Mermaid Cupcakes for Your Favorite Fin Fan

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What little person isn’t enchanted with the concept of Mermaids? A few years back I did a Mermaid themed birthday party on our main site: Mermaid Birthday Party – With Free Printables! If I did that party now? Instead of the cake, I would make these mermaid cupcakes.

mermaid cupcakes article cover image of mermaid tail cupcakes

Mermaid Cupcakes

How do you make mermaid cupcakes?

Because these Mermaid Tail Cupcakes are a little putzy, I start this recipe with a boxed cake mix. You could easily use my Best Yellow Cupcake Recipe from Scratch and then divide the batter to add the food coloring you need.

It really is pretty simple, you make and frost the cupcakes, and then add the mermaid tail. You can make them with chocolate, but we like to make them with fondant.

Mermaid Cupcake Toppers

Now as for the Mermaid Tails and Seashells, the mermaid Silicone fondant mold can be found at Michael’s craft store, along with 1 tube of pink fondant, and one tube of lilac fondant. The Seashell Silicone fondant mold I found HERE on Amazon.

To work with the fondant, you will also need: 1 C of corn starch, 1 food safe paint brush (Wilton sells a set of 5 at Michael’s), and 1 tube of gold luster dust.

If you make the fondant accessories first, you will whip out the finished cupcakes faster than you could possibly imagine. Start by lightly powdering your hands with the cornstarch, and start to work the fondant until it becomes soft and easy to work with.

Using one of the brushes, dip it into the cornstarch and lightly coat the silicone mold. Tear off a tablespoon amount of fondant and mold it into the tail mold. Once that is done, let it sit for 5-10 minutes before flipped over the mold and carefully push out the fondant tail out of the mold.

Once all tails have been molded, lightly dip the tip of a paint brush into the gold dust and brush the tail with it. Let the mold dry for 1 hour.

Repeat the steps to make the Seashells.

Can you make the cupcakes in advance?

Just like any of our cupcake recipes, you can make the cupcake bases in advance. I actually have some yellow cupcakes in my freezer right now for Easter. Generally, the rule of thumb is that if you plan to frost and enjoy them within a couple of days you should be storing your cupcakes at room temperature. If you do not plan to frost or enjoy them within a couple of days then it’s best to freeze them. You can learn more about Batch Baking During the Winter Months in my other post if you want to, but batch baking and freezing are some of my trade secrets. Rarely would I pop them in the fridge – the constantly circulating air dries them out too much.

Mermaid Cupcakes Recipe

You will need:

  • 1 box of French vanilla cake mix
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 C of softened unsalted sweet cream butter
  • 1 C whole milk
  • cupcake liners
  • cupcake pan
  • blue, pink, purple and green gel food coloring

Directions for Mermaid Cupcakes

Preheat oven to 350 and line cupcake pan with the liners. In a medium bowl, combine the cake mix, butter, milk, and mix until combined. Divide the batter into 4 small bowls. Add a few drops of the food coloring to a bowl, one different color each. Mix until combined and the colors are bright and vibrant to your liking.

Using a spoon, start spooning 1 color of batter into the cupcake liners. Repeat step with other colors until the cupcake liners are 3/4th full. Bake in the oven for about 21 minutes. Pull out and place on the side to cool.

Frosting Ingredients

  • 1 C unsalted sweet cream butter, softened
  • 2 1/2 C powder sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla 
  • 3-5 TBSP heavy whipping cream
  • Blue and pink gel food coloring
  • 1 disposable piping bag
  • 1 disposable piping bag with a star tip
  • 1 bag of Wilton White Jumbo Nonpareils Sprinkles
  • 1 bag of each Wilton Purple, green, Blue, orange Jumbo Nonpareils Sprinkles

Using a standing mixer, combine all ingredients and mix on medium speed. If your frosting starts looking like powdery rocks, add another tablespoon or so of heavy whipping cream. Mix until you see creamy stiff peaks starting to form.

Once the frosting is made, scoop about 1 C of frosting into the 3 different bowls. Add a few drops of the blue food coloring into one bowl, add a few drops of pink into the second bowl, and leave the third bowl white.

Take the piping bag (without a tip), and stick it tip first into a drinking glass. Fold the edges of the piping bag over the glass. Scoop blue frosting into the piping bag and then frost the cupcakes.

Dip the frosting into the sprinkles.

Using the piping bag with the star tip, set it in a glass and fold the edges over. Scoop the pink frosting onto one side of the piping bag and then scoop white frosting onto the other side. Twist the outer edge closed and then pipe a medium dollop of frosting into the middle of the blue sprinkled cover mound.

Push the mermaid tail into the pink and white frosting and add the shell piece onto the side of the frosting for the finishing touches.

finished mermaid cupcakes with the tails on them

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