Dancing Baby Groot Chocolate Gingerbread Cupcakes
After three long years, Guardians of the Galaxy is back with Volume 2! The sequel stays true to all we loved about the first film, providing another shoot-em-up space adventure with plenty of laughs and a feel-good soundtrack. Every member of our favorite galactic motley crew returns to the big screen- with one slight change: Lovable Groot comes back as Baby Groot and, to be honest, I could not be more stoked about that. He’s the cutest, and they made him cuter. Well done.
The film picks up on the dysfunctional group of heroes, renowned throughout the galaxy for killing that one bad guy last time and saving the planet! (Remember that? Me too.) This time, the crew maintains their official title as galactic guardians, landing a gig with a powerful alien race called the Sovereign. An effort to protect valuable batteries from invaders goes awry thanks to Rocket’s habitual thievery. As the Sovereign Army’s newest target, the guardians flee the planet, narrowly escaping with the unexpected help of (surprise!) Peter Quill’s father. The movie then delves into Starlord’s parentage, leading the characters deep into an emotional, yet silly, plot line.
Of course, I had to make Baby Groot cupcakes! Are you even surprised? There was no doubt in my mind lil Groot would be the star of this blog post. The biggest challenge of these treats was capturing his cuteness in its full glory. I’ll be honest with you, these desserts pictured are my second attempt. The first Groot’s were not adorable enough, and that did not work for me. I threw them away and started again, and I’m so happy with that decision. The key to maximum charm on these cookies is in the eyes. When piping, make them a little far apart and don’t forget to add the little white dot in his eyes. I pulled these tips from my experience with drawing cartoons and they made a world of difference.
For this dessert, you’re going to need little terracotta pots. I picked these up at my local JoAnn’s and washed them well before baking. I used six, unglazed, untreated 6oz pots. They’re about 2 ¾ inches tall and wide. After washing, brush the inside of the pots with vegetable oil and line the bottoms with parchment paper.
For the Groot gingerbread men, use this stencil. Print it out, cut it out, and place on your rolled out gingerbread dough. Carefully cut around the stencil with a knife. This is time consuming, and kind of a pain, but look how cute they are!
Once your Groot gingerbread men are baked and cooled, it’s time to bring him to life. I used Wilton #2 and #3 tips to pipe the royal icing vines, eyes, and smile. For his little leaves, I used Wilton #65 leaf tip. The leaves are optional, but I like the pop of color they brought to this otherwise neutral dessert.
When it’s time to put the Groot’s into the cupcakes, I recommend popping them in the freezer for 20 minutes first. This firms up the cookies and makes them easier to press down into the cupcake. After frosting the cupcakes and topping them with graham cracker crumbs, insert a knife into the center to create a slot for the cookies. Carefully press the cookie down into the cupcakes.
There you have it! Adorable baby Groot dancing cupcakes. For detailed recipes, check out the write-ups below. (Pro-tip: Listen to the Guardians of the Galaxy playlist while you make these.)