Sweet And Crumby

Baking, a Love Story

A Day Late And a Dollar Short Drunken Cointreau Cupcakes


Yes, this would have been a good post for FRIDAY or even SATURDAY as you were getting ready to party on, but as the title suggests, I am a day late and a dollar short. That’s just how it is folks.

This week has been nuts. At best. We have visited TWO ER’s, THREE other Doctors’ offices, went for an MRI, AND the best part is, this all started ON CHRISTMAS! Who knew we could be so exciting?! I did. That’s our Christmas M.O. I’m afraid. That is not the first time we have needed an ER on Christmas.

My husband tore a leg muscle and a tendon. “How?” you may ask. Well, we are sticking to the story that he was  practicing his act for Cirque Du Soleil and should have warmed up more. Or another story we have thrown out there is that we are not as acrobatic as we used to be (wink, wink).  But the truth is boring, and I really don’t like to bore you to tears here. Well, at least I don’t TRY to. It may happen now and then, but honestly the effort is to entertain you my friends. Really.

Believe it or not, I made these guys for breakfast…to bring to my dad. These are the FAMOUS cointreau cupcakes from this story here, and I messed them up on Christmas Eve by making them from SCRATCH. I just don’t do mixes anymore. It’s against my religion or something. But unfortunately, they just weren’t drunken enough and didn’t taste like our old favorites I grew up on. Yes, I grew up on swigging drunken Cointreau cupcakes. That’s just how we roll.

So I promised my dad a fresh batch, cake mix and all (I will go to confession later), to replicate our perfectly drunken Cointreau cupcakes. He looks forward to these little babies ALL YEAR.  But as luck wouldn’t have it, I was low on butter. It seems that a baker is either devoid of butter or has a plethora. Today, I just had one stick and that was not enough for frosting and so…the Lucille Ball moments played out. I added a bit of cream cheese to compensate for the lack of butter and two tablespoons of Cointreau. A little taste….not enough Cointreau.

Added another tablespoon, a little taste….not enough Cointreau and finally a FOURTH tablespoon and a little taste and…NOT ENOUGH COINTREAU. I feel like the audience should be shouting out the “Not enough Cointreau!” part. Could you do that? Please. For those of you raised in the 70’s, does this remind of you Match Game?

I was perplexed by the lack of Cointreau taste or was my judgement getting a bit fuzzy perhaps?   Maybe the tang of the cream cheese was over powering the Cointreau flavor. So I basted the cupcakes with straight up Cointreau, frosted it, and tried one. Then I tried another. Enough Cointreau? I still didn’t think so. Next time, no cream cheese. Just a plain ol’ buttercream with LOTS AND LOTS of Cointreau!  I guess I may owe him another batch…

The Infamous Shirley Siegel Cointreau Cupcakes (with mix, for the from scratch version, go here)
Makes 4 dozen mini cupcakes or 18 regular-sized cupcakes.
1 box of chocolate fudge cake mix
1 c. sour cream (full fat, don’t skimp here)
4 large eggs (or 3 extra large)
1/2 c. vegetable oil
3/4 c. Cointreau or Grand Marnier
1/8 c. water
1 T. cocoa powder

Cointreau Buttercream Frosting
1 c. unsalted butter, brought to room temperature
2 T. Cointreau (or more if you like)
Enough powdered sugar to firm up your frosting (about 3-4 c.)
For beauty and splendor…grated orange zest over the top.

For the Cake: Preheat your oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.  Prepare mini muffin pan with liners or regular cupcake pan. Combine all ingredients in a bowl of a stand mixer. Beat on medium until well combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl. Scoop the batter into the muffin tin with a mini ice cream scoop if you have it or just with a small spoon. Fill 2/3 full. Bake for 12 minutes.  Cool entirely before frosting.

For the frosting: Beat the butter until creamy. Add the sifted powdered sugar (I never sift, it’s a problem…you should sift…I have baking ADHD). Add the cointreau and beat until creamy. Spread with a knife over the cupcakes. For stiffer frosting add more powdered sugar and then you can pipe it but then you won’t taste the Cointreau as much so it’s entirely up to you. Pretty or really drunken? I went for drunken.

38 thoughts on “A Day Late And a Dollar Short Drunken Cointreau Cupcakes

  1. These little cupcakes look gorgeous and so delicious – being underage, I wouldn’t make then using alcohol but orange juice (specifically blood orange) 😛
    They are simply lovely 🙂

  2. Couintreau cupcakes are never late to the party. They have an open invite. I hope the hubster is feeling alright and you guys have a nice boring week. Sounds like you’ve had enough excitement.

  3. Oh my Geni, that Cointreau Laced Devil’s Food Cake looks to die for. I need to find someone to make it for me for my 30th this year. Or I could make it. But I think I’d prefer someone else in case I also stuffed it up. But the cupcakes are still adorable, I’ve just pinned them on pinterest too. Hope your husband feel better too, sounds like your christmas day way trying to say the least. Maybe you should all just have another cupcake… that’s what the Clever Muffin Doctor would prescribe. Happy new year 🙂

  4. Too much tasting Me thinks!! I love the idea of these little cupcakes, I hope all is as it should be with the gymnast! ! c

  5. Fuzzy judgment, I’d say… 😉 These look fantastic and I just know I’d eat the whole batch. I hope that your husband’s leg heals soon, I’m sure the Cirque show just isn’t the same without him!

  6. Swiggable cupcakes. Geni, that miraculous little tiny phrase requires no excuses or apologies of any kind. Onward!!! These were meant by the universe to happen. Ohmmmmmmm.

  7. I’d take those any day – not just for NYE. What a nice daughter (and wife!) you are to make those after all your adventures this week. Hoping your husband is moving about soon, for everyone’s sanity. 🙂

  8. nom nom nom… 🙂

  9. This is a great recipe, Geni. No wonder your Father eagerly awaits your delivery each year. I hope your husband, acclaimed acrobat that he is, is doing much better and that 2012 will be ER-free for us all!

  10. Geni, I thought you were going to start the recipe by giving one sip of Cointreau for the baker and one for the cup cakes and repeat process until either the baker or the cupcakes are well marinated… Either way they sound delightful and very yummy. Have a great new year.

  11. Not enough Cointreau !
    I just made my very first Plum Cake & my cake was so high on rum we almost got drunk on the first bite.
    Drunk cakes are a must have for Christmas N New Year’s.
    Wish U & your family a very Happy, Delicious & Eventful New Year. 🙂
    P.S. : Get Well Soon to your hubby.

  12. I bet the frosting tasted great, even better the next day! I hope your hubby feels better and that the start of the new year is a bit more calm.for the both of you.
    Have a Happy New Year!

  13. Delicious and beautiful! Thank you dear Geni, Happy New Year, with my love, nia

  14. Yum! These look incredible. Sorry to hear about your husband- I hope he recovers quickly! Maybe if he eats enough cupcakes he will forget the pain? HA!

  15. Sorry about all of your doctor visits, especially during the holiday season. Hope your husband is feeling better! We’ll forgive you for posting these a little late, they still sound absolutely incredible and would be delicious at any time! Happy New Year Geni! 🙂 xx

  16. Oh ouch! I hope that your hubby recovers quickly! That does not sound like a fun injury. Nothing a little Cointreau couldn’t fix! These are fabulous cupcakes – and you know me, I’m not even a chocolate fan. What a fun recipe! I’m going to have to print this one off and make sure that it’s a part of next year’s holiday for sure! Happy New Year Geni and here’s to a speedy recovery!

  17. Outstanding sounding recipe….loving the Cointreau in it, but that might just be the glutton in me. 😉

  18. Happy New Year, and if you haven’t seen it yet, I wanted to acknowledge your great contribution to my enjoyment of blogging this year both here and ‘at my place’:


    Consider it a no-strings-attached blog award of my own to you!


  19. I have to be curious about any recipe that a dad looks forward to each year! I would totally try to cake mix version since there must be something in that that makes it his favorite:) I hear you re the butter thing… I always seem to either have a freezer full or none… and when there’s none I shouldn’t wonder why my jeans are fitting so snug:) Hope your husband heals fast!

  20. These look very good! A little Cointreau never hurts anything you make!

  21. Oh Geni, I love a boozy baked good. I wish I was at your house! It seems like such a delicious place!

  22. Lots of chocolate and lots of Cointreau (plus buttercream!!!) sounds like a cupcake marriage made in heaven to me! Hope your husband is on the mend and that the new year is a healthy one for you both.

  23. You know the way to my heart Geni.. and that is with chocolate lol. These Cointreau Cupcakes look AMAZING! I can’t wait to try these myself

  24. First of all, it’s NEVER too late for drunken cupcakes. and never too early for Cointreau. so this post basically has perfect timing.

    And you have never ONCE bored me to tears!

  25. my family would love these! we have some serious cointreau lovers 🙂

  26. I love the idea of drunken Cointreau cupcakes, I can almost taste them….I think I can have them at any time, especially today, after more than 2 weeks off and coming back to work 😉
    Happy New Year Geni!

  27. Hospitals on Christmas? That’s no fun! I hope your husband heals up ok.
    I feel like feeding him these cupcakes would help – they look amazing.

  28. Ouchie – hope your hubby’s leg heals quickly!
    Outstanding recipe and additional cointreau tips duly noted.
    🙂 Mandy

  29. Oh Geni, you’re the best!! Through it all, you,ve managed to bake up a truly boozy delicious dessert!! I’m not into using cake mixes any more either but if need be I will and serve it with a smile!

  30. Not enough Cointreau!
    I LOVED Match Game!!! And Tic Tac Dough, and Joker’s Wild! GREAT memories!

    You left me a comment precisely when I’m baking your “Oh My Gosh!” muffins! Your ears or rather oven mitts must have been burning. Look for the post later tonight, Geni! They just came out of the oven and they’re still too warm to taste, but they smell incredible!!
    BIG HUGS!!

  31. Hi Geni! Here’s hoping that you haven’t seen the ER yet this year. I could seriously do with some chocolate cupcakes today. Happy New Year!!

  32. How did I miss this post?! The cupcakes sound amazing, too much cream cheese, not enough cointreau – either way? YUM! I’m sorry that hubby hurt himself doing acrobatic feats without warming up first! Is he okay now?

    These look delicious and if your father wants a fresh batch – send these down to me….I’ll eat them!

  33. Simple and good cupcake recipe!

  34. Pingback: Drunken Cointreau Cupcakes | Sweet And Crumby « CAN{i}BE TREATS

  35. I hope that your husband feels better now..doctors and the holidays are a really bad mix..

  36. Hi there. I love the sound of this recipe. Do you have any modifications, to the recipe, for making this as a full-sized cake, rather than as cupcakes? Thanks in advance

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