Christmas Cupcakes – Mulled Wine Cupcakes with Chestnut Butter Frosting | Cupcake Project

Christmas Cupcakes – Mulled Wine Cupcakes with Chestnut Butter Frosting

Other Christmas Cupcakes and Chanukah Cupcakes:

Christmas cupcakes made with mulled wine will have Santa begging for more (he likes his wine, you know – why do you think he has such a ruddy complexion?). These Christmas cupcakes have a complex adult taste, but they are sweet, moist, and festive enough to serve to the entire family.

The only problem I had with my Christmas cupcakes was that the recipe only made twelve. I would highly recommend doubling it – they are that good! One warning though, the wine flavor is not overpowering. Don’t go in expecting a heavy hit of wine flavor.

A Note About Christmas Cupcakes and Me

Photo credit:

I don’t celebrate Christmas. As a child, I did not ever put out cupcakes for Santa (or cookies for that matter). The staging of this photo was the first time I ever wrote a “For Santa” sign. However, as a Jewish child, I did believe in Santa.

For some reason, I had a stuffed Rudolph doll. I lived in New York, but we always went to Florida to stay with my grandparents over Christmas (I know – how stereotypically Jewish can you get!). On Christmas Eve, I would always take my reindeer doll and set it by the door to the condo to make sure that Rudolph could go out and help Santa deliver toys to the Christian kids.

Before Making Mulled Wine Cupcakes

Before making mulled wine cupcakes, make sure you’ve made some mulled wine. Duh! Check out my post on mulled wine for instructions.

Mulled Wine Cupcake Recipe

I based the cupcake recipe on the recipe for Minko’s Do the Hokey Pokey cupcakes. They were so yummy that I thought they would be a good starting point. Here is the adapted recipe:

Christmas Cupcakes – Mulled Wine Cupcakes with Chestnut Butter Frosting

Yield: 12 cupcakes

Christmas Cupcakes – Mulled Wine Cupcakes with Chestnut Butter Frosting


  • 2 C flour
  • 1 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1/2 t cinnamon
  • 1/4 t allspice
  • 1/4 clove
  • 3/4 C unsalted butter, softened
  • 2/3 C sugar
  • finely grated zest of 1 orange
  • 2 eggs
  • 2/3 C sour cream
  • 2/3 C mulled wine, room temperature


  1. A few hours before you are ready to bake, combine the orange zest and the sugar in a bowl. This will let the orange flavor infuse into the sugar.
  2. With a fork, whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, and spices in a bowl.
  3. Beat butter, grated orange zest and sugar in a large bowl for 1 minute, until light and fluffy.
  4. Beat in eggs and sour cream until blended.
  5. Alternately fold in flour mixture and mulled wine in three additions, beginning and ending with flour.
  6. Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full.
  7. Bake at 350 F for about 25 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
  8. Chestnut Butter Frosting
  9. Check out my chestnut butter frosting recipe post for the details on how to make the frosting for this cupcake.


Mulled Wine Syrup

I drizzled some mulled wine syrup over each frosted cupcake. This is by no means necessary, but it's a nice splash of red and it tasted quite good. To make the syrup, combine 1 cup of mulled wine and 1 cup of sugar and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and let the mixture simmer for about 10 minutes.
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23 Responses to Christmas Cupcakes – Mulled Wine Cupcakes with Chestnut Butter Frosting

  1. Happy cook December 4, 2008 at 8:58 am #

    They look so cute. I am sure i will also love them as much as santa does :-)

  2. Elle December 4, 2008 at 9:44 am #

    Oh my gosh, what a sweet story! The cupcakes look beautiful, too! I’ve never had mulled wine, but I’m sure it would be wonderful in cupcakes.

  3. allison strine December 4, 2008 at 10:34 am #

    oh I totally connect with your Rudolph story! As a Jewish kid, Santa was so darn mystifying. Yummy looking cupcakes too!

  4. Jennywenny December 4, 2008 at 10:36 am #

    Wow these look amazing, now I need to find an exuse to make them!

  5. Spogden December 4, 2008 at 10:55 am #

    I happen to have some Mulled wine because of your Mulled wine post a couple of days ago that I just might have to whip into cupcakes. :) YUmmy!!!

  6. Ivy December 4, 2008 at 11:38 am #

    I love all your Christmas cupcakes! I may be making some myself for a Christmas party. I haven’t made cupcakes in so very long. I miss them. :(

  7. Ms Ashley December 4, 2008 at 2:38 pm #

    Santa is going to LOVE THESE!!

  8. Katie Barlow December 4, 2008 at 4:53 pm #

    wow…how do you come up with all your creative cupcake ideas?

  9. ~~louise~~ December 5, 2008 at 7:38 am #

    What an intriguing recipe, Stef, The warmth of the wine and the sweetness of the cupcake is sure to melt anyone’s senses. Thanks for sharing…

  10. Stef December 7, 2008 at 7:23 pm #

    Happy – Aww. Thanks!

    Elle – Mulled wine is definitely worth trying – if you like wine. It’s a bit like sangria but hot.

    Allison – Hah! Thanks!

    Jenny – Why wait for an excuse?

    Spogden – I’m impressed that you didn’t drink all the mulled wine. Let me know what you think of the cupcakes!

    Ivy – Why have you strayed from cupcakes for so long? Return to the fold!

    Ashley – Hope so!

    Katie – I think about cupcakes way too much!

    Louise – How eloquently put. That’s so much.

  11. Groom 2.5 December 7, 2008 at 10:27 pm #

    You say, “the wine flavor is not overpowering.” I say it wasn’t really present at all, but that didn’t prevent me from enjoying the lovely cupcake. Good cupcake, but outside of the drizzle on top, not very wine flavored.

  12. ley December 8, 2008 at 11:51 am #

    Aww, that’s cute about your reindeer doll! And I love the flavour combination you have in these! It’s so very winter.

  13. Rico December 19, 2008 at 1:13 pm #

    I am Santa I am Santa…send me some of those cakes for santa….I just love your creativity and photos too.thx for sharing merry xmas

  14. Becky December 10, 2010 at 3:38 am #

    Your reindeer story is so cute! the mulled wine cupcakes look soo good. I’ve been looking for more Christmas cupcake ideas, and I knew just where to go for ideas:)

    Happy Chanukah to you and your family!

  15. taylor November 18, 2013 at 9:15 am #

    I love this sweeties desserts

  16. taylor November 18, 2013 at 9:17 am #

    The best desserts for the holiday


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