It also doesn’t hurt that beets make these cupcakes a little healthier. By using beets, we can eliminate the oil altogether while getting a good dose of vitamins C, betaine and various antioxidants. But how do they taste? Rich, complex and wholesome. If you didn’t know that beets were in the recipe, you wouldn’t guess it. There’s just an extra note of earthiness, a delicate aroma and an incredible moistness.
Most importantly, these cupcakes are fun. Deep red with swirls of white chocolate to make the red pop even more, these cupcakes are so much fun to share. Mr. Hot and Spicy and I shared these while snuggling up to watch Flight. Later on, I’ll bring some in to work and shock my coworkers with the novelty of beets in cake. And if you’re sending in cupcakes to your child’s school for Valentine’s Day, I can tell you from my experience as an elementary teacher that these cupcakes would be preferable to the sugar bombs sold at the supermarket.
Unfortunately, as I’ve said before, I’m not much of a baker. I don’t have the patience for the details of baking or the preciseness for the chemistry of baking. So, although I’m usually against processed foods, I used a cake mix as the base for these cupcakes. Eventually I’d like to evolve this recipe to a from-scratch version (maybe next year?) but for now I enjoyed the shortcuts of cake mix.
Valentine’s Day Beet Cupcakes
- 1 bunch beets, about 3 medium or 5 small
- 1 cup water reserved from cooking the beets
- 2 eggs
- white cake mix (I used Duncan Hines Classic White Cake Mix)
White Chocolate Drizzle: (optional)
- ½ cup white chocolate chips
- ¼ teaspoon vegetable oil
- Cupcake tin
- Cooking spray or cupcake baking cups
1. Preheat the oven to 350˚.
2. Wash the beets and trim them of any leaves or stalks. Don’t peel them. Did you know you can eat beet leaves? If your beets came with leaves, save them and use them in a salad.
3. Place the beets in small pot and add enough water to cover. Boil the beets for 30 to 40 minutes or until the beets can easily be pierced by a fork. You want the beets to be super tender. Let the beets and the water cool. Reserve the water the beets cooked in.
4. Once the beets are cool enough to handle, you can slip off their skin. I say slip and not peel because the skin really does just “slip” right off if you use the paper towel method. Use a paper towel to tug the skin off.
5. Roughly chop up the beets and add them to your blender. Remember the cooking liquid you reserved? See how it’s a deep, deep crimson? Add one cup of that to the blender. Puree until the mixture is smooth. The result will be soooo red!
8. Bake according to the directions on your cake mix box. 20 minutes at 350˚ was perfect for mine. Let the cupcakes cool before adding the white chocolate drizzle.
9. To melt the chocolate chips, use a microwave-safe bowl and your microwave set on low (I use the defrost setting). Add the vegetable oil to the chocolate. I had to learn the hard way that chocolate won’t drizzle without it. Cook for 30 seconds at a time, stirring like mad in between. Eventually, the chocolate will melt enough to flow smoothly and you have a few minutes before it hardens again. Drizzle the top of each cupcake with whatever design you can create. Have fun!
Yields 15 cupcakes
Serving Size: 1 cupcake
With white chocolate drizzle:
Weight Watchers Points+: 5
Calories 168, Carbs 29, Fat 5g, Protein 2g
Without white chocolate drizzle
Weight Watchers Points+: 4
Calories 130, Carbs 24, Fat 3g, Protein 2g