Munch Madness: Cupcake Finals

Who will take the cake?

Episode: Munch Madness

The Kitchen hosts went head-to-head cooking up classic dishes to represent their respective regions. The winners of the first rounds advanced to the Cupcake Finals. Jeff Mauro and Sunny Anderson battled it out in the finals, creating regionally inspired desserts for the judge to determine who would take the cake in The Kitchen's "Munch Madness" tournament.

Jeff Mauro makes Chocolate Caramel Pecan Cupcakes, as seen on Food Network's The Kitchen

Jeff Mauro makes Chocolate Caramel Pecan Cupcakes, as seen on Food Network's The Kitchen

Jeff Mauro's Chocolate Caramel Pecan Cupcakes

What you'll need:

  • 24 chocolate cupcakes (made from a box cake mix)
  • 2-inch round biscuit cutter
  • Store-bought hot fudge
  • Store-bought caramel frosting
  • Pecan halves
  • Flaky sea salt

How to:

  1. Remove the cupcake centers with a biscuit cutter and set aside.
  2. Pipe hot fudge into the cupcake centers.
  3. Place the removed cupcake centers back into the holes.
  4. Frost each cupcake with caramel frosting.
  5. Garnish each with a pecan half and a sprinkle of flaky sea salt.
Sunny Anderson makes Sopapilla Cupcakes, as seen on Food Network's The Kitchen

Sunny Anderson makes Sopapilla Cupcakes, as seen on Food Network's The Kitchen

Sunny Anderson's Sopapilla Cupcakes

What you'll need:

  • Two 8-ounce blocks cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons creamed honey, plus additional for drizzling
  • 24 yellow cupcakes (made from a box cake mix)
  • 4 cups fried wonton strips
  • 1/4 cup cinnamon sugar

How to:

  1. To make the frosting: Place the cream cheese in a large mixing bowl and add the sugar and honey. Whip with an electric mixer until soft and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Spread the frosting generously over the cupcakes.
  2. To make the crunchy topping: Place the wonton strips in a microwave-safe bowl. Heat until warm to the touch, about 45 seconds. Add the cinnamon sugar and toss until evenly coated.
  3. Use your hands to lightly crush the topping and mound on top of the cupcakes. Drizzle with additional creamed honey and serve immediately.

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