Browned Butter Horse Cupcakes

Party guests will be delighted as they disassemble this dessert! Covered in salted-caramel frosting, rich and nutty browned-butter cupcakes cleverly make up this horse-shaped cake. Feel free to improvise with toppings and presentation – it’s all about having fun in the kitchen!

Serves: 36Prep: 1 hourCook: 20 minutesTotal: 1 hour 20 minutesDifficulty: Easy

Serves: 36


  • 4 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 tsp. baking powder, divided
  • 2 1⁄2 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 4 cups unsalted butter, softened and divided
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 cups 2% milk
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 tsp. vanilla extract, divided
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1⁄2 cup salted caramel sauce
  • Chocolate chips
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder


  • Heat oven to 350°F. Line 36 cupcake cups with paper liners.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and 1½ tsp. salt.
  • In a medium saucepan, melt 3 cups butter over medium heat for 8 minutes until it just starts to brown and smells nutty. Take care not to overcook and burn. Stir in granulated and brown sugars; transfer to a clean bowl to cool to room temperature.
  • In another medium bowl, whisk together milk, eggs and 1 tablespoon vanilla. Stir into cooled butter mixture. Add flour mixture; beat on medium speed 1-2 minutes until blended. Divide batter evenly among cupcake liners. Bake 18-21 minutes until knife inserted in center of cupcake comes out clean.
  • Meanwhile, in a clean mixing bowl, beat remaining 1 cup butter on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Reduce speed to low; beat in powdered sugar. Add caramel sauce and remaining 2 tsp. vanilla and 1 tsp. salt; beat well. Remove small amounts of frosting to two separate bowls. On a serving tray, arrange cupcakes into a horse shape according to photo and frost cupcakes using a piping bag and tip. Add cocoa powder to 1 cup of frosting to create the mane and hooves if desired.