Cookie Dough-Filled Cupcakes with Brown Sugar Buttercream Frosting

A fluffy vanilla cupcake is filled with an egg-free chocolate chip cookie dough and topped with a brown sugar buttercream frosting and a smattering of mini chocolate chips. The best of a cookie and a cupcake, all in one!

Heeeeeey, folks! Let me tell ya 'bout my best friend.

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This is Ami! She and I have been besties since 7th grade, and in this time we've been through A LOT together. Let's see:
- Many long hikes, some involving BEARS (AAH)
- Many long road trips, all involving me singing too much and abusing AUX cord privileges
- Many boys. MANY BOYS. SO MANY* BOYS.

*The word 'many' has now lost all meaning, maybe or maybe not related to the fact that it's 10:24 AM on a Sunday and I'm still drunk from last night.

Now, we've obviously always been awesome (HAHA), but I think we both agree that we peaked senior year of high school. This was the year we discovered Ke$ha and dedicated our lives to being just like her, glitter and all. WWKD?!

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So yeah, we were pretty cool. EXCEPT - shockingly - when it came to baking together. In the span of a year, we managed to ruin the following:
- Chocolate chip cookies (unknowingly followed two different recipes, and ended up making cookie dough soup)
- Cupcakes (tried to take them out of the pan too soon, they crumbled, we mixed the crumbs with icing and called it a 'trifle,' my mom called it a 'hot mess' (rude) and threw it away)
- Brownies (accidentally turned on the burner under the Pyrex full of brownies, and only realized this when the pan EXPLODED)

A scary moment in both of our lives

A scary moment in both of our lives

Since we would rather not tempt fate, we have largely kept our baking efforts separate since these catastrophes. Every day in our 12th grade physics class, we would open our laptops, get on Foodgawker, and choose the creation we would make (INDIVIDUALLY) that night. The next day, we would bring it in! It was a wonderful system! We were the best students ever!*

*This is a good time to mention that our physics teacher hated us with a burning passion. One day, I came home to a mother whose face screamed disappointment. Our teacher had emailed her, saying that Ami and I were terrible students who never paid attention in class, and instead passed the time gossiping and looking up recipes. UM, RUDE TO GO BEHIND OUR BACKS LIKE THAT, MS. SPEEGLE. We ended up getting A's in the class so we gucci, but seriously? Let us live!

One of the most memorable treats that Ami brought in was a chocolate-chip cookie dough cupcake. After one bite, I saw the very face of God. The boys in class were all calculating how many weeks of allowance they would have to save up to afford an engagement ring, and the secret underground teacher network was abuzz with the news. First the other physics teacher, then the entire science department, was in the classroom, lined up to get a cupcake.

So yeah, my best friend is pretttttty much the greatest.

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Ami has since abandoned me to be a Hotlanta girl, and I miss her EVERY DAY. So, I figured trying to replicate her famous cupcakes (while blasting Ke$ha, obviously) would be a great way to alleviate my pain! And boy, did it ever. These cupcakes could solve ANY problem. Just look at them!

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Cookie Dough-Filled Cupcakes

To make these cupcakes, I started with a classic vanilla cake using my go-to recipe. I baked them up while I got to work on the filling and frosting.

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Cookie Dough Filling

Now, some people will tell you that it's bad juju to eat raw eggs, and there's something called salmonella or whatever. I am not one of these people. Batter is bae. However, I decided to play nice and make this cookie dough filling egg-free, just in case. Do you hear me, karma gods? I've been good! Shower me with gifts!!

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To make the filling, you will need:
- 4 T (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 3/8 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1 cup + 2 T unbleached all-purpose flour
- 7 oz sweetened condensed milk
- 1/2 t vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup mini chocolate chips

Combine your butter and brown sugar, mixing until fluffy. Add your flour, sweetened condensed milk, and vanilla extract. Stir until well combined. Fold in your mini chocolate chips and feel free to add more if you're feeling especially feisty. Cover the mixture with plastic wrap, stick that sucker in the fridge (for about an hour), and get to work on the...

Brown Sugar Buttercream Frosting

Ever since I bought a hand mixer (for the macarons!), I have been SO JAZZED TO MAKE FROSTING. We're talking embarrassingly excited. If you're a first time reader, this is the point where you find out that I am, in fact, crazy.

To make this frosting, you will need:
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 2/3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 T milk
- 2 t vanilla extract
- Pinch salt

Soften your butter (I did mine in the microwave; as I've said before, I don't plan ahead) and beat together with your brown sugar until light and fluffy. To this, add your powdered sugar*, flour, milk, vanilla, and salt. Taste and add additional sugar/milk as needed to achieve your ideal sweetness and texture. I know, I know - taste testing - twist my arm...

*DO THIS SLOWLY OR YOUR KITCHEN WILL LOOK LIKE A COCAINE FACTORY.

Assembly

The fun part! You're going to take each cupcake and, using a sharp knife, cut a cone out of the center, like so:

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You can toss the centers, or you can binge eat them, or you can mix them with frosting and call it a trifle and get your heart broken when your mom throws it away. Choose your own adventure.

Into each divot, you're going to add a little ball of the cookie dough filling. It'll be super sticky and weird feeling straight out of the fridge, but it tastes like heaven, so don't fret!

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Next up, frosting! I used a star tip and my super intimidating cake-decorating gun to pipe a swirl of buttercream on top of each cupcake. Finished off with a sprinkling of mini chocolate chips, they were ready to go!

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I texted Ami this picture immediately, and she had the following things to say: "Omg Jesse are you serious I actually hate you" "I just ran 8 miles and there is no sugar in my apartment and this is psychological torture" "I have a wedding dress I need to fit into and you're ruining my life"

She loves me, deep down.

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But maybe not after I post this picture.

XOXO,
Jess