Kawaii Hawaii Cupcakes

  • 430g (15 oz) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 265 g (91/2 oz) caster (superfine) sugar
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 125 g (41/2 oz/1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 375 ml (121/2 fl oz/11/2 cups) full-cream (whole) milk
  • 125 ml (4 fl oz/1/2 cup) vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons Greek yoghurt (or sour cream)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
  • 2 tsp pineapple flavouring
  • 6 drops yellow food gel

Pineapple Frosting

  • 1 batch American buttercream frosting
  • 5 drops yellow food gel
  • 2 tsp pineapple flavouring

Yellow Frosting

  • 2 batches American buttercream frosting or Swiss meringue buttercream frosting
  • 6 drops yellow food gel


  • 250g green candy melts
  • 100g white chocolate, melted
  • 80g blue candy melts, melted
  • 80g black candy melts, melted
  • 1 cup pineapple jam


Kawaii Hawaii Cupcakes

  1. Eyes, hair and mouth
  2. Let’s begin with the facial features! To make the eyes add the white chocolate to a piping bag and cut a small bit of the end off.
  3. Pipe small round blobs onto a baking tray lined with baking paper. Pipe some blue candy melts onto the still wet white chocolate blobs. Allow to set. You’ll need 30 eyes.
  4. To pipe the mouths, add the melted black candy melts into a piping bag and pipe some small U shapes and then fill the shapes in.
  5. To prepare the green hair, take a small teaspoon of the melted green candy melts and place on to some baking paper. And spread it out into a long shape about 2cm in length. Allow everything to set at room temperature.
  6. Preheat a fan-forced oven to 140°C (275°F) or a conventional oven to 160°C (320°F). Line two cupcake tins with the cupcake liners.
  7. Add the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt to a large mixing bowl and mix with a hand mixer until well combined.
  8. Next, add the softened butter and mix on low speed until the mixture reaches a crumbly, sand-like texture.
  9. Add the eggs, milk, oil, yoghurt, vanilla, yellow food gel and pineapple flavouring, and mix on low speed until all the dry ingredients are incorporated. Scrape down the side of the bowl and mix for a final 20 seconds. It’s at this point that you can add any flavourings or food-gel colourings to the batter.
  10. Fill each liner three-quarters of the way. Using an ice-cream scoop to transfer the batter to the cupcake liners makes this a quick and easy process, and ensures each liner contains exactly the same amount of batter and that the cupcakes will bake evenly.
  11. Bake for 40–50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a cupcake comes out clean. Allow the cupcakes to cool completely on a wire rack before frosting.
  12. To prepare the frosting, add yellow food gel and pineapple flavouring to the frosting and mix until well combined.
  13. Core the centre of each cupcake and fill with pineapple jam.
  14. Fit the end of a piping bag with a medium round tip and frost a small swirl of frosting on top of each cupcake. Leave a gap from the edge of the cupcake.
  15. Fit the end of another piping bag with a Wilton #32 piping tip and frost little spikes around the frosting blob. Add the eyes, mouth and hair to finish.