Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Dirty Worm Cupcakes (The kids love these!)

The idea for dirt cake or dirt cupcakes has been around for awhile now.  You are probably no stranger to them.  Some people make them with pudding and stick them in a plastic flowerpot.  I had the idea to make them into cupcakes for a playdate I hosted at my house recently. 

These fun, simple cupcakes will have all the kids talking about you and your wonderful dessert.   My daughter Vivian and all her little friends really enjoyed them.  In fact, one of the kids (Norah) ran inside to inform her mommy that "The worms aren't real!"  Hahaha!  All of us moms cracked up over that line. 

I took an even easier route than most because I used a cake box mix, a can of diet soda and a few other basic ingredients.  The diet soda cake comes from a Weight Watchers recipe and tip that a former co-worker gave me years ago.  Just replace the basic cake's ingredients of eggs and oils with 10 to 12 oz of soda.  You don't notice a difference in taste but you'll be indulging in less calories and fat! 

So here's my simple recipe and how I put it all together!

Dirty Worm Cupcakes
(Makes 12 cupcakes)

1 box of Devil's food cake mix
10-12 oz of soda (I used diet coke)
1 small container of vanilla frosting
3 to 4 oz of Oreo cookies, grinded up into bits (about 1 and 1/2 cups)
24 (or more) gummy worms (I used the sour kind)

Grease a 12-muffin tip pan with cooking spray.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 

Place the Devil's food cake mix into a medium size bowl.  Pour in the 10 oz of soda.  (Or if you really want to, then follow the package instructions of using oil and eggs).  The soda can be cold or hot, it doesn't matter.  Either way it may sizzle but trust me, it works great. 

Pour the batter evenly into each muffin filling it about 3/4 full.  Bake for about 20 minutes.  Let the cupcakes cool. 

Meanwhile, grind up your Oreo cookies in a food processor until they form crumbs.  Place the crumbs in a bowl. 

Frost the cupcakes with the vanilla frosting after they have been cooled.  (You could use chocolate frosting but I think the "dirt" stands out better against the white frosting.)  Then dip each cupcake in the Oreo-crumb filled bowl.  I took a photo of what the cupcake looks like with just the frosting and then after it's been dipped in Oreo crumbs:

Poke two holes in each cake.  I used the bottom of a thin wooden spoon.   Place a gummy worm in each of the holes.  I tried to make mine springing out or snoozing across each cupcake.  Have fun with it like this: 

Serve to the kids and watch their faces light up!  And moms can enjoy their reactions or leftover cupcakes as well. 

Also, please check out this one very satisifed customer (pictured below) - Meet my daughter Vivian's friend Jillian.  She was covered in oreo crumbs after she finished her cupcake.  Here she is licking her fingers because that's how much she enjoyed it!  LOL!  

My daughter's little friend Jill = one very sastified customer! :)

In fact her mom, my friend Amber, decided to wash her hands outside using my garden hose.  We won't mention how Jill later took the garden hose in her own hands and had a little fun squirting another kid and herself, LOL!  

This above picture and the comments I received from the kids who ate them made this dessert worth the trouble!  And it really wasn't any trouble at all, actually.   :-)

Next week, I'm going to try this recipe again but use vanilla pudding cups instead.  I'll make it easier on myself by skipping the cake and just sprinkling the Oreo crumbs above the pudding then placing the worms on top.  This will be for a bug-themed preschool class I'm teaching next Monday!  Let's hope that the kids there will love them as much as Jillian did but maybe not have quite as much mess!   Ha!  

Do you have any kid-friendly dishes or desserts to share?  I'd love to hear about them or see photos too!


  1. My kids said they were the best they ever had.

  2. cake pops!!! a bit involved, but worth the ooos and ahhs!

  3. I'm fascinated by the can of diet soda in place of the eggs/oil in the cake mix. I'm trying that ASAP!

  4. Sounds like fun! And those look adorable! They have gummy bugs at the Dollar Tree. Don't ask how I know :)