Salted Caramel Cupcakes for a Virtual Baby Shower


These caramel cupcakes are topped with a rich salted dulce de leche caramel frosting and happen to be the perfect virtual baby shower treat for my blogging  friend Jenny of Picky Palate.

Salted Caramel Cupcakes at

There seems to be something running in the blogging water these days, when you consider all the pregnant bellies showing up on blogs, facebook and at events.

Today my friends and I are throwing a surprise virtual shower for Jenny, the creative face behind the Picky Palate a blog full of fun kitchen creations!   Jenny is a wife and mom of two little boys, with number three expected to arrive in September!  Not only has she been cooking up another picky palate to feed, but Jenny has also just finished her very first cookbook, The Picky Palate Cookbook with Wiley Publishing that will be available October 22nd 2012.  What an exciting year for her!!

We all can’t get together with Jenny in person, but we can all share our well wishes and excitement for her and her family by showering her with our virtual sweets, treats and more!

Salted Caramel Cupcake recipe

Earlier last month I visited Sprinkles cupcake shop in New York City with my daughters.  As soon as I opened the door and took in the sweet aroma, I knew I wanted the salted caramel cupcake.  I’ve been dreaming about the wonderful thick, creamy buttery caramel frosting every since, and knew I would need to try and recreate that cupcake at home.  What better time than a virtual baby shower!  I think Jenny would LOVE these as much as we did!

I started with a Duncan Hines Caramel Cake Mix and doctored it up just a bit.  Still using 3 eggs like the box calls for, but I then  used melted butter instead of oil, and only one cup of liquid, using 1/2 cup Coffee-Mate Caramel Macchiato liquid creamer and 1/2 cup water. {full recipe below}

Caramel Cupcakes at

This will yield a nice thick batter, enough for 24 regular size cupcakes and 12 mini cupcakes.

The real magic happens with the frosting!  I used Nestle la lechera dulce de leche caramel to make a caramel cream cheese frosting!  If you can’t get a hold of the Dulce de Leche, I’m sure caramel ice cream topping would work well too.

Caramel Cupcake recipe at

With the left over dulce de leche, I drizzled a little over the top of the frosting then a light sprinkling of fleur de sel that I picked up at The Meadow Shop in New York City!  A beautiful and unexpected shop that I fell in love with that specializes in artisan salt and gourmet chocolate and more! A must stop if you ever find your self in NYC’s West Village!

Salted Caramel Cupcakes at

I wish I could give you  a scratch and sniff here!  Even sitting on my table 2 days later, you could just smell the creamy, buttery caramel as you walked by.  These were, dare I say, nearly as good as what we had at Sprinkles.  Although, I’m not comparing them side by side, but they were definitely every bit as dreamy as I had envisioned!

Salted Caramel Cupcake recipe at

There you go! One seriously sensational cupcake! For one seriously sensational blogger and her new baby!

I have to tell you though, my husband wasn’t a fan of the salt, so if you aren’t either, just leave the salt off the top…..but promise me, you will try it on just one!  Be very light, a little fleur de sel goes a long way!

Congrats to your family, Jenny! There are a lot of incredible moments ahead for you.

Salted Caramel Cupcakes

Yield: 24 regular size cupcakes + 12 mini cupcakes

Salted Caramel Cupcakes



    For Caramel Cupcakes
  1. Heat oven to 350° and line cupcake pans with cupcake papers.
  2. In a large bowl, using electric mixer, combine cake mix, eggs, butter, cream and water for 1 minute on low. Scrap sides, then mix on high for 1 minute.
  3. Divide batter evenly between cupcake wells and gently shake to smooth batter. Bake 18-20 minutes (10 minutes for mini cupcakes) or until toothpick inserted into the center cupcakes comes out clean.
  4. Let cupcakes cool completely before frosting.
  5. Unfrosted cupcakes can be frozen in a covered container for 1-2 weeks.
  6. For Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Frosting
  7. Place butter in a large mixing bowl and blend slightly. Add cream cheese and blend until combined, about 30 seconds.
  8. Add the caramel and mix until fully incorporated.
  9. Slowly add powdered sugar 1 cup at a time and blend on low speed until combined and desired consistency (you want your frosting pretty thick).
  10. Increase to medium speed and beat until it begins to get fluffy.(about 1 minute)
  11. Pipe caramel frosting on top of cupcakes with an extra large round pastry tip
  12. Drizzle frosting with caramel
  13. Lightly garnish with fleur de sel


if you can not find the Duncan Hines Signature Caramel Cake Mix you can use a Butter Cake Mix

Jenny’s Virtual Baby Shower Tour

Amanda: Kevin and Amanda Cinnamon Blueberry Biscoff Breakfast Cookies

Angie: Bakerella Baby Faces

Averie: Averie Cooks Chocolate Banana and Biscoff Graham Bars

Bev: Bev Cooks Horseradish Deviled Eggs

Bridget: Bake at 350 Cute as a Button Cupcakes

Cheryl: TidyMom Salted Caramel Cupcakes

Gaby: Whats Gaby Cooking Blueberry Buttermilk Cake

Heather: Heather’s Dish Perfect Pancake Bites

Julie: The Little Kitchen Mixed Berry Mint Slushies

Kathy: Panini Happy Baby Oreo Ice Cream Pies

Kristan: Confessions of a Cookbook Queen Homemade Animal Crackers

Lauren: Lauren’s Latest Mini Chocolate Lava Cakes

Lori: Recipe Girl Oreo and Caramel Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

Maria: Two Peas and Their Pod Cookies ‘n Cream Sheet Cake

Marion: Sweetopia Baby Shower Cookie Favors

Marla: Family Fresh Cooking Blueberry Mint Agua Fresca

Michelle: Brown Eyed BakeShrimp Nacho Bites

Naomi: Bakers RoyaleChocolate and Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Trifles

Recipe BoyChocolate Dipped Peanut Butter Cup Stuffed Oreos

Robyn: Add a Pinch Blue Velvet Cake

Shaina: Food For My Family Ginger Plum Preserves

Shelly: Cookies and CupsOreo Pop Baby Rattles

Teresa: Blooming On Bainbridge Pom Pom Cupcakes ~ Coming Soon!

I'm linking up with these parties.......please visit them! Get Your Craft on , Weekend Wrap Up Party, Pity Party

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Cheryl Sousan

A self-proclaimed neat freak, Cheryl chronicles her journey through homemaking on her blog,, where she shares recipes, tutorials, crafting and her ever-growing love for photography. This St. Louis mom juggles her passion for life, her daughters and her tiger-loving husband, all while her obsession with tidiness cleans up the trail blazed behind her. Google+

116 Responses to “Salted Caramel Cupcakes for a Virtual Baby Shower”

  1. Hayley @ The Domestic Rebel posted on August 20, 2012 at 3:15 pm (#)

    Uhhhh omg, I need these. That picture with the caramel being drizzled over the cupcake? I. Die. Amazing, Cheryl!

  2. Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet posted on August 20, 2012 at 4:38 pm (#)

    Ooooh, my kind of cupcake – lots of drizzle! Yum!

  3. Lynna posted on August 20, 2012 at 7:59 pm (#)

    omg, the salty caramel is my favorite cupcake from Sprinkles! 😀

  4. leslie posted on August 20, 2012 at 8:34 pm (#)

    Swoon…dulce de leche…I could eat the stuff by the spoonful.

  5. Allison [Girl's Guide to Social Media] posted on August 20, 2012 at 9:57 pm (#)

    Sea salt and caramel are a glorious combo. I think my mouth is pretty much drooling on my keyboard. I’ll have to make these for my fiance because he LOVES caramel.

  6. Kristen posted on August 20, 2012 at 10:23 pm (#)

    I adore salted caramel. These look amazing!

  7. teresa posted on August 20, 2012 at 10:23 pm (#)

    Cheryl these look so yummy!
    Love that special salt.
    Also love it that you used Caramel Creamer in the cake batter.
    Your pictures are amazing!

  8. Lisa | With Style and Grace posted on August 21, 2012 at 1:28 am (#)

    Mmm… salted caramel, sounds like perfection, especially for miss Jenny!

  9. Robin @ Simply Southern Baking posted on August 21, 2012 at 5:03 am (#)

    Mmmm…I’m drooling looking at this picture. These look amazing!

  10. Ali | Gimme Some Oven posted on August 21, 2012 at 8:33 am (#)

    These look AMAZING, Cheryl! Love all things salted caramel. And a happy baby shower to Jenny!! :)

  11. MichelleH posted on August 21, 2012 at 8:40 am (#)

    Oh these look amazing!

  12. Kathie posted on August 21, 2012 at 8:41 am (#)

    These look so good, I can almost smell the caramel as you’re dripping it from the spoon to the cupcake! Thanks for sharing!

  13. Aninas Recipes posted on August 21, 2012 at 8:44 am (#)

    Wow! These cupcakes look great! Oh and I am all for the salt girl! Cupcakes are just perfect for baby showers! Love this post!!

  14. Diane {Created by Diane} posted on August 21, 2012 at 11:33 am (#)

    I’m in LOVE with salted caramel and could really go for about a dozen or so of these yummies!!!

  15. Chelsea {Whatcha Makin' Now?} posted on August 21, 2012 at 11:36 am (#)

    I love the doctored up cake mix recipe – I need to try that! These cupcakes look amazing! Thanks for the great ideas!

  16. Dana @ Minimalist Baker posted on August 21, 2012 at 10:09 pm (#)

    I must have these. I simply, must!

  17. Kiran @ posted on August 21, 2012 at 10:51 pm (#)

    Mmmm.. love salted caramel on everything!!

  18. Megan @ whatmegansmaking posted on August 22, 2012 at 10:38 am (#)

    These look awesome! Love that caramel drizzle on top :)

  19. Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen posted on August 22, 2012 at 4:23 pm (#)

    Mmm, I can’t get enough of salted caramel, these have my name all over them!

  20. Shaina posted on August 23, 2012 at 4:28 pm (#)

    These turned out so nice, Cheryl. Absolutely gorgeous, and salted caramel is my favorite. I can’t wait to try these.

  21. Heather @French Press posted on August 23, 2012 at 11:06 pm (#)

    what a SWEET idea:) your cupcakes look insanely amazing!

  22. icakepops posted on August 24, 2012 at 9:32 am (#)

    Oh my! Your photographs make these cupcakes come to life!

  23. Russell at Chasing Delicious posted on August 27, 2012 at 10:44 am (#)

    Yum, yum and yum! I would gladly eat a dozen of these in one sitting. Just saying.

  24. Dina posted on August 31, 2012 at 5:52 am (#)

    Does regular salted caramel taste the same as the french sea salt that you used?

  25. tanya1234 posted on September 7, 2012 at 5:55 am (#)

    luv it thankx alot

  26. Heather posted on September 8, 2012 at 12:10 am (#)

    So apparently the Carmel cake mix doesn’t exist where I live. I am really disappointed I couldn’t find it anywhere, went to at least 6 different stores looking for it. I did, however, find the Duncan Hines Decadent Apple Caramel cake mix, think it would taste just as good? Or should I wait till I can find the regular caramel cake mix?

    • TidyMom replied on September 8th, 2012 at 5:58 am

      Darn! I’m so sorry. I don’t know why they don’t make things available everywhere!
      I think the Duncan Hines Decadent Apple Caramel cake mix would maybe work – but I would follow the direction on the box for mixing the cake – because I think that’s a smaller cake

      Here’s what I would try on of 2 ways

      get a good butter cake mix or even the Duncan Hines French Vanilla (if you can find it) and
      • use 1 cup caramel creamer and no water (and follow my recipe)
      • Follow my recipe + add ½ cup caramel sauce/syrup to the cake mix

      Hope that helps!

      • Heather replied on September 9th, 2012 at 12:46 am

        I am trying the Butter cake mix with 1 cup of the creamer…hoping it turns out as good as yours look! Thanks for the help!

      • Michelle replied on March 1st, 2013 at 2:44 pm

        I just called Duncan Hines (3/1/13) and they have discontinued their caramel cake mix!!! I’m going to try a plain white or butter cake mix instead and use creamer instead of water…and perhaps a spoon or two of caramel sauce.

  27. Jill Lewis posted on October 4, 2012 at 12:14 am (#)

    i have a question about the salted caramel cupcakes – i can’t find the cake mix but did find butter pecan – how do you think that would work or should i stick to the suggestion you mentioned above about the french vanilla?
    Thanks in advance for your reply :)

  28. Brittany posted on November 9, 2012 at 1:13 pm (#)

    I was drooling over this recipe and then was asked to make cupcakes for a (non-virtual) baby shower and finally, had an excuse to make them. I couldn’t find the Caramel cake mix either and freaked out a little bit, but then I saw your modifications for a French Vanilla mix… I added 1/2 c. caramel like recommended and they tasted amazing! Thank you for this fabulous recipe!! A huge hit!

  29. Megan posted on December 26, 2012 at 3:44 pm (#)

    Hey! Just wanted to let you know I made these and they are DELISH! I actually posted the recipe on my blog as well! Thank you so much for the lovely recipe!

  30. Sue D. posted on April 2, 2013 at 9:20 am (#)

    These look so good I want to make them right now!

  31. Jo Ann posted on May 20, 2013 at 9:07 pm (#)

    Hi, I’m planning on trying these. My question is…sorry, maybe it’s me….but I have a question about the coffee-mate creamer. In one link it shows a link to amazon, for the powdered version and the other (recipe) shows the liquid version. Which is it? It says 1/2 cup of water and 1/2 cup of creamer…could go either way….

    • TidyMom replied on May 21st, 2013 at 2:42 pm

      Hi Jo Ann, sorry for the confusion – but I just double checked and all the links go to the liquid creamer – and the liquid cream is what I used.

      Hope this helps

  32. Kerin Jones posted on September 30, 2013 at 9:08 pm (#)

    I love this recipe however along with some of the other ladies I wasn’t able to get a hold of the Duncan Hines Signature Caramel Cake Mix so I used Duncan Hines French Vanilla Cake Mix with half a cup of caramel sauce. They were a hit at my friends baby shower, a few of the ladies asked for the recipe. I also really like the look of your blog as soon as I saw those pictures I knew it was a recipe I had to try.

  33. Rita posted on January 5, 2014 at 12:43 pm (#)

    I found the Duncan hines signature caramel cake mix and the Nestles carmel dulce de leche on Amazon so I just ordered it. I’m so excited to try your recipe that I decided to pay the extra and order on Amazon.
    A question, the picture you have posted looks like it has swirls in the cupcake. Does it have swirls? I didn’t see any instructions on mixing something into the mix itself. Thanks, can’t wait to try this.

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