Hot Cocoa 3 Muskateers Cupcakes


So I’m convinced my family is positively batty.

Among many reasons to back this claim, one of them is that they don’t believe in putting up Christmas decorations early.

Uuuummmm, let me clarify that “early” means mid-November (like now). Not in the summer, not even in October. Mid-November. But they whine and cry and protest it’s “too early!” like that’s actually a thing.

I’m not decking halls in my bathing suit when it’s 15457845 million degrees outside. I’m just getting festive over a month in advance. It’s not crazy, it’s practical.

Think about it: you can enjoy the Christmas decorations longer and more thoroughly because they’re up earlier. That means falling asleep with rainbow lights glistening outside your bedroom window, burning cinnamon candles like it’s your job, blasting Christmas music every day for the next month +, and decking that tree out with ornaments, plenty of lights, and presents wrapped underneath.

Yeah, I’m an early wrapper, too. Don’t hate on my spirit, spirit-hater.

But instead I’m battling their illogical fears against decorating early. It’s really rough, you guys. They just don’t understand me. I mean, I am practically convinced I’ve been adopted by a spiritless, confused family and my real family is out there somewhere, singing Jingle Bells at this very moment and hoisting my long-lost little brother Timmy up to adorn the top of the tree with a sparkling star. And they’re laughing and joking by a roaring fire (chestnuts optional) and drinking hot cocoa as a family, because that’s what logical, spirit families do.

Sigh. I live a rough life, y’all.

So to brainwash convince my family to get on my level, I made some Hot Cocoa 3 Muskateers Cupcakes. These cupcakes are awesome because the frosting is actually made out of 3 Muskateers candy bars. You read that right, doll. Candy bar frosting.

Now be logical. Eat a cupcake.

Hot Cocoa 3 Muskateers Cupcakes *3 Muskateers frosting adapted from Shelly’s recipe HERE 

1 box chocolate fudge cake mix, plus ingredients on back of box
1 small box sugar free/fat free instant chocolate pudding
1 jar Kraft Mallow Bits
1 bag Hot Cocoa-flavored 3 Muskateers bars, unwrapped
1/2 cup butter
1 jar (7 oz) marshmallow fluff
3 Tbsp milk
About 4 cups powdered sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two muffin pans with about 20 liners. Set aside.
2. Prepare the cake mix according to package directions. Stir the pudding mix into the cake batter to combine, along with about 1 cup of the mallow bits.
3. Portion the batter evenly among the muffin cups, filling about 2/3 full. Bake for approx. 14-16 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool the cupcakes completely.
4. In a medium saucepan over low heat, melt the unwrapped 3 Muskateers bars, stirring occasionally. The mixture will take on a soft ball shape; when this happens, remove from heat (it will almost look like a bunch of melted together Tootsie rolls).
5. Meanwhile, in the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together the butter and marshmallow fluff until creamy. Add the candy ball and beat to blend. Gradually add the milk and powdered sugar until frosting is combined and smooth. The frosting will have a stretchy consistency, much heavier than a regular frosting.
6. Pipe or spread the frosting onto cooled cupcakes. Garnish with additional mallow bits and a small straw, if desired. Store these cupcakes airtight, at room temperature or in the fridge, approx. 1-2 days. Makes approx. 20 cupcakes.

These cupcakes are insanely chocolatey, perfect for you cocoa lovers out there. The fudgy cupcakes are light and fluffy, and the rich + sweet marshmallowy chocolate frosting is absolutely decadent. I like the mallow bits inside the cake because they get super caramelized and gooey, almost taking on a toasty quality. Not to mention, these cupcakes are just too cute.

I hope you enjoy!

xo, Hayley

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  1. My children all have their mini trees up and decorated in their rooms and we have been singing Christmas tunes for a while now. I don’t go full fledged with the decorations until Thanksgiving is done, but I love Christmas and think you are completely justified in decorating now. 🙂

  2. I’m with ya-I’m all about gettin Christmasy early. Most of my presents have already been bought&wrapped 😛 This cupcakes look like PERFECTION! Oh hi insanely chocolatey cake. Oh hi fluffy 3 muskateers frosting, oh hi lil marshmallows! Yummmmmm!

  3. I have to agree with your family on this one. One holiday at a time, PLEASE!

    I’m going to have to try out that icing though. Looks fantastic!

  4. I seriously never thought to melt candy for frosting. TOTALLY DOING IT. We are being SO mean and forcing Jordan to wait until the week after Thanksgiving (normally we decorate on that weekend, but we’ll be gone). She did, however, buy Jenny a 4ft. pink Christmas tree that is now in my living room. So she got her way. 🙂

  5. Candy bar frosting?! Can I move in with you?? 🙂

  6. I have been listening to Christmas music for like a week already. My husband says we need to celebrate Thanksgiving first, but come on, there is no Thanksgiving music! There isn’t even any Thanksgiving decorations. Thanksgiving is just about food and family (and according to my husband, football) so why can’t we just wrap Thanksgiving up and make it part of the holiday season?! I am SOO ready!

  7. I LOVE that you melted the candy and put it in the frosting. That’s so creative and sounds out of this world delicious! Hopefully this will help put your family in the Christmas spirit early. 🙂

  8. Whoa!! These look great! I could eat a few of these up!
    I’ll be putting up the decorations next week. The little one will be home to “help”. yeah… She’ll enjoy it while I yell at her to be careful!

  9. I have been listening to Christmas music for a month now! And I put my tree up in mid-October…even that was early for me, but I don’t regret it haha

  10. They have hot cocoa 3 Musketeers bars?!? How have I not seen these anywhere? What state do kneed to move to?? These look fabulous!

  11. I’m definitely getting in the spirit a bit early this year:) although – we only have up the house lights.

    I NEED those cupcakes now – and the candy bars too

  12. I still can’t wrap my head around the fact that Thanksgiving is next week! We always decorate our tree that Friday night–is this year flying by, or is it just me?? Either way, these cupcakes look amazing–WHY have I never melted candy bars for frosting before?? And I have got to get my hands on those hot cocoa 3 Muskateers!!

  13. Hayley these are so FUN! And I think these are some of your best photos ever – they are so sharp and clear and I just want to take a sip from one of those adorable little straws!

  14. ok first there is nothing wrong with putting up christmas decorations now, there is so much work involved that I want them up as long as I can possibly get away with!!! At this moment I am listening to Christmas music and making my baking list! Second I think that you need to get on a plane and come over here with all your amazing goodies that you make!

  15. I’m already in the Xmas sprit Hayley! I haven’t began to listen to xmas music but I’ve been eating candy canes like it’s my job. these cupcakes are ADORABLE. you have a knack for cupcake decorating! did you ever take a cupcake decorating class? Love the little marshmallows on top!!!!

  16. That is an amazing frosting idea! I hope it helped to convince your family:) I want to put the decorations up early to be ahead of the game, but I’m having Thanksgiving at my house and I don’t want them all to think I’m crazy and that I think it IS Christmas!

  17. Well, since Thanksgiving is in the way here, we get ours up ASAP afterward.Our biggest problem is getting the Christmas decorations back down again.My mother once left the Christmas tree up untl the week before Palm Sunday. She once left a ‘spray’ up,(A very large bunch of pine boughs tied at the top, with bow, sprayed with artificial snow),all year long.

  18. I saw these in the grocery store and bought them a week or two again. And I’ve been saving them because I wasn’t sure what to do with them. Now I know. I knew I could count on you for a good recipe!

  19. Back for Seconds says:

    What a fun idea! I love the little marshmallows on top too. Super cute!
    I usually decorate the day after thanksgiving but I am in the spirit early this year. Hubby won’t let me decorate but I’ve been baking and listening to Christmas music. Fun times!

  20. Hot Cocolate says:

    Those are beautiful cupcakes! These will be a hit for Christmas gifts for the neighbors. My vote is enjoy those Christmas decorations as long as possible! It is a lot of work. You might as well enjoy it for awhile 🙂

  21. bakerbynature says:

    These are so cute, Hayley!!! And my family is totally batty, too 😉

  22. It is hard to resist the urge to decorate early when everything in blog land is all about the next big holiday. I want my family to enjoy Thanksgiving and what it means, so our decorations will stay in the totes until the day after. No need to rush onto the next holiday when one hasn’t even happened…except in baking of course;-) I love these cupcakes…aren’t melted down candy bars in frosting the best? These look so cute with the marshmallows and straws!!!

  23. Oh my gosh! I can’t believe I stumbled on a bag of these in the Target close out and didn’t make cupcakes with them! Tasty idea. I’m going to have to remember these for when I stumble across another bag.

  24. This looks mouthwatering!! I wanted to let you know I featured it in my roundup! You can see it here… 🙂



  1. […] would like to express my thanks to The Domestic Rebel for this blog post, in which she alerted me to the fact that such a thing as Hot Cocoa with Marshmallow 3 Musketeers […]

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