I attended a friend's baby shower recently, and came home with a tube/box of Sprinkles' Dark Chocolate Cupcake Mix (I won one of the silly shower games). Now I had heard of Sprinkles before but had never tried one of their cupcakes. And honestly after sampling the cupcakes produced from their mix I don't think I would be in a hurry to buy the original. The cupcakes (from the mix) were moist enough, but I found them very bland and unexciting. There was no explosion of flavor or pop of taste, and if I'm paying $14 for a box of cupcake mix I expect an end product that makes my taste buds stand up and sing.
I made the Sprinkles cupcakes for my Mom's 76th birthday party. I always buy her birthday cake from Swiss Confectionery (the BEST tasting cake in New Orleans), but some last minute additions to the party list made me fear that I wouldn't have enough cake (a serious crime in my family). So I pulled the Sprinkles mix from the pantry and whipped up some cupcakes in less than an hour.
I did make one change to the Sprinkles cupcake: I added a cookie crumb crust. I grind up Lorna Doone shortbread cookies, mixed them with sugar and butter, press the crumb mixture into the bottom of the cupcake liner, and bake the crust for five minutes until it sets. My Mom LOVES cupcakes with cookie crust.
Next came the mixing of the Sprinkles cupcake batter. The sequence of mixing was a little different than normal. 1) Cream the butter then added the dry mix to the butter, 2) add the eggs, 3) and finally the milk. The batter was thick and luscious looking, but even at this point it was a little lacking in flavor.
I spooned the batter on top of my pre-baked cookie crust, and then baked the cupcakes for 20 minutes. My oven runs a little hot so I always remove my baked goods at the lower end of the baking range.
I didn't think the trademark Sprinkles "dot" looked festive enough for a birthday party, so I skipped the blue and black dot and used my own sprinkles.
Looks cute, but taste-wise the cupcake was unremarkable. Even the cookie crust and luscious frosting wasn't enough to perk up flavor of the Sprinkles cupcake.