A Year of Holidays: Super Bowl (Part 2)

A review of Dr. Pepper Cupcakes & Eight-Layer Dip from The Pioneer Woman Cooks: A Year of Holidays cookbook.

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Food and Football (Part 2)

Click here for Part 1, where I tested Buffalo Chicken Bites, Grilled Corn Dip, Potato Skins (classic & pepperoni pizza), and Spicy Whiskey BBQ Sliders.

This year I just tried two of the remaining recipes in the Super Bowl section of this cookbook: Eight-Layer Dip & Dr. Pepper Cupcakes.  Both of these recipes can only be found in the cookbook, and not on the Pioneer Woman’s website.

Cupcakes (Yesterday)

I made the cupcakes first, since I could prepare them a day in advance.  The less I have to do the day of an event or holiday, the better!

First, the chopped prunes and chopped cherries are tossed in a saucepan with some Dr. Pepper and boiled for about 5 minutes.  In a separate saucepan, butter is melted and then mixed with cocoa powder and boiling water.  Both are set aside to cool.

The remaining wet ingredients are combined, and the dry ingredients are mixed together in the bowl of an electric mixer.  First, the butter/cocoa mixture is added to the dry ingredients, then the buttermilk mixture, and finally the Dr. Pepper/fruit mixture.

My batter turned out a little runnier than it looked in the cookbook, but they still turned out fine with just a little extra time in the oven.

Once the cupcakes are cooled, the frosting is made.  More Dr. Pepper is poured into a saucepan, but this time it’s boiled down and reduced.  It took me longer to reduce than the recipe said it would.

In an electric mixer, all the ingredients are combined, adding the cooled Dr. Pepper reduction last.  Now all that’s left is to ice the cupcakes!

Eight-Layer Dip (Today)

In order to make sure the dip stayed fresh, I waited until this morning to make it.

First, a pico de gallo is made.  In a separate bowl, diced avocados are mixed with some of the pico de gallo mixture to form a chunky guacamole.  Then the refried beans are mixed with taco seasoning.

Now we layer!  Refried beans, sour cream, grated Monterey Jack cheese, grated Cheddar cheese, chunky guacamole, olives, roasted corn, and pico de gallo.  Then half a lime is squeezed all over the top.

To be honest, I didn’t use as many olives as I was supposed to because I don’t like them and wanted to be able to easily pick them out.

Taste: 10/10 for the Dip, and 8/10 for the Cupcakes

The layer dip was of course really delicious, but while the cupcakes were definitely good they were a little odd.  I’m not actually sure how to describe the taste!  Sort of like a spice cake, maybe?  But sweeter.  The icing is very rich and buttery, and I liked the citrus flavor in it.20200201_164122

Difficulty: Average

I’d say the cupcakes were a little more challenging than the dip, but both probably come in around “average.”

Cost: Average / Expensive

For the cupcakes, the cost will move into “expensive” if you don’t already have a lot of these items in your pantry (i.e. butter, baking soda, vanilla, flour, sugar, spices, etc.).  You will need prunes, dried cherries, Dr. Pepper, butter, cocoa powder, buttermilk, eggs, baking soda, vanilla, flour, sugar, nutmeg, anise seed, ground ginger, ground allspice, ground cardamom, powdered sugar, lemon zest, and orange zest.

The dip requires tomatoes, onion, jalapeño, cilantro, lime, avocado, refried beans, taco seasoning, sour cream, grated Cheddar cheese, grated Monterey Jack cheese, sliced black olives, and roasted corn kernels.

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