Easy Beach Cupcakes

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35 minutes

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These easy Beach Cupcakes are adorable, sweet treats that’ll bring a fun beach vibe to any summer party. Decorated with colorful beach umbrellas, a sandy beach, and a sunbathing teddy graham, these playful cupcakes are just too cute to resist!

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Beach cupcake with green umbrella

Adorable Beach Cupcakes

These beach theme cupcakes are the cutest dessert you’ll make all summer! Because they start with a simple box of cake mix, they’re easy to prepare too! Once baked to perfection, these delectable treats are decorated, with a few simple items, to look just like a charming summer beach scene.

A layer of Nilla wafer cookie crumbs represents the sandy shore. Nestled in a peach gummy pool float there’s a cute little teddy graham and a colorful paper umbrella that completes the scene. These easy-to-make, whimsical cupcakes are perfect for beach parties, summer gatherings, or simply adding a little beachy fun to your dessert table.

If you’re looking for other cute, themed cupcakes, check out these colorful Mermaid Cupcakes and Unicorn Cupcakes.

Beach cupcakes from above

Why We Love This Recipe

  • Adorable decorations: They’re all decked out to look just like a beach scene. From the blue color of the frosting to the happy little teddy graham, these cupcakes are guaranteed to bring a smile to anyone’s face.
  • Easy summer dessert: Starting with a boxed cake mix and a super easy buttercream frosting, these easy to make cupcakes are so simple, even a beginner can do it!  
  • Great for many occasions:  From a summer birthday party, pool party, or even baby showers these adorable cupcakes add a delightful touch to all your summer gatherings.

Ingredients:

Beach Cupcakes ingredients labeled
  • Box of white cake mix + ingredients on the back (water, oil, eggs)
  • Butter, softened
  • Vanilla extract
  • Powdered sugar
  • Milk 
  • Blue gel food color
  • Peach ring candies
  • Teddy Grahams
  • Nilla Wafers – crushed to fine crumbs
  • Cupcake liners
  • Umbrellas, optional

How to Make Summer Beach Themed Cupcakes

For The Cupcakes

Step 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a muffin tin with blue cupcakes liners.

Step 2. In a large bowl, mix together the boxed cake mix with the other ingredients listed on the box. Bake cupcakes according to the package directions (you’ll know they’re done when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean)

Step 3. Allow cupcakes to cool completely to room temperature.

Cake batter in bowl
Cupcake liners filled with batter

For The Frosting

Step 1. For the buttercream frosting, use a hand mixer or stand mixer to beat the butter until smooth. Mix in vanilla and powdered sugar, until well combined.

Step 2. If the frosting is too thick, add 1 tablespoon of milk at a time until you get the consistency you like.

Note: If your butter is really soft, you may not need to add the milk. But typically, it’ll take just a little to help make it smooth and creamy.

Step 3. Add about 1 teaspoon of the blue food coloring to the vanilla frosting and mix until there are no streaks. If needed, add more blue to give your frosting the perfect ocean water look.

Decorating The Cupcakes

Step 7. Frost the cupcakes with blue frosting using an icing spatula (or a butter knife).

Blue icing in glass bowl
Blue icing on cupcakes

Step 8. Sprinkle about a spoon full of Nilla wafer crumbs over half of the cupcake to make edible sand. 

Step 9. Place a teddy bear cracker inside of a peach ring and add to the “water” on the frosted cupcakes.

Step 10. If you like, you can add paper drink umbrellas or paper palm trees to the tops of the cupcakes for the perfect finishing touch. Enjoy!

Crushed Nilla Wafers and blue frosting on cupcakes
Teddy grahams in ring candies on top of cupcakes

How Should I Store Leftover Cupcakes?

If you have leftover cupcakes, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator. For best results, they should be eaten within a day or two.

Can I Use Store-bought Frosting?

Of course! Canned frosting tends to have a dense consistency. To make it lighter and fluffier, use an electric mixer to whip it for a few minutes. Add a little vanilla extract to give it more of a homemade flavor.

Beach cupcakes from above

Other Decorating Options

  • Beach sand: Instead of the teddy graham crackers, you can use crushed graham crackers. To add a little more texture, mix in about a tablespoon of brown sugar to the graham cracker crumbs. This gives the color of the sand more definition. For a sweeter topping, you can use gold sanding sugar.
  • Floatie: If you can’t find peach gummy rings, you can cut a fruit roll up (or other fruit leather candy) into small rectangles to resemble beach towels. Use a touch of icing to help stick the teddy bear to the top.  
  • Ocean water: Make the ocean frosting look like it has little white caps. When mixing the blue icing, create a swirled pattern by using a toothpick to mix in the blue food coloring.
  • Beach ball: Add even more fun to the beach scene by placing a hard beach ball candy to the top of each cupcake. You can also easily make your own little beach ball out of fondant.
  • Ocean blue cupcakes: You can give the cupcakes even more color by adding a few drops of the blue food coloring to the cake batter.
  • Pretty presentation: Serve on a decorated platter or tray with ocean-colored sprinkles, candy pearls or some additional cookie crumbs.
Beach cupcake with pink umbrella

Beach Cupcakes Recipe Tips and Tricks

  • Don’t overfill the liners: You want big and fluffy cupcakes, but you don’t want them running over the side when they are baking. To allow room for rising, pour batter until it’s about two-thirds of the way full in the liners.
  • Avoid over mixing: To make sure you end up with light and fluffy cupcakes, mix until the ingredients are just combined. Overmixing can result dense and heavy cupcakes.
  • Use a flavor you prefer: We used white cake mix but you can a yellow cake mix if that’s what you like. You can even use chocolate cake mix, and just take the icing all the way to edge to cover up the chocolate color.
  • Cool completely before frosting: To prevent the frosting from melting and sliding off, you want to always let your cupcakes cool completely. To speed up the cooling process, set them on a wire rack so the air can come from below to help cool the bottoms.
  • Wait to add the umbrella and bear: The moisture in the cupcakes can cause the umbrella sticks to soften and the teddy grahams to become soggy so wait until right before serving to add them.
Beach cupcakes with paper umbrellas

Want More Fun Cupcake Ideas?

4 from 3 votes

Beach Cupcakes


Course Desserts & Sweets
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
These easy Beach Cupcakes, with colorful umbrellas, sandy beaches and sunbathing teddy grahams will bring fun beach vibes to any summer party.

Ingredients
 

  • 1 box white cake mix 15.25 ounce size
  • 1 cup water *for cake batter
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil *for cake batter
  • 3 eggs *for cake batter
  • 1 cup butter softened
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1-2 tbsp. milk as needed
  • blue gel food coloring
  • 36 Nilla Wafers crushed to fine crumbs (best done in a food processor)
  • 24 peach ring candies
  • 24 Teddy Grahams

Instructions

For The Cupcakes

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a muffin tin with blue cupcakes liners.
  • In a large bowl, mix together the boxed cake mix with the other ingredients listed on the box. Bake cupcakes according to the package directions.
    1 box white cake mix, 1 cup water, 1/2 cup vegetable oil, 3 eggs
  • Allow cupcakes to cool completely to room temperature.

For The Frosting

  • For the buttercream frosting, use a hand mixer or stand mixer to beat the butter until smooth. Mix in vanilla and powdered sugar, until well combined.
    1 cup butter, 2 tsp. vanilla extract, 4 cups powdered sugar
  • If the frosting is too thick, add 1 tablespoon of milk at a time until you get the consistency you like.
    1-2 tbsp. milk
  • Add about 1 teaspoon of the blue food coloring to the vanilla frosting and mix until there are no streaks. If needed, add more blue to give your frosting the perfect ocean water look.
    blue gel food coloring

Decorating Your Cupcakes

  • Frost the top of the cupcakes with blue frosting using an icing spatula (or a butter knife).
  • Sprinkle about a spoon full of Nilla wafer crumbs over half of the cupcake to make edible sand.
    36 Nilla Wafers
  • Place a teddy bear cracker inside of a peach ring and add to the “water” on the frosted cupcakes.
    24 peach ring candies, 24 Teddy Grahams
  • If you like, you can add paper umbrellas to the tops of the cupcakes for the perfect finishing touch. Enjoy!

Notes

  • The amount of water, vegetable oil and eggs are the typical ingredients required per the cake mix box. If your box calls for different amounts, follow the box instructions instead.
  • If your butter is really soft, you may not need to add any milk to the frosting. But typically, it’ll take just a little to help make it smooth and creamy.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 369kcal | Carbohydrates: 63g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 41mg | Sodium: 352mg | Potassium: 57mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 39g | Vitamin A: 267IU | Calcium: 65mg | Iron: 1mg
The nutrition information provided is an estimate and can vary based on cooking methods and ingredients used.

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4 from 3 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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2 Comments

  1. 2 stars
    there is no measurements for this recipe

    1. Hi Timothy, You can find all the measurements in the recipe card at the end. Enjoy 🙂

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