Chai Cranberry Christmas Cupcakes

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Today I’m participating in my first Recipe Redo.  I really need to do this more often because there are so many awesome recipes on my blog and I often make them again and again.  However, some of the photos from my first few years weren’t great.  I’ve also ended up tweaking many of the recipes to make them even better.

I can't get enough of these Chai Cranberry Christmas Cupcakes!

The first recipe I’m remaking are my Chai Cranberry Christmas Cupcakes.  You can find my original post about them HERE.  I’m kind of sad that my photos for the original post were lost in my blog transition but I’ll be honest, they weren’t that great to begin with.

These gorgeous Chai Cranberry Christmas Cupcakes don't take too much effort to make!

You will notice that my original recipe uses both butter and applesauce.  Once upon a time I was trying to make even the most decadent desserts a little bit healthier but I’ve since decided that if I eat everything in moderation then full on butter is the way to go.  It just makes them taste better.

These cupcakes are perfect for the holidays.  They start with making your own Chai spice with cinnamon, ginger, black pepper, all spice, and cloves.   This spice goes in both the cupcakes and the frosting.   It totally makes them taste like Christmas.

Chai Cranberry Cupcakes are perfect for the holidays.

The cupcakes are sweet and spicy and have a pop of tartness from the cranberries.  The frosting is rich and creamy with just a hint of spice.  The sugared cranberries on top add a pop of color as well as additional tartness to the cupcakes.

Bite into one of the sweet, spicy, and tart Chai Cranberry Christmas Cupcakes this holiday season!

I love the way that they turned out.  I also am really please with my revamped frosting.  I think it holds up really well and just tastes really great.   I passed a few of these out to my friends and I heard nothing but rave reviews.  So if you are looking for a tasty holiday treat make sure you try these cupcakes!


I can't get enough of these Chai Cranberry Christmas Cupcakes!

Chai Cranberry Christmas Cupcakes

Yield: 18 cupcakes
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes

Delicious chai spiced cupcakes dotted with fresh cranberries topped off with a cream cheese buttercream and sugared cranberries!


For the chai spice:

  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon all spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

For the cupcakes:

  • 1/2 c. (1 stick) butter
  • 1 1/4 c. sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 1/4 c. flour
  • 1 T. chai spice seasoning
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 c. milk
  • 3/4 c. fresh cranberries, some whole, some chopped

For the frosting:

  • 2 sticks butter, softened
  • 4 oz. cream cheese
  • 2 teaspoons chai spice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 4 c. powdered sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons milk

For decoration:

  • sugared cranberries
  • sanding sugar


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 18 muffin cups with paper liners.
  2. In a small bowl combine all the ingredients for the chai spice. Stir until well combined.
  3. In a large bowl cream together the butter and the sugar.
  4. Add in the vanilla and eggs and mix well.
  5. In a medium bowl combine the flour, chai spice, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  6. Add half of the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix well to combine.
  7. Pour the milk into the bowl and mix until well combined.
  8. Add in the remaining flour and mix until just combined.
  9. Fold in the cranberries.
  10. Fill the cupcake liners 3/4 of the way full.
  11. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely on a wire rack.
  12. To make the frosting beat the butter and cream cheese in a large bowl with a mixer on medium speed.
  13. Add in the chai spice and vanilla and mix well.
  14. Add the powdered sugar a half cup at a time, mixing well after each addition, until the frosting is smooth. Add in milk until you reach desired consistency.
  15. Pipe the frosting onto cool cupcakes. Top each one with 2 or 3 sugared cranberries then sprinkle with sanding sugar.


Recipe adapted from Apple A Day

Looking for the ultimate holiday dessert? Give these Chai Cranberry Christmas Cupcakes a try!


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