When we were kids, there was nothing better than opening up our lunch boxes to find a Hostess cupcake waiting there. Even now, just seeing the box in the grocery store is enough to take us back to those simpler days with everybody clamoring to trade with us. We’re always tempted to buy them, but now that we’re all grown-up and we know what’s in those pre-packaged goodies, we can’t quite bring ourselves to add them to our cart. It feels like less of a sacrifice now, though, because Kawaii Sweet World has figured out a copycat recipe so we can make them ourselves! Watch and read on to learn how to make them and share this childhood favorite with your kids.

You’ll Need

– 1/2 cup butter
– 2 ounces semisweet chocolate (chocolate chips or bar chocolate are both fine)
– 3/4 cup flour
– 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
– 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
– 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
– 1/4 teaspoon salt
– 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder (optional)
– 2 large eggs
– 1/2 cup white sugar
– 1/4 cup brown sugar
– 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
– 1/2 cup buttermilk (If you don’t have buttermilk, mix 1/2 cup regular milk with 1 1/2 teaspoons white vinegar, and let stand for 5 minutes.)
Marshmallow Filling
– 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
– 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
– 3/4 teaspoon vanilla
– 7 ounces (1 standard-size jar, about 1 cup) marshmallow spread
Chocolate Glaze
– 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
– 1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
– 2 tablespoons light corn syrup

How To


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Melt the butter and chocolate together in the microwave and set aside to cool.
  3. Whisk together the cocoa powder, flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and instant espresso powder. Set aside.
  4. Whisk together the eggs, white sugar, brown sugar and vanilla, then mix in the cooled chocolate.
  5. Add half of the dry mixture to the wet eggs mixture and whisk, then mix in all of the buttermilk.
  6. Mix in the remaining dry mixture and whisk until well-combined.
  7. Scoop into 12 cupcake liners and bake for 18 minutes.

Marshmallow Filling

  1. In a medium bowl, cream the butter and sugar together.
  2. Stir in the vanilla.
  3. Mix in the marshmallow spread and whisk until light and fluffy.
  4. Load into a piping bag or a Ziploc bag, preferably fitted with a large round pastry tip.

Chocolate Glaze

  1. Melt the butter, chips, and corn syrup in the microwave in 30 second intervals until smooth and glossy.


  1. Cut out small hole in cupcakes with cupcake corer or knife. Trim the core so only a thin cupcake “lid” remains.
  2. Fill the holes with about 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoons of the marshmallow filling, and cover with the lid.
  3. Dip the tops of the cupcakes in the glaze and let set for 15 minutes, until the glaze has firmed.
  4. Pipe designs on the flat glaze surface with leftover marshmallow filling or buttercream frosting. If you use the marshmallow filling, you may need to thicken it with powdered sugar.

Oh my goodness, these look JUST like we remember them! One bite, and we’re eight-years-old again, except now with the knowledge that we’re eating a homemade, preservative-free treat. What do you think? Were Hostess cupcakes part of your childhood? What other treat would you like to learn to make at home?