Chocolate Swirl Cupcakes Topped with Chocolate Frosting and Pirouettes


Tomorrow we leave for Michigan for a little escape from the city and I could not be more excited. My husband grew up in northern Michigan and I grew up in southeast Michigan. We met at Michigan State University during my last year at school. From East Lansing, we moved into an apartment in Brighton, Michigan where we stayed for a year.

I grew up in the suburbs of Detroit where we had tons of land, a tree fort in the backyard, dirt on our road, and a farm behind our house. To me, the house was a perfect house to have a childhood, especially in Michigan. My husband grew up in northern Michigan where he was surrounded by land, trees, water, and beauty. His surroundings during his childhood were so beautiful that people still look at his hometown as a vacation town during all of the months of the year due to boating, fall sightseeing, and skiing.

Even with all of the beauty of Michigan, I always knew that I would end up in a city at some point in my life. The city bug hit me when my family would take numerous trips throughout the years to visit my aunt and uncle in Chicago. The moment I set foot in that city I fell in love and that’s when my determination to live in a city grew to exponential heights.

Having traveled throughout the U.S., Europe, and the Czech Republic, my love for cities continued to grow. One day, I figured enough was enough. During our year spent in Brighton, Michigan, I hinted to my husband (boyfriend at the time) that I wanted to move to a city. Hint after relentless hint soon turned into an ultimatum. He was either going to move to a city with me or we were over. Thank goodness he decided to stay with me on this one. I’m such a better person because of him and I don’t know where I would be without him.

We both ended up finding jobs in D.C. and four years later we’re still loving the city life. In that time span, we added a dog to our bunch, got married, and bought a rowhouse in the city. This city has been absolutely incredible to us and we look forward to all of the great memories that this city will help us create.

However, now that I have claimed stake on the city bug, is it weird that we always try to find ways to escape the city and enjoy the fresh air and beauty of Michigan? Thankfully, Michigan is easily achievable with a car ride. Seeing that blue Michigan sign as we cross into the state border always brings back such a flood of memories of the amazing times we had and continue to create whenever we visit.

During our trip these next couple weeks, we’ll be touring the state as we visit our parents, attend a wedding, enjoy rest and relaxation, take in all of the beauty that the state has to offer, party during a tailgate, attend a Michigan State football game, and spend time with family and friends who we miss so much in between visits.

So this cupcake is for you, Michigan…and for us. We’re celebrating the excitement for our big trip and thanking Michigan, as well as our family and friends, in advance for the great memories that will be created over the next few weeks.

Chocolate Swirl Cupcakes

  • 1 box of white cake mix
  • 1/3 cup of oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 5 ounces of milk chocolate chips
  • 2 cups creamy chocolate frosting
  • Pepperidge Farm French Vanilla Creme Filled Pirouettes
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a muffin tin with cupcake liners.
  2. Mix together the cake mix, 1/3 cup of oil, 3 eggs, and 1 cup of water for two minutes until well combined.
  3. Melt the chocolate chips in a medium bowl. Pour half of the cake batter into the chocolate-filled bowl and then mix together until the chocolate is incorporated.
  4. Fill the cupcake liners 1/2 full by pouring 1-2 tablespoons of white batter into the cupcake liners. Top with 1-2 tablespoons of chocolate batter. Continue to do so with all of the cupcake liners.
  5. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  6. Remove the cupcakes from the oven, take them out of the muffin tin, and allow the cupcakes to completely cool on a wire rack.
  7. Frost the cupcakes and then poke a small hole in the back side of the cupcakes. Break pirouettes in half and insert the pirouettes into the cupcakes at a slant.

What is your favorite type of cupcake?

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  1. I live in Ann Arbor! I'm totally with you on wanting to live in a city though. We're originally from Miami, FL and moving here is definitely a change. I want to end up in a city again and we travel to Chicago often when I'm missing that city feel. :)

  2. I haven't had cupcakes in so long… I always mean to make them, but nothing I bake turns out well :)
    I'm a Michigan-dweller, originally from Gaylord, currently near Lansing, and soon to be in Kalamazoo. I miss being up north (even though I'm the anti-winter), but my husband is a city boy who is counting the days till we can make a permanent escape. Hope you have a great and safe trip, with lots of amazing memories!

  3. I grew up in Grand Rapids and never meant to move away but have lived in Chicago for nearly 9 years! I, too, get excited when I see the blue Michigan sign when we hit the border…

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