With the Girl Gourmet Cupcake Maker, kids get a fun, easy, no-hassle introduction to baking. This educational and creative toy not only teaches the very basics of cooking--such as measuring and mixing--but its cupcake decorating accessories encourage kids to experiment with their own personal touches. If you have a microwave oven and an adult handy to supervise the fun, kids ages 8 and up can get started baking and decorating in no time.
The Girl Gourmet Cupcake Make provides kids with a fun, easy, no-hassle introduction to baking. View larger.
|What We Think |
(what this means)
The Good: Easy-to-use cupcake mixes bake in seconds; easy-to-follow directions make for easy mixing, baking, and decorating; cupcake mixes are gluten free.
The Bad: Cupcake froster turns out less-than-perfect results; cupcakes' taste aren't quite "mom's home-made" quality.
In a Nutshell: Cupcake baking and decorating kids provides a fun, simple, quickly executed introduction to baking; inspires and encourages creativity.
|At a Glance |
Ages: 8 and up
Requires: Microwave oven; adult supervision
The Cupcake Maker comes with four special cupcake mixes and frosting that are custom designed for use with this toy. The cake flavors include red velvet, chocolate, yellow, and cinnamon sugar; the frostings are chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, and cream cheese flavored. These easy-to-use mixes, which contain no wheat ingredients--a definite plus for the gluten-free crowd--and require only water as an added ingredient. (Allergy alert: the mix does contain powdered eggs and powdered milk.)
The toy comes with everything your child needs to mix, bake, and decorate the cupcakes: a tiny mixing bowl, measuring spoon, water dropper, and miniature spatula for mixing the batter and frosting; a microwaveable container for baking the cupcakes; and a cupcake frosting gadget with a shape reminiscent of a KitchenAid standing mixer. And everything your little chef needs to get started is packaged in chic, girl-pleasing, contemporary pastels.
Mix It Up
Simply mix the cake mix with water using the provided measuring spoons and water dropper to reach the desired consistency (we found that a pudding-like consistency gives the best results), pour the batter into the cupcake paper, and put it in the plastic "baking dish," bake it in the microwave for about 30 seconds, and--voila!--out comes a completely baked cupcake. Because the cupcakes get pretty hot, an adult should handle them until they're cool enough to handle.
In the meantime, the frosting can be mixed up in the same manner. Again, it took us a few tries to get the proper consistency: it's especially important for the frosting to be, as suggested, the consistency of firm cookie dough to work properly with the cupcake froster.
Time to Decorate
The cupcake froster comes with a frosting tube with a plunger and decorator-type tip. Scoop the frosting into the tube with the miniature spatula and place it in the machine. (This step can prove almost impossible if the frosting is too runny.) Place the cooled cupcake below and push down the lever. The frosting machine simultaneously spins the cupcake and pushes out the frosting to create a spiral shape. Kids can put the finishing touches on with the included sprinkles or, as the "shortcut" cards suggest, with cut-up fruit or candy (you'll want to stock up on these beforehand). The finished cupcake is smaller than a regular cupcake and a bit larger than your standard mini cupcake.
The Taste Test
The quick-and-easy baking and frosting mixes make for a fun and simple introduction to baking, especially for kids who haven't already started growing their "kitchen legs." Kid-sized cooking utensils makes it fun for kids to use, and are much easier to use than Mom and Dad's larger and heavier utensils.
The cupcakes themselves cook quickly in the microwave, making for a fast turnaround that won't try younger kids' patience; but they also, to be honest, don't quite have the taste as the home-made cup cakes that mom or grandma makes. But admittedly, this opinion is formed by an adult palate. For the kids that cook the cupcakes, they will be flavored with the sweetness of do-it-yourself pride.
Adults will need to make sure, however, that the kids don't start out with aspirations to the Martha Stewart-like decorating job pictured on the box: after multiple tests, we found that the cupcake froster simply does not turn out perfectly dainty frosting spirals. This might prove disappointing, so kids should be prepared to expect more realistic, charmingly handmade results. And your kids will be sure to have a lot more fun and confidence with their own creative decorating jobs.
What's In the Box
Add water to cake mix with the provided spoons and water dropper.
Pour the batter in the dish, microwave, and--voila!--a cupcake!
Place the cooled cupcake below and start frosting.
Keep it coming ... you can never have too much frosting!
Cover the cupcake with sprinkles and its ready to eat!
Cupcake Froster, 4 cupcake mixes; 4 frosting mixes; two-sided measuring spoon; spatula; water dropper; mixing bowl; 4 cupcake papers; 4 "shortcut" cards; microwave baker; cupcake cup; sprinkles and sprinkle container.