Cactus Cupcakes

Transport your taste buds to the desert with these cupcakes topped with graham cracker “sand” and pretzel rod cacti growing from their centers.

Serves: 12Prep: 20 minutesCook: 20 minutesTotal: 40 minutesDifficulty: Easy

Serves: 12


  • 1 box cupcake mix (any flavor)
  • 12 graham crackers
  • White frosting
  • 12 ounces white chocolate baking chips
  • Green food coloring
  • White sprinkles
  • Red food coloring
  • 12 pretzel rods


  • Kids: Bake cupcakes according to package instructions. Let cool.
  • Adults: While cupcakes cool, crush graham crackers into a fine powder “sand” by pulsing them in a food processor or blender. Pour the “sand” onto a shallow plate.
  • Kids: Frost cupcakes lightly with frosting. (Set some frosting aside for a later step.) Roll each iced surface through the sand.
  • Kids: Pour the baking chips into a microwave-safe glass bowl. Heat in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time, stirring between each interval, until chips are fully melted. Mix a few drops of green food coloring into the melted chocolate. Carefully pour the green chocolate into a tall drinking glass.
  • Kids: Break each pretzel rod in half. Dip each piece into the green chocolate, then add sprinkles to create white spines. Allow to harden on a sheet of wax paper set over a cooling rack. Place 2 pretzel rod pieces into each cupcake to make cacti.
  • Kids: Mix reserved white frosting with a couple drops of red food coloring to make pink. Spoon frosting into a zip-top plastic bag. Snip off a small corner. Squeeze a little pink icing onto the top of each pretzel rod cactus to make a flower. Store cupcakes in an airtight container.