Thursday, April 21, 2016

April Batterbox Review and Coupon

I have a confession to make: I used to hate baking. I love to cook, but baking was always too precise and I felt like I never had the time to bake anything from scratch. But then I was introduced to Batterbox, which made baking fun and easy!

*Disclaimer: This box was sent to See, Shop, Love! in exchange for an honest review. Post contains affiliate links.

Batterbox is a new subscription that sends everything you need to make themed treats each month! It was started by two best friends, Robin and Candace. Robin realized how expensive it was to buy all the ingredients and tools needed for one cake and wanted to make baking more cost efficient. She enlisted her taste tester, Candace, and launched Batterbox to do just that!

Subscriptions are available in one-, three-, six-, and 12-month renewing periods and are priced as follows:
  • One month for $29.99/month
  • Three months for $85.00 every three months ($28.33/month)
  • Six months for $162.00 every six months ($27.00/month)
  • 12 months for $299.98 every 12 months ($24.99/month)

Each month's box will contain everything you need to make a dessert with a crafty theme. March's box was centered around Spring and April's had an April showers theme. They're great for everyone, and also would be a really fun activity to do with children (definitely with adult supervision, though).

You can see all of the items that were in the box in the first photo in this post. As you can see, everything is perfectly portioned! I love that. It is expensive to buy all of the ingredients and tools, and this is so much easier since everything is pre-measured and ready to go.

The box also contained a three page print out with the instructions and colorful photos. And index card with a list of the exact ingredients provided and what you needed to supply (and the instructions again) was also included. The only ingredients I needed to have were butter, three eggs, and milk.

So what was April's treat? Confetti Vanilla Cupcakes with Almond Buttercream! I had so much fun making these! The process was super easy and I loved not having to worry about measure out (most of) the ingredients. The cupcakes were also way more creative than anything I've ever baked before. The photo above shows the candy melt umbrellas that ended up being the finishing touch.

Normally when I bake I buy a mix in a box and don't get too fancy. For these cupcakes I mixed up the batter from the ingredients provided, but then separated it and added blue food coloring to some for the bottom "puddles" of the cupcakes. Then blue sprinkles were added to the remaining non-colored batter for "rain drops." So creative!

Bake 'em up for 18-20 minutes at 350°F, and you've got yourself some really beautiful cupcakes! I would have never thought to add food coloring or sprinkles to batter, but now I'm going to experiment with all different colors for future cupcakes and cakes!

One thing I want to note is that these would be so much easier to make if you have a stand or handheld mixer. I have neither, so everything got mixed by hand. It wasn't difficult by any means (meaning the batter wasn't took thick or anything), it was just labor-intensive.

I also made the almond buttercream frosting myself with the ingredients in the box, which I had never done before. The recipe called for shortening to mix with the butter, but it said if you didn't have any you could just whip the butter alone, which I did. I don't know what it would have tasted like with the shortening, but it still tasted delicious without (butter, powdered sugar, milk, and almond extract). The instructions said to use the included piping bag to make clouds out of frosting, but as you can see, I failed miserably at that. I decided to just do a normal circular icing pattern for the rest of the cupcakes.

I had also never used a piping bag before, and wow, does it make such a difference! Normally I would just smooth on icing with a knife and it never ended up looking smooth. I'm going to invest in a reusable piping bag, I think.

Also, aren't these cupcakes beautiful?! I just love the vibrant blue color! I added a lot of food coloring because I like a bright blue, but you could have added more or less if you wanted, the box came with a generous portion of coloring.

The umbrellas were the final touch! I placed this one on wrong--well, not as instructed. I was supposed to put them in upright, with the handle going into the cupcake, but I think they look cute with it lying on top, too.

Now, the most important detail: how did they taste? AMAZING! So good. So good that I ate four of them immediately. FOUR! I couldn't help it. I was so excited to have made them myself, and also, I just really like cupcakes.

I had so much fun with Batterbox and I loved how creative the cupcakes ended up being! I can't wait to share what's left of them with my family. Here's a list of everything that was in the box, so you can get an idea of what to expect in future boxes:

For the cupcakes:

  • Cupcake mix (all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt in one package)
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1/4 cup of sprinkles
  • 1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
For the buttercream
  • 2 and 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 2 tsp almond extract
And, as I said before, all I needed to supply was 8 tbsp butter (1 stick), 3 large eggs, 3/4 cup milk for the cupcakes; and 1/4 cup butter (1/2 stick), 1/4 cup shortening (optional), and 3 tbsp milk or cream for the buttercream.
Bottom Line: I think Batterbox is amazing! Making the cupcakes was fun, easy, and delicious. This box turned a former baking-hater into a lover! I can't wait to see what they have in store for future boxes.

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