Dr. Pepper Bourbon Cupcakes

Dr. Pepper Bourbon Cupcakes

Here it is!! The pinnacle of our Dr. Pepper-palooza meal!!!! Oh my gosh. This is one of the most intense desserts I have ever created! I have never tried making a cupcake with a filling before and I am so proud that my first attempt was such a huge success. Levi and Alanna loved them! My parents told me it was decadent 🙂

Levi and I had sooooo much fun making these together! Dancing around the kitchen jamming out to the bizarre playlist that happens when you put your 5 year old iPod on shuffle all. Good times.

I really love cooking with booze. And when you are making something sweet I think that bourbon is the way to go. Even when your food gets a little boozy it’s not the most horrible thing. The right bourbon has that smooth almost buttery taste and will accentuate so many different flavors all the way from chocolates to cherries to raspberries to peaches!

Thanks to a Beat Bobby Flay episode I finally understand reductions. You want to boil the liquids till they are about 1/2 or 1/3 the size when you started. That’s it. Simple right? And then you get all that flavor in a thick syrupy sauce. It’s a nifty little trick that you will see me use a little more from now on.

Ok are you ready to rock and roll? Here we go:

Cupcake Ingredients (makes 12):

  • 1 cup of flower
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1/2 cup of brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp of baking soda
  • 9 regular marshmallows
  • 1/2 cup Butter
  • 3/4 cup Dr. Pepper
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. of cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 egg

Cupcake Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl whisk together flour, baking soda and sugar. In a saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter and add the Dr. Pepper and cocoa. Bring it to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Add marshmallows and stir them in until they are completely melted.

Pour the Dr Pepper mixture over the dry ingredients, add milk, and egg. Mix thoroughly.

Use a muffin tin and cupcake liners. This dough won’t rise a whole lot so when you fill the cupcake liners you can do a little more than 3/4 full. Bake for 20-25 minutes until a toothpick can come out clean. Cool these on a cooling rack. While you prepare the “ganache”

Chocolate Bourbon Ganache

So I made a little adjustment to a traditional ganache recipe because I don’t really like it when the filling drips out of the cupcake or is too messy.


  • 8 oz. Bittersweet chocolate
  • 2/3 cup half and half
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 5 tbsp Bourbon
  • 3-4 marshmallows

“Ganache” Directions:

In a small sauce pan heat the cream to simmering. In a metal or glass bowl pour the cream over the chocolate. Add the marshmallows and mix until smooth. Add butter and bourbon and keep stirring until smooth.

Cut a cone shaped hole in the cooled cupcakes. (You should probably save this so that you can dip it in the leftover ganache and snack on it while you make the frosting.) Put the ganache in a pastry bag, or a ziplock with the corner cut off. Pipe the ganache into the cupcake.

Almost done cupcakes

Bourbon Dr. Pepper Cherry Buttercream Meringue Frosting

  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 stick softened unsalted butter. (This time it’s important to use Unsalted. Believe me.)
  • 1 can Dr Pepper reduced to 1/2
  • 3 tbsp Bourbon
  • 1 tbsp maraschino cherry syrup


In the bowl of a stand mixer, or a metal bowl, combine the egg white and the sugar. Create a “double boiler” over a pot of simmering water. Whisk consistently until the sugar has dissolved. Transfer the bowl to the stand mixer and use a whisk attachment to beat the mixture until the content has doubled in size and holds it’s form in peaks. This is what it should look like.


This is going to take awhile. Be patient.

Switch over to the paddle attachment. Cut the butter into 2 tbsp squares. Add each square one piece at a time. And mix thoroughly between each square. Keep that mixture going until it’s still smooth. In a small saucepan add the Dr. Pepper and 2 tbsp of Bourbon. Boil until it’s 1/2 or even better 1/3 the size. Let it cool a little bit and add most of it to the frosting. (Save some to drizzle over the finished cupcake.) Keep the mixer going and add the last tbsp of bourbon and the cherry syrup. Now taste it. Keep adding booze and cherry syrup till you have reached your frosting flavor nirvana.

Pipe the frosting on top. Drizzle a little reduction. We added some cake decorations and a cherry and get ready to revel in the decadent amazingness that is your Dr. Pepper Bourbon Cupcake.


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