These cute Thanksgiving Turkey Cupcakes are so easy to make with a box of chocolate cake mix and tub of chocolate frosting. The kids will love helping to decorate them and serve them for an easy dessert recipe for any Thanksgiving celebration.
Gobble, gobble, gobble…it’s turkey time! Nope, not roast turkey time, though that is one of my favorite things to prepare. Instead, I’ve got a recipe for you to make the cutest reese’s pieces turkey cupcakes ever! This simple recipe transforms box cake mix into Thanksgiving treat that is just delightful.
If you’re needing a way to give your Thanksgiving dessert table a little facelift, these adorable Thanksgiving turkeys are my favorite recipe to make. I mean, you may not want to eat them because they’re so stinkin’ adorable, but I bet the chocolate will be too enticing to say no to.
This kid-friendly dessert is perfect for parties, bake sales, potlucks and such a fun idea! No one will ever turn down adorable candy corn turkey cupcakes. Plus, it makes a great family activity for the fall season.
Why You’ll Love Turkey Thanksgiving Cupcakes
- Not only is the finished cupcake kid-friendly, but so is the recipe! Bake the cupcakes and then let kids decorate each cupcake on their own. Perfect for a craft time that ends with an edible result!
- This easy cupcake recipe makes 24 cupcakes, so you’ll have more than enough to serve at a party and maybe even still have leftovers.
- Easy Turkey cupcakes are made from box mix. No need to grab a million ingredients and make things from scratch. Just a box of chocolate mix and a jar of chocolate frosting.
Ingredients for Turkey Cupcake Recipe
- Chocolate cake mix – The secret ingredient to the cutest Thanksgiving cupcakes — boxed cake mix! It’s so easy to transform a simple cake mix to a fun creation. You can also make your favorite chocolate cupcakes from scratch if you’d like.
- Water – A little water will help bring the ingredients together for cupcake batter.
- Eggs – Allow eggs to come to room temperature so that they more easily mix in with the other cupcake batter ingredients.
- Vegetable oil – Don’t have vegetable oil? Another neutral oil will work, and melted butter will too!
- Chocolate frosting – Grab a can of your favorite chocolate frosting from the grocery store to frost the cupcakes. Go all out and make your own homemade Chocolate Buttercream frosting if you’d rather do that.
- Brown M&Ms – Brown M&Ms are an easy decoration to use on the top of the cupcake to make the turkey.
- Candy corn – Candy corn will mimic tail feathers on top of each cupcake!
- Candy eyeballs – Grab some candy eyeballs from the baking aisle of your local hobby store, or order them online.
- Pretzels – Thin pretzel sticks will act as more decoration on the tops of each cupcake.
How to Make Turkey Cupcakes
- According to the instructions on the back of your box of cake mix, preheat the oven and mix the cake batter together. Place cupcake liners in the muffin pan and bake 24 cupcakes and then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Once cool, scoop frosting into a piping bag with a ½ inch round tip.
- Then frost the cupcakes with chocolate frosting, keeping the center of the frosting higher than the edges.
- Place two pretzels into the backside of the cupcakes, with the centers of them slightly overlapping, to mimic the look of a tail.
- Then arrange four candy corns, tips of candy corns pointing down into the frosting to create a look of feathers. Place another piece of candy corn flat on the top of the cup cake with the tip down for a beak.
- Press three brown M&Ms into the side as wings and then finish the decorations for these adorable turkey cupcakes by placing two candy eyeballs above the beak.
- Serve and enjoy!
How to Store Turkey Cupcakes
Cover a iced and decorated cupcakes with a tall airtight lid, or with aluminum foil tightly sealed on the sides. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days. The decorations will soften over time, so try to make these cupcakes the day you plan to serve them.
FREEZER: Undecorates and unfrosted cupcakes can actually be stored in the freezer. Wrap each cupcake tightly in plastic wrap and place into a freezer bag. Store in the freezer for up to 2 months. Allow to thaw completely then wrap, frost cupcakes and decorate.
Can I use different candy if I don’t like candy corn?
If you are not a fan of candy corn, you can use yellow and orange M&Ms, stood up on their ends, to mimic feathers! Do an alternating pattern of yellow and orange, or do a few rows with one orange and one yellow.
What other substitutions can I make on turkey thanksgiving cupcakes?
Don’t have pretzel sticks on hand? Can’t find candy eyeballs? Missing M&Ms? Not to worry, there are a lot of different things you can use in their place. Pretzel twists are great to use as a tail! You may even like their look better, so you choose.
If you are unable to locate candy eyeballs, use white M&Ms with a dot of edible food ink, or make them out of icing. Chocolate chips with their points facing down are a great replacement for brown M&Ms.
- Don’t over-mix the cake batter or you’ll end up with dense cupcakes instead of ones that are light and fluffy.
- If you do not have a piping bag, scoop the icing into a ziplock bag and cut the corner off to pipe icing onto the cupcakes.
- Feel free to make each turkey a little bit different! Add different decorations, make them look unique, have so much fun with it!
Your guests are sure to gobble up these turkey cupcakes perfect for the Thanksgiving season! They are such fun treats for your Thanksgiving table your entire family will love!
More Turkey Day Dessert Recipes
- Pumpkin Pie is a classic Thanksgiving dessert that everyone need a good recipe for. Try out my recipe, you won’t be disappointed!
- Pumpkin Cake has all the quintessential fall coziness in the form of a moist and flavorful cake.
- Pecan Pie may seem difficult to make, but with my recipe you’ll have it together in no time.
- There is always room for more pie, right? Make this incredible Apple Pie alongside you’re other favorite treats.
- 15.25 ounces box chocolate cake mix plus ingredients called for on box
- 16 ounces tub chocolate frosting
- Pretzel Rods for decorating
- Candy corn for decorating
- Brown M&Ms for decorating
- Candy eyes for decorating
- Make, bake and cool cake mix as directed on the box for 24 cupcakes. Cool cupcakes completely.
- Fill pastry bag fitted with a ½‘’ round tip with chocolate frosting. Then frost the cupcakes with chocolate frosting so the center is higher than the outside.
- Place 2 pretzels on the backside of the cupcake for the tail with the center of them slightly overlapping.
- Then arrange 4 candy pieces in front of the pretzels with the tips pointing down into the frosting for the tail.
- Place another candy corn on the front of the cupcake for the beak with the tip facing forward.
- Then place three brown M&M’s on each side for the wings.
- Finish the turkey cupcake by placing 2 candy eyes above the beak.