Peppermint Chocolate Candy Cane Cupcakes

Kate's Safe and Sweet - Peppermint Cupcakes on Tray Together

These cupcakes are prefect for Christmas and the winter season and start out with a moist homemade chocolate cupcake with a small addition of peppermint extract and and are topped with peppermint frosting in a candy cane swirl, then finished off with a sprinkle of crushed candy canes for the ultimate holiday sweet!

Kate's Safe and Sweet - Peppermint Cupcake Trio

For these we used our Chocolate Cake Mix and Vanilla Frosting Mix.  The first step to making these is to gather all your ingredients and supplies.  Note: This recipe will work well for a cake or cupcakes.

Peppermint Cupcakes Ingredients Needed:

  • Kate’s Safe & Sweet Chocolate Cake Mix
    • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
    • 1 cup rice milk or milk of choice (plain oat milk was used for the cake in this recipe)
    • 5 tablespoons canola oil
    • 1 tsp pure peppermint extract

Cake Tools Needed

  • Mixing bowl(s)
  • Measuring cups
  • Measuring spoons
  • Spatula 
  • Muffin tin (or cake pan of your choice)
  • Cupcake liners

Cupcake Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and place your oven rack in the middle of the oven. Line your muffin tin with cupcake liners or prepare your cake pan(s) by with parchment paper on the bottom and cooking spray. Set the pan aside. 
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the milk of choice with the apple cider vinegar and set aside.
  3. Add the chocolate cake mix into a medium bowl and milk and apple cider vinegar mixture, oil, and peppermint extract.  Stir well making sure everything is well incorporated.  Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl to get all the ingredients mixed.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared muffin tins or cake pan (s). 
  5. Place in the oven and bake.
    1. Cupcakes: 18-21 minutes
    2. Cake: 25-28 minutes
  6. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on wire rack.  
  7. Prepare frosting as per below and frost when completely cooled.

Peppermint Frosting Ingredients Needed:

  • Kate’s Safe & Sweet Vanilla Frosting Mix
  • 3/4 cup of Butter/ Shortening of your choice
  • up to 4 teaspoons of Rice milk (or safe milk of your choice)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of pure peppermint extract (more if you like it stronger in peppermint flavor)
  • Red food coloring (if you’d like to dye half of it)
  • Crushed candy canes for garnish

Tools Needed:

  • Mixing bowl(s)
  • Spatula
  • Measuring spoon
  • Measuring cup
  • Hand mixer or stand mixer


  1. Combine butter/ shortening in a large bowl and beat until well combined.
  2. Add about half of the frosting mix and mix until well combined.
  3. Add 2 teaspoons of the rice milk and continue to mix.
  4. Add peppermint extract and the remaining frosting mix and mix until well combined and smooth.
  5. Add more peppermint extract if you’d like it to have a stronger peppermint flavor.
  6. Divide frosting into two bowls and color one bowl red with the food coloring. Start slow and add a little at a time.
  7. To make the frosting two colored add half of the uncolored and half of the colored frosting into one piping bag – one part on each side.
  8. To frost alike the photos you will hold your piping bag straight up and down and press from the top of the piping bag down allowing the frosting to fan out and pull up the bag when you have what you’d like on the cupcake.  Work your way up until you get to the height you’d like.
  9. Top with crushed candy canes and an optional candy cane!

This frosting is so dreamy and creamy and delicious eaten right off of the spoon too!

Kate's Safe and Sweet - Peppermint Cupcake Close Up

Optional to add a peppermint candy cane of course – but looks so pretty and festive!

Kate's Safe and Sweet - Peppermint Cupcakes

This dessert is absolute perfection for Christmas or any other winter holiday and great among a tray of other cupcakes!

Kate's Safe and Sweet - All Cupcakes

This fun frosting effect can be added to any cupcake for a more impressive buttercream.

Kate's Safe and Sweet - Peppermint Cupcake with Candy Cane

Enjoy and Happy Holidays!

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