taco cupcakes experiment

You know what has never been done before? Turning tacos into a cupcake.

Welcome to today’s experiment! I hope you’re ready because this is about to be an interesting post about my process of making a recipe.


The first order of business was doing some research. Would it be sweet or savory? Shaped like a taco or flavored like one? I had a vision of what I wanted the taco cupcake to look like, but I wasn’t sure where to start. So, I searched for taco flavored cupcakes on Google and saw regular cupcakes with taco toppers. The closest I got to a taco cupcake was a cornbread muffin with sour cream on top. I thought using cornbread would be a great I idea. But how would I incorporate cake into it? Another question I asked myself was what I was going to use as the icing? I didn’t just want to use sour cream and call in the day. No, I wanted more flavor than that.

My next goal in my research was to find a savory icing. I knew I could use heavy cream, but what would I use to flavor it and make it thick enough to stand up on its own? Somehow, I found someone who made a savory icing for their macaroni “cupcakes”. The icing was made out of heavy cream, cream cheese, and some seasonings such as mustard powder. I thought this was a great start to making this taco cupcake.

Writing it down

Alright. I researched the two most important components of a cupcake: the cake and the icing. I had a plan at first, then somewhere in the middle of making the cupcakes, I ditched the plan. (Mostly because I never wrote down my plan before I got started)

The base was going to be equal parts of yellow cake mix and cornbread mix (cornmeal, flour, sugar, salt, and baking soda). Other sweet cornbread recipes had more cake mix than cornbread mix, however they were making a loaf and I was making cupcakes. It was important that I added cake somewhere in the recipe!

I used smaller measurements heavy cream and cream cheese from the savory icing recipe I found. Cornbread and a mixture that would taste like sour cream doesn’t sound that good by itself. So, what is the best part of a taco? Cheese!

At first, I was going to use Kraft mac & cheese powder as the seasoning. But I found Nacho Cheddar cheese popcorn flavoring while I was shopping for ingredients. This was perfect!

Now it was time to put it all together…

Starting Small

Making the icing was simple. I mixed the heavy cream until soft peaks formed then added the softened cream cheese and seasonings (nacho cheese powder and onion powder). I set my icing in the fridge while I made the cupcakes.

I was making a new recipe and I definitely didn’t want to waste ingredients. So, I used similar measurements from the maple bacon cupcake recipe to make six cupcakes. I started with equal measurements of cake mix and cornbread mix. Then this is where I ditched the plan. I added a few splashes of milk then a few splashes of water. I wasn’t sure how much liquid I should have been adding but I kept referencing the measurements in the maple bacon cupcake recipe. Then I melted some butter, added an egg, and hoped for the best as I put it in the oven.

Another huge question was for how long? And what temperature? I tried 375 F and set a timer for thirteen minutes.

The time flew by and I pressed the top of the cupcakes to check if they were done. And they were! While they cooled, I prepared ground beef for the filling and some pico de gallo for a topping. Once everything was ready, I cut holes into the cupcakes and added my taco meat. Then I filled a piping bag with my icing and piped away!

How Did It Taste?

Now for the best part… the taste test!

taco cupcake

I was absolutely nervous looking down at my newest concoction. It smelled amazing! But how was it going to taste…

Have you ever had chili and cornbread together? If so, that is exactly what it tasted like. (Without the beans of course!) The slight sweetness from the cake mix cut through some of the saltiness of the meat and the savory icing.

The icing tasted like sour cream with a hint of cheese. I definitely liked that the cheese flavoring wasn’t over-powering. And adding the pico de gallo was the perfect amount of freshness on top! I could taste every ingredient separately, yet it blended together really well.

Even my mom was surprised at how good it tasted!

Room for Improvement

First of all, I can’t believe this experiment was a success! I actually made a cupcake that was taco flavored! And even though this was my first-time making these cupcakes, there is definitely room for improvement. The biggest element of the cupcake that bothered me was the slight grittiness in the cake. Maybe I used too much cornbread mix or didn’t add enough liquids. Other than that, everything else tasted how I thought it would.

I hope you had a great time reading about this experiment. I was super excited to do this one. If you’re wondering where the recipe is, there isn’t one. This was an experiment, and I would keep improving the recipe until it was close to perfect. But definitely let me know if you want to see a recipe in the future.

If you have an idea for a cupcake flavor that you want me to experiment on, you can tell me all about it here! And if you’re not up for baking, you can always eat something out of the ordinary from these bakeries here.

I hope you enjoyed today’s experiment. I was really looking forward to doing this recipe since starting my blog and I’m thrilled that it worked.

Thank you so much for reading!

– Courtney

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1 Comment

  1. I’m not sure if you had me at the taco mention or the cupcake mention but I’m inspired by your pulling this off!!!! Thank you for sharing but also for trying it in the first place and sharing about it!

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