These maple bacon cupcakes pack all of the best flavors of a French toast breakfast. Filled with blueberry jam, these cupcakes are lightly spiced with cinnamon and nutmeg and topped with sweet and buttery maple Swiss meringue buttercream, drizzled with maple syrup and candied salty bacon crumbles. Eat them for breakfast. Eat them for dessert. They're a delicious sweet treat for anytime of the day.
Why You Will Love This Cupcake Recipe
- The cupcakes are soft, tender, fluffy and lightly spiced.
- Candied bacon is sweet, salty, crispy and chewy.
- Maple buttercream is silky and smooth, fluffy, buttery and maple-y. Tastes like butter and syrup on French toast.
- Easy to follow recipe with step by step photos for you to reference for perfect maple bacon cupcakes every time.
Ingredient Notes and Substiutions
Canola oil - or vegetable oil
Cake flour - for soft, tender and light cupcakes
Spices - cinnamon and nutmeg - just a little bit for a French toast flavor
Fine sea salt
Milk - I always recommend whole milk. Whole milk is higher fat, and fat equals more moisture.
Bacon - Any kind you prefer to use. I prefer applewood smoked, regular thickness.
Maple syrup - Pure maple syrup and not pancake syrup.
Light brown sugar
Maple extract - to amp up the maple flavor
Blueberry jam - Filling the cupcakes with jam is optional, but I think the pop of blueberry is so delicious and necessary for that breakfast french toast and bacon flavor.
Preheat the oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet with foil and a cupcake pan with paper liners. Full recipe instructions and tips are listed in the recipe card at the end of this post.
- Whisk together the egg, egg yolk, oil, and vanilla.
- In a stand mixer bowl, combine the cake flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg. Beat on low for one minute.
- Add the butter and beat until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- Slowly pour in the milk, mixing until the flour mixture is moistened. Pour the remaining milk into the egg/oil mixture. Whip the batter for 90 seconds until thick and fluffy.
- Beat in the egg/oil mixture in two additions.
- Evenly divide the batter amongst the cupcake liners.
- Bake for 17-20 minutes. Cool completely.
- Using a sharp knife, cut a hole into the center of the cooled cupcakes and fill with the blueberry jam.
- Place the bacon onto the foil lined pan. Brush the bacon with maple syrup and sprinkle with brown sugar.
- Bake for 25 minutes or until the brown sugar has melted and the bacon is crisp. Cool, then finely chop and set aside.
- Whisk together the egg whites, maple syrup and granulated sugar in a heatproof bowl. Set over a pot of simmering water and cook, whisking constantly until the mixture reaches 160F. Alternatively, you can lightly (and quickly) dip your finger (Be careful. It is HOT.) and rub the mixture between your thumb and finger. You should not feel any sugar granules.
- Sieve the mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer to catch any cooked egg that might have occurred during cooking.
- Beat the egg white mixture to stiff peaks. The egg whites should be glossy and stand straight to a point when the whisk is slowly pulled out of the bowl. The bowl should be cool to the touch.
- Beat in the butter, a few cubes at a time. The mixture may looked curdled or loose, but keep beating, it will come back together.
- Beat in the salt, vanilla and maple extract. Beat on low for an extra 8-12 minutes to allow the buttercream to smooth out and pop any air bubbles.
- Fit a piping bag with a large star piping tip and buttercream and and pipe swirls onto the cupcakes.
- Top with bacon bits and a drizzle of maple syrup.
- Remove the bacon from the foil soon after it comes out of the oven. If the bacon cools on the foil, it will stick to the foil.
- Do not core the cupcakes all the way down to the bottom of the cupcake. Doing so could cause the jam to spill out once the wrapper is taken off. You can use a cupcake corer or a small paring knife.
- Use room temperature ingredients. Using cold butter, eggs or milk could leave you with split batter and buttercream.
- Weigh your ingredients using a kitchen scale. Weighing ingredients is both accurate and consistent.
Storage and Freezing
Cupcakes are best eaten the day they are made.
The bacon is best within a few hours of cooking and before the fat has solidified. Frost the cupcakes with the buttercream and top with bacon right before serving.
The cupcakes need to be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days in an airtight container because of the bacon. Bring the cupcakes to room temperature before eating.
Buttercream can be kept at room temperature for up to 2 days, refrigerated for up to a week and frozen for up to 3 months. Bring the buttercream to room temperature and beat it on low speed to fluff it back up. Cupcakes can be made up to a day in advance before filling and frosting.
There are different grades of maple syrup. Grade B is what I recommend for baking. It may also be labeled as grade A (dark color/strong taste). Other grade A types will be too light and delicate for this recipe.
Yes, this recipe can be easily doubled to make 24 cupcakes.
More Cupcake Recipes to Try
Maple Bacon Cupcakes
- Instant read thermometer (optional)
- Large star tip (1E or 2D)
- 1 large egg, room temperature
- 1 large egg yolk, temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1½ cups cake flour
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
- ½ cup whole milk, room temperature
- 5 slices bacon
- 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- ½ cup light brown sugar, packed
- 5-6 large egg whites
- ⅔ cup pure maple syrup
- ⅔ cup granulated sugar
- 1 ½ cups unsalted butter, cubed, room temperature
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ - ½ teaspoon maple extract
- ½ cup blueberry jam
- Preheat the oven to 350F. Line a cupcake pan with paper liners and set aside. Line a medium baking sheet with foil.
- In a measuring cup, combine the egg, egg white, vanilla and oil. Whisk to combine.1 large egg, room temperature, 1 large egg yolk, temperature, 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract, 2 tablespoons canola oil
- In the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the cake flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg and mix on low speed for a minute to combine.1½ cups cake flour, ¾ cup granulated sugar, 2 teaspoons baking powder, ½ teaspoon fine sea salt, ¾ teaspoon cinnamon, ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
- With the mixer still running, add in the softened butter pieces. Mix on low speed until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. You should be able to gather a bit in your hand, squeeze and you have a solid piece. This means the butter is evenly distributed.5 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
- With the mixer still on low, slowly pour in the milk, mixing JUST until the flour mixture is moistened. You will not use all the milk at this time. Pour the remaining milk into the bowl with the eggs and oil, and whisk to combine.½ cup whole milk, room temperature
- Turn the mixer speed to medium and whip for a full 90 seconds. The mixture should be whipped up, thick, and lighter in color. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure everything is properly mixed.
- With the mixer speed on low, add the egg/oil/remaining milk mixture in two additions, scraping down the bowl after each addition has been mixed in.
- Once the remaining egg/oil mixture has been added, give the bowl a final scrape and mix with a spatula. Divide the batter among the 12 liners.
- Bake the cupcakes for 17-20 minutes, until a toothpick comes out with a crumb or two when inserted in the center of the cupcake. Increase the oven temperature to 375F.
- Place the baked cupcakes on wire racks to cool for 5 minutes. Carefully remove the hot cupcakes from the pan and cool completely on a wire rack.
- Place the slices of bacon on the prepared cookie sheet. Brush or drizzle the bacon with maple syrup.5 slices bacon, 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- Sprinkle the bacon with brown sugar. Bake for 25 minutes or until the brown sugar has melted and the bacon is crisp.½ cup light brown sugar, packed
- Remove the bacon from the pan and place on a cutting board. Cool completely. Finely chop the bacon and set aside to cool completely.
- Weigh out egg whites, maple syrup, and granulated sugar together in a heat proof bowl.5-6 large egg whites, ⅔ cup pure maple syrup, ⅔ cup granulated sugar
- Clip a candy thermometer onto the side of the bowl and place over a pot of simmering (not boiling) water, whisking constantly and gently until temperature of the egg/sugar mixture reaches 160F, or until the mixture is hot and granules of sugar cannot be felt when rubbing the mixture between your thumb and finger.
- Using a sieve, strain the egg white/sugar mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer.
- Mix on medium speed with the whisk attachment until the mixture is glossy, reaches stiff peaks and the outside of the bowl is no longer warm. You cannot add butter to the bowl if it is warm or the butter will just melt when added.
- Once the mixture reaches stiff peaks, switch out the whisk attachment for the paddle attachment and begin mixing on low speed.
- Add the softened butter cubes, a couple at a time, until incorporated.1 ½ cups unsalted butter, cubed, room temperature
- Let the buttercream mix. It might curdle or look lumpy but that’s ok. Keep mixing. This could take some time.
- Keep mixing on low and add the salt, vanilla and maple extract, if using. Mix until everything is fully incorporated. The buttercream is ready when it is smooth, satiny and creamy.½ teaspoon fine sea salt, ¼ - ½ teaspoon maple extract, ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- Using a sharp knife, cut a hole into the center of the cooled cupcakes to create a space for the blueberry jam. The piece you removed will be the shape of a cone.
- Spoon the blueberry jam inside each carved out cupcake. Fill the cupcake with the filling to the top, about a heaping teaspoon full. Slice off the pointy end of the cone piece you removed so that it can fit on top of the filling. Place on top of the filling.½ cup blueberry jam
- Top the cupcakes with maple buttercream, a drizzle of maple and top with bacon bits.