Easy Summer Themed Cupcakes


Easy Summer Themed Cupcakes

Hey Mamas! I don’t know about you, but I am SO glad summer is finally here! My family spent the Memorial Day weekend kicking off the season and we made these cupcakes to represent all of our favorite summer activities to come.

I am all about simple and easy cupcakes that make a big statement, and these four designs do just that. They only require buttercream frosting, frosting tips, a few snack staples, and a little creativity.

I’ll show you how I made them. As usual, I started with a dozen cupcakes. I like to use a box mix for cupcakes. My favorites are Pillsbury White Cake Mix or Duncan Hines Dark Chocolate Fudge.

I made my favorite buttercream frosting recipe, and divided it into bowls, then tinted it with food coloring to make the colors I needed: red, orange, yellow, blue, and black. And I kept a lot of white aside as well.

1. Campfire Cupcake

Tools you’ll need: Cupcakes, pretzel sticks, mini marshmallows, toothpicks, a frosting bag filled with a combination of red/orange/yellow frosting with a Wilton #1M tip.

Step 1: Arrange 3 pretzel sticks on the cupcake, breaking them in the center so they all lie flat on the cupcake.

Step 2: Using the #1M frosting tip, create the fire. Make sure you’ve got all three colors in the bag, all the way down to the tip, so they all mix together to create the fire effect when you squeeze the frosting out. Apply heavy pressure, then swirl around the cupcake several times, easing up on the pressure at the end to create a point on top. 

Step 3: Add mini marshmallows to two toothpicks, and arrange them around the fire. You can even toast them a little if you’d like! 

2. Beach Day Cupcake

Tools you’ll need: Cupcakes, blue frosting (no tip required for this one), crushed graham crackers, Teddy Grahams, sour candy strips, Gummy Lifesavers, umbrella toothpicks. 

Step 1: Frost the entire cupcake with blue frosting, and smooth.

Step 2: Apply crushed graham crackers to half of the cupcake.

Step 3: Cut a small piece of the sour candy strip (about 2″), then place it on top of the crushed graham crackers, and top with one Teddy Graham.

Step 4: Arrange one Gummy Lifesaver, and the umbrella toothpick around the cupcake as desired.

3. Sunshine Cupcake

Tools you’ll need: Cupcakes, a frosting bag filled with yellow frosting with a Wilton #12 tip, another frosting bag filled with yellow frosting with a Wilton #366 tip, and one more frosting bag filled with black frosting with a Wilton #3 tip.

Step 1: Using the #12 tip, apply frosting to the entire cupcake. Work in large swirls starting at the outside perimeter of the cupcake, and working your way in. Smooth the frosting.

Step 2: Using the #366 tip, add the rays of sunshine to the cake. Working in a circle, place these all the way around the cupcake. As you squeeze each ray, pull your tip away from the cupcake to create a nice point. 

Step 3: Using the #3 round tip, add the sunglasses to the center of the sunshine cupcake.

4. Beach Ball Cupcake

Tools you’ll need: Cupcakes, white frosting, a frosting bag filled with blue frosting with a Wilton #3 tip, another frosting bag filled with yellow frosting with a Wilton #3 tip, and one more frosting bag filled with red frosting with a Wilton #3 tip.

Step 1: Frost the entire cupcake with white frosting, and smooth. Pick a spot on the cupcake to be the center of the beach ball and mark that spot with a dot of colored frosting.

Step 2: Using the #3 tip, pipe an outline of red, starting at the dot you made, and curving out to the edge of the cupcake. Complete the shape of the red portion of the beach ball, and fill in with red frosting.  

Step 3: Repeat Step 2 with the blue and yellow frosting, and make sure to leave white space between each of the colors.

I hope you’ll love these fun and easy summer cupcakes! Enjoy!

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Haley McManigal
Hi there! I’m Haley, a middle-aged-momma to Lukas and Laney, and wife to Dan. I’ve lived in East Tennessee my whole life, and I couldn’t imagine being anywhere else. After moving all over Knox County and surrounding areas, my family has settled in Hardin Valley where we intend to stay at least until the kids graduate from high school. My son was born in 2017, changing my life forever, and my daughter completed our family in 2020. I work as an architect and project manager at a global design firm. I think it’s pretty cool that I get to meet with people from all over the world from my home office on a daily basis. I am happiest when I’m able to strike just the right balance between home and work life. But my family is my greatest treasure and my most fulfilling role in life so far is Mommy. My favorite things are reading, writing, cooking, exploring, and making things. I don’t have much free time these days but when I’m able to squeeze in a few of these activities it really pays off. I love being a part of Knoxville Moms and I cherish the opportunity to share this journey of motherhood here with you!


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