Whenever the season or holiday changes I like to see what Super Target has in its baking section. Usually it's themed sprinkles or cupcake papers. Currently in their Fall/Halloween section the have something from Kraft called Caramel Bits. Basically, they are small pebbles of caramel made for baking. We bought a bag & have tried them so far in brownies & oatmeal cookies. The brownies came out with a weird texture (not sure if that was the fault of the caramels) but the cookies were sooooo good! I decided to also try them in this week's cupcake.
The cupcake is banana flavored with bits of caramel mixed in. Then I melted some chocolate chips & swirled the chocolate into the cupcake batter. The frosting is a chocolate caramel ganache, also using the caramel bits.
Oh, is this flavor combination tasty. I love the chewy chunks of caramel in the cupcakes. The caramel does stick to paper cupcake liners but comes right off the foil ones so keep that in mind if you decided to bake them.
Banana Caramel Chocolate Swirl Cupcakes
3/4 c sugar
1/4 c unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 t baking soda
2 T sour cream or plain yogurt
1/2 c mashed banana, about 1 banana
3/4 c flour
1/2 t vanilla
2 T caramel bits
4 T semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 F. Prepare 8 muffin tins.
Cream butter & sugar together until light & fluffy. Beat in the egg.
Dissolve the baking soda into the sour cream. Beat that into the the butter mixture. Stir in the banana, flour & vanilla. Once that is all combined stir in the caramel bits.
In a small microwave-safe bowl melt the chocolate chips in the microwave.
Pour about 1 T of batter into each muffin tin. Scoop 1/2 T of melted chocolate on top.
Top with the remaining batter. Use a toothpick or skewer to swirl the chocolate into the batter.
Bake for 20 minutes until the cupcakes are golden brown. Allow to cool completely before frosting.
Makes 8 cupcakes
Chocolate Caramel Ganache
3 1/2 oz semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 oz caramel bits
6 T heavy cream
1 T butter
Put everything in a microwave-safe bowl & microwave until everything is melted, about 1 minute. I like to stop the microwave about every 20 seconds & give everything a good stir. Frost the cupcakes (if the ganache is too runny let it sit a few minutes) then put them in the fridge to allow the ganache to harden.
Frosts 8 cupcakes