I made these cupcakes about a year ago and sadly I was not capturing my cupcake adventures then so I do not have any of my own personal pictures, but thankfully other people in this world were more on top of it than me and I have been able to snag (with permission) there pictures to make this blog post a little more fun. Remember, when posting pictures from other websites, it is not only the legal but the nice thing to do🙂
Picture courtesy of meandmypinkmixer.com
One of my favorite fellow baking bloggers Mike’s Baking recently made a grape flavored poke cake for his husband’s birthday but he blogged about how it did not turn out they way he wanted it to and that the jello mixture just seeped into the whole cake. Now even though I bet it tasted wonderful, the look of it was not what he desired. I saw this and knew I needed to help a fellow baker out and all other bakers in the world with this problem.
Before writing a post about Poke Cake, (or cupcakes really because I mean this IS a cupcake blog) I did a little internet searching for similar recipes and found that most just say to use a boxed white cake mix. YUCK! I understand why they are out there, but whenever possible I beg of you all to bake from scratch, it is worth the time/money and you are eliminating the artificial ingredients that are packed into boxed cake mixes so you can put them in the jello we are about to use.
Okay, now that I have gotten off my soap box, let us get down to the good part…The Poke Cupcake Recipe…Unlike most white cake recipes, this one does NOT call for beating the egg whites into a stiff peak and then incorporating the mat the last second, this allows the cake to be a little denser so the jello syrup wont bleed into the whole cupcake/cake.
This recipe can also be made into a Poke Cake using a 13 x 19 inch baking pan and altering the baking time to 35 minutes.
Equipment for Jello Poke Cupcakes
- 2 Standard 12 cup cupcake pans, or 1 used twice
- Cupcake Liners
- Cookie sheet (this will be explained later)
- Measuring cups
- Measuring spoons
- Mixing bowls
- Wooden Skewer
- Small Sauce Pan
- Electric mixer
Jello Poke Cupcakes
White Cake Adapted from America’s Test Kitchen
Recipe Yields 24 standard cupcakes or 1 13×19 inch sheet cake
White Cupcake Ingredients
- 2 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- 4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup 2% milk, room temperature
- 2 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 6 large egg whites, room temperature
- 12 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened
- 1 3/4 cup granulated sugar
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line your cupcake pan with cupcake liners. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. in another medium bowl, whisk together the milk, vanilla, and egg whites. Set both bowls to the side.
In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar together with an electric mixer on medium/high speed until light and fluffy, 3-6 minutes (walk away from it and do something else, check the oven, wash your hands, play with your kids, “a watched pot never boils” and that goes with making butter fluffy). Reduce the mixer speed to low and beat in 1/3 of the flour mixture, followed by 1/2 of the milk mixture. Repeat until milk is gone and end with the last of your flour mixture. Beat until JUST incorporated.
Take your rubber spatula from your equipment check list and give the batter a final stir to make sure it is thorughly combined. Evenly divide the batter into your cupcake pans. I use a Standard ice cream scoop and it seems to be just about right and then you have universal cupcakes. Bake the cupcakes until a toothpick inserted in a few cupcakes comes out pretty clean and the top of the cupcakes are very brown. Don’t worry, that does not mean you burnt them. About 22-25 mins, rotate the cupcakes halfway thought baking. Let the cupcakes cool completely in the pan before adding the syrup. This takes about 2 hours.
While the cupcakes are cooling, this is the perfect time to clean up your mess in the kitchen, clean some dishes and prep for making the Jell-O syrup. With about 30 minutes before you are wanting to put the Jell-O on the poke cupcakes, start making the Jell-O.
Jello-O Syrup Ingredients
- 3 ounce package of Jell-O, any flavor
- 1 cup boiling water
Before we begin with the Jell-O syrup I have to say ,I usually make my own syrup from fresh fruits but because my blog keeps deleting itself when I am almost done, I have decided to do the shortcut way. This way is twice as fast and just as good, I promise!
Boil your water in a small sauce pan over medium/high heat, about 10 minutes. When just starting to boil, take off the heat and whisk in the Jell-O powder until completely dissolved. Transfer the mixture into a heat safe bowl and let it get to room temperature, about 20 minutes. This last step is where I differ from most Poke Cupcake Recipes, and it is well worth it. If the syrup is too hot and runny it will soak through the WHOLE cupcake or cake and that is no good.
During the cooling period, transfer all the cupcakes to a baking sheet. This will help keep everything clean when filling the cupcakes with syrup later. Poke 3-6 holes into each cooled cupcake using a wood skewer. Try not to poke all the way through to the bottom of the cupcakes but do twist the skewer a bit to enlarge to the holes.
Picture courtesy of Zuppa.com
Pour the cooled Jell-O in a plastic squeeze bottle and slowly pour the syrup into each hole of the cupcakes. Remember, it is better to put less in at first than too much. You can always add but never can take out. Once all the holes are filled, loosely cover the cupcakes with plastic wrap and store them in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours, to let the Jell-O set.
If you are making a Poke Cake, No need to transfer the cake to a new pan, poke 50 holes in the cake, and pour the syrup evenly across the whole cake: do not spread it for that will make for a soggy cake.
Whipped Cream Topping
- 2 cups heavy cream, chilled
- 2 tablespoon granulated sugar
Before serving, whip the chilled cream and sugar together with an electric mixer on medium/high speed until a soft peak forms and top each cupcake after the Jell-O has set.
Picture courtesy of Zuppa.com
Once the it is set and decorated you should have a lovely poke cupcake with colorful lines running right through it! Now it is time to enjoy your yummy goodness! Please, let me know how your poke cupcakes turned out, I really would love to know. Also let me know what flavor you used for your Jell-O.
And remember, a cupcake WILL always help!