Easy RumChata (or Horchata) Cupcakes

One of the best unknown drinks out there is horchata. Now, there are a lot of people who have had this drink, don’t get me wrong, but in the military life you’re always meeting new people and learning just how different we are in America. I’m surprised at how many people haven’t tried the delicious horchata or RumChata (the alcohol version).

What is it? Rice pudding is what I normally compare it to. Essentially, it’s a rice drink with flavors of vanilla and cinnamon. It has a milky, creamy taste too (it is rice milk!).

Now, as much as I can appreciate cakes from scratch, there’s just something about measuring all the dry ingredients that I hate doing at home. Instead, I’ve found a way to “fix” a box cake mix so it tastes just as good! Read on to find out more.

Disclaimer: This post is not endorsed by any of the brands named, nor sponsored. …But if you know someone from RumChata, feel free to send them my way!

rumchata cupcakes

RumChata or Horchata Cupcakes

Makes 24 cupcakes

Cake

1 box Pillsbury white cake mix (no pudding)
1 cup horchata or RumChata
4 large eggs (just the whites. feel free to get the egg whites carton to make this easy)
1/2 cup 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 Tablespoon vanilla
1 package vanilla pudding
2 Tablespoons cinnamon
(Note: all ingredients should be room temperature so the butter doesn’t cool and harden while you’re mixing it in)

Frosting

1 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 cup horchata or RumChata
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1-2 Tablespoons cinnamon, to taste
7-8 cups powdered sugar

***Additional 1/4-1/2 cup of horchata/RumChata is needed***

The Method

Preheat oven to 350F. Line cupcake pan with paper baking cups.

In a large mixing bowl, whip egg whites until fluffy. Add horchata/RumChata, vanilla, and mix to incorporate. Add softened butter and mix. Add vanilla pudding, cinnamon, and cake mix. Using your mixer of choice, beat on medium for 2 minutes.

Pour batter into cupcake pan, filling to 1/2-3/4 full. Bake for 19-25 minutes. (Mine took about 20, but this will vary depending on your oven. Check them at 19!) When a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, they’re ready! Take them out and place them on a cooling rack. I like to take them out of the pan so they don’t continue to cook–plus I needed the pan to make the other half!

Pour roughly 1/4 cup of horchata/RumChata into a cup, mug, bowl, measuring cup… whatever it was you were using to pour it before. Take a basting brush and brush the tops of the cupcakes. If you don’t have a basting brush, you can dip a spoon into it and gently pour/rub the spoon over them. Let them cool for a couple of hours or overnight. You can put them into the freezer if you need them sooner!

While the cupcakes cool, it’s time to make the frosting. This works best with a mixer!

Beat butter on medium-high until smooth. Add vanilla, cinnamon, and horchata/RumChata and mix. (Note: I’m obsessed with cinnamon, so I like to add a lot! Otherwise, you can just add enough to add some cinnamon specks.) Slowly add powdered sugar until desired consistency is achieved. (Note: I really don’t like adding that much sugar, plus I was nearly out last time I made these. I used roughly 4-5 cups and it worked for me! You do you.) The key is for the frosting to hold its shape.

Do NOT refrigerate frosting (or it’ll harden!).

After the cupcakes have cooled, give them one last brush with horchata/RumChata. Fill a piping bag (or zip-top bag if you don’t have one) with your frosting, and get going! I’m sure you can find a ton of frosting techniques in YouTube tutorials, so watch a few and have some fun! This time I chose a star tip and did a fairly basic frosting technique, but they look kind of like roses, so it’s fun! You start in the middle and just kind of pipe a little pile (I should totally write frosting tutorials. Ha!). Keeping the frosting consistently flowing, start spiraling around, working your way to the middle. Should look like a little mountain. Have you really never seen a cupcake? Why are you still reading this?

Garnish with some silver and gold sparkly sprinkles if you want a little extra flair!

Keep cupcakes in an airtight container and eat within a day or two. Mine may have lasted longer, but I take no responsibility of yours lasting that long!


As always, feel free to take this recipe and make it your own! Try mixing it up and using other flavors (what if you replaced the RumChata with Kahlúa and the vanilla pudding with chocolate pudding? What about a Bailey’s cupcake?). Let me know how it works out! Comment below or tag me on Instagram: @3cats.and.a.foodie

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All packed up for the night! I’ll frost them in the morning before I pack them up for the NYE party.
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Remember that Pampered Chef blog post? Here is the Cool and Serve in action!

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