Spiced Eggnog Cupcakes with Vanilla-Rum Swiss Buttercream

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


When most people think of Thanksgiving desserts, the first thing that usually comes to mind is pumpkin.  Pumpkin pie, pumpkin cakepumpkin flan, pumpkin cheesecake – the list goes on.  Thanksgiving is the one day of the year when pumpkin lovers unite and unabashedly share their mutual adoration for all things…pumpkin.  But, what about all those poor, unfortunate souls that don’t like pumpkin?  Don’t they deserve tasty Thanksgiving treats too?  Hard as it may be to believe, these people do exist.  Mr. SGCC is one of them.  And his dislike for pumpkin extends to most other orange foods as well.  He won’t touch sweet potatoes, butternut squash, cantaloupe persimmons or even a benign little carrot.   Enter eggnog…

Eggnog is another one of those quintessential holiday items that start popping up in the supermarkets around this time each year.  However, most people don’t ever notice it until weeks later because they’re too consumed by all things pumpkin.  But, eggnog is quite a versatile little product.  It’s great to enjoy all by itself, and even better spiked with a little bourbon and cinnamon.   Whizzed in a blender with ice cream, it makes a fabulous milkshake.   And, it can be swapped with milk in most baked goods, like these eggnog cupcakes, with amazingly delicious results.


To make the cupcakes, I used my favorite vanilla cupcake recipe from the Magnolia Bakery.  Instead of the milk called for in the recipe, I used a cup of eggnog in the batter instead.  I also added a splash of dark rum, and some cinnamon and nutmeg too.  Then, I piled each fluffy, moist cupcake high with a silky, rich vanilla and rum laced Swiss buttercream.    Heaven!

The Swiss buttercream recipe is one that I adapted from Martha Stewart.  While making Swiss buttercream can be a tricky business, when you get it right – it’s glorious!   The most important thing you have to remember when making it is to pay attention.  Swiss buttercream does not fool around.  But, if you’re diligent about following the directions, all should work out just fine.   There is a great Swiss buttercream tutorial at Sweetapolita.  I highly recommend it to anyone who is interested in learning more about making it.   But, beware!  This site is addictive!


Once your cupcakes are frosted, you can decorate them any way you like.  I used some sparkly, gold sugar sprinkles here, but I bet they’d be wonderful with a drizzle of caramel sauce too.

Aren’t they pretty?


I have totally fallen in love with using eggnog to jazz up holiday desserts!  I’ve been putting it in pound cake, ice cream and custards too.  The flavor it adds is subtle, but lovely – and oh, so festive!

So, if you’re having some picky pumpkin haters at your Thanksgiving table this year,  make them eggnog cupcakes.  Or, just make some for yourself to enjoy after everyone goes home.  Winking smile




20 responses to Spiced Eggnog Cupcakes with Vanilla-Rum Swiss Buttercream

  1. On November 20, 2012 at 12:01pm, Rosa said...

    Beautiful cupcakes! That buttercream is wonderful.



  2. On November 20, 2012 at 12:07pm, Kristen said...

    Oh my, Susan! These look absolutely amazing!

  3. On November 20, 2012 at 3:16pm, Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar said...

    These sound super tasty! Yum!

  4. On November 20, 2012 at 4:28pm, Rachel (S[d]OC) said...

    I learned to make Swiss buttercream earlier this year and now it’s the only frosting I use. I would love it swirled on a tasty eggnog cupcake!

  5. On November 21, 2012 at 10:25am, roz said...

    These are just about the most perfect cupcakes for the holiday season . . . . YUMMMM! I hope that you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!


  6. On November 24, 2012 at 1:07pm, Lisa Parda said...

    Happy Belated Thanksgiving….. I just found your site from a link at brown eyed baker. I absolutely ADORE egg nog and this sounds fantastic. Quick question about your recommendation for substituting the eggnog for the milk…I would think you would need to lessen the egg’s you add to the recipe too but it seems not to be the case in this recipe. Have you found that with all your experiments?
    I am working on a website that compiles delicious recipes that feature alcohol in food and since it’s under construction I am hoping to work on getting permission from you for this recipe once it’s up and running. I will be testing the recipe this week and just had the egg question on the substitution. P.S. Great site. Thank you!

  7. On November 24, 2012 at 11:42pm, Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious said...

    Amazing! Hope you had a wonderful thanksgiving! And these cupcakes are definitely a must-make for Christmas!

  8. On November 26, 2012 at 3:44pm, Melissa said...

    This looks so much like Bakers Royale Eggnog Cupcake, same frosting and the second photo is also her exact photo layout.

  9. On November 28, 2012 at 2:09am, Radhika said...

    That looks really yummy. Trying that out soon.

  10. On December 02, 2012 at 5:02pm, Hannah F. said...

    Can’t wait to try these!
    And, where did you get that (is it granite?) muffin tray? Do you bake in it?

  11. On December 11, 2012 at 6:49pm, Jennifer Lied said...

    So I decided to try your recipe and the batter was good but for some reason my buttercream did not come out as light and fluffy as I believe it should have. The only thing that I did different was that I don’t own a stand hand mixer , I own a hand held. Maybe the beaters did something? I have no clue. The kids love them, I guess that is all that counts.

  12. On December 13, 2012 at 10:23am, Jocelyn (Grandbaby Cakes) said...

    These look incredibly scrumptious! Wow! I adore eggnog in anything around this time of year.

  13. On June 22, 2013 at 10:26pm, linda said...

    egg nog ain’t just for drinking, this recipe is proof, yuumm!

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kiss the cook!

Hello and welcome to SGCC! I’m Susan, a professional writer, food columnist, recipe developer, wife, mother, daughter and sister, who used to be a lawyer in a previous life. My love of food comes from a long line of wonderful and creative Italian home cooks who didn’t always have a lot, but knew how to make a lot out of what they had. I hope that you enjoy yourself while you’re here, and visit often! read more >>

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