This St. Patrick's Day decorate Oreo Cookies and use them to create adorably cute Leprechaun Cupcakes. Each little leprechaun sits atop a big swirl of green frosting and happily holds a pot of gold.
Over the past year, I've been making cupcakes topped with bears, puppies, monkeys, and even lions made using Reese's Cups. Each of those animals sits atop a big swirl of frosting and has its arms wrapped around a piece of candy.
I love this design concept and wanted to use it to make St. Patrick's Day cupcakes but didn't want to use a chocolate peanut butter cup.
Instead, I chose to dip Oreo Cookies into peach-colored candy melts and turn them into Leprechauns.
Admittedly, these Leprechauns do require a bit more work than the Reese's Cup animals did.
First, you need to dip the Oreo, then add a beard and face. The leprechauns also need hats and hands which are also handmade.
I decided each leprechaun would hold a pot of gold and I took the easy route and used the paper cupcake sticks that came in a package of Wilton St. Patrick's Day cupcake liners. Your leprechauns could also hold a chocolate gold coin. Or you can make chocolate pots filled with gold candy pearls.
To make these Leprechaun cupcakes a little more fun, I baked white cupcakes with a green center.
You can skip this step but it does make the cupcakes a bit more magical.
Let's get baking!
- white cake mix - Plus the ingredients to make the cake or use store-bought cupcakes.
- green food coloring - This is optional if you want to the insides of your white cupcakes green.
- white frosting - Make homemade buttercream or use a thick store-bought frosting like Wilton's Decorator Icing.
- white and orange candy melts - Blend white and orange candy melts together to achieve skin tone for the Leprechauns' faces or mix a little orange candy coloring into white candy melts.
- OREO Cookies - Dip the cookies in the skin-tone candy melts to make the Leprechauns' faces.
- green candy melts - You'll use this to make the Leprechaun hats.
- black food coloring marker - Use this to create a hat band on each candy hat.
- edible gold luster dust - Mix this with some lemon extract and brush it onto the hats to make a buckle.
- lemon extract
Start by making (or buying) cupcakes.
If you want to add a surprise green patch inside each cupcake, use a Wilton Two-Tone Cupcake Pan and Insert.
You make your cupcake batter, then color ⅓rd of it (in this case, green) and pipe that into the center of the insert and pipe another color (in this case, white) around the outside.
When you've filled 3 cupcakes, you simply lift up the insert, place it into the next set of cupcake liners, and pipe in more batter. You don't have to clean the insert unless you change colors.
I tested out Wilton's Perfect Fill tip to pipe in the green coloring. You put it into a disposable pastry bag just like a coupler, then pipe the batter into the pan. It fits perfectly into the two-tone insert and when lifted up doesn't allow the excess batter to spill out.
OREO Leprechaun Faces
Once you have a batch of cupcakes made, you need to make some leprechauns.
Start by melting one 12-ounce bag of white candy melts with 10 orange candy melt wafers. Once blended together, they create a nice peach color.
Dip any type of Oreo Cookie you like into the peach-colored candy coating. I had some Pumpkin Spice Oreos, so I used those. Vanilla Oreo Cookies will work great too.
Use a dipping fork or kitchen fork to lift the cookie out of the candy melts and allow the excess to drip off before placing it on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Freeze for 5-8 minutes until the candy coating hardens.
You'll also need two small peach-colored hands for each leprechaun cupcake. Pipe teardrop shapes onto a parchment paper-lined baking sheet then pop them in the freezer for a few minutes.
You'll also need to melt some green candy melts to use to make the leprechauns' hats.
I used the leprechaun picks that came with the St. Patrick's Day cupcake kit as a guide. I pulled the sticks out of the paper hats and set them under a piece of parchment paper. I then piped around the outside of the hat, making my hats a wee bit bigger than the paper picks.
If you don't have the picks, draw out a simple hat shape and set it under your parchment paper, then pipe the green candy melts over top. Pop them in the freezer for about 3 minutes until the candy hardens. Then remove them and allow them to warm up to room temperature.
Use a Wilton Green Candy Decorating Pen to draw a band on each hat. Then mix a bit of edible Wilton Gold Pearl Dust with some lemon extract or vodka. I used Wilton's Sweet Meyer Lemon flavoring from their Treatology System.
Use a food-use-only paint brush to paint a gold buckle onto each hat.
To decorate the leprechaun Oreos you'll need red or orange candy melts or a combo of both, which is what I used. You'll also need a food-use-only paint brush with wide bristles.
Dab the melted candy melts around the edge of the Oreo cookie. Once the candy starts to thicken, push your brush up against the edge and quickly pull away creating small little spikes. This will give your leprechaun's beard and hair some texture.
Then use a black candy marker to draw two eyes and a smile on each face. Add a dab of peach candy coating at each end of the smile if you'd like them to have cheeks.
One of my readers commented that she had a hard time getting her Reese's Cups Teddy Bears to stand up straight on her cupcakes, so I thought it might be helpful to add a candy pick to each Leprechaun Cookie.
To create a candy pick, simply pipe some candy melts onto parchment paper and set the Oreo Leprechaun over top. Allow the candy to harden before peeling it off the parchment.
Attach one candy hat to each Leprechaun cookie using either peach or green candy melts.
Frost the cupcakes.
Now you need to add a big swirl of sturdy green frosting on top of each cupcake.
I used Wilton's Decorator Icing and colored it using their Kelly green icing coloring. I absolutely love this frosting. It's the perfect consistency for piping big swirls of frosting onto cupcakes and it tastes great.
To make the swirls, spoon some of the green frosting into a pastry bag fitted with a big star (1M) tip, then pipe a big swirl in the center of each cupcake.
Assemble the cupcakes.
Now all you have to do is decorate the cupcakes.
Attach one Leprechaun cookie to the top of each swirl of frosting.
Insert a pot of gold pick into the front of each cupcake or attach a gold chocolate coin. Then press a candy hand on either side.
Your Leprechaun Cupcakes are ready to serve.
- 12 ounces Wilton White Candy Melts plus 10 orange Candy Melt wafers
- 16 Oreo Cookies use any flavor you like
- 4 ounces Wilton Green Candy Melts
- 1 pinch edible gold petal or luster dust
- lemon extract
- 4 ounces Wilton Orange or Red Candy Melts or mix both
- black and green candy decorating markers
- 16 baked cupcakes
- green colored frosting about ⅓ cup per cupcake
Pour white and orange candy melts in a microwave safe bowl.
Heat on high power for 15-30 second increments, stirring after each until melted creating a peach color.
Dip Oreo in peach colored candy melts.
Remove using a dipping fork and allow excess candy coating to drip off.
Set on parchment paper lined baking sheet.
Freeze for 5-8 minutes until candy coating hardens.
Pipe 32 small tear drops onto parchment paper for the hands.
Melt green candy melts.
Pipe or paint the candy melts onto parchment in the shape of a leprechaun hat.
Make 16 hats.
Freeze for 3-5 minutes until hardened.
Use the green candy decorating marker to draw a band onto each hat.
Mix gold petal dust with just enough lemon extract to make a thin paste (a few drops.)
Brush it onto each hat creating a buckle.
Melt orange candy melts.
Paint a ¼ inch wide border all around each cookie creating the hair and beard.
Draw eyes and a smile onto each cookie.
Add dots of peach candy coating at each end of the smile.
Attach one hat to each cookie using candy melts.
Attach one Leprechaun cookies to the top of the swirl on each cupcake.
Insert a pot of gold pick or attach a gold coin or shamrock candy to the front of each cupcake.
Insert two hands into the frosting so they look like they are holding the pot of gold.