Cherry Root Beer Spice Cupcakes

I have been looking for an excuse to use some of the Root Beer Concentrate I have in the pantry, and my son’s teacher’s birthday provided me with an opportunity to experiment with some cupcakes.

The Root Beer Float Cookies were awesome, but I went with something different and tossed in some maraschino cherries (complete with the syrup) for a nice pink hue for Valentine’s Day. Then topped them with sprinkles and some heart shaped cherry jelly beans. Adorable and delicious!

Cherry Root Beer Spice Cupcakes - thatrecipe.com

The flavor is not overpowering root beer. The vanilla and spices in the concentrate gave them a great spice cake taste that we loved. But if you can’t find it with the other extracts in your grocery store you can ask them to order it. Or if the thought of root beer flavored cupcakes doesn’t thrill you, just use vanilla or almond extract instead.

Since the cupcakes were for his teacher, I forced J to help. And by forced I mean I said “Do you want to make cupcakes?” then quickly got out of the way as he ran to get his apron and toque.

We pulled out the Cake Boss: Recipes from Mia Famiglia cookbook and used the Vanilla Cake recipe as our starting point. I only wanted 12 cupcakes so we had to cut the recipe in half.

J read the ingredients to me, then we worked on our “doubles facts” to figure out how much would be one half.

boy reading recipe

He had no problem understanding that 1 cup plus 1 cup is 2 cups, so we only need to use 1 cup.  Maybe Common Core isn’t evil after all. I did the fractions for him, because first graders are not quite ready to understand that half of 3/4 is 3/8.

He measured and poured in the ingredients which left me two hands free for photos. Yeah.

add eggs to cake batter add milk and cherry syrupThen we hit a snag. The bowl full of batter is a little heavy and I wanted to make them nice since they were for a gift. I wanted to pour the batter in to the cupcake liners. I agreed to let him do the last few, figuring those would be for us.

Then he took off to play with his Dad! Not wanting to wait, I finished. He was annoyed when he came back in the room as I was finishing. So, to get even he added a little something of his own to the top of the batter when my back was turned.

brown sugar on cupcake batter

A pinch of brown sugar… nice choice. I left it on top. It was so minimal it didn’t effect the taste.

I frosted them while he was playing outside, then let him add the decorations.

decorating cupcakesI hope his teacher enjoyed them as much as I did.

Cherry Root Beer Spice Cupcakes

Serves 12
Prep time 20 minutes
Cook time 30 minutes
Total time 50 minutes
Meal type Dessert
Occasion Valentines day
From book Cake Boss: Stories and Recipes from Mia Famiglia
These Cherry Root Beer Spice Cupcakes are a simple cupcake base with root beer concentrate and maraschino cherries blended in.



  • 1 1/2 cup cake flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 6 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon root beer concentrate
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 Large eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 jar maraschino cherries (10 ounces)


  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 teaspoon root beer concentrate
  • milk (for thinning the icing)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake pan with cupcake liners.
Remove 12 cherries from jar for decoration if desired. Chop remaining cherries and set aside. In a small sauce pan, cook down the cherry syrup to about one half it's starting volume.
marischino cherry syrup in pan
In a large bowl of stand mixer, add flour, sugar, vegetable oil, baking powder, root beer concentrate and salt. Using the paddle attachment, mix on low until combined. Scrape down sides of bowl, then beat on medium low for 1 minute.
With the motor running add one egg at a time pausing in between until egg is thoroughly integrated. Scrape down sides of bowl, add chopped cherries then beat on medium low for 1 minute.
add eggs to cake batter
Pour half of the reduced cherry syrup into a measuring cup, add enough milk to equal 1/2 cup. With the motor running on the mixer, slowly add the milk into the batter. Scrape down sides of bowl, then beat on medium low for 1 minute.
add milk and cherry syrup
Pour batter into the prepared cupcake pan. Bake until done, approximately 20 minutes.
pour cupcake batter into prepared pan
While cupcakes bake, combine powdered sugar, butter, root beer concentrate and remaining reduced cherry syrup. Add milk a tablespoon at a time until it reaches desired consistency. Put in refrigerator until ready to use.
Remove cupcakes from oven and move to a cooling rack to cool completely.
baked cherry root beer spice cupcakes
When cool, ice cupcakes and decorate with reserved cherries, sprinkles, etc.
decorating cupcakes

Until next time, happy eating.

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  1. Nancy Laws (@chicmompreneur)

    These look amazing, as always Audrey! #ibabloggers #pinned

  2. Jamie

    These sound so yummy!! Pinned it to try one day!

  3. Meg

    They look so good! Shared 🙂 #ibabloggers

  4. Carolann

    Those look great! I’ve been wanting a good cupcake recipe thank you! Pinned!

  5. Michelle

    Definitely pinning to my dessert board! Yum!

  6. Lorelai @ Life With Lorelai

    Looks like you guys had a great time creating your root beer cupcakes! The flavors sound delicious, and they are decorated really cute too. 🙂 Thanks for sharing at the #HomeMattersParty 🙂

    Life With Lorelai

  7. Kim @ This Ole Mom

    Wow! Your cupcakes look delicious. I’ll have to try them out. Thanks for sharing your recipe. Pinning.

  8. Christine from SoDomesticallyChallenged

    oh. my. gosh. Those look amazing!

  9. Leia @ Eat It & Say Yum

    Yum, love cupcakes! Thanks for sharing at On Display Thursday!

  10. Amberjane

    Look amazing but I am not fond of root-beer if I am honest – but I do love cherry. Thanks for linking up to Pin Worthy Wednesday, I have pinned your post to the Pin Worthy Wednesday Pinterest Board.

  11. Kelly @ Mum-bo-Jumbo

    There are no words except Wow!!!! Thanks for linking up at #mum-bomonday

  12. Jen @ The Halfway Homemaker

    These look super yummy. Thanks for sharing with Tasty Tuesdays!

  13. Lou Lou Girls

    Hello cute lady! I’m loving it. Pinned and tweeted. Thank you so much for partying with us. I hope to see you tonight at 7 pm. We love to party with you! Happy Monday! Lou Lou Girls

  14. Kayla

    This sounds so awesome! Root beer is such an amazing taste and I bet it’s wonderful in these cupcakes 🙂

  15. Winnie

    These look GOOD !!
    It’s been years since I’ve had root-beer 🙂 We don’t have it here.
    I’d looooooove to have one of your cupcakes now 🙂
    Winnie recently posted…אזני המן מבצק פילוMy Profile

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