Thursday, June 24, 2010

Nostalgic Summertime Cupcakes

I’ve been thinking a lot about what summer means….what it meant to me as a child. The only thing bigger was Christmas. It meant playing chase outside ‘til dark thirty….catching lightening bugs….running through sprinklers….the smell of fresh cut grass….and the ice cream truck’s happy music wafting through the neighborhood. He had the timing down just right….early enough not to “ruin my supper” as my grandmother said. push up

All the kids raced inside to retrieve their allowance or beg for small change. My mother gave me enough money for two treats—one for me and one for my beagle named Rebel. This was a defensive move on her part :). It prevented the inevitable tears over stolen ice cream. Rebel preferred vanilla. But my favorite was a push up…. about four inches of cold delicious orange sherbet….air conditioning for your insides.


I saw this recipe for creamsicle cupcakes in Woman’s Day magazine and was immediately reminded of those days. They are light with just the right amount of orange flavor.

Creamsicle Cupcakes

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

2 cups granulated sugar

1/2 tsp. each baking powder, baking soda, and salt

3 large eggs

2 tbsp. grated orange zest

2 tsp. vanilla extract

3/4 cup vegetable oil

1 cup buttermilk

Orange Cream Frosting

8 ounces cream cheese, softened

1 tsp. vanilla extract

2 tsp. grated orange zest

1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar

orange paste food color (optional—I used red and yellow mixed)

For the cupcakes preheat oven to 350. Line 24 muffin cups with paper liners. In a medium bowl whisk flour, 1 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt until blended. In a large bowl mix eggs, orange zest, and vanilla until blended. I used my new Kitchen Aid mixer from Designs by Gollum! Beat in remaining 1 cup sugar. Add oil and then buttermilk until blended. On low speed, beat in the flour mixture until just blended. Spoon about 1/4 cup mixture into each muffin cup

**Measuring the amount I put into each muffin liner is one of the best hints I learned from the Viking Cooking School. It ensures uniform sizes.

Bake 25-28 minutes. Remove to wire rack to cool completely

For the frosting, beat the cream cheese, vanilla and orange zest on low until well blended. Add confectioners’ sugar and beat until fluffy. Add food coloring (if using) until light orange. Refrigerate until firm enough to spread. Garnish as desired. I made flowers with the homemade fondant recipe.


Sometimes you can go home again….even if it’s just for a moment.

I am joining our generous and gracious hostess Michael Lee West for Foodie Friday. Check out her giveaways and click on her button on my sidebar for immediate transportation! I am also linking to Stepahanie Lynn at Under the Table and Dreaming for the Sunday Showcase Party. You can find her here!


  1. Are we by chance related? Sisters? Although I didn't have a dog named Rebel, I pretty much spent my southern summers just as you did. Jerry, the popsicle man came by every summer afternoon. He looked different every summer and it took us a while to figure out that it was a different "Jerry"!

    I've already copied the cupcake recipe. Thank you very much!


  2. Oh I loved creamsicles!! I'm going to make these today!
    xoxo Pattie

  3. Those not only sound good, they are so pretty!!

  4. This looks so cool and refreshing, Susan! And pretty!

    We share so many of the same memories. We loved that old ice cream truck and the excitement when it came down our street, it felt like your heart was in your throat. And all those games we played outside with just our imaginations! What fun!


  5. You just nailed some of the best parts of summer, Susan, and summer to me always involved my grandmother's cupcakes. And these look GREAT!


    Sheila :-)

  6. Just last week, my beloved bought a cremesicle !
    I have not thought about those tinkling bells of the ice cream truck in a great while...

    Your post brought back cherished visions of the good days! Sure hope you continue to have a delightful summer season :)

  7. Yummmmm! These look awesome for sure.
    Sweet memories you have of days gone by....that's wonderful!

    God bless,
    d from HomeHaven

  8. I am definitely making these cupcakes. Orange is my theme color for 2010 (yes, I'm that odd...) I have been trying all kinds of orange inspired treats all year. I can already taste these in my head!

  9. Susan, another great WD recipe! Your cupcakes look wonderful! I did so enjoy the lazy days of summer! Joni

  10. I loved creamsicles as a kid!

  11. I remember the ice cream man too. With six kids in the family we only got a treat on special occasions. I think my favorite were bomb pops.
    Your cupcakes look so delicious. I love how you have decorated them and your photos of them are beautiful.

  12. Oh! I love cremesicles!!!! I saw the picture of your cupcakes and a huge grin broke out on my face. Gonna copy and paste...and then try them out! Thank you, oh, thank you!

  13. They almost look too nice to eat. Almost...

  14. Creamsicles were my favorite too! This recipe is one I am putting on my to do list. Yummy!

  15. Great job! The icing looks amazing!

  16. Such delightful (& yummy) looking cupcakes. I loved the Push-ups! I wanted to share that love with my young daughters. However, after a second time of eating the orange novelty, I realized that there was something in it that made younger daughter bounce off the wall. She even agreed...never again.

  17. Such a wonderful summer flavor:-)

  18. Oh my, those memories of the ice cream truck came flooding back as I read your post. What a great time we had running for money and hoping the truck wouldn't leave before we got to it. The red white and blue bomb pops were always my pick.


  19. Hi Susan,

    They were happy memories, enjoying an ice-block on a very hot summers day. I can relate to that also.
    These cupcakes look delicious and would like to try making them ~ thanks for the recipe.

    Happy weekend

  20. PS...on the rhyme time...I do EVER so much love pasta...LOL

  21. I remember those push ups - I LOVED them!!! Thanks for bringing back the memory of my childhood. Those cupcakes sure do look good! -

  22. I did so love your story. The cup cakes are almost as wonderful as your memories. I hope you are having a wonderful day. Blessings...Mary

  23. What beautiful cupcakes... thanks for stopping by my blog and nice to find yours!!

  24. Dark thirty, that just cracked me up! I would love to return to my childhood for just one night to have another evening just like this, so carefree and FUN!

    Recently my 5-yo great-nephew visited me and I took him downtown to the ice cream parlor. After carefully surveying the scooped ice cream choices and everything in the refrigerated case, he reached in and chose a push-up. I swear, I hadn't said a thing, but I giggled and thought, yea, he's a child after my own heart.

    These cupcakes look and sound delish, I already copied the recipe for his next visit!

    Thanks, for your sweet comment on my dog and honey, when you down our way just let us know and Sheila and I will be there!

  25. I love the combo of orange & vanilla! Yumm!!!

  26. Now these look absolutely delectable! I remember those push ups!

  27. Orange and vanilla--like a cream cycle! Looks delicious!

  28. Hi Susan: I never know where to answer questions-my own blog? the one askings blog? So, here I am. I suppose you could say Oliver is a rescue dog. He's our third dalmatian. Cooper came from Charleston, SC. Argos came from Dakota Dalmatians (one of the top breeders in the country) just north of Chicago. They gave him to us!! If they aren't showing a dog, they seek out good homes. The stipulation is that if, for any reason, the "adoptive parents" can't keep the dog, it comes back to Dakota. That's what happened with Oliver. He's three and a real dear! We were told that the return was no fault of Oliver's and we can see that. Could have been a money issue; however, other than some good food, dalmatians are an extremely healthy breed and don't require grooming. We love him and he's helping us get over the loss of his predecessors.


  29. Bee-utiful! Your flower toppers and pretty colors are so appealing. I know we will enjoy your recipe. Thanks!

  30. Looking so yummy! thanks for sharing!

  31. Oh my gosh! Yummy, and gorgeous!

  32. Yep, I remember summer just like that and buying push ups from the ice cream truck that came through our neighborhood Ü

    thanks so much for the recipe.

  33. My favorite childood ice cream in a cupcake form, what could be better?

  34. Susan - These look amazing! I can almost taste them as I type! TFS - fantastic job - they look delicious! I'll be featuring this today. Stop by and grab a featured button if you like! Thanks so much for linking up to The Sunday Showcase - I greatly appreciate it! Hope you are enjoying your weekend! ~ Stephanie Lynn

  35. De.Li.Cious.

    Seriously so so so so good, and so so so so sooo simple. Compliments from everyone at the party, and so refreshing and different for a summertime cupcake. Oh my gosh.

    Hope you don't mind me spreading the word about your tasty goodness!!


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