Creamsicle Cupcakes

Our contributor, Lauren Kapeluck of EllenJay Events, is back with a delicious new recipe….

It might only be May but the ice cream man has been driving down my street for well over a month now.  Every time I hear his musical truck all I can think about are drumsticks, ice cream sandwiches and popsicles.  It reminds me that the warm weather is here to stay and it’s time to start stocking my freezer full of cool summer treats!  So thank you Mr. Ice Cream Man for inspiring me to create these Creamsicle Cupcakes based off of one of my all time favorite popsicle treats.

Creamsicle Cupcake Recipe | by Lauren Kapeluck for

I took a shortcut with this recipe and used a vanilla box mix as the base, but don’t worry it is packed full of all kinds of orange citrus goodness that you won’t be able to tell once you take a bite.  Orange juice and orange zest are used in both the cake and cream cheese icing which really creates a lovely refreshing citrus taste.  These cupcakes are really moist and super light, so don’t be surprised if you find yourself eating more than one at a time.

Creamsicle Cupcake Recipe | by Lauren Kapeluck for

To decorate I wanted to mimic the traditional Creamsicle popsicle so I used an apple corer to remove the center of the cupcake and added a white cream cheese filling. Orange cream cheese frosting was swirled on top and then one more dollop of white cream cheese icing was added to the center.

Creamsicle Cupcake Recipe | by Lauren Kapeluck for

These cupcakes would be perfect for a summer pool party or a citrus theme birthday bash.  Add a scoop of vanilla ice cream along side and you’ve got one yummy treat!

Creamsicle Cupcake Recipe | by Lauren Kapeluck for

recipe by Lauren Kapeluck
(makes 24)

For the Cupcakes:

1 box white cake mix (dry)
3oz box orange gelatin (dry)
1/4 cup orange juice
1 tsp orange extract
1 tsp orange zest

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line muffin pans with cupcake liners.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine dry cake mix and dry orange gelatin.
  3. Measure out the water, using the amount shown on the cake mix box.  Do NOT pour it into the mixing bowl yet!  First, remove 1/4 cup of the water and replace it with 1/4 cup orange juice.  Now pour it into the mixing bowl.
  4. Add in eggs and oil, using the exact amounts shown on the cake mix box.
  5. Add in orange extract and orange zest.
  6. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes until well combined. Scrape sides of bowl as necessary.
  7. Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full with batter.
  8. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  9. Let cupcakes cool in pans for 5 minutes, then remove to wire racks to finish cooling.
  10. Once cupcakes are completely cool, hollow out the center using an apple corer.


For the Frosting:

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
5 cups confectioner’s sugar
1 teaspoon orange extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon orange zest
orange food coloring

  1. In bowl of stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and cream cheese until smooth and creamy.
  2. Gradually add in confectioner’s sugar 1 cup at a time and beat well, scraping down sides of bowl.
  3. Add extracts and mix well for about 2 minutes.
  4. Remove 1 cup of icing and set aside.  This will be used as white cream center inside the cupcakes.
  5. Add orange zest to the remaining icing.  Add orange food coloring, one drop at a time, until you reach the desired shade of orange.


To Assemble Cupcakes:

  1. Spoon white frosting into a piping bag fitted with a large round tip.  Spoon orange frosting into a seperate piping bag fitted with a large round tip.
  2. Fill center of each cupcake with white frosting.
  3. Use orange frosting and swirl around the center of the cupcake two times. Fill the inside of the swirl with a dollop of white frosting.


For the Flag Cupcake Toppers:

Orange Washi Tape

Cut a two inch piece of tape.  Wrap tape around a toothpick and align ends of tape together.  Press to seal with toothpick inside.  Make a V cut on the end to create flag points.  Insert into cupcakes.

Creamsicle Cupcake Recipe | by Lauren Kapeluck for


Tessa’s Creamsicle Cake
My Pineapple Upside-Down Cupcakes
My Cinnamon Roll Cupcakes
My Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes
My Apple Pie Cupcakes
My Honey Cupcakes

Lauren Kapeluck , CONTRIBUTOR

Lauren is a monthly contributor for The Cake Blog. She is a self-taught baker and lover of all things sugar. Read more about Lauren on her bio page.


    • 2


      Yes, the recipe for the filling inside the cupcake is the cream cheese frosting recipe, just without the orange zest and food coloring. I reserved about a cup before I tinted the frosting to save for the filling.

  1. 4

    Carla says

    Please, can you tell me if the substitution of 1/4 cup of orange juice is to replace the total amount of water, or if it is a partial amount along with the remaining amount of water? Thanks so much. I can’t wait to make these!

    • 5


      The orange juice substitution is only to replace 1/4 cup of the water with orange juice, you still need to use the remaining amount of water that the box calls for. The box mix I used called for 1 1/4 cups water so I used 1/4 cup orange juice and 1 cup of water.

  2. 8

    kaisha says

    These sound so yummy and would perfectly match the colors for my son’s 1st bday party! Where did you find that adorable tape for the flags??

  3. 18

    L. Chapman says

    I made these for my great-granddaughter’s 2nd Birth!day party, & people are still raving about them! They were some of the best I’ve ever tasted! Will be making these again!

  4. 26

    Colleen says

    After digging out from under a total of about 2 ft of snow (with more on the way) we could all use some summer and since that is months away, I will be making these to at least bring part of the daydream to life! Thank you for sharing!!!

  5. 29

    Jessie lauver says

    HOW do I print this recipe WHERE is the print it button! I love orange cream anything!
    milkshakes, doughnuts…..

  6. 35

    Stephanie says

    These look delicious! I am thinking this would make a great bundt-type cake instead of cupcakes. I would just omit the filling piece and ice the cake with the orange, cream-cheese frosting. Would that work? Thanks!

    • 38

      Elizabeth says

      Omg you’re so rude. Sorry, but I read the other comments until I got to yours. She stated in a previous comment about the water/oj. Take the time to read before making a comment :) would have saved you the trouble and 24 “crappy” cupcakes.

  7. 40

    shannon says

    Do you think i a whipped cream frosting would be good with these instead of the creme cheese? I dont mind cream cheese frosting but would prefer another option if possoble.
    These cupcakes look delicious!
    Thanks for taking the time to respond :)

  8. 42

    Sharon S. says

    I made these tonight for a bake sale, and they are delicious! I love anything orange, and these are perfect.

    I don’t have an apple corer so tried to just cut out a piece with a small knife. When it didn’t work well on the first two, I didn’t want to mess any more cupcakes up, so I just piped the orange frosting on then piped a quarter-sized circle over the center. To decorate them, I cut candy orange slices in half (the whole ones were overpowering in size) and placed them just off center of the white frosting. They look great!

    Thank you for a great recipe!

  9. 44

    Rhonda says

    Oh how I wish we could attach a picture. Made these this weekend for my mom’s birthday. They turned out fabulous!! I had to divide my time, so made the cupcakes on Saturday and did the icing on Sunday. They turned out fabulous!! And they taste exactly like a creamsicle! The cupcakes turned out perfect, and since I didn’t have an apple corer, I used my Bismark icing tip, the usual round one for the main frosting and then for a touch of pizazz I used a large flower tip for the top white piece. Cannot wait to see what mom thinks! And did I mention then turned out fabulous?!?!?

  10. 46


    Fabulous recipe. It was great. I tried it and loved it. Will be thinking of making the frosting my permanent frosting recipe. It was magnificent, just sweet enough. The cream cheese definitely adds a little something extra to the recipe. Thanks for this.

  11. 48

    Libby says

    Thanks for the yummy recipe! It is all of my friends’ favorites and most requested bring over treat. Has anyone tried to convert this into a cake instead of cupcakes? Would it be the same recipe just with frosting layers instead of piped in and on top?

    • 49

      Tiffany says

      I think it would be easier as a cake, personally. Don’t get me wrong, its very cute but time consuming. I think 2 round pans with white cream cheese frosting in the middle and the orange food coloring frosting outside and decorate as desired, maybe some candied oranges or even dollops of whipped cream on the outer edge or a design if you have Wilton tips and pastry bag. Good luck! Show us how it turns out:)

  12. 51

    Tiffany says

    These look great. I do something similar but its orange jello cake with cool whip. I’ve never heard of putting gelatin powder IN a cake mix? Sorry some of you guys cupcakes didn’t turn out but I thought her directions were really clear, some of you obviously don’t bake a lot lol

  13. 52

    Amber says

    I was expecting a lot more from a website called The Cake Blog, than using cake mix. Disappointing.

  14. 57

    Consuelo says

    Someone asked this earlier but I don’t think the question was answered. Am I supposed to make the gelatin or am I only supposed to use the gelatin poweder?

  15. 63

    Reema says

    Frosting FYI – Couldn’t find my food coloring (moved recently). Store didn’t have primary colors. I used orange Kool-Aid instead. I knew you could use it to dye easter eggs and hair so I thought, why not? I think it gave it an extra punch of orange flavor too. Was a big hit. :)

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