My step-mom was having a birthday and I wanted to bring her a birthday dessert. Something that looked special and was full of chocolate. We share our love for chocolate! I was still in zombie-land due to a medication I was taking, so I knew I had to figure out something simple.
Trader Joes to the rescue! I picked up a box of their chocolate cake mix, chocolate frosting mix, and a bottle of their amazing caramel sauce. I stopped at the craft store to find paper cups that were cute- a special touch. I grabbed 2 Skor candy bars, and got a bit excited as I envisioned myself taking a hammer to them. 🙂 I also grabbed a squeeze bottle that I found it in the cake decorating aisle, it was only a buck. Lastly, I found some candles that sparkle and trick the birthday girl by re-lighting themselves over and over. Hee. Hee.
Of course, any box cake mix, frosting mix and caramel can be used for this, but I am a HUGE Trader Joes fan. Why?
- All Products In The Trader Joe’s Label Promise:
- NO artificial flavors, colors or preservatives
- NO genetically modified ingredients
- NO MSG
- NO added Trans Fats
Let’s take the cake mix. When I read the ingredients, they were the ingredients you would read on a recipe card. All pronounceable. This is true, REAL convenience food. Taking ingredients I would use to make it from scratch, and putting them together for me.
Trader Joes Cake Mix Ingredients:
Natural Vanilla Flavor
Pillsbury Cake Mix Ingredients:
ENRICHED BLEACHED FLOUR (WHEAT FLOUR, NIACIN, IRON, THIAMIN MONONITRATE, RIBOFLAVIN, FOLIC ACID), MALTODEXTRIN, SUGAR, MALTITOL, WHEAT STARCH, COCOA PROCESSED WITH ALKALI, PARTIALLY HYDROGENATED SOYBEAN OIL, BAKING POWDER (BAKING
SODA, SODIUM ALUMINUM PHOSPHATE, MONOCALCIUM PHOSPHATE) CONTAINS 2% OR LESS OF PROPYLENE GLYCOL MONOESTERS, NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL FLAVOR, SALT, CELLULOSE, CORN STARCH, MONO- AND DIGLYCERIDES, CELLULOSE GUM, XANTHAN GUM, POLYSORBATE 60, SUCRALOSE (NON-NUTRITIVE SWEETENER), COLORED WITH RED 40, TBHQ AND CITRIC ACID (ANTIOXIDANTS), SOY LECITHIN.
The Pillsbury cake mix has sugar, plus artificial sweetener. Does that make ANY sense to you? Me either. It also adds artificial red food coloring. Many, many food allergies in children are caused by artificial colors. I am not saying these cupcakes are healthy by any means, but I enjoy knowing that they are not full of man- made ingredients, some of which are chemicals. So…on to the good stuff!!
How I made Gooey, Chocolate Caramel Cupcakes:
~Made Chocolate Cupcakes according to the directions on the box of Trader Joes Chocolate Cake Mix
~Made Chocolate Frosting according to the directions on the box of Trader Joes Chocolate Frosting Mix
~Used a hammer to crush 2 Skor candy bars (while still in the wrapper)
~Warmed Caramel sauce and put into a squeeze bottle.
~Squeeze some caramel into the center of each cupcake. This makes them super moist and gooey!
I gotta stop here and take some time to rave about this particular caramel sauce. IT IS SO GOOD. I think it should be called “Salted Caramel Sauce” because there is just enough salty to the sweet to make your mouth water. It is divine.
~Drizzle with more caramel
~Sprinkle with crushed Skor bar
ChelsMay 28, 2011 at 1:13 am
Looks so delicious!
jeanaMay 27, 2011 at 4:41 pm
Wish we had a TJ’s too! These look great!
AliciaMay 27, 2011 at 4:20 pm
Oh, I so wish there was a Trader Joe’s by us. I would be making those things today!
WhitneyMay 27, 2011 at 8:43 pm
I love TJs and I have a bunch of birthdays coming up. This is perfect – thank you!