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How do I Choose the Best Cupcake Decorations?

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  • Written By: Sheri Cyprus
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 12 September 2016
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Choosing the best cupcake decorations is quite simple if you take your budget, time allowance and the occasion into consideration. Cupcakes can be elegant, time-consuming, gourmet and on the expensive side or they can be whimsical, quick, creative and fairly inexpensive to make. For instance, the best cupcake decorations for a wedding are going to be a lot different than those needed for a child's birthday party. In addition to commercial cupcake sprinkles and colored sugars, a variety of candies and cookies can be used along with frosting to decorate cupcakes.

The best way to add eye-catching interest to cupcakes, such as for a child's birthday party or bake sale, is to choose cupcake decorations that create dimension. For example, a piece of green twisted licorice turned upside down with the ends pressed into the top edges of the cupcake can become a basket handle. Two small round wafer cookies placed a small distance apart, with most of the wafers hanging off of the top edge of a cupcake, can create ears to make teddy bear cupcakes.

Tiny graham wafer teddy bear cookies can be “dressed” by piping colored frosting “clothes” onto them. The dressed bear cookies can stand on top of frosted cupcakes to create a miniature scene limited only by the imagination. Other candy or cookie decorations may be added to complete the look. These types of cupcake decorations are best saved for when there is a lot of time to fuss with small details.

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For quick cupcake decorations, a quick sprinkle of a sweet topping is all that's needed. The most attractive way to do this is to contrast the sprinkles with the frosted cupcake's top color. For example, white miniature marshmallows sprinkled on cupcakes can make a fun and different decoration, but not on top of the same color of vanilla frosting. Classic multi-colored sprinkles go with any frosting color, but sprinkling a few gourmet jelly beans onto each cupcake can be an updated alternative.

Dark green colored sugar sprinkled on cupcakes topped with light green frosting can be served to honor Saint Patrick's Day. Add a few red candies on top and the same cupcake decoration technique is ready for a Christmas party. One of the best cupcake decoration ideas for a baby shower is to top some cupcakes with pastel pink and others with baby blue colored sugar. Little non-edible novelty trinkets such as mini baby bottles can be placed on top of each cupcake.

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