Recipe of the Week: Boxtop Cupcakes…

This past year, I volunteered to be one of the boxtop collectors for my kids’ school.  For those who don’t know, this job involves going around and picking up the boxtops for your assigned grade once a month, clipping, counting, and bagging them in groups of 50.  I was assigned to the first grade, and there are five classrooms, which fortunately for the school means a lot of boxtops!!!  Well…I can assure you of two things.  One, I will not be volunteering for this job again!  And two, I will never, I repeat never send in boxtops with my children that have not been perfectly clipped on the dotted lines!  This is a very tedious job, so say the least! However, once you are done then the fun part comes!  Baking cupcakes!  The class with the most boxtops gets to have cupcakes, and I get to be the one to deliver them to all their cute little smiling faces!  (Believe me, this makes the kids very happy.  The teachers not so much, though 😉  Coupon nut that I am, I found Pillsbury cake mix for 50 cents a box and stocked up for the school year.  I usually make the icing, though.  Here is a great icing recipe, that is also nut free, and dairy free if you exclude the milk.  Some of the kids have allergies, so you have to be careful!  Hope you enjoy, and remember, PLEASE CLIP YOUR BOXTOPS NEATLY!!! 

1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine softened
1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract (can purchase at Michael’s)
4 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar (1 lb.)
2 tbsp milk

Using a stand mixer, cream shortening and butter together. Add vanilla. Cover entire mixer and bowl with a dishtowel while adding sugar, as it will make a huge mess if you don’t!  Gradually add confectioner’s sugar.  Add milk a little at a time and beat at medium speed until you reach the desired consistency.  Keep bowl covered with a damp cloth until ready to use. Ice immediately, or keep icing bowl in refrigerator when not in use. It can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. You will need to re-whip it before using.  If you have a child with a dairy allergy, you can use water instead of milk.

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