You don’t need to be a master baker to expertly decorate cupcakes. Not with this easy-to-follow recipe, that is! Even beginners can create these whimsical succulent cupcakes with matcha vegan frosting—no advanced culinary degree required. The frosting recipe is simple, and the step-by-step decorating technique does not require special equipment or extensive skill. Give it a try!
For this recipe, you’ll need a dozen pre-baked and cooled cupcakes. Vanilla pairs well with the matcha frosting, but for a fun twist, try these Vanilla-Coconut Cupcakes as a base–modify them as the recipe suggests to fit your dietary needs.
1 cup Spectrum Organics Vegetable Shortening
2 cup Vitacost Organic Powdered Sugar
1/2 Tbsp. Vitacost Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder
1 small sandwich bag or piping bag (without a piping tip inserted)
- In small bowl, sift powdered sugar to remove lumps. Set aside.
- In separate bowl, combine matcha with a small amount of water. Stir to form a thick paste. Set aside.
- In mixing bowl or bowl of stand mixer, add shortening. With hand or stand mixer or with whisk, cream shortening. Little by little, mix in 1-1/3 cup of sifted powdered sugar. Frosting should be soft and creamy, with consistency of gel toothpaste. Add up to 2/3 cup additional powdered sugar if you need to stiffen up frosting or a bit of water to loosen.
- Once perfect texture is reached, add matcha paste and stir until fully incorporated.
- With a spoon or spatula, fill plastic bag with frosting and squeeze so it’s in a corner. Remove any air pockets as best as possible to prevent splats while piping. Use scissors to snip a pinky-sized hole in corner.
- Hold bag vertically above cupcake and squeeze a 3/4-inch mound of frosting in center. This will be core of your succulent and you’ll build the petals around it.
- Hold bag at a slight angle, with the tip nearly touching the base of the mound. Squeeze gently until frosting makes contact with the mound. Pull away, to the side, releasing pressure on the bag as you pull.
- Rotate cupcake and continue piping your bottom row of petals by holding the tip of the bag nearly touching the mound, squeezing until frosting touches mount, then releasing pressure as you pull away.
- Once first row is completed, move to second row. Stagger second row petals between bottom petals. Remember to squeeze until frosting makes contact with center mound, then release pressure as you pull away.
- Continue this technique to complete final few petals on top.
- If your petals are not sticking to the mound, your frosting may be too dry. Whisk in a little water and try again.
- If your petals won’t hold their shape, frosting may be too wet. Whisk in a little extra sugar or chill frosting for a few minutes before trying again.