Monday, July 2, 2012

Happy Canada Day! - Maple Bacon Cupcakes

Yesterday was Canada Day, but instead of celebrating with a BBQ and wearing red and white, there was absolutely nothing going on here. (Apparently I don't know enough Canadians) Actually, that's not true. There was a party at the American Club to celebrate July 4th, which I considered going to all dressed up in red and white Canadian style, (they'd deserve that for holding their party on OUR day!) but decided that might not be too much fun.

Instead, I had my own kind of celebration. In the form of baking, of course. I started thinking about making cake and attempting to decorate it with a Canadian flag, but I'm not much of an artist. So with some inspiration from Recipe Girl, I went with Canadian ingredients instead - and what's more Canadian than maple and bacon? (Well, ok, there's poutine, but that's harder to imagine in cupcake form) If you've ever had your maple syrup from your pancakes run into your bacon, you can imagine how good this might be.

Recipe Girl's bacon was candied, so I candied my bacon too. This was pretty easy. I took 1/4 cup of brown sugar, 1/2 tsp of cinnamon, and about 2 tbsp of maple syrup, mixed it together, and it was almost exactly the right amount to coat my 8 small slices of bacon.

I put them on a baking rack over a foil-covered pan, and baked them at 350 degrees for roughly half an hour. I took them out every 5-10 minutes, flipped them, drained off the fat (see later) and brushed them with more maple syrup. I ended up with 8 slices of chewy, sweet, salty deliciousness.

If you haven't tried this, you should. Wow.

And then I made these:

I started with an internet search and it seems I'm not the first person to do this, and an important thing I learned is that apparently when you start adding maple syrup to cupcake batter, it can easily ruin the chemistry of it. Glad I read up first!

Due to ingredients, quantities and such, I started with this recipe, which weirdly turns out to be from! Not a place I'd normally think to go for a recipe, but it worked the best for me. Of course, as usual, I made some changes. After reading this recipe from, I decided to drain off the fat from the candied bacon and used that in place of about 2 tbsp of the butter (if I'd planned a bit, I would have saved the grease from that morning's bacon too, but who thinks that far ahead?) I also ran out of sugar (!) so instead of 2 cups of granulated sugar, it was more like 1.5, and I substituted maple syrup for the rest. Unfortunately maple syrup is about a million dollars a bottle here, so mine's the fake stuff. I also cut the vanilla extract down to 1tsp, and upped the maple extract to 2.5tsp.

I also decided not to use the cinnamon buttercream recipe from Oprah's site because I was running out of butter! (Yeah, I know, what's happening in my house?) And also, I wanted a maple-y icing, so I used the one from Bacon Today. Topped them with slices of candied bacon and red sprinkles to make them LOOK Canadian and YUM!

I know you wouldn't normally think to put bacon in a cupcake, but after I made the Bacon Chocolate Cake, I had to consider the possibility! It gave the cupcakes tiny bits of chewy saltiness, and with the maple flavour, made for some pretty tasty treats!


  1. dear lord! these look opulently delicious!! x

  2. These look absolutely delicious. Evil, but delicious.


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