After returning from a trip to Hawaii, I wanted to create a dessert that would take the sting out of being back to the daily grind, and remind me of the tropical oasis I’d so briefly visited. And so this recipe was born. These sinfully delicious “Luau” Cupcakes have a rum cake that is filled with pineapple, cherry and bacon bits. The frosting is a pineapple whipped cream, with a cherry for garnish. They are a tropical delight and are an ideal dessert for any Luau or Hawaiian-themed party. The sweetness of the fruit and the frosting perfectly compliment the salty savory-ness of the bacon. Eating one is just like vacationing in paradise. Well, not really, but it’s pretty darn close.
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup cherry grenadine
1/4 cup crushed pineapple
1/4 cup chopped candied bacon
1/4 cup spiced rum or coconut rum
For the Pineapple Whipped Cream
2 cups whipping cream
4 tbsp confectioners sugar
1 tbsp pineapple juice (or rum)
1/2 cup finely chopped pineapple
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cupcake pan with wrappers or baking cups.
2. Cream butter, sugar, and eggs together until fluffy. Add vanilla and mix until combined.
3. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. Add half of the dry ingredients, mixing until just combined, then add the remaining dry ingredients.
4. Slowly add the grenadine and the rum, mixing until combined.
5. Hand-fold in the crushed pineapple and chopped bacon. Pour evenly into baking cups.
6. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let the pan cool for about 5-10 minutes, then transfer the cupcakes onto a towel or cooling rack to cool completely.
Whipped Cream Instructions:
1. Before you start, chill mixing bowl and whisk or beaters for a few minutes before you start the whipped cream. If you are using an electric mixer, be sure you are using the whisk attachment and not the paddle.
2. Start by adding cream into your chilled bowl, whisking until it starts to thicken.
3. Add in sugar and continue to beat for a moment, then add in the juice (if you want adult cupcakes, you can add rum instead of juice). Whisk or beat your cream mixture until soft peaks form.
4. Hand-fold your pineapple chunks into the whipped cream.
5. Once the cupcakes are completely cooled, you can brush a bit of rum on top of each cake, then top them with whipped cream. If not, add your whipped cream by spooning some onto each cake and smoothing it out with the back of a spoon. Top each cupcake with some chopped bacon and a cherry.