Typically, I'm one of those people who prefers to consume her bacon in the morning at breakfast as nature intended. But I'm happy to make an exception for Maple Bacon Cupcakes.
I promise you, there's no more perfect combination of salty and sweet than you'll find in this recipe. The butter cream frosting is flavored with real maple syrup. And the cupcake batter gets just a hint of saltiness from cooked bacon pieces and, oh yes, bacon fat. If you're in an extra-savory mood, sprinkle coarse sea salt and a few bacon bits over top.
Maple Bacon Cupcakes from Taste of Home
1. Cook bacon in a fry pan. Reserve about a half tablespoon drippings and place in the fridge to solidify. Mince 1/4 a cup of the bacon.
2. Beat butter and solidified bacon fat 'til light and creamy. Add the brown sugar and maple syrup and beat well until combined. Add the egg and beat until incorporated.
3. Sift the flour, salt, baking soda, and powder together.
4. Add some of the flour to the butter mixture and mix, then some of the milk, then continue to alternate the dry and wet ingredients, ending with the dry. Mix until just combined. Fold in the minced bacon. Taste and add more maple syrup, flour, or milk if needed for desired taste.
5. Scoop into cupcake papers and bake at 350 F for 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
6. While cupcakes are cooking, make frosting: Beat butter on low speed until smooth. Stir in the maple syrup. With the mixer still on low, slowly add the confectioners' sugar and mix until smooth.
Image via lcrontic.com/Flickr