The perfect homemade chocolate cupcake is decorated with peppermint patties, shredded coconut, and chocolate-covered raisins to look like a polar bear paw!
The recipe for my most-loved and easy-to-make chocolate cupcake is down below. I make this cake for all of my fun decorated cupcakes, including Christmas Tree Cupcakes and Snowman Cupcakes, which are also perfect as wintertime treats.
You can make cupcakes from scratch, or use a box mix. Whichever is easier for you is fine.
Polar Bear Paw Cupcakes are a wonderful option when you want to make cupcakes in the winter but you don’t want them to be specifically holiday-themed. Make these for a kid’s birthday party (particularly if you have a child who loves animals!) or as a snow day treat.
You’ll love this recipe for Polar Bear Cupcakes because it is super simple. There are many polar bear cake recipes out there, but this one is easier because it doesn’t require a piping bag or any special decorating skills. These bear cupcakes are impressive without being complicated.
Complete list of ingredients and amounts can be found in the recipe card below.
- Chocolate Cupcakes: Please see the recipe card for the list of ingredients and instructions for making my famous chocolate cupcakes. You can also use a box cake mix or store-bought undecorated cupcakes to create these polar bar cakes.
- Vanilla Frosting: Pick up a can of frosting at the store, or make a simple buttercream by mixing together 1.5 cups softened butter, 5.5 cups powdered sugar, 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract, and 2 tablespoons of milk. Use a hand held or a standing mixer for this.
- York Peppermint Patties: I love these minty chocolate candy bars! Their round shape creates the pads of the bear paws. If you aren’t a fan, you can use Oreos instead.
- Chocolate Covered Raisins: Dark chocolate raisins will better match the color of the peppermint patties, so look for those when you’re shopping. These will be the toes! If you prefer, you can use dark brown M&Ms instead.
- Coconut: The furry topping for these cupcakes is made from sweetened, shredded coconut. Place it in a small bowl so you can easily dip the frosted cupcakes in it.
How to Decorate Polar Bar Cupcakes
Start by making chocolate cupcakes using the recipe below. The cupcakes are ready when a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake, comes out clean. Let the cupcakes cool completely before decorating.
- Frost: Apply a good layer of vanilla frosting to the top of each cupcake. This is easiest using an offset spatula.
- Make the Paw: Press a peppermint patty into the frosting, off-center, and close to one edge as shown. Then press 4 chocolate-covered raisins (choose ones that are about the same size) above the peppermint patty to create the polar bear toes.
- Dip: Hold the bear paw cupcake in your hand and gently press it into the shredded coconut so that it adheres all over the frosting. You can roll it around a bit so that you get coconut stuck to the edges as well.
Don’t try to decorate cupcakes if they are still warm. Let them cool completely so that the icing doesn’t melt.
If you prefer vanilla, then sure, go ahead! Did you know that polar bears have black skin underneath all of that white fur? Chocolate cupcakes make these authentic polar bear cupcakes!
If you have an allergy or otherwise don’t want to use shredded coconut, you can simply leave it out. The cupcakes will still look like polar bear paws without it. You could also try using white sprinkles.
Yes, they can! Keep them as is, or tint the coconut a tan color if you like. These will be perfect for a teddy bear picnic.
These easy to decorate cupcakes are fun to make. Let the kids help you make them for a fun afternoon activity!
Did you make this? Be sure to leave a review below and tag me on Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest!
Polar Bear Paw Cupcakes
- Cupcake liners
- 12 muffin pan
- Small bowl
- ¾ cup (90g) all-purpose flour
- ⅔ cup (65g) cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs at room temperature
- 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup (78ml) vegetable oil
- ½ cup (120ml) whole milk at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 can vanilla frosting
- 12 York Peppermint Patties
- 48 dark chocolate covered raisins try to find ones that are similar in size
- 2 cups shredded sweetened coconut placed in a small bowl
- In a bowl, combine the dry ingredients (flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt).
- In a separate bowl, combine the eggs with sugar, oil, milk, and vanilla.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mix until they’re incorporated but do not over mix.
- Fill the cupcake liners ¾ through. Bake in a preheated oven at 350°F/180°C for 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center. Allow to cool down in the pan – to cool down completely before frosting.
- Apply a good layer of vanilla frosting on top of each cupcake, then press a peppermint patty into the frosting (it shouldn’t be centered, a little closed to the edge). Then press 4 chocolate-covered raisins (or brown M&Ms) above the peppermint patty.
- Hold the cupcake with your hand, and gently press it in the shredded coconut so it adheres all over the frosting. You can roll it around a little to make sure you get the edges. If the frosting isn’t all covered, use a spoon and add more shredded coconut to cover those spots.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.
© Little Sunny Kitchen
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