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One of my lovely co-workers bought me a container of Pillsbury Gluten-free Cookie Dough, and she insisted I reimburse her in cookies. Not so, I thought. I can’t JUST make cookies with cookie dough, that would be too typical. As if it were meant to be, I stumbled upon this post by a fellow Boston Blogger that I recently met, and I decided that’s exactly what I wanted to do with my cookie dough. I spent some time looking for a plain cupcake/cake recipe, like white or yellow cake, since I only have experience making very decadent chocolate cupcakes. I decided to start with this recipe based on the comments and my trust in the author, made a few changes, and I think I nailed it. Except for one thing. I discovered that there are different kinds of buckwheat flour, apparently. This whole time, I’ve been buying buckwheat flour from this Asian market, and what it says on the label is just “Buckwheat Flour,” no descriptor. And I absolutely love it, use it in everything. Well, the weather has been terrible, so I decided to order some online when I ran out this time. Of course, that meant I had to cave and purchase *GASP* Bob’s Red Mill, and it was called “Whole Grain Buckwheat Flour” (and, naturally, was double what I’m used to paying). It came in the mail yesterday and WOAH is that different from what I’ve been buying. Like, it’s so dark it turned my yellow cake mix into…creepy gray dirt mix. I only used half a cup and boy can I taste it. So, good thing there’s cookie dough and icing in every bite to mask the flavor. Now I have to go back to all my recipes and specify LIGHT buckwheat flour where I use it. Lesson. Learned.

Ok, back to my recipe.

Cookie Monster Cupcakes

Cupcakes:
1 container Pillsbury GF Cookie Dough (or make your own!)
1/2 cup of butter, softened
1 1/2 cups of sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 cup of LIGHT buckwheat flour (or millet or sorghum)
1/2 cup of white rice flour (or you could omit the buckwheat and use a whole cup of rice flour, I just find that this addition gives a much better texture)
3/4 cup of potato starch
1/2 cup of tapioca flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup of milk (I used almond)
1/2 cup of french vanilla yogurt (this happens to be the flavor that I had on hand, so I omitted the teaspoon of vanilla extract)

Lighter Buttercream Frosting:
1 cup of milk (I used almond)
2-3 tablespoons of cornstarch or all-purpose gf flour, whatever you have on hand
1 cup of butter, softened
1/2 cup of sugar
Any flavorings or colorings you might like to add (I obviously added blue food coloring, but I doubled this recipe since I was working on another batch of cupcakes, and added a really sweet honey that I have so that I could cut back on the sugar)

Pillsbury Cookie Dough

So, scoop out giant tablespoons of your cookie dough and roll it into balls, 18 if you can, since that’s how many cupcakes this recipe makes. But if you need to eat some of that raw cookie dough, you know, just to test it, that’s ok, too. You might just have some cupcakes that are cookie-dough less. (This is a judgment-free zone.) Place your cookie dough balls in a plastic bag or on parchment paper and freeze overnight, if you can, but for a few hours at the very least.

Preheat the oven to 350. Cream the sugar and butter, add the eggs and yogurt. You can either combine all your dry ingredients in a separate bowl and then add that, with the half cup of milk, to the egg mixture, but I’m a fan of one-bowl baking, so you can just dump all that in there at once. Who cares.

Line your muffin tin with paper liners, and scoop about a fourth of a cup of batter into each one. Then plop a cookie dough ball into the center of each, and bake for 18 minutes. Remove and let cool completely before frosting.

Cookie Monster Cupcakes

You can use whatever you prefer, but here’s a nifty way to make a light buttercream if you’re interested (I HATE buttercream frosting but when I found this recipe I just had to give it a shot):

Bring one cup of milk to a simmer in a large pot, and stir in the cornstarch or gf flour. Stir stir stir! You want to make sure you get this as smooth as possible, flour clumps are gross. Trust me. Once it’s thickened, like a really goopy gravy, set aside to let cool.

Meanwhile, cream the butter and sugar, for a few minutes so that the sugar can dissolve. Then slowly add the milk goop and keep beating until it’s all combined. It might look like it’s separated or curdled, but just keep beating it, it’ll get it’s act together (a technique I only endorse for frosting). Add anything else you’d like, such as LOTS of blue food coloring so that you can put blue “fur” on your cupcakes like Cookie Monster!

OH! I learned this nifty little trick from a guest on one of Ina Garten’s shows (I think…well, I know I saw it somewhere). If you roll your icing up into plastic wrap, then tie one end and pull the other through your icing bag, you don’t have to clean it! And you can switch between colors easily, too! Genius.

Like this (it's a terrible picture, I know).

Like this (it’s a terrible picture, I know).

I would call these Cookie Monstah Cupcakes since I live in Boston, but there’s already a food truck with that name. Too late.

Anhywho, these would be great for a kid’s party, you could put little eyes and a big mouth on them. But they’re also good for adults. Because they’re delicious.

Cookie Monster Cupcakes

(See how my yellow cake is brown? Yeah. Dark buckwheat. Oops.)

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