To avoid these problems, I spring for mini cupcakes. In my meager mini cupcake-eating experience, I've found that bakers who specialize in mini cupcakes tend to be more focused on reaching cupcake perfection with their one or two-bite treats.
Grace Hiura of Cakelab is one of those bakers. She recently delivered a few boxes of her mini cupcakes to us in anticipation of the Valentine's Day dessert rush. After eating them, I'd be tempted to buy a few boxes for myself if the idea of spending Valentine's Day devouring mini cupcakes didn't sound so sad. What makes Grace's cupcakes better than average? They're super moist, light, aren't too sweet, are well flavored, and provide just enough cake and frosting to satisfy your sweet tooth. (Admittedly, I went beyond my sweet tooth's craving by eating about five of the mini cupcakes, but it was for, ahem, "research purposes.")
Here are the flavors we tried:
- Lemon Meringue: Lemon cake with lemon cream and meringue
- Banana Pudding: Banana cake with wafers and vanilla pudding
- Red Velvet: Cocoa cake with cream cheese frosting and pecans
- Blackout: Chocolate cake with chocolate pudding filling and crumb topping
- Fluffernutter: Banana cake with marshmallow filling and peanut butter frosting
I couldn't recommend one flavor over the other: They were all spot-on. My favorites were the Blackout and the Fluffernutter since they both had fillings, but I happily ate all of them.
There is only one major downside to Grace's cupcakes: They're not available in stores. You can order Grace's cupcakes through Etsy, where she's currently featuring special Valentine's Day packs containing a dozen assorted mini cupcakes for $18. The packs—Sourpuss and Sweetheart—have different flavors than the ones we tried (aside from the Red Velvet), but I don't doubt that they're good. You have until Sunday, February 7, to put in your orders to pickup in Manhattan on February 12 or 13. For more details, read her deivery/pickup policies.
All products linked here have been independently selected by our editors. We may earn a commission on purchases, as described in our affiliate policy.