I was tasked with helping out with a party. To go with the Hawaiian luau theme, I pulled together something I’d seen on Pinterest. The cupcakes involve arranging cute, teddy bear cookies at the beach. Don’t worry… most of the cupcakes fit the theme with cute little bears swimming and sun tanning. Only a few were eaten by sharks (complete with blood) and drowned by giant octopuses.
Teddy Bear Luau Cupcakes
Makes 24 cupcakes
- 4 sticks (2 C) butter, softened
- 16 C powdered sugar
- 1 t vanilla extract
- 1 t butter extract
- 2-4 T heavy cream
- Blue food coloring
- Yellow food coloring
- Blue sparkling sugar
- Graham cracker crumbs
- Pretzel sticks
- Green colored melting candy disks
- Gummi LifeSaver candies
- Teddy Graham cookies
- Fruit by the Foot fruit roll ups
- Gummi soda bottles
- Gummi sharks
- Gummi octopus
- Red gel food coloring
- Tiny, paper umbrellas
Ahead of time, make and cool 24 of your favorite cupcakes.
Use a stand mixer to cream the butter. Allow to run on high for about 2 minutes until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and butter extract.
Add powdered sugar in 2 C increments. Use heavy cream to reach desired consistency. You may end up with extra. Frosting is done with it is thick but spreadable, like peanut butter.
To make palm trees, lay parchment paper on the counter top. Set out pretzel sticks. Place green melting disks in a Ziploc bag, microwave for 30 seconds. If they are not melted, add 15 more seconds. Snip the corner and draw palm tree fronds on top of the pretzel sticks. Fill them in. Allow to cool completely. If you are adding sprinkles, put them on while it is still melted.
Pull out 3 C of frosting and tint it blue. Transfer to a piping bag. Cut the corner or add a swirl tip.
Pull out 3 more C of frosting and tint it yellow. Transfer to a piping bag. Cut the corner flat.
Put 1/2 C plain frosting into a piping bag. Cut the corner very small. This is your “glue.”
To make cupcakes with bears on beach towels: Pipe 2/3 of the cupcake with pale yellow frosting. Dip it into graham cracker crumbs (sand). Pipe blue frosting on remaining 1/3 with swirls (ocean). Add blue sparkling sugar. Cut 1 inch trips of fruit rollups. Use plan frosting to glue the fruit roll up to the sand. Glue a teddy graham cookie to the towel. Add a gummi soda. Add a paper umbrella.
To make cupcakes with bears going swimming: Pipe 1/2 the cupcake with pale yellow frosting. Dip in graham cracker crumbs. Pipe blue frosting into swirls on the other half. Add blue sparkling sugar. Select teddy graham cookie with both arms up. Carefully stuff the cookie into a gummi LifeSaver candy. Stick it into ocean. Select teddy graham cookies with one arm up. Use plain frosting to stick another gummi LifeSaver candy to the extended arm. Set it on the sand. Add a premade palm tree.
To make cupcakes with shark/octopus attacks: Pipe 1/4 of the cupcake with pale yellow frosting. Dip into graham cracker crumbs. Pipe the remaining 3/4 with blue frosting swirls, add blue sparkling sugar. Use plain frosting to stick a gummi shark in the middle. Break the leg off a teddy graham, setting the cookie and the leg just past the shark’s mouth. Add a little blood with red gel food coloring. Place an octopus toward the back of the cupcake with an upside down bear in its grasp. Add a gummi lifesaver on the sand.
Feel free to put these together however you want. There are so many cute ideas and versions. Although this should go without saying… don’t make cupcakes with shark attacks if you think they will upset the host or partygoers (especially if they are little kids).