Mar 25, 2012

Skinny Coconut Cupcakes



A quick and easy coconut cupcake made with a box white cake mix as a base. No butter or oil was used in this recipe, I simply swapped out the oil for light coconut milk and apple sauce. Sweetened coconut flakes are combined with a light cream cheese frosting for a divine finish!

And to give it an Easter vibe, don't you just love these adorable Cadbury mini-eggs! Completely optional, but fitting for the Easter Holiday. If you're a coco-NUT like me, you'll just love these!


If you prefer baking from scratch, try these Pineapple Zucchini Cupcakes made with coconut flakes... amazing! And if coconut isn't your thing, these Pineapple Bliss Cupcakes are one of my most popular desserts and are so simple to make. Enjoy!


Skinny Coconut Cupcakes with Chocolate Eggs
Skinnytaste.com
Servings:
24 • Serving Size: 1 cupcake • Old Points: 4 pt • Points+: 5 pt
Calories:
196.1 • Fat: 6.4 g • Protein: 2.5 g • Carb: 31.2 g • Fiber: 0.8 g • Sugar: 11.5 g
Sodium:
150 mg

Skinny Coconut Cupcakes (without Chocolate Eggs)
Servings: 24 • Serving Size: 1 cupcake • Old Points: 3 pt • Points+: 4 pt
Calories:
148.6 • Fat: 4.4 g • Protein: 2 g • Carb: 24.2 g • Fiber: 0.8 g • Sugar: 4.7 g
Sodium:
142.6 mg


Ingredients:

For the Frosting:
  • 8 oz 1/3 less fat Philadelphia Cream Cheese (not fat free)
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp natural coconut extract

For the Cupcakes:
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 cup canned light coconut milk (Thai Kitchen)
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened apple sauce
  • 2 tsp natural coconut extract
  • 18.25 oz white box cake mix (Duncan Hines)
  • 1/2 cup sweetened coconut flakes
  • 72 Cadbury mini chocolate eggs (optional)


Directions:

In a medium bowl combine the cream cheese with the powdered sugar and coconut extract with a mixer. Keep refrigerated until ready to use.

Preheat oven to 350°. Line 24 cupcake tins with liners.

In a large bowl combine egg whites, coconut milk, apple sauce and remaining coconut extract. Mix well, then add cake mix and mix until combined.


Pour batter into lined cupcake tins about halfway and bake 22-24 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cupcakes cool to room temperature.

Top each cupcake with 1/2 tablespoon of cream cheese, then top each with 1 tsp coconut flakes. For an Easter theme top each cupcake with 3 mini chocolate eggs.


Note: If you make these a day ahead, don't frost them. Keep the frosting refrigerated and frost them the day you plan to eat them.



If you like these Coconut Lime Cupcakes, you might also like:

104 comments :

  1. Replies
    1. They are delicious even without the frosting. My 18 month old could not eat one of these fast enough. Going to make another batch for the kids at daycare for Easter.

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  2. These are so pretty! Love the little egg nests on top!

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  3. Why is it best to wait to frost them? I'd really like to make them for an Easter bake sale because I think they'd be a big hit!

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    1. Because it's cream cheese, it should be refrigerated.

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    2. For a bakesale use premade cream cheese frosting. Wouldn't need refridgeration.

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  4. Gina, these look so lovely. I'm not in the US though, and so I don't know what you mean by a 'white box cake mix'?

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    1. it's just White Cake mix..that comes from a box like betty crocker

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    2. Yes, I used Duncan Hines, Betty Crocker's mix is smaller now so I don't use it, the measurements would change.

      No box cake mix out of the states? Who knew!! I'll play around with a recipe from scratch.

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    3. I bought Duncan Hines for this recipe and it's actually only 16.5. Betty Crocker is 18.25. Does the ounces matter much?!

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    4. Box cake mix is pretty rare in Ireland also. So far I have only found Betty Crocker Devil's Food Cake and Milk Chocolate Layer Cake Mix. Recipes that are pointed to use these would be amazing!
      We also don't have cool whip and low fat soured cream is as scare as hen's teeth!
      Baking WW friendly treats is such a challenge. I am delighted that I can make your Macaroon recipe and have an Easter treat that is low in points.
      Got to goal last week and wouldn't have done it without your recipes. Thanks!!

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    5. Now wonder so many other people are healthier than us Americans;) They make more scratch food lol. Less preservatives and fats more real food ingredients.

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  5. Did you use a regular size muffin tin or a mini-size tin?

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  6. YUM...and SO cute! Sweetened or unsweetened applesauce?

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    Replies
    1. I had the same question

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  7. Do you think this would work with Angel Food Cake cupcakes? Always enjoy your recipes Gina, thank you!

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  8. These look delicious!! Do you know how many WW points they are?

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    Replies
    1. The points are at the top when your reading the nutritional content

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  9. Yum! So easy and yet sounds like it is full of coconut flavor, which I love!

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  10. Is the light coconut milk from a can or the refridgerated kind?

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    Replies
    1. I have the same question! Can't wait to try these. I adore coconut AND cupcakes!

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    2. If I remember right, from when I used to date a guy who was part Thai and cooked with it, it comes in a can :)

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    3. What if I can't find light?? Only a can of coconut milk...

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    4. I guess I'll see what happens.....now that I am looking at it again, the can I bought is NOT light! I hope they will be ok....I have been looking forward to these for a while now! Happy Easter! :)

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  11. These look fabulous...and I love how the coconut mimicks a "nest" idea...and the Cadbury eggs are the perfect size/hue for this lovely Easter creation...Problem...I cannot find sweetened coconut easily here in France (there is an American Expat Market that sells it..but the price is truly outrageous!)..could I possibly use the unsweetened variety?..or should I use something else for a "nest-y" effect?...Thank you for your healthier, lower calorie offerings...they save one from the "panick" mode one can veer into planning for holiday meals/celebration dinners such as at Easter time...You eliminate such stress for us, every day, in this way..just thanks for all you do Gina...It is very much appreciated. Happy Spring!

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  12. What brand of light coconut milk are you using?

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  13. curious why we shouldnt use fat-free cream cheese? is it a textural thing or for flavor?

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  14. The frosting will be runny if you use it.

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  15. I used Thai Kitchen light coconut milk (from a can)

    If you can't find sweetened coconut flakes you could use unsweetened and just add a little more sugar to your frosting.

    I used unsweetened applesauce (I will correct that above)

    These are regular sized cupcakes.

    Hope you all enjoy!

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  16. What a fabulous, skinny take on an Easter favorite! These cupcakes look so delicious and relatively guilt-free. Great job, Gina!

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  17. Victorialeigh33/26/12, 12:26 PM

    I have mini cupcake maker these would be darling in mini size (and easier on my love handles). Lol.

    Gina, what about using powdered Splenda for the frosting (you can make it from granulated)..... That would cut the sugar way down. What do you think?

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  18. I was wondering if I can change the recipe to a cake???

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    Replies
    1. I was wondering that too!

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  19. YUM! I'm loving coconut lately, especially dried :)

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  20. Gina, I don't know how you do it! You have such a gift! Thanks for sharing!!

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  21. Mine are baking in the oven as I type. These aren't for Easter, so I'm going to put three fresh raspberries on top of each cupcake, but I do love the little chocolate egg idea. Very cute, thanks for the recipe.

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  22. Could. You. Use a gluten free cake mix?

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  23. So Cute!!! And really not all that bad for you with the adjustments!! =) RE: Paula s. I'm sure you could!! =)

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  24. If making these for Easter, and if you're not afraid of a little dye... mixing some food coloring in with the cake and/or the coconut topping would be festive! Little green nests for the eggs? Adorable!

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  26. I love coconut cupcakes! These are too cute!

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  27. Can you use refrigerated coconut milk? I don't have any of the canned type...

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    Replies
    1. I think the canned will give it more coconut flavor and moisture.

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  28. These were super easy and really good. They also looked just as cute as yours, which for me is at least half the success of any recipe!

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  29. I made these this afternoon. They are fabulous!!! I used to make a full fat coconut cupcake. Yours is just as good and I feel better eating these.So moist and you can taste the coconut flavor very well! Thank you for all your lowfat baking recipes!

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  30. Made these tonight for a luncheon tomorrow!!! My husband and I taste tested them and they are DELICIOUS and SUPER cute!!! Thank you for making Weight Watchers bearable and so yummy!

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  31. Excellent cupcakes! Moist and yummy. I accidentally made 12 rather than 24 and they are HUGE! (and higher point value, obviously) The smaller version looks cuter so next time I will follow the directions (blush) Used pink foil cupcake papers and the Cadbury eggs are adorable on top. Will be repeating them for our Easter gathering

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  32. these are soo cuuuutee! i must try! thanks for the great idea!

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  33. These would perfect for Easter!! Adorable!

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  34. These look too good. I've got to make something for easter now. Thank you for the inspiration!

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  35. Thanks, I'm so glad you all liked them!

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    Replies
    1. Maybe add green food coloring to the coconut to look like Easter grass?

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  36. I am going to make these for our Easter dessert!In my family, we all enjoy eating healthy, but we DO love dessert! Thank you, Gina, for giving us all something wonderful that we can feel great about eating! (Not just this recipe, but ALL the recipes I have tried from your website so far have been DELICIOUS!!!!!!!)

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  37. these cupcakes are delicious! easy to make and eat. on the first try the cupcakes were easy to replicate as shown in the photos. they baked quickly, not using the full time indicated. and I mean if you like coconut, these little cakes are really delicious.

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  38. These sound so perfect, I can't wait to try!

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  39. i love you Gina!!!!

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  40. Where do you buy the coconut extract? I have been searching everywhere but have only found the artificial extract.

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  41. I made these and they were awesome. I added just a sprinkle of vanilla bean seeds to the frosting and it was delicious. Everyone at work loved them! Thank you so much!

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  42. Coconut is always been cute to used in decorating cupcakes. This are great idea to make Easter cupcake.

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  43. This sounds a little strange but could I sub vanilla for the coconut extract and use vanilla almond milk instead of the coconut milk? I love coconut but my husband does not so I can get my fill with just the coconut flakes on top...what do you think?

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  44. ughhhh... I just went to 3 different stores and they do not sell coconut extract here in Dubai... I have the sadz :(

    I have to wait until my sister sends a package to me from the US and have her send some. I wanted to make these for tomorrow but I will just have to tuck this recipe away for the future...

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  45. Fun tip - M&M's make mini coconut chocolate egg!!! I found it in my grocery store's easter section today and was just thrilled! Can't wait to top my coconut with those little eggs :) I think they are bigger than the mini Cadbury's, so I will probably only add 1 egg to each, but they are fabulous!

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  46. How much coconut extract do you use in the frosting and how much do you use in the cupcake batter? Also, when/how do you add the shredded coconut into the cupcake batter? SO looking forward to these for my Easter dessert! I'm also making your skinny chocolate chip cookies subbing the chocolate chips for Easter colored M&Ms. I cannot wait to try both! Thanks!!!

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  47. What are the measurements if I'm using Betty Crocker cake mix instead of Duncan Hines?

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  48. They don't sell many kinds of Duncan Hines cake mixes where I live, one I found that came closest to the one in your recipe (I think) was Betty Crocker's Angel Food White Cake Mix, which is 16 ounces. Would this work too? And if so, do you know what the measurements should be in this case?
    Sadly I also wasn't able to find any coconut extract... So bummed about that! Would vanilla be an okay substitute?

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  49. 2 teaspoons of coconut extract each for both the cupcakes and frosting? Just wanted to make sure!

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  50. I plan on making these tomorrow.

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  51. I just made these using a mini muffin pan and little jelly beans, they fit better on the smaller cupcakes - They are so wonderful and look so festive! Love them!!

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  52. They are soooo yummy! The frosting is Indulgent and the cake is moist. I highly recommend them!

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  53. I made this for Easter dinner with the extended family today and everyone seemed to like them. I know did; I ate TWO. oh, well. Its Easter. It could have been worse. Thanks again for a great recipe, Gina. I took photos and tagged you (Skinnytaste) on facebook, Gina. Not nearly as pretty as yours but yummy all the same. :-D

    Happy Easter/ Passover, everyone!

    ~Christine R.

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  54. yum! I added some cocoa powder to the coconut so the tops would look a little more nest-y!

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  55. Just made these and had to substitute pillsbury cake mix and imitation coconut extract - still delicious! Impossible to tell that they're skinny cupcakes!

    They also look cool if you toast the coconut flakes first to make the tops look more like nests. My family thanks you!

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  56. i gina im about to put the cup cakes in the oven cant wait to taste them oh yummy!!! i used coconut rum because i didnt want to spend six dollars on immatation coconut extractand i had the coconut rum on hand hope it works ill let you know!

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  57. hi gina i"ve made lots of your recipes and their all very good im also pretty nwe to the site but love it! im the girl with the coconut rum deal happy easter!!

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  58. I made these today and they were a hit! My family raved about the frosting. I also had to use Pillsbury cake mix and imitation extract, but they were wonderful. I've had three :). Fairly new to the site (made 6-7 recipes) and a huge fan. Thanks Gina!

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  59. I made these for Easter, they were a hit. I could not find light coconut milk, so I used the regular. They turned out fine. I actually like them better without the frosting.

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  60. Thank you for this recipe. They are so good! A big hit at Easter, and one I will make again.

    Mary

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  61. Just wanted to let you know I made these and took them into work for the kids this weekend and they were a definite hit :)

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  62. Thank you Gina! I made 48 of these for Easter dinner and everyone loved them! Nobody could believe they were healthy. The best part is that everyone thought I spent hours and hours making them and they were actually so easy and quick. I truly mean it when I say I do not know what my family ate for dinner before I found your website.
    I love banana bread and was wondering if you have ever tried to make it. I would love your receipe.
    Thanks!
    Francesca

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  63. I made these for Easter and they were just awesome!! I am glad I saved a few for myself to have for this week. Delicious... a nd my favorite candy was included! I made them with Dark Chocolate Cadbury Mini Eggs :)

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  64. Hi Gina,
    I made these, and they were delicious and easy!
    I also couldn't find reasonable coconut extract, but got a tiny
    bottle of coconut oil at my cake supply shop, and added a few drops along with vanilla extract. Usually make a southern chef's coconut cake, and this was delicious, portion controlled and so much easier!
    Thanks,
    Denise

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  65. I made these for Easter, they were great for grandkids and family. I only did the Cadbury eggs on a few. Bummer, those Cadbury eggs are yummy.

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  66. These cupcakes were a huge Easter hit! Thank you for the recipe. I had to visit 6 different store to find the Coconut Extract, which was a bummer. I actually noticed the extract you picture is a Coconut Flavor and not an extract. Don't know if it makes a difference. Thanks again.

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  67. Thanks so much for the fab recipe. I live in South Africa, so could not find coconut flavor, but just left it out and they were yummy! I did not ice them, but painted them with melted jam, and rolled them in toasted coconut, very yummy! Thanks so much!
    Judy

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  68. I made these Easter weekend and they were a hit!! They were so good and really light and fluffy!! I used funfetti cake mix which added a little more color and made them a little more spring themed. I didn't get to make the frosting (I ran out of time so I had use the canned stuff).

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  69. I made 4 dozen of these at Easter and gave some out to all my friends. I got text messages all night long asking for the recipe. They were so delicious. Gonna go make another batch now because I can't get enough of them.

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  70. I wanted to try these, I did, but I'm really a from scratch baker (not so fond of the boxed mix additives plus I've got a 4 yr old with food allergies) - please make a from scratch version! (Perhaps this Duncan Hines copycat recipe is a start - http://www.food.com/recipe/copycat-duncan-hines-boxed-cake-mix-122139 - I was going to try to adapt, but I didn't know where to start)

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  71. Although I didn't end up making these (see above), I did steal the cute coconut "nest" idea plus the chocolate eggs (although I used M&Ms coconut, continuing on the coconut theme) - YUM!

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  72. Gina, I love your site! My family is on Weight Watchers and the recipes on your site make our dinners and snacks so enjoyable. I have a quick question about your Skinny Coconut Cupcakes. Do we put any of the coconut in the batter? Also - I could only find a bottle that looks like the same product in your picture. It is a 2 ounce bottle and says: All Natural - Frontier - Alcohol Free - Coconut Flavor. It does not say it is an extract. Is this ok to use or do I need to keep looking? Thanks so much!

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  73. I made these for Easter this year and LOVED them! I brought the leftovers to work and they vanished. Most people didn't even know they were 'skinny' cupcakes and were shocked when they found out. Very tasty and seems like it would be easy to adapt to making other kinds of cupcakes. Great recipe! Recently found your blog and love it!!!

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  74. To "Steriods Sale" - Your post has absolutely Nothing to do with this recipe and is totally inappropriate for this site. Plus, I seriously doubt that the people reading this site have the slightest interest in taking steriods!

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  75. If I don't use the applesauce for allergy purposes is that going to drastically change the taste?

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  76. Gina HELP!!!

    I bought a box of Duncan Hines white cake mix last night and they come in 16.25 ounce boxes. How should I modify the receipe so that they come out yummy?!?!

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  77. Gina, I am confused. The recipe for the icing calls for powdered sugar but the directions just say to "Top each cupcake with 1/2 tablespoon of cream cheese, then top each with 1 tsp coconut flakes." Where is the powdered sugar?

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    2. Mix with cream cheese? Just a guess, though.

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  78. In response to Gina's question about Duncan Hines cake mixes that are now 16.25 oz. instead of the regular 18.25 ounces. The 16.25oz. are the new sizes for Duncan Hines, Pillsbury and Betty Crocker so for your cakes to come out good you have to add 5 or 6 tablespoons of flour or bake the cake longer as it may be more liquid. This is information I read in our newspaper and this was given by Kathleen Purvis of the Charlotte Observer and she consulted the Cake Mix Doctor, Anne Byrn, author of several cookbooks about doctoring cake mixes. Hope this information helps everyone.

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  79. Gina,

    What brand of natural coconut extract did you use and where can I buy it?

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  80. I can't find natural coconut extract anywhere! What would be the best substitute? I have both natural vanilla and imitation coconut extract.

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  81. I made these for Easter, just according to the directions and they came out perfect. And beautiful.

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  82. We love your site and recipes so much we choose to feature this skinny coconut cupcake recipe on our Easter roundup here, http://www.thehappygal.com/healthy-easter-recipes/ Thank you!
    -The Happy Gal

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  83. Gina - can this be made as a cake? Maybe in a Bundt pan?

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