Think cream cheese is just for bagels? Think again! Our friends at Arla Cream Cheese have an absolutely delicious recipe for Banana Cupcakes with Caramel Cream Cheese Frosting you've just got to try! This recipe makes 18 regular or 36 mini cupcakes, perfect to share with the family or the office. You can find Arla Cream Cheese in our Frozen Foods/Dairy Department!
8 Tablespoons (1 stick) salted butter
3 ½ ounces (1/2 package) Arla Cream Cheese
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 cup AP flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 very ripe bananas, mashed, about 3/4 cup
Preheat oven to 375°F. Line muffin cups with paper liners (18 regular or 36 mini) and lightly spray with pan spray.
Remove the peel-off lid from the cream cheese and, using a fork, mix the whey into the cream cheese. In a medium bowl using a hand mixer, beat ½ the package of cream cheese with the butter until smooth, about 1 minute. Add vanilla and, using high speed, gradually beat in sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Reduce mixer to medium and add eggs one at a time, just until combined.
Measure flour and stir in baking powder and salt. Using low speed, add the flour mixture to the creamed mixture just until combined. Clean the beaters and, using a large spoon or spatula, fold the mashed bananas into the batter just until combined.
Using an ice cream scoop, fill the lined cups 3/4 full with the batter. Place the cupcakes in the oven and bake until a toothpick comes out clean, about 20 minutes. If making mini cupcakes, bake about 15 minutes, until golden brown.
Let cupcakes cool completely before frosting.
Caramel Cream Cheese Frosting
Ingredients (makes enough to frost 18 cupcakes)
¼ cup granulated sugar
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) salted butter, cubed and divided
3 ½ ounces (1/2 package) Arla Cream Cheese, well stirred
2 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted or whisked to remove lumps
Flaked salt for garnish, optional
Add sugar to a small skillet and heat over high heat, gently swirling, not using a utensil, just until the sugar melts and turns a deep caramel, about 2 ½ minutes. Remove from the heat and drop in 2 tablespoons of the cubed butter and a generous tablespoon of cream cheese. Again, swirling gently to combine, not using a utensil. The butter and cream cheese will melt into the caramel and loosen. As the butter stops melting, use a silicone spatula and stir to combine. Set aside to cool completely.
In a deep, medium bowl, using a hand mixer, combine the remaining cream cheese and butter and beat until smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the caramel sauce using high speed, beating until creamy, another minute. Using low speed, carefully add the sugar and when the last bit is added, increase to high speed and beat an additional minute until smooth, light and fluffy.
Frost cupcakes and top with a pinch of flaked salt.