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Lightened Up – Chocolate S’mores Cupcakes

It goes without saying that Jessica at How Sweet It Is is the queen of all things dessert.  And margaritas.  And fish sandwiches.

But anyway, since she posted her recipe for S’mores Brownies, I’ve been wanting to make them.  Considering the fact that I’m getting married in less than two months (!), I tried to make them a bit lighter when I made them for a fourth of July gathering this past weekend.

Instead of graham crackers for the base, I used ginger thin cookies.  I’ve seen them at drugstores and grocery stores in the foreign foods areas, but this weekend I saw this large box at Big Lots for only $2! 

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I also nabbed huge bottles of Boylan’s Diet Root Beer for $0.75 a piece!  Why have I never been to Big Lots before?

Anyway, to “lighten up” the graham cracker ginger thin crust, crushed the cookies with an egg white in my Magic Bullet, until they formed a thick paste (please excuse the super old, discolored muffin tin).  I also made a batch of mini cupcakes with just the crumbled cookies (no egg white) and they stayed together pretty well too.

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To smush down the cookie paste and make it even in the bottom of the cupcake liners, I coated a small juice glass with cooking spray, which worked nicely.

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If you use the egg white mixture you should bake the base layer for about 6-8 minutes.  When I used the crumbs alone I didn’t pre-bake them.

I cheated with a boxed cake mix and an old weight watchers trick – 1 can of diet soda.  Don’t ask me how this works (all of my college chemistry courses can’t help me explain it), but it does.  1 box + 1 can = immediate calorie reduction.  No eggs, no oil, nothing else needed.

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You still have to stir the batter a good bit to get it to look like normal batter – trust me, it will get there!  The best part of the diet soda trick?  You can eat the batter raw and not worry one bit! I’m not admitting to anything though! ;)

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Pour the batter over the cookie bases, about 3/4 full.  These are the minis that had just the crumbs as a base:

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Baking these was tricky – you just have to do the toothpick test (unless the cake mix gives you an estimated time for cupcakes).  Once they were done, I topped them with a single large marshmallow (or 1/4 of a large one for the minis).

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After going under the broiler for about 3 minutes, they were a gorgeous golden brown – and the kitchen smelled SO GOOD.  They came out slightly puffy, but my darling fiance’ had the great idea of pushing the marshmallows down – very carefully – which spread the melted sugar all over the top of the cupcake, just like icing.

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One box of cake mix made 12 large cupcakes and 24 minis.  And I may have consumed A SMALL AMOUNT of leftover batter. :)

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Approximate nutrition (for a large cupcake): 175 calories, 5 g fat, 29g carbs, 3g protein

I’m 150% sure that the buttery, extravagant brownie version tastes much better than these cupcakes, but they worked just fine for me!

I didn’t have time to read a single blog post yesterday, I apologize.  It was the first WIAW that I’ve missed too!  I hope this recipe makes up for it! :)

I found out that people are even fans of s’mores or totally uninterested – what side do you fall on?

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19 responses to “Lightened Up – Chocolate S’mores Cupcakes

  1. loftyappetite July 7, 2011 at 12:56 pm

    These look amazing, even got that campfire toasted look. i’m kind of middle of the line with smores. in camping/summer environments i always want one, but once i do i’m over it and don’t like it as much as i was craving it!
    It’s so exciting that your wedding is coming up so fast! How is your foot? Is it getting better? Also, one of my Polish friends started a blog about planning a Polish wedding, I thought you might be interested :) http://mybigfatpolishwedding.blogspot.com

  2. sprint2thetable July 7, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    Diet soda?! I’m going to have to try that one out. You could use diet cherry soda and make them chocoalte-carry muffins!

  3. allieksmith July 7, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    I am a smores fan 100% all the way! These look delish, though if I made them I would probably make the less healthy version because i’m not getting married any time soon ;)!

  4. In Sweetness and In Health July 7, 2011 at 2:18 pm

    I am a smores fan all the way! Those look awesome :). And I’ve actually never heard of the diet soda trick- pretty cool!

  5. Cait @ Beyond Bananas July 7, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    This diet soda trick is somethign I am going to need to try ASAP!

  6. kristina@beancakes ❤ July 7, 2011 at 3:17 pm

    oh my! there is ALL sorts of goodness going on here! i LOVE s’mores!! and these look divine claire! i love the diet soda + cake mix trick ~ my co-worker used to bake 7-up cakes, i just love that name ~ 7-up cake ;)
    xx ~ kristina

  7. Shanna, like Banana July 7, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    Who the heck is NOT a fan of smores? My god, that’s just wrong!

    Creative twist to Jessica’s recipe…I’d totally eat one (or a 5)

  8. Tiff July 7, 2011 at 4:13 pm

    You know what’s odd – I love smores, but smore desserts don’t do it for me. I guess I just don’t like marshmallows unless I’m actually at a campfire. I know, it’s dumb. haha

    I’ve been wanting to try those cookies though. I bet they’d be good with my decaf spice tea at night.

  9. Jenny July 7, 2011 at 4:26 pm

    Those cupcakes are adorable!! They look really good. S’mores are delish

  10. Annette @EnjoyYourHealthyLife July 7, 2011 at 5:26 pm

    WHOA! I love this. And yeah, the diet soda trick is one I love to make (my bros never know the difference. wahahaha). Pretty cupcakes!

  11. Jess (In My Healthy Opinion) July 7, 2011 at 5:53 pm

    S’mores seem to be all the rage lately! I’m definitely a fan, but haven’t had one in a long time. These cupcakes look deeeelicious. :)

  12. Cait's Plate July 7, 2011 at 6:52 pm

    Oh man, there are people out there that DON’T like s’mores!? I can’t believe that! I’m totally on the loving side of them and would absolutely love to eat one of those cupcakes!

  13. char on a mission July 7, 2011 at 9:54 pm

    Coolest baking tip ever. And those marshmallows look friggen awesome once they’ve baked. I honestly didn’t think they would melt down like that, but it works out so well. And ya, who doesn’t love smores. I’m actually kind of sad when I go to a bonfire and there’s no smores…I kinda think people are crazy who don’t do that!

  14. Gluten-Free Lindsey July 7, 2011 at 10:06 pm

    I don’t understand how people don’t like s’mores!! These look soo good!

  15. Katie July 8, 2011 at 12:08 am

    I love Smores!!! the best ever! I love going to a bonfire just for those!!!

    Loving the cupcakes!! U are a good cupcake baker I see ; )

  16. Heather @ girlyeverafter July 8, 2011 at 1:49 am

    Totally a fan of smores. Camping isn’t the same without them!

  17. Pingback: Lightening Up: 2011 « Live and Love to Eat

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