Maple Bacon Bourbon Cupcakes

(small batch – makes 6)



1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons bourbon
2 tablespoon pure maple syrup
1/4 teaspoon maple extract
3/4 cup (3.6 ounces) all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

Bourbon Glaze:

1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon bourbon

Maple Bacon:

2 strips thick-cut bacon, diced into small pieces
1 teaspoon pure maple syrup


1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 tablespoon bourbon
1/4 teaspoon maple extract


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (F). Line a cupcake tin with 6 liners. If using a 12-cup cupcake tin, fill the empty slots with an ice cube.


In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar and egg until pale and a little bit fluffy. Whisk in the vegetable oil, bourbon, maple syrup, and maple extract until completely incorporated.

Stir in the baking powder and salt until incorporated. Gently stir in the flour until batter is smooth.

Divide the batter between 6 cupcake liners and bake for 20 – 24 minutes or until a wooden skewer comes out mostly clean. A few moist crumbs clinging to skewer is okay, just make sure it’s not undercooked batter.

Remove from oven and pierce the tops of the cupcakes several times with a fork. Immediately brush the bourbon glaze over the cupcakes, allowing the glaze to absorb. Use all the glaze. Cool cupcakes in the tin for 5 minutes then remove to a wire rack and cool completely before frosting.

Bourbon Glaze:

A few minutes before cupcakes are finished baking, mix the glaze ingredients together in a small bowl. Heat in the microwave for 30 – 45 seconds until mixture bubbles. Stir to completely dissolve the sugar.

Tip: Place a plate beneath the glaze mixture when heating in case it bubbles over in the microwave.

Maple Bacon:

While the cupcakes bake, prepare the maple bacon by cooking the diced bacon until mostly crispy (but not dark brown). Drain the grease and return the bacon to the frying pan.

Drizzle 1 teaspoon pure maple syrup over the bacon. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until the syrup caramelizes.

Immediately remove from heat and transfer the maple bacon to a plate to cool completely.


Using an electric mixer, cream the butter until fluffy. Slowly add in the confectioners’ sugar and beat until incorporated. The mixture will be very stiff.

With the mixer on low, add the salt then drizzle in the maple syrup, bourbon, and maple extract.

Once ingredients are incorporated, beat on medium-high speed for 3 minutes until frosting is light and fluffy.

If the frosting is too soft, add additional confectioners’ sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, until desired consistency is reached. If the frosting is too stiff, add additional bourbon or maple syrup (your choice!) 1 teaspoon at a time, until desired consistency is reached, then beat an additional 2 minutes.


Place the frosting in a piping bag fitted with a wide star tip. Pipe generous swirls of frosting onto the tops of the completely cooled cupcakes.

If desired, drizzle a 1/2 teaspoon of maple syrup over the tops of the frosting swirls. With or without the extra maple syrup, garnish frosting with the bits of maple bacon and enjoy!


Recipe can be doubled.