Growing up, we drank Coke religiously in this house. My parents were never the types who withheld sweets, candy or soda, so we usually had free reign over what we wanted to eat. Granted, we couldn’t have sodas with dinner, have cookies before meals or substitute actual substantial food (or however substantial Happy Meals could be) for Little Debbie snack cakes and Fritos, but we did eat it far more frequently than our other kid friends.
I recall going over to a friend’s house one day after school and her mom asked if we wanted some snacks to nosh on while we did homework. I eagerly said yes, anticipating cookies and milk or an ice cream bar and a root beer. Instead, her mom brought out a plate of carrots and celery with two glasses of water.
What in the living fluff.
I suppose I was so used to heading straight after school to my grandma’s, who watched us until my parents got off of work. My grandma was so preoccupied with her stories and being adamant that she didn’t watch Ricki Lake and Jerry Springer (she totally did) that she didn’t really pay any mind to what we ate — so it was usually Mother’s brand Taffy cookies and a Coke for me. Oh what I’d give to have that metabolism again.
Anyway, one of my favorite treats growing up were Coke Floats. I LOVED the combination of rich, creamy vanilla ice cream and that fizzy, sugary Coke and how they got all melty and delicious together. Or likewise, I would always order Vanilla Cokes when we went out to eat — there’s something so tantalizing and classic about vanilla and Coke. So when I had the idea for these cupcakes, those frosty-cool Coke Floats were my inspiration for sure!
And take my advice — they’re definitely delicious brain food
- 1 box white cake mix
- 1 can (12 ounces) Coca Cola
- 1 dram Cola flavored oil (or 2 tsp Cola Soda Stream syrup)
- FOR COLA FROSTING:
- ¾ cup butter, room temperature
- 1 Tbsp heavy cream
- 1 dram Cola flavored oil
- ½ tsp vanilla
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- White non-pareils
- Maraschino cherries
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a muffin tin with 12 paper liners and set aside. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, beat together the cake mix and soda with an electric mixer on medium-low speed, about 2 minutes. You are ONLY mixing in the dry mix and the soda -- NOTHING else (no eggs, no oil, no water). Once combined, beat in the dram of Cola flavored oil or the Soda Stream Cola syrup to combine.
- Portion the batter evenly among the muffin cups, filling about ¾ of the way full. Bake for approx. 14-16 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean or with moist crumbs. Cool completely.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together the butter, heavy cream, Cola oil and vanilla extract with the paddle attachment until creamy and combined. Gradually add the powdered sugar, about a cup at a time, until frosting is light and fluffy.
- Pipe the frosting high onto cooled cupcakes; sprinkle with white non-pareils. Garnish with a patted-dry maraschino cherry and serve! *If you want the frosting high, like as shown in the photos, consider doubling your frosting recipe.*
Wondering what a ‘dram of oil’ is? A dram is 1 fluid ounce (3.7 ml) and is contained within a small bottle. Flavoring oil is extremely concentrated and is ideal for making candy. It’s much more potent than your standard extract, so only a little is needed to enhance or create the flavor you desire. Believe it or not, a single Cola dram is the perfect amount (when combined with the can of Coke soda) to flavor an entire dozen cupcakes and really kick up that sweet, classic Coke flavor. You can BUY THE COLA DRAMS HERE. Likewise, if you cannot find the Cola drams, you may substitute Soda Stream’s Cola-flavored syrup (you know, the stuff you use to make your own soda at home!) in place.
Either way, I know you’ll fall in love within one bite of these scrumptious, classic-Coke Float Cupcakes!
Have a fantastical day!!