Go Max Go recently shipped me a box of candy bars to review. But rather than do straight reviews, I agreed to get creative and come up with some fun recipes. I was googling around the internet, looking for ideas for Sheridan's birthday cupcakes (see yesterday's post) when it hit me — vegan Snickers-style cupcakes! A quick search for "Snickers cupcakes" turned up a pretty popular recipe reprinted on many blogs, so I used that for inspiration.
But in the end, I wound up using adaptations of several different recipes from the internet. So, just so you know, none of these recipes alone are mine. The chocolate cupcake recipe was adapted from Isa's Chocolate Cupcakes on the PPK. The caramel frosting was adapted from this recipe on Six Sisters' Stuff. And the coconut sea salt caramel drizzle came from Eff Yeah, It's Vegan. But I've combined them in my own new way, and I've made some minor adjustments.
Vegan Jokerz Cupcakes with Coconut Sea Salt Caramel Drizzle
Makes 12 cupcakes
Coconut Sea Salt Caramel Drizzle
1 can coconut milk, refrigerated for about 24 hours
1 cup dark brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Pinch of salt
1 cup cashew milk
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup evaporated cane juice
1/3 cup canola oil
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegan margarine
1/2 cup vegan shortening
1/4 cup cooled caramel sauce (from recipe above)
1 Tbsp. cashew milk
3 cups powdered sugar
1 Go Max Go Jokerz bar, sliced into 12 pieces
To make the caramel sauce:
After refrigerating for 24 hours, turn the can of coconut milk upside down and open it. The fat should be thick and creamy and separated from the coconut water. If not, try another brand. Some brands contain emulsifiers, and this doesn't work. But it's crucial that you don't get any of the liquidy water in there. My favorite brand is Coco King because it actually solidifies on the shelf at room temperature.
Scoop the fat out, and discard the water. Put the coconut fat in a medium saucepan. Add the brown sugar, and heat over medium-low for about 25 minutes, stirring often. It should cook down and thicken a bit. After 25 minutes, if the sauce seems separated, you've gotten too much coconut water mixed with your fat. That's okay! Put the hot sauce into a blender and blend until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until thickened and cool.
To make the cupcakes:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and line a cupcake pan with liners.
Mix the cashew milk and vinegar together and allow to sit for a few minutes to curdle. Add the sugar, oil, and vanilla extract and beat until foamy. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients in two batches. Stir until only a few tiny lumps remain. Don't over-stir!
Fill the cupcake liners 3/4th of the way full. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes. Allow to cool completely before frosting.
To make the frosting:
Use a bowl with a hand mixer or a stand mixer to beat together the margarine and the shortening. Add the completely cooled caramel sauce. Beat again. Add the vanilla, salt, cashew milk, and half the powdered sugar. Beat until lightly whipped. Add the rest of the powdered sugar, and beat for about five minutes, until very whipped.
Transfer the frosting to a pastry bag or a large ziploc bag. If using a ziploc, cut off one corner, and pipe the frosting onto each cake. Transfer the remaining caramel sauce to another ziplock bag, and cut a tiny hole in the corner. Drizzle over the cupcakes. Sprinkle chopped peanuts over each cake, and then place a Jokerz slice on top of each cake.