Monkey Cupcakes

by Brie Padfield
(Portland, OR)

Ever since my little man started learning to get around by himself, I've been calling him Monkey Head. So when I saw these monkey cupcakes in a magazine I just knew that I have to make them for his first birthday.

The recipe called for premade ginger snap cookies and brown mini m&m's for the eyes, but I made my own cookies and cut them in half. Blue mini M&M's were used to match my sons eyes.

The cupcakes were a huge hit with the kids and they are pretty good for you too as they are full of bananas.


* 1/2 cup shortening
* 1 1/2 cups sugar
* 2 eggs
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 1 cup mashed ripe bananas
* 1/4 cup buttermilk
* 2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* Chocolate Frosting for Head
* Vanilla Frosting to adhere eyes
* Mini Oreos for ears
* Graham cracker for mouth (or cookie)
* M&M's (eyes)


1. In a large mixing bowl, cream shortening and sugar. Add the eggs, vanilla, bananas and buttermilk. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; add to banana mixture.

2. Fill 18 paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full.

3. Bake at 350 degrees F for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove to wire racks and be sure to cool completely.

4. Let cool completely before frosting and adding on decorations.

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