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Shoofly Cupcakes

by on April 7, 2010 · 8 comments

 Life is getting back to normal, but I feel a little edgy and am having a hard time making decisions — especially baking decisions. Everything sounds tasty, but too complicated, too expensive, too rich or too much. I almost took the day off, when what should appear in my email but a note from Louise saying she was typing up a special recipe.

Straight from Pennsylvania, home of coconut eggs, Whoopie Pies, Hershey Bars and The Office, it’s Shoofly Cupcakes!

Have I ever mentioned that I don’t like Shoofly Pie? Yes, multiple times. But these cupcakes were very tasty and made with ingredients I had on hand here in temporary housing.

And they were simple. You make a quick molasses batter (it’s odd looking, until you add the flour)….

Divvy it up between muffin tins, top it with a crumb made of butter, sugar and flour, then bake.

The result is an interesting looking cupcake with an old fashioned molasses flavor and wonderfully soft crumb. Thanks, shortening! I know lots of people shy away from it, but it’s what the recipe called for and I must say it worked beautifully. The molasses gave it the cake plenty of flavor and I didn’t miss the salt. Most versions of this recipe don’t have salt, and Louise’s didn’t either.

For the butter in the crumb topping, I used unsalted. Louise doesn’t keep salted butter in the house so she uses unsalted too. For my tastes, I think I’d prefer a salted butter in the topping, but I’m not complaining. Thanks to Louise for sending me the perfect recipe for a day like today.

Shoofly Cupcakes (aka Molasses Crumb)

1 cup soft shortening
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs, well beaten
1 cup molasses (dark or light)
1 teaspoon baking soda, dissolved in 1 cup lukewarm water
3 cups all purpose flour

Cream shortening and sugar in a bowl; add eggs, blending well.

In a small bowl, combine molasses and dissolved baking soda and water. Slowly add to the creamed mixture. Gradually beat in the flour. Pour batter into paper cupcake liners 2/3 full.

Crumb Topping:
1 cup flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter

Combine all ingredients and make into fine crumbs.

Sprinkle crumb topping over each cupcake. Bake at 375 for 25 minutes. Makes 18 cupcakes.

UPDATED: These were good, but this morning I found one that might be better. Taste of Home has a Shoofly Cupcake which uses all butter and has just enough salt to ramp up the flavor a bit.

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Published on April 7, 2010

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Jennie April 7, 2010 at 6:08 pm

Ha Ha! Anna, this message straight from PA… I am the only member of my family, both immediate and extended that doesn’t like shoo fly pie. I feel like the black sheep of the family! My grandfather loves to bake them, I feel like I break his heart every time I turn down a slice.
Maybe I need to try the cupcakes…

Puppydogs April 7, 2010 at 9:13 pm

Oh those do look delish! I am sorry, I can not find the recipe…..can you tell me where it is?


Anna April 7, 2010 at 9:19 pm

Doh! I wrote about it and didn’t paste the recipe. Thanks for catching that. Here it is.

Anna April 7, 2010 at 9:21 pm

Jennie, I think your grandfather would understand if you baked him some cupcakes. It would make up for everything.

Katrina April 7, 2010 at 10:32 pm

I’m pretty sure I’ve never tried shoofly pie, let alone cupcakes, but I do like molasses-y things. Wondering about with no spices though.

Louise April 8, 2010 at 5:19 am

Katrina — shoo-fly pie doesn’t need spices. Look at Pecan Pie and you’ll see most recipes don’t have spices either but rely on the nuts/sugar for taste. Here it’s molasses. Some use a combination of brown and white sugars. My personal preference is wet-bottom shoo-fly, and a single slice, not a whole pie, does me just fine. And like anything else, there are good and bad ones with some just not worth the calories. And the crust has to be a very good one too.

Krystle April 8, 2010 at 9:14 am

I have never heard of or tried these but they look pretty interesting!

Anna April 8, 2010 at 10:07 am

Taste of Home has another recipe for Shoofly Cupcakes.

Theirs uses butter and salt. I think I’ll try that one.

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