Cupcakes are wonderful, individually-sized morsels of cake that are a great hit at birthday parties and other social gatherings. Cupcakes also make a great treat outside of celebratory scenarios if you’re just looking for a little something sweet.
But no matter how much you love something, sometimes you can become stumped as to how to make it different and unique, and this can include cupcakes as well. Perhaps you have a party coming up and your mind is drawing a complete blank as to how you want to decorate them or have them professionally decorated. So whether you’re having a hard time coming up with your next cupcake masterpiece or if you’re just looking for some fresh, inspiring ideas, then check out our list of nine fun cupcake decorating ideas for 2021 to help get you started!
If you have never thought about squeezing all of your cupcakes together then decorating all of the tops at once to make one large pull-apart cupcake cake, then you don’t know the potential that you’ve been missing! You can go simple and just form them all into a basic square or rectangular shape and decorate the whole thing like you would a sheet cake, or you can take it a step further and create shapes like rainbows, butterflies, or any other shape you can possibly form with one, two, or multiple dozens of cupcakes and then let your imagination run wild!
If you aren’t confident in your cake decorating skills and you have a child or loved one who wants you to make cupcakes with their favorite characters for their class or birthday party, then this decorating tip is for you! Stores such as Dollar General and Dollar Tree carry lots of little character figurines such as Disney, Barbie, Paw Patrol, and more, so these are great places to find neat little figurines to use as cupcakes toppers. These fun little toppers also make great little party favors for guests to take home after the party, or if you aren’t having a traditional birthday party, then the birthday boy or girl has scored some cool little toys. Try looking online or around different stores to find the best little topper figurines for your occasion.
Decorate-Your-Own Cupcake Station
If you want something a little different without as much effort on your part, then consider having a DIY cupcake area at your next party! Have the area prepared with different colored frostings, sprinkles, candies, or whatever other fun things you can think of, plastic knives for spreading, and plates for holding everyone’s cupcake creations. These DIY cupcake stations are fun for all ages, so whether you’re hosting a party for a five-year-old or a ninety-five-year-old, this idea is sure to be a hit!
Does the birthday person have a love for all things Starbucks? This simple cupcake decorating tip plays up on the Starbucks aesthetic and looks super cute whether you’re a professional barista or not! Green cupcake cups are definitely recommended to achieve the look, along with green straws that can be cut to the perfect size for your cupcake “drinks.” Pipe on some creamy vanilla or buttercream frosting to look like a fancy whip on top of a drink, drizzle with chocolate or caramel sauce, and sprinkle on toffee bits, sprinkles, or whatever their heart desires! Stick a piece of a green straw down into the frosting and you have an adorable cupcake “drink.”
For fun and easy Easter-themed cupcakes, take shredded coconut and dye it into however many springtime colors you want to, to replicate the “grass” that comes in Easter baskets. Put down a base layer of frosting and then form the colorful shredded coconut into a small nest on top of the cupcake and nestle some Robins Egg malted chocolate candies, jelly beans, or whatever kind of egg-looking candy you prefer to make these fun, delightful cupcakes.
Chocolate Pen Written Toppers
If you or someone you know has a chocolate pen and you want to make simple yet elegant cupcake toppers, use the chocolate pen on wax paper to write out short, simple words or expressions such as “XOXO,” “Love,” etc., and then stick them on top of each cupcake to create fun, pretty, edible toppers.
Tie-Dyed and Color Swirled Frosting
Whether or not you have a fancy color-separating cake decorating tool, you will come out with colorful, beautifully swirled cupcakes that just might be too pretty to eat. If you don’t have any proper tools to separate your colors, take each color you want to use and drop it into the piping bag and squeeze. You’ll come out with some pretty, interesting color swirls in kind of a tie-dye effect, and no two cupcakes will be the same! Another approach is to leave your frosting white and take gel food colors and stripe them down the sides of the bag. Fill with your icing and when you squeeze, the color on the sides will make uniform, colorful stripes.
Printed Flags or Labels
No matter what kind of party you’re having, you can create and print custom labels to match the theme that can be placed right on top of your cupcakes for a quick, easy topper! From flags to shapes to letters and more, whatever you want on top of your cupcake is your only limitation. Print them out, cut them out, and then stick them on a toothpick (stick the image on both sides of the toothpick if you desire) and you have a fast, simple DIY cupcake topper for any occasion!
Want to present unique, elegant cupcakes that look like they took a ton of effort? Then simply frost your cupcakes with whatever frosting you desire, and then top with shaved chocolate. Whether it’s milk, dark, or somewhere in between, those shaved chocolate curls will lend a look of elegance, and of course it’s chocolate so who wouldn’t love that?!
When it comes to decorating cupcakes, your imagination is your only limitation. We hope that our suggestions for ways to decorate cupcakes in 2021 will help you on your way to decorating some fun, amazing cupcakes all year long!