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St. Patricks Day Cupcakes

Servings: Makes 18 cupcakes
Celebrate the luck o' the Irish by serving these festive cupcakes for dessert. Kids and leprechauns alike will love the color and the loads of chocolate chips inside! Be sure to have adult help with the baking.

1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 4-serving-size package instant pistachio pudding mix
3/4 cup miniature semisweet chocolate pieces
2/3 cup sugar
2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 beaten eggs
1-1/4 cups milk
1/2 cup cooking oil
1 teaspoon vanilla or 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 of a can (store bought) cream cheese frosting (1 cup)
Green colored sugar
1/2 cup candy-coated milk chocolate pieces

1. Grease muffin cups or line with paper bake cups. In a large mixing bowl stir together flour, pudding mix, chocolate pieces, sugar, baking powder, and salt. In a small bowl combine beaten eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla or almond extract. Stir into flour mixture just until combined. Fill muffin cups 2/3 full.

2. Bake in a 375 (190 C) degree F. oven for 18 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack. Frost with cream cheese frosting; sprinkle with green sugar, then milk chocolate pieces.

Makes 18 cupcakes.

Make-Ahead Tip: Up to 2 weeks ahead, prepare and bake the cupcakes but do not frost them. Wrap and freeze the cupcakes. Thaw and frost before serving.

Source: Better Homes & Gardens
Date: February 20, 2003