I found this cute recipe in the 2007 edition of Land O' Lakes Harvest Baking. I used a chocolate cake mix, but you can bake the cupcakes in any flavor, and from scratch, if desired. I added 1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate morsels to the cake mix to add a little more chocolate flavor. I am not a fan of canned frosting, so I made homemade butter cream using a recipe from one of my old Betty Crocker cookbooks. It is a simple, wonderful frosting recipe, and I am including it in this post.
I was so engrossed in making these that I did not do many step-by-step photos, but you should be able to figure out the assembly from the above photo. I used Ghirardelli Milk Chocolate morsels for the eyes because they are a little larger than the semi-sweet, but you can use either one. I experimented with how to attach the morsels to the life savers and decided that Betty Crocker Cookie Icing works the best. I used it on the owls in the bottom of the above photo, so you can see the difference. It takes a few minutes to set, so don't get in a hurry.
1 pkg cake mix (I used Duncan Heinz Moist Deluxe Dark Chocolate Fudge)
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate morsels
oil, water, and eggs, according to package directions
24 cupcake liners
Butter Rum Life Savers
Betty Crocker White Cookie Icing
Ghirardelli Milk Chocolate morsels (if desired, for eyes)
Bake cupcakes according to package directions. Add chocolate morsels if desired. Cool.
Prepare frosting and frost the cupcakes. Place 2 butter rum life savers just above halfway on each cupcake for the eyes. Place a dot of cookie icing on each life saver. Place a chocolate morsel on top of the icing. Arrange sliced almonds around the eyes for feathers. Add a cashew for the beak.
Frosting:1/3 cup softened butter
3 cups confectioners sugar
3 tbsp milk
1-1/2 tsp vanilla
Beat ingredients until smooth. Add a little more milk, if necessary to achieve the desired spreading consistency.
Bake cupcakes according to package directions:
Frost and decorate:
These would be great for a kid's party. Or a ladies' spend-the-night party, which is what I took them to. I hope you have fun with these!