Pistachio Cupcakes

Last October I was asked to make cupcakes for my childhood friend’s wedding. The couple asked that I mix up the flavors for the 100 plus cupcakes I was to make  under one condition…I must make a pistachio cupcake! You see, the groom LOVES pistachios. Not just the nut in a shell either. He loves the ice cream, the muffin, the pudding…really anything you can flavor with pistachios. At the time, I had never made a pistachio cupcake but I am always up for a new recipe. So I did as any normal amateur baker would do, I turned to my Pinterest friends. After looking at dozens of recipes I was able to come up with one that I thought would work best. 

(Not so) coincidentally, Nick was the photographer for this very same wedding. A baker and photographer under one roof. Not too bad huh?  Anyways, since I was also a guest at the wedding Nick had asked his brother to help by being the second shooter. This is where Matt (the brother) experienced his very first pistachio cupcake. It was love at first bite. For months he talked about this cupcake and how he couldn’t wait for his birthday so that I could make him his very own batch. Well, his birthday had come and gone and I still had yet to make Matt his cupcakes. In my defense he was out of town the week of his birthday so I just never got around to doing it. But enough is enough right? Tonight I decided to fulfill his wishes and make a batch of pistachio cupcakes.  (Mostly to get him to stop bugging me about it!!)

I hope you enjoy them as much as he does! 

1 box of white or yellow cake mix
1 package of instant pistachio pudding
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup club soda
3/4 cup chopped pistachios

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Mix together cake mix, pudding mix, oil, and soda until well blended. Stir in 1/2 cup of chopped pistachios.
Pour batter into cupcake liners about half way. Bake for 18-20 minutes. 
Let cupcakes cool completely. Frost with buttercream frosting and top with remaining chopped pistachios. 

Buttercream Frosting
1 cup of unsalted butter (softened)
3 cups of powdered sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 T milk
green food coloring (optional)

Cream together the butter and sugar until well blended. Add in the vanilla and milk until combined. Add more milk if needed for smoother consistency. 
For a green tint, add a few drops of green food coloring and mix until blended. 

Servings: 24-28 frosted cupcakes

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