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Maltese Cupcakes

Photo: Tami Hardeman
Just like the actual dogs, these cupcakes are just too cute for words. Rather than a regular cupcake batter, use a pound cake batter for these cupcakes because it makes a sturdier cupcake to hold all of the frosting and decorating ingredients. Make a homemade vanilla  frosting or use canned vanilla frosting.  You’ll need enough vanilla frosting to lightly frost the cupcakes, plus additional frosting for the decorations. You can make your own Rice Krispie Treats or use store-bought. See How to Make Maltese Cupcakes for step-by-step instructions and photos.


  • 1 vanilla cupcake with vanilla frosting
  • 2 (2– x 1-inch) Rice Krispie Treats
  • 1 large marshmallow (not jumbo)
  • 1 fruit roll or red/pink chewy candy (such as Tootsie Rolls)
  • 1 small chocolate candies, sugar pearls, or chocolate frosting
  • 1/4 cup additional vanilla frosting for decorating

How to Make It

  1. Add a thin layer of frosting to the top of the whole cupcake.

    How to Make Maltese cupcakes
  2. Cut a marshmallow in half; set aside.

  3. Shape one Rice Krispie treat into a ball about the size of a golf ball. Add one dollop of vanilla frosting toward the middle of the cupcake to hold the head in place.

  4. Place ball on top of dollop of frosting in center of the cupcake.

  5. Place a small amount of frosting in the front of the Rice Krispie ball and place one half of a marshmallow, cut edge side in the icing, to act as the snout.

  6. Fit a piping bag with a #233 grass tip and fill with white frosting.  Pipe frosting “hair” over entire cupcake, except the front of marshmallow muzzle. To do so, hold bag so top of the bag and cupcake form a 90° angle, less than ¼ inch from surface. Apply pressure to form hair, pulling up and away to make hair about ½ inch. Stop pressure and pull tip away. Cut the second Rice Krispie Treat, cutting 2 small triangles as ears. Place at top of the Maltese’s head for ears, one ear at “11 o’clock” and the other at “1 o’clock”. Continue piping with #233 grass tip to cover.

  7. Using a piping bag with a #12 tip filled with white frosting, pipe front side of marshmallow for nose.  This can also be done with a spatula.

  8. Add small chocolate candies to face for eyes and nose. Cut a small piece of fruit roll for tongue.  Insert tongue piece below nose. 


Cook's Notes

For the basic frosting on top of each cupcake, you’ll only need enough to lightly coat the top of each cupcake, about ¼ cup frosting per cupcake.  Too much frosting on the cupcake will make it harder to decorate into the puppy face.