Kid-friendly Cantaloupe Cupcakes Recipe - Sticky Fingers Cooking
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Recipe: Cantaloupe Cupcakes

Recipe: Cantaloupe Cupcakes

Cantaloupe Cupcakes

by Erin Fletter
Photo by Romix Image/Shutterstock.com
prep time
40 minutes
cook time
25 minutes
makes
6-12 servings

Fun Food Story

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Cantaloupe Cupcakes

Cantaloupe Cupcakes!

What’s up Cupcake? Muffin Much! Cupcakes and muffins are like twin sisters ... except one has copious amounts of frosting. Yum! Who doesn't love cupcakes? I am pretty sure it is illegal not to love them! It's because of the fun and joy they bring to everyone who tastes them. Cupcakes are simple, nostalgic, and whimsical. Even if you're not one for sweets, you've gotta admit that the cute aesthetic of cupcakes alone is enough to put a smile on your face. For some reason, cupcakes always bring more joy than a plain old cake. I also love all of the creativity you can put into your cupcake creations. There are no limits!

This recipe combines two of kids' favorite fruits: Cantaloupes and Apples. The cantaloupes create beautiful flavor and color, while the bubbles from the sparkling apple juice will make kids giggle with delight when they take their first bite! They will even Shake to Make our Sweet Kid-Made Butter frosting!

 

Happy & Healthy Cooking,

Chef Erin, Food-Geek-in-Chief

Fun-Da-Mentals Kitchen Skills

  • crack :

    to break open or apart a food to get what's inside, like an egg or a coconut.

  • dice :

    to cut foods into small pieces of equal size so that the food is cooked evenly or looks uniform and pleasant when used in the recipe.

  • fold :

    to gently and slowly mix a light ingredient into a heavier ingredient so as not to lose air and to keep the mixture tender, such as incorporating whipped egg whites into a cake batter or folding blueberries into pancake batter; folding is a gentler action than mixing or whisking.

  • macerate :

    to soften foods by allowing them to soak in a liquid.

  • separate eggs :

    to remove the egg yolk from the egg white by cracking an egg in the middle and using the shell halves, the palm of the hand, or a device to keep the egg yolk in place while the egg white falls into a separate bowl.

Equipment Checklist

  • Oven
  • Muffin pan
  • Paper cupcake liners
  • Cutting board + kid-safe knife
  • Medium mixing bowl
  • Dry measuring cups
  • Liquid measuring cup
  • Measuring spoons
  • Whisk or handheld electric mixer
  • Strainer
  • Toothpicks
scale
1X
2X
3X
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6X
7X

Ingredients

Cantaloupe Cupcakes

  • 1 cantaloupe
  • 2 C sparkling apple cider
  • 2 C all-purpose flour (sub gluten-free flour)
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 large eggs (sub egg replacer or banana + baking soda—more info below)
  • 1 C sugar

Food Allergen Substitutions

Cantaloupe Cupcakes

  • Gluten/Wheat: Substitute gluten-free flour in Cupcakes.
  • Egg: Substitute with egg replacer or {{1}} mashed banana + {{1}} tsp baking soda in Cupcakes.
  • Dairy: Substitute dairy-free butter for whipping cream in Kid-Made Butter.

Instructions

Cantaloupe Cupcakes

1.
preheat + dice + pour + macerate

Grownups: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and line your muffin pan with paper liners. Have kids dice 1 cantaloupe and add 3 cups to a bowl. Pour 2 cups of sparkling apple cider on top and allow the cantaloupe to rest in the cider (macerate) for up to 30 minutes.

2.
measure + whisk

Have kids measure and whisk together 2 cups of flour and 2 teaspoons of baking powder into a medium bowl. Set the bowl aside.

3.
crack + separate

Have kids crack 2 large eggs and separate the egg yokes and the egg whites.

4.
measure + beat

Have kids beat together the 2 egg yolks and 1 cup of sugar until creamy and light yellow. Then, slowly add the flour and baking powder to the egg yolks and sugar until combined. Set to the side.

5.
whip + fold

In a separate bowl, have kids whip the egg whites with a metal whisk or an electric mixer until stiff peaks form. Then, have kids fold the stiff egg whites into the cupcake batter.

6.
drain + fold

Drain the diced-up cantaloupe from the apple cider, reserving all the liquid (for the cupcakes and the Aqua Fresca). Now have kids fold in the drained cantaloupe with 2 tablespoons of the reserved juice into the batter. Mix well.

7.
spoon + bake

Have kids spoon the batter into your pre-lined muffin pan. Fill the wells about 1/2 to 3/4 full. Bake for 18 to 25 minutes or until cooked through. Test with a clean toothpick: stick in the center of a cupcake, and if it comes out clean with no wet batter, bingo! It's cupcake time! Let the cupcakes cool on your kitchen counter.

Surprise Ingredient: Cantaloupe!

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Photo by Nishihama/Adobe Stock

Hi! I’m Cantaloupe!

"I'm so happy to be part of your recipe today! I'm a variety of muskmelon with firm and juicy orange flesh. People often eat me with breakfast and in fruit salads and desserts. Because I'm made up of 90 percent water, the great taste of a juicy, sweet cantaloupe comes with a very small caloric price: only 50 calories per 6-ounce slice!" 

History & Etymology

  • Cantaloupe derives its name from the town of Cantalupo, Italy, where cantaloupe seeds arrived from Armenia and were planted in the papal gardens in the 16th century.
  • Cantaloupe has plenty of relatives! It is a member of a vine-crop family known as Cucurbitaceae, which includes other melons, squash, cucumbers, pumpkins, and gourds. It is thought that they originally grew in the wilds of India and other parts of Asia.
  • Explorers brought cantaloupe to the New World in seed form and later saw it cultivated by Native Americans.
  • Of all the melons, cantaloupe is the most popular in the United States!
  • Colorado Rocky Ford Cantaloupes have been grown in the Arkansas River Valley since 1887. 

Anatomy 

  • North American cantaloupes have a light yellow and green net-like rind or peel. When you cut one in half, you will see that its firm, moderately sweet flesh is orange with seeds in the middle. 
  • Cantaloupe sizes range from 4 to 7 inches in diameter, and they weigh between one to eleven pounds.
  • How to Pick, Buy, & Eat
  • It takes cantaloupes 3 to 4 months to grow before they are mature enough to be picked.
  • When choosing cantaloupe, do not pick one with the stem still attached, which means the fruit is immature. 
  • Look for melons with a yellowish tint to the rind and a strong melon smell. Use your thumb to press on the cantaloupe rind. The cantaloupe should yield to gentle pressure when it is ripe.
  • To ripen a cantaloupe at home, leave it at room temperature for two to four days. However, if it is already ripe, refrigerate it until ready to eat.
  • Don't forget to wash your cantaloupe thoroughly before cutting it! The surface of the rind could have harmful bacteria, like salmonella. 
  • After cutting a cantaloupe, wrap it in plastic wrap and keep it in the refrigerator for up to three days until you're ready to eat it.
  • Cantaloupe seeds can be roasted and eaten like pumpkin seeds. 
  • You can eat cantaloupe by itself for a snack or with breakfast, or slice, cube, or blend it and add to salads, soups, sauces, desserts, sorbet, granitas, or drinks.  

Nutrition

  • Cantaloupe is an excellent source of vitamins A and C and beta-carotene. These nutrients are antioxidants, and when they are present in the food we eat, they help protect cells and fight disease. 
  • Cantaloupe also contributes to fiber intake, and fiber aids digestion and helps lower bad cholesterol levels.

 

What is Sparkling Apple Juice?

Photo by Jan Danek jdm.foto/Shutterstock.com
  • Sparkling apple juice and cider are fizzy, fun-filled versions of noncarbonated apple juice and its cider cousin. You ́ll find these naturally sweet, nonalcoholic drinks in your grocery store's juice aisle. Other fruit flavors are sometimes added to the apple, including cranberry, grape, pear, and pomegranate.
  • Sparkling apple cider is ideal for family celebrations, appealing to revelers young and old. Fat-free, cholesterol-free, caffeine-free, and 100 percent juice, sparkling apple juice will appeal to both parents and kids!

Let's Learn About Colorado!

Photo by Nick Fox for Shutterstock
  • Colorado is one of the Mountain States in the Western United States. It became a state on August 1, 1876. Wyoming borders it to the north, New Mexico to the south, Utah to the west, and Kansas and Nebraska to the east. Its borders also touch Arizona and Oklahoma, and it's one of the Four Corner states that include Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah. Colorado's total land area is 104,094 square miles, and its population is over 5.7 million. 
  • The Southern Rocky Mountains run through Colorado, in the Central and West parts of the state. The mountains offer terrific skiing and other winter sports opportunities, which are very popular with both residents and visitors to the state. The Southern Rockies, also called the Colorado Rockies (like the local National League Baseball team!), have 53 peaks that are at least 14,000 feet high and are called fourteeners. Among them is the famous Pikes Peak at 14,115 feet.
  • You often hear the name Front Range, referring to parts of Colorado and Wyoming, for both the mountain range on the eastern edge of the Southern Rockies and the populated areas along that eastern edge. It is the first mountain range you come to when traveling west across the Great Plains. The Colorado Eastern Plains, part of the Great Plains, are east of the Front Range. Eastern Colorado is primarily farmland and rangeland. 
  • Denver is the capital and most heavily populated city in Colorado, with over 715,000 residents, and it's home to Sticky Fingers Cooking! Denver is known as the Mile High City because its elevation is one mile above sea level, exactly 5,280 feet. However, Denver isn't the highest incorporated city in Colorado. That distinction goes to Leadville, in the Rocky Mountains, with an elevation of 10,152 feet. 
  • Colorado is known for its extreme weather changes, with temperatures changing by as much as 76 degrees within two days. The climate is dry, so it's essential to drink lots of water, especially when exercising. Visitors to the state need to be aware of two potential health issues when visiting, dehydration and altitude sickness, especially if they visit the mountains from a sea-level state. It's always good to have water handy and slowly acclimate to the altitude before strenuous exercise, like skiing or snowboarding.
  • Colorado holds many of the largest, highest, longest, and deepest claims in the US and world. For example, Glenwood Springs has the largest hot springs mineral pool, and Pagosa Springs has the deepest hot springs in the world. The highest paved road in the United States is the Mount Evans Scenic Byway, climbing 14,258 feet to the top of Mt. Evans. Lastly, the Great Sand Dunes National Park in the San Luis Valley has the tallest dune in the country at 750 feet tall!
  • Colorado is also known for two delicious fruits, Palisade Peaches and Rocky Ford Cantaloupes. Palisade Peaches are extra juicy and sweet. They are primarily grown near Palisades, a town in Mesa County, in Western Colorado. The peaches are available from late June to early October. Rocky Ford Cantaloupes are grown in Rocky Ford, a city in Otero County, in Eastern Colorado. The cantaloupes are soft, juicy, and sweet to eat. Harvested from early July to late September, Rocky Ford's soil content and big temperature swings help crops grow and make cantaloupes sweet!

That's Berry Funny

Why did the cantaloupe jump into the water?

Because it wanted to be a watermelon!

The Yolk's On You

What did the one melon say to the other melon when they fell in love? 

We’re just too young ... we cantaloupe!

The Yolk's On You

How do you make a cantaloupe shake? 

Put it into the freezer until it shivers.

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