Saturday, June 29, 2013

Nanaimo Bar Cupcakes & Whoopie Pies

Nanaimo Bars are a Canadian favorite. If you have never had one then you really are missing out. 
Nothing will ever beat a homemade Nanaimo Bar....the store bought ones just aren't the same. 
If you want to try one here is our recipe -- Nanaimo Bar.  
Today I decided to try a Nanaimo Bar Cupcake just to be different.
It turned out really Nanaimo Bar-y tasting. And, because it was cake and not the usual Nanaimo bar bottom, it was soft and squishy and VERY addicting. 
The Nanaimo Bar Whoopie Pies are the exact same recipe as the cupcakes, they are simply baked in a Whoopie Pie pan instead of a cupcake pan. 
I simply used our delicious Vanderwolf's Family Secret Chocolate Cake recipe and changed it up a bit. 

Nanaimo Bar Cupcakes (& Whoopie Pies)

1/2 cup baking cocoa
1 cup flour
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 cup coconut
1/2 cup pecans, finely chopped
2 tsp baking soda
pinch of salt
2 cups sugar
1 cup sour milk or cream
2 eggs
2 tsps vanilla
1/2 cup oil
1 cup boiling water 

1 cup butter, softened
6 Tbsp milk
1/4 cup vanilla custard powder (We always use Bird’s Eye Custard Powder)
4 cups icing sugar

Chocolate Topping
2/3 cup chocolate chips
2 Tbsp butter

To make cake: Preheat oven to 350. Line cupcake pans with paper liners. 
Mix together first 8 ingredients. Make a hollow in center of bowl and add remaining 5 ingredients into center.
Whisk all together until well blended. 
Pour into prepared cupcake liners. 
Bake 20 mins or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. (Depending on pan size this varies greatly. Keep an eye on it!)  Remove from oven to cool 5 minutes on wire rack before removing the cupcakes from the pan.
Let cool completely. 
To make frosting: Beat together butter, milk, and custard powder. Slowly beat in icing sugar, about 1/2 cup at a time, until smooth.
Let chill for at least 30 minutes.
To make chocolate topping: When ready to assemble cupcakes - In a microwave safe bowl, place the chocolate and butter. Heat in the microwave in 20 second increments - stirring well in between - until melted and smooth. DO NOT over cook.
Assemble your Nanaimo Bar Cupcake: Place cupcakes on serving platter. Spread or pipe the chilled frosting on top of each cupcake. 
Place back in fridge for 15 minutes to chill again.
Using a piping bag (or Ziplock bag with the corner snipped off) drizzle the chocolate over each cupcake. You can also use a knife and spread a thin layer on top if you prefer.

If you used a muffin top pan or whoopie pie pan instead of a cupcake pan here are those instructions:
Assemble your Nanaimo Bar Whoopie Pie: Take one half of the whoopie pie, spread generously with the chilled frosting, sandwich with the other half of the whoopie pie. 
Generously drizzle the chocolate topping on the top of the whoopie pie. Sprinkle with finely chopped pecans.

I love this spin on the Nanaimo Bar. It is a little less sweet than the original. Don't get me's still uber sweet...but it is just that much less sweet.
Note -- If you can't find Vanilla Custard Powder you can replace it with an equal amount of instant vanilla pudding powder. Understand that this completely changes the taste of the recipe BUT it is still very, very tasty!

Be sure to visit Carole's Chatter  for some great links!


  1. Okay I am placing an order for one of each of these for my birthday... you have a few days to get ready... ready, set, bake!!

  2. The recipe sounds awesome. I can't wait to taste them once I give the recipe a try. That's on the agenda for next week. Thanks for sharing!

  3. ON my gosh, this is a recipe I will have to try. I had my first Whoopie Pie while traveling thru PA as a child and they sure were good. Thank you for sharing with the Clever Chicks Blog Hop this week; I hope you’ll join us again!

    Kathy Shea Mormino

    The Chicken Chick