Polar Bear Cupcakes

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If you have a kiddo that has a winter birthday this year, you should definitely make these Polar Bear Cupcakes. They are homemade cupcakes topped with smooth and creamy icing with toppings that make the cutest little polar bear face.

Winter Bear Cupcakes

These are so simple to make and taste so good! I love making these will my kids and I’m sure your children will love making them too. You get to make your own cupcake batter and decorate them to look like polar bears. The sanding sugar on its face looks like it plopped in some fresh snow.

Key Ingredients You’ll Need

Flour: Use all-purpose flour for the best results along with the baking powder and baking soda to allow them to rise properly in the oven.

Sugar: You will need granulated sugar for the cupcakes and powdered sugar combined with butter, vanilla, and heavy whipped cream for the frosting.

Decorating Ingredients: You will need Black Edible Pearl Sprinkles, White sanding sprinkles, and Ghirardelli white melting wafers that can be found at sam’s club.

How To Make Polar Bear Cupcakes

Step 1. Set the oven to 325 degrees and use paper liners to line a 12-cupcake pan. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl and whisk to combine. Add the milk and vanilla into a small bowl and combine. Put the butter and sugar into the bowl of a standing mixer and combine using a paddle attachment on medium-high for 2-3 minutes until light and fluffy. Turn down to medium-low and one at a time, gradually add in the egg and egg whites and combine for 1-2 minutes until creamy.

Step 2. Pour in half of the flour mixture and milk mixture alternating between the two and combining after each addition. Portion the batter into the liners before placing it in the oven for 18-20 minutes or until the tops are dry to the touch and a toothpick comes out clean. Prepare the icing by placing the butter and vanilla into a standing mixer and combining using a paddle attachment. Pour in the 2 cups of powdered sugar and combine on low until it forms pebbles. Add in the rest of the powdered sugar and combine while gradually increasing the speed to medium. Add in the heavy whipping cream and combine until smooth.


Step 3. Add a thick mound of frosting on top of the cupcake using a cake spatula. Put some of the frostings into a piping bag. Pipe some of the frostings onto the back of a Ghirardelli white melting wafer and place it onto one of the top corners of the cupcake to make an ear. Repeat so that you have two ears and a head. Put a white wafer into the middle of the frosting to make the nose and pipe some frosting on top. Coat the whole top of the cupcake in white sanding sugar. Place two large black pearls for the eyes right above the nose. Press the eyes into the frosting slightly to stick. Use a smaller pearl for the nose. Serve and enjoy!

Other Ways To Decorate Polar Bear Cupcakes?

You can follow the directions for the frosting and cupcakes, then when it comes to the decorations you will need these additional ingredients to make these cupcakes into bear paws instead!

When the cupcakes are frosted, you will dip them in the shredded coconut. Then, place one of the grasshopper cookies on the lower half of the cupcake before placing 3 M&M’s for toes!

Polar Bear Cupcakes

Tips & Tricks

Place any leftovers in an airtight container for the best storage method.

These can be stored at room temperature or in the fridge.

To avoid a huge mess, make sure to coat the cupcake in the sanding sugar over a bowl to catch any excess.

If you don’t have edible pearls, you can use chocolate frosting or M&M’s for the eyes. You can also just color some additional frosting black and use a piping bag to add the eyes and nose.

Polar Bear Cupcakes on a black and white table cloth.

More Animal Recipes:

Polar Bear Cupcakes with snow frosted decorations.
Polar Bear Cupcakes on a table cloth.

Polar Bear Cupcakes

If you have a kiddo that has a winter birthday this year, you should definitely make these Polar Bear Cupcakes. They are homemade cupcakes topped with smooth and creamy icing with toppings that make the cutest little polar bear face.
Servings: 16 cupcakes
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Decorating Time: 1 hour
Total: 1 hour 40 minutes


Vanilla Cupcake

  • 1 ½ cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt
  • 2/3 cup whole milk
  • 1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup butter unsalted, slightly softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 large egg whites

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

  • 4 ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup butter unsalted, softened
  • 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
  • 4 tbsp heavy whipping cream

Decorating Ingredients

  • edible pearl sprinkles Black
  • 2 – 8 oz white sanding sprinkles
  • 1 – 30 oz Ghirardelli white melting wafers


  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line a 12-cup cupcake pan with paper liners. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a small bowl, stir together the milk and vanilla.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce the speed to medium-low, slowly add the egg and egg whites one at a time, and beat until creamy, 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Slowly add half the flour mixture, then the milk mixture, then the remaining flour mixture, beating until just blended after each addition. Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake liners and bake until the tops are just dry to the touch and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes.
  • Using a standing mixer with a paddle beater, cream the butter and vanilla until combined. Mix in 2 C of powdered sugar on low speed until combined, the frosting will look like pebbles. Mix in the remaining powdered sugar and slowly increase speed to medium speed. Mix in the heavy whipping cream and continue to beat the frosting until it is combined and smooth
  • Scoop a mound of frosting on top of the cupcake and use the cake spatula to smooth it into a thick mound. Scoop some frosting into the piping bag. Take a Ghirardelli white melting wafer and pipe a dollop of frosting on top of it.
  • Place the frosting wafer into 1 top corner of the frosting mound to create the ear of the bear. Repeat for the other side Now you should have the ‘head’ and ‘ears‘.
  • Place a wafer in the center of the frosting to create the ‘nose’. Pipe frosting on top of the wafer. Using the white sanding sugar, coat the cupcake in the sanding sugar. Make sure to do this part over a bowl that way you don’t end up sanding sugar EVERYWHERE! It’s not fun to clean up!
  • Pick out two large size black pearl sprinkles for the eyes and place them above the nose. Make sure to press down into the frosting. Pick out a slightly smaller black pearl sprinkle for the nose. Enjoy

Last Step:

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  • 1 large Piping bag fitted with a large round tip
  • large Cookie scoop round
  • 1 min cake spatula angled


Calories: 674kcal | Carbohydrates: 76g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 41g | Saturated Fat: 27g | Cholesterol: 107mg | Sodium: 222mg | Potassium: 155mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 66g | Vitamin A: 1055IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 50mg | Iron: 1.1mg


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