Bake Sale: Maple Pecan Cupcakes

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Bake Sale: Maple Pecan Cupcakes

By Stefani Pollack

Diving into these maple pecan cupcakes from the top, you’ll be met with butter pecan buttercream frosting that tastes exactly like butter pecan ice cream – so much so that you may be tempted to put it in a bowl and eat it with a spoon.  That wouldn’t be a bad choice, but then you would miss out on discovering how well the butter pecan pairs with the pecan-packed maple cupcakes made with a half cup of pure maple syrup.  Together, frosting and cupcake are pecan perfection!

Maple Pecan Cupcakes
Yield: 16 cupcakes

Cupcake Ingredients:
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup finely crushed pecans
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup sugar
½ cup pure maple syrup
½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2 large eggs, room temperature
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup whole milk
1 cup roughly chopped pecans

Cupcake Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 F.
In a medium-sized mixing bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, mix together flour, crushed pecans, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
Mix in the sugar and maple syrup until fully combined.
Add the butter and mix on medium-low speed for three minutes. 
Mix in the eggs and vanilla until just combined.
Mix in the milk until just combined.
Fold in the chopped pecans.
Bake for 20 minutes or until cupcakes bounce back when lightly touched.

Frosting Ingredients:
1 cup + 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup roughly chopped pecans
Pinch salt
3 cups powdered sugar
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Frosting Directions:
To prepare the butter pecans, melt two tablespoons of butter in a small skillet over medium low heat.
Add pecans and salt to the skillet.  Cook for six to eight minutes, stirring periodically, until almost all of the butter is absorbed.  Remove from heat, but leave in the skillet.
To prepare the frosting, in a medium-sized mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, mix remaining one cup of butter on medium-low speed for three minutes or until light and fluffy.
Slowly mix in powdered sugar until fully combined.
Mix in vanilla until fully combined.
Scrape the cooled pecans and any butter left in the skillet into the frosting and fold in.
Spread onto cooled cupcakes.

Stefani Pollack is the author of the popular cupcake blog, Cupcake Project. While she loves simple chocolate cupcakes, Stefani prefers creative cupcakes inspired by her favorite flavor combinations. She encourages her readers to branch out and experiment in the kitchen. Why cupcakes? They bring out the kid in us! Visit Stefani at

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Reader Comments:


I am so excided that you are back. I have diabetes and I'm having a hard time. U are my heart and savior with this. If you can do it I can too with your help.

By ruthie barnes on August 13, 2014


I love your many kinds of receipes.

By Mary Lou Cederlind on March 20, 2014


Paula, still love your shows but what happen to Jamie's show. He had a great show. I just wanted to tell you how great you look since you lost weight keep up the good work and keep on writing recipes From one Southern to another. Carolyn Wells

By Carolyn Wells on January 11, 2013


These were absolutely amazing! I had one left over and placed it in the refrigerator and it was even better cold. Definitely keeping this recipe handy! Yummy!!

By Lorri on November 28, 2011


I made these for thanksgiving this year and they were a little dry. Not sure if I did something wrong. The frosting was delicious. Make sure the pecans are completely one hundred percent cool before adding to your frosting. Will try this recipe again and I hope I get a moister cupcake.

By Shelly on November 26, 2011


Maple cupcakes were the biggest hit at both family dinners, both grandmothers called me today to say that these were our newest tradition to always be on the Thanksgiving table:)

By susan on November 25, 2011


What a great cupcake for the fall!!! I made these for a family dinner with my future in-laws. Everyone loved them and I had lots of requests for the recipe! I will definately make them again...

By Delta on November 22, 2011


Sara - If you have that problem again, you could always add more powdered sugar.

By Stefani from Cupcake Project on November 16, 2011


this sounds like a real WINNER Paula....stay healthy galfriend..Kathy

By on November 16, 2011


We loved these cupcakes! Our church LOVED them too! I have a question. The frosting would not thicken.What was the issue? I followed the recipe but it was runny. We ate it and loved it but I want to know what I can do for next time.

By sara french on November 15, 2011


Miss Paula We Love All Your Recipes, And We Which You On Tv All The Time And I Also Love Your New Piggy Canister Set, Love It,I'm Already Buging My Huband For It For Christmas,So Can You Make A Rooster Canister Set. I Just Thought It Would Go So Cute With The Piggy Canister Set. They Would Be A Family. Yours Truly Cindy.

By Cindy Anderson on November 12, 2011


I am looking for a "strawberry" butter cream frosting. Could I just add some pureed strawberry's to regular butter cream icing? Thanks for you assistance.

By Shelley on November 11, 2011

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