Hamburger Cupcakes

I am super excited for this post because it feels like a real achievement. I bake lots, yes, but I’ve never actually created anything. You might think it sounds silly but I am very aware of my novice baker status and these just absolutely made my day yesterday with the way they came out. They took about 3 and a half hours to actually make, from start to finish, so I wouldn’t recommend making them if you were pressed for time. As long as you store them in an airtight container, they’re good for the next day or too, so you can also make them in advance. Both of the cake recipes I will demonstrate here are from this book:


Alex bought it for me a few months ago. As you can see, it actually stands up which makes it really easy to refer to when you’re baking the cupcakes so you don’t get sticky fingers all over the pages and you don’t have to bend and fold pages over to get them to stay. Lots of lovely recipes in there which you will be seeing over the coming months also! Anyway, back to the burgers!

First you need to make the “buns” which are basically vanilla cupcakes. In this book, the vanilla cupcakes are made using the ‘all in one’ method that Mary Berry favours so put all of your ingredients in a bowl and beat together until thoroughly mixed.


This next part made me slightly nervous as I haven’t ever baked cupcakes without using paper cases before but obviously you need to forgo them for this recipe as otherwise they end up with fluted edges that aren’t very burger like or authentic. So make sure you thoroughly grease your muffin tin with a little melted butter and you should be fine. Fill each one to approx. 2/3 full and bake for 10-15 minutes until golden brown and risen. A toothpick inserted should come out clean.


Take out of the oven and set aside to cool. It is important that they are completely cooled right down before you remove them from the tin as they will just fall apart otherwise. It helps if they are cooled for the next step which is to cut in half with a sharp knife to make the top and bottom part of the bun.


Now to make the “burgers”, we’re doing a chocolate cupcake recipe. Melt the chocolate over a pan of boiling water then set aside to cool slightly.


Next, beat the butter and sugar together in a bowl until smooth and creamy.


Gradually beat in the eggs. Add a teaspoon of flour if the mixture looks like it is curdling.


Next, sift in the flour and add the cocoa powder. Fold in by hand until no flour can be seen.


Mix in the melted chocolate.


Again making sure that the tin is greased properly, fill with the chocolate mixture. Use slightly less than you did with the vanilla mix as you don’t need so much rise for these compared to the buns.


Bake for approx. 15-20 minutes until risen slightly and a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Again, set aside to cool completely before removing from the tin. If they have domed slightly as they’ve risen, slice the tops off.

Whilst the chocolate cupcakes are in the oven, start to make up your condiments and lettuce. The lettuce is basically desiccated coconut mixed with a little green food colouring.


To make the ketchup and mustard, make up a basic buttercream recipe by beating together butter, icing sugar and vanilla flavouring until smooth.


Separate into two bowls and add red colouring to one bowl to make the ketchup and yellow to the other to make the mustard. The more artificial the colour, the better I think. Makes it look much more authentic!


Now the fun part is assembling your hamburger! First, spread the yellow buttercream over the bottom of one of the pre-cut buns.


Place a burger patty on top.


Sprinkle the desiccated coconut over the top.


Pipe the red buttercream over the coconut.


Place the top part of the bun back on.


Make up a little sugar/water mixture and brush the tops of the cupcakes with it. Sprinkle over some sesame seeds and press firmly to make sure they stick.


And there you have it, hamburger cupcakes! I am immensely proud of how they came out looking and they got lots of admiring comments and looks at the barbecue.


Here’s a list of the ingredients and method for those that prefer.

Ingredients for the buns

  • 125g unsalted butter
  • 125g self-raising flour
  • 125g caster sugar
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla flavouring
  • 2 eggs

Ingredients for the burgers

  • 125g unsalted butter
  • 125g light muscovado sugar
  • 125g self-raising flour
  • 100g milk or plain chocolate
  • 15g cocoa powder
  • 2 eggs

Ingredients for the decoration

  • 75g unsalted butter
  • 150g icing sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla flavouring
  • red, yellow and green food colouring
  • desiccated coconut
  • sesame seeds


  1.  Preheat the oven to 180° then grease a 12 hole muffin tin with butter.You don’t want to use paper cases as this will give the hamburgers a fluted appearance which isn’t very authentic.
  2. To make the buns, beat together the butter, sugar, eggs, flour, baking powder and vanilla flavouring until smooth and creamy. Add 1-2 tbsp milk if needed to loosen the mixture.
  3. Fill the prepared muffin tin with until approx. 2/3 full then bake for 10-15 minutes until golden brown and well risen. Insert a skewer or toothpick and if it comes out clean, they are done.
  4. Leave the cakes in the tin to cool completely. Slice in two with a sharp knife and set aside.
  5. To make the burgers, repeat step one 🙂
  6. Break the chocolate into pieces and melt over a pan of boiling water then set aside. In a separate bowl, cream together the butter and sugar then gradually add the eggs. Sift in the flour, add the cocoa powder and fold in. Stir in the melted chocolate.
  7. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 15-20 minutes. When a skewer inserted comes out clean, they are ready. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool completely. Slice the tops off if they have domed.
  8. To make the decorations, cream together the butter, icing sugar and vanilla. Separate into two bowls and add the food colouring until the desired colour is reached. Mix the desiccated coconut with a little green food colouring.
  9. Spread the yellow buttercream  over the top of the bottom part of the bun then top with the burger patty. Sprinkle with the desiccated coconut then pipe the red buttercream over the coconut and replace the top of the bun.
  10. Mix together 1/2 tsp of caster sugar with 1-2 tbsp of water then brush the tops of the cakes. Top with the sesame seeds to finish, pressing firmly.

So there you have it, hamburger cupcakes! Deceptive looking things, it really is a strange sensation when you eat them because your brain is convinced they are about to eat something savoury and you end up with a mouthful of sweet cake (I don’t think you’ll catch anyone complaining though!)


Instagram pic :)

Instagram pic 🙂

UPDATE – very exciting news! I’ve entered these cupcakes into a nationwide competition being held by National Cupcake Week (which is 16th-22nd September for those of you who don’t know). There are four categories, classic, themed, free-from and made with alcohol. I’ve entered these into the themed category (the theme is seasonal/summer). I’m not expecting anything to come of this as I am sure there will be a lot of home bakers entering this competition but it was a big step for me to share these with people outside of my immediate circle and you never know! I won’t find anything out until September 16th if I progress any further. Fingers crossed!



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