Pirate Rum Cupcakes

My friend Liz’s surprise birthday party took place at pirate-themed-bar Pillagers Pub, so naturally I needed to create a pirate-themed cupcake. She had mentioned that she liked the idea of alcohol-infused baked goods, so I got working on a Malibu Rum cupcake and frosting. The cake is an old recipe by Sandra Lee, and the frosting was something whipped together by myself. The result was a light, fluffy, refreshing cupcake with just the right amount of coconut and rum flavoring.

Photos by Justin Schmauser

Malibu Rum Cake
(Recipe from Sandra Lee’s Semi-Homemade Cooking)


  • I box classic yellow cake mix
  • 1 cup Malibu Rum
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 3.4 ounce package vanilla instant pudding mix
  • 4 eggs


Preheat oven to 325 degrees and prepare cupcake pans with wrappers (I used this Pirate Cupcake Kit)

Mix all ingredients (cake mix, rum, vegetable oil, instant pudding mix and eggs) in a bowl with an electric mixer for 2 minutes.

Pour mixture into cupcake pans, filling each 2/3 full.

Bake according to the directions on the back of the box, or when a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean.

Let cool, frost, and enjoy!

Coconut Rum Buttercream Frosting


  • 8 TBS unsalted butter
  • 3-4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 TBS Malibu Rum
  • 1 TBS coconut milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


In an electric mixer, whip butter until fluffy.

Add in 3 cups of powdered sugar, rum, milk, and vanilla slowly as you mix.

Continue to mix until you reach the frosting consistency you prefer, adding in more powdered sugar or coconut milk as needed.

(Warning: These are not for lil scabbers under the age of 21, on account of the rum.)

Arrgh you going to make these at your next pirate gathering?


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