How to make fake cupcakes

Written by nicole whitney
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How to make fake cupcakes
Make realistic-looking cupcakes with plaster and spackle. (cupcakes image by Kimberly Reinick from

From reality TV's "Cupcake Wars" to the swankiest wedding receptions, cupcakes have become so ubiquitous lately that in March, CNN declared "The nostalgic cupcake craze is prepared for a long stay." But sometimes you don't need the real thing, and a convincing fake is critical to your event decor's success. Bakers use fake cupcakes, which look freshly baked for months, to display their flair for cake decorating. Others use them for home accents, gifts or party favours. With a few of arts and crafts supplies and kitchen items, you can make a delectable looking cupcake with zero calories and fat.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Muffin pans
  • Cupcake liner
  • Plaster of Paris
  • Water
  • Spatula
  • Spackle
  • Plastic bowl
  • Acrylic paint
  • Pastry bag
  • Cake decorating tip

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  1. 1

    Place a cupcake liner in each cup of the muffin pan. Use a muffin pan with six cups for this recipe.

  2. 2

    Use a spatula to mix 3 cups Plaster of Paris with 1 1/2-cups of water in a plastic bowl. Find Plaster of Paris at a craft and art supply store or home improvement store. The consistency of the blend should be thick but pourable. Adjust the consistency if needed by adding more Plaster of Paris or water.

  3. 3

    Fill the cupcake liners with Plaster of Paris until they level off at the level of the top of the cupcake liner. Leave the Plaster of Paris to set for 20 to 30 minutes. Wash the bowl to use it for the "frosting."

  4. 4

    Pour 2 cups of spackle in the plastic bowl. Add acrylic paint to make it the colour you would like. You can adjust the intensity of the colour by adding more paint for deep colour or less paint for pastel colour. Stir the paint and spackle thoroughly. Immediately place the spackle in a pastry bag with a star tip. Start from the outer edge of the cupcake and pipe the spackle on top of the cupcake in a swirl. Use firm, even pressure to force the spackle out of the bag so that you have one continuous flow of "frosting."

  5. 5

    Allow the cupcakes 24 hours to completely cure before handling.

Tips and warnings

  • Add a bit of yellow or brown paint to the Plaster of Paris if you would like the "cake" part of the cupcake to have the colour or yellow or chocolate cake. However, this is not a necessary, since the "frosting" will cover it.
  • Avoid mixing the spackle for the frosting ahead of time. It will start to set and will be more difficult to push out of the pastry bag.
  • Clean the Plaster of Paris and spackle from the bowls immediately. Use a disposable pastry bag instead of a cloth one. This will make the clean up process less messy and lengthy.
  • Add embellishments to the tops of the cupcakes to make them look more realistic. Try sprinkles for cake decorating or use beads from the jewellery supply isle of a craft store.
  • Exercise caution with your finished cupcake. The "frosting" part will crumble or crack if you handle the cupcake carelessly or drop it.

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