The kids aren’t always a fan of classic Christmas pudding, but these Christmas pudding muffins are a fun alternative and just as festive.
Just like a piñata, these muffins contain an exciting surprise for little ones. Packed full of sweets like Smarties, Haribos, or Maltesers. The chocolate flavoured cakes are decorated to look just like Christmas pud. Thankfully they take just a fraction of the time to prepare. This child-friendly recipe is perfect for getting little helpers involved.
- 225g plain flour
- 55g cocoa powder
- 2tsp baking powder
- 115g caster sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 250ml milk
- 6 tbsp sunflower oil or you could use 85g butter, melted and cooled
- Little sweets to fill your pinata cakes
- 75g white chocolate
- Cherries, fondant or writing icing for the red berries and green holly decoration
- You will need
- A 12 hole muffin tin. You can either grease the tin or line it with paper cases - don't use your favourite paper cases though, as they will be peeled off after baking.
First of all preheat the oven to 200°C/Gas Mark 6.
Pass the muffin tray to your child and ask them to pop a paper case into each hole. Otherwise, to save paper cases, you could get them to grease with a little butter – entirely up to you!
Weigh the flour, cocoa powder and baking powder, then sift into a mixing bowl, this will be your dry bowl. My little boy is easily distracted and kept turning to look at things whilst holding on to the sieve. Every time he turned he took the sieve with him; thankfully this a very child friendly recipe and losing a few grams of flour on the floor didn’t really matter!
Weigh the sugar into the dry bowl and give it a little stir.
Now we can move our attention to the wet bowl. If you are feeling brave, you could let your child crack the eggs into a large jug or bowl. My little boy actually did a great job, but I had to grip my hands together to stop myself from interfering!! Pass a fork to your little one so they can give the eggs a bit of a beating, then help them to measure in the milk and oil (or melted butter if using). I think it is best to help at this point, unless you don’t mind an oily flood!
Mix the wet ingredients together while your child makes a well in the centre of the dry ingredients with a wooden spoon – my little boy loved doing this!
After pouring the wet ingredients into the bowl I took a step back and watched my boy gently and very SLOWLY mix everything together. It is unlikely that your child will over mix but keep a keen eye to be sure they are gentle; lumps are good, we want lumps (for a change)!
Now for the bowl to muffin tin transfer! This is a very drippy mixture, so blobs are bound to find their way down the sides of the tin and worktop! Try not to help too much at this point as children love to do the last bit as they will feel like they did it ALL by themselves!
Now you can take over and place the muffin tin into the oven. Leave the muffins to cook for about 20 minutes, until risen and firm to the touch.
Once out of the oven, leave the muffins to cool in the tin for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
When the muffins are cold you can move on to the decorating part.
Weigh out the white chocolate into a microwavable bowl and give short sharp blasts in the microwave until melted. Leave to one side to cool.
Now the next part you will have to do, unless your child is sensible with knives. There is no way my three year old can be trusted, so I took over and cut deep circles into each muffin with a sharp knife (a table knife would work just as well). Pull out the thick circles of cake and let your child fill each hole with as many sweeties as they can fit in! You may have to remind them not to eat too many as they go along! Place the cake that you just cut out back over the sweets and push down firmly.
Use your white chocolate to drizzle over the top of each muffin, then decorate with your choice of either cherries, sweets or fondant.
Top tips for making Christmas muffins
You can use wrapped and unwrapped sweets in this recipe. As the sweet treats inside the muffins aren't included in the baking process but rather the decorating process afterward, you don't have to worry about melting chocolate or sweets inside the muffins.