If you read our blog or follow us on Twitter, it's fairly obvious that everyone in our office has a bit of a sweet tooth—and I'm no exception. Since I regularly get to munch on sweets at work (hey, tasting cupcakes and chocolates is part of the gig), at home I get my sugar-fix via the ever-expanding lineup of baking-related TV shows.
My latest addiction? Food Network's Cupcake Wars. Each week four of the country's top cupcake bakers face off in elimination challenges until one is named the winner. Even with only an hour on the clock, these bakers manage to make and decorate dozens of perfect-looking treats. After analyzing a few episodes I compiled a list of tools to help you make equally eye-catching cupcakes.
Cookie Scoop When dishing out cake batter use a cookie scoop—this way the batter is evenly dispersed and your cupcakes bake uniformly. Left: Large Cookie Scoop, $13.99, OXO Good Grips, oxo.com
Cupcake Plunger This nifty gadget easily removes the center of a cupcake so you can fill it with icing, fruit, or even ice cream. Right: Cupcake Plunger, $3.99, Chicago Metallic, Bed Bath & Beyond
Photos: Courtesy of Bake It Pretty
Icing Kit For a polished look use a pastry bag to top your cupcakes with swirls of icing. This kit comes with four different pastry tips so you can experiment to find a style you love. The Best-Ever Cupcake Icing Kit, $16.95, bakeitpretty.com
Visit our gallery for more cupcake ideas. —Allison Bean