm, Jillian was one of the original "Insiders," for the Visit Maine tourism campaign. She loves telling the stories of her adopted state, finding out-of-the-way places, and people making interesting things. Watching her daughters play in the wild woods and fields of Cushing makes her very happy.


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