The 7 Best Cupcake Makers
This wiki has been updated 30 times since it was first published in June of 2015. If you and your family love homemade goodies but you don't always have the time for a long baking session, try one of these convenient cupcake makers. They cook foods more quickly than a full-sized oven and use a lot less energy in the process. The ones featured here can be used to produce both sweet and savory treats, and some include a variety of recipes to get you started. When users buy our independently chosen editorial selections, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
July 30, 2021:
Forget preheating a huge oven just for some fun, sweet treats. A cupcake maker saves a significant amount of time and electricity compared to traditional cupcake pans, making the whole process more easy and fun. For this round of updates, we decided to nix four models at the bottom of the list that didn't offer the premium performance we always look for. The Holstein Housewares HF-09013M and Babycakes CC-12 remain at the top, and we also added the Nostalgia BBE4 to the #3 slot thanks to its multiple removable plates that accommodate cookies, brownies and bundt cakes.
April 20, 2020:
When you’re busy getting ready for a party, or when you want to bake without even turning on the oven, try using one of these handy cupcake makers. You’ll get nicely browned creations in a fraction of the time, so you can move on to the equally important decorating process. In today’s update, we added in a model from a household name in baking that’s been around for a century. The Betty Crocker 2930 comes in pleasing pink and white colors, and provides handy indicator lights so you know when it’s properly heated and when your creations are done. Like several others, this one is suitable for a variety of other recipes, including hors d'oeuvres, little frittatas, and miniature quiches. The Brentwood Mini is another newcomer to the list and like the Betty Crocker model, it produces seven cupcakes per go. This one comes with a handy cord wrap feature, and can conveniently can be stored vertically, so it won’t take up much space in a cabinet, and it’s made with safety in mind, with an automatic shutoff feature that prevents overheating.
If you loved Hostess Cupcakes growing up, check out the Smart Planet Hostess, which will allow you recreate this iconic dessert. Included is a pastry bag and tips for piping filling into them and swirling icing onto their tops. Note that this maker does not produce full-sized cupcakes like you’d get at the store; they’re smaller than the real deal. Any Disney lover in your life will appreciate the Disney DMG-7, which comes in a fun magenta color and includes a silicone mold to make Minne Mouse bows that can placed atop your cupcakes.
For a model that’s as versatile as it is pretty, look to the Patty Cake Multi-Treat, which comes with various interchangeable plates that enable you to make cupcakes, muffins, donuts, cake pops, or a large waffle. Its lightweight, compact design and locking handle make it convenient for taking with you to wherever the party’s happening.
If you’ve got young, eager helpers in the kitchen, be sure to supervise them around these appliances, which can get very hot as they bake.
EZ Frost Machine There are various tools for baking cupcakes quickly, but the frosting aspect can really slow you down. Restaurant and bakery owners can use this machine to frost large batches of cupcakes in very little time. It comes fully assembled, and its foot pedal allows you to release frosting onto each cake in a controlled manner. The pedal also frees up your hands so you can maneuver each cupcake with ease. The speed can be controlled using a dial on the front of the machine. It works with any standard frosting tip, so you can continue using the ones you’ve always preferred. Reloading it with icing can be done easily when you remove the sliding plate and insert a new bag. ezfrost.com
Can Cupcakes Actually Be Good For You?
The obvious issues like diabetes are scary enough on their own, but there are more insidious problems associated with too much sugar consumption that might surprise you.
If you’re anything like me, you own a brochure or two for chocoholics anonymous. Maybe you’ve even been to a meeting. It’s a tough life navigating the perils of the sweet tooth, and just about every food company — from our bread manufacturers to big tobacco — seems intent on targeting and satisfying our craving for sugar.
It turns out sugar isn’t very good for you, however. The obvious issues like diabetes are scary enough on their own, but there are more insidious problems associated with too much sugar consumption that might surprise you.
For starters, sugar is associated with an increase in inflammation. If you’ve ever taken a simple pain killer like ibuprofen, you may have noticed that it’s designed to reduce inflammation; pain and inflammation go hand in hand. Allergy sufferers may not be so shocked to hear that this inflammation can result in symptoms similar to an allergic reaction, including a swelling of the sinus membranes (stuffy nose) and an increase in mucus production. Many professional athletes drink a watered down version of popular sports drinks for this very reason. The drinks are so sugary that their side effects can actually impede performance.
Ingestion of sugar also causes a temporary spike in blood sugar, as well. Your body tries to rev itself up by releasing insulin to burn off all that extra energy. This is what happens when children who have too much candy begin to bounce off the walls. Once your insulin stores are depleted, however, two things happen. First, your energy level plummets. This is what’s known as a sugar crash. Next, your body takes the remaining sugar that it can’t burn off and stores it as fat. This is why obesity is so often linked with diabetes.
With all that in mind, it might seem like cupcakes aren’t such a good idea, but these tiny treats can actually be a healthier option than regular cakes and brownies, especially when you make them yourself in a handy cupcake maker. Obviously, you can elect to make your cupcakes out of any number of healthy ingredients, and many of those would churn out delicious confections. Many others, however, would give you glorified veggie muffins, and that’s not what we’re all about here at chocoholics anonymous.
For all its evils, sugar isn’t the devil. No food is if you can enjoy it in moderation. The problem these days is that companies put too much sugar in too many things. If you can forgo those product in favor of cupcakes made in the home, you’ll be on the right track.
Instead of thinking of your cupcake maker as a means for creating cupcakes that are healthy in and of themselves, use the cupcake form itself as a means for portion control. Then, simply limit the number of cupcakes you’ll allow yourself from a batch. Make a habit of surprising the people in your life with the majority of your creations, saving just a few for yourself. It’s a lot more sensible than trying to measure out two square inches of cake or brownie material, and then bringing a strange slab of Tetris-shaped cake to your PTA meeting.
How To Choose The Perfect Cupcake Maker
For the most part, cupcake makers are all very similar devices. They work in a very similar way that waffle irons or pizzelle makers work. Each unit opens to reveal a number of cupcake molds into which you pour your homemade batter. When you close the lid, the cupcakes cook to perfect forms. Since these items all work so similarly, there are only a few key features for you to consider before you make your informed purchase.
If you find a maker with a high output, check its overall dimensions.
The easiest aspect to quantify in a cupcake maker is the number of cupcakes it can produce in a single pressing. If you know you aren’t the type to give yourself a long afternoon to spend baking, or if you know that you often have to make cupcakes for larger groups, a cupcake maker with the highest quantity output available is going to be necessary.
If you find a maker with a high output, check its overall dimensions. If it seems that it’s the same size as another unit that makes half as many cupcakes, then it probably makes much smaller pieces. Should you only want to be able to make a few cupcakes now and again for intimate gatherings or as a fun family dessert, then a smaller output will suffice.
Some makers have replaceable molds, as well. These will allow you to make more than just cupcakes. If you want to create donuts with less oil, muffins, or even cake pops, there are molds out there that can make it happen.
A Brief History Of The Cupcake
The cupcake has had quite the resurgence in the 21st century, thanks in large part to the explosion of competitive boutiques in city centers like New York and Los Angeles. Shops like Magnolia Bakery and the Buttercup Bake Shop led to a revolution in the quality (and price) of the humble confection. It wasn’t always this way, however, and for most of human history the cupcake has served a humble and effective purpose.
The first cupcakes took their names from the containers in which they were cooked. If you were making a cake before the 1800s, and you had a little extra batter left over, you could toss it in a ramekin or pottery cup. These treats weren’t designed to be cupcakes, but that’s indeed what they were.
Recipe books reaching as far back as 1796 reference cakes made specifically in these smaller vessels. Their appeal rested largely in their individual containment, that each diner could get his or her own little cake. The late 1800s saw the popularization of the muffin tin, which would immediately gain use as a staging ground for cupcakes.