Easy Mermaid Cupcakes

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1 hour 5 minutes

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These adorable Mermaid Cupcakes are sure to make a splash at your next party! Topped with creamy swirls of colorful frosting and a whimsical candy mermaid tail, they’ll be a big hit with all the Little Mermaid fans in your life. 

Easy Mermaid Cupcakes

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Mermaid cupcakes on white marble counter

Easy Mermaid Cupcakes 

These adorable mermaid cupcakes, with fun, colorful, and whimsical charm, are the perfect treat to celebrate the release of the new Little Mermaid movie. They’ll also add a special little touch of magic to your next beach or pool party or any ocean-themed gathering.

Light and fluffy, these decadent cupcakes are irresistibly delicious and are guaranteed to be loved by both kids and adults alike.  Whether you’re enjoying a family movie night or serving them at a party, you can take the mermaid theme to the next level by serving these amazing cupcakes with a big scoop of this No Churn Mermaid Ice Cream

Mermaid cupcakes from above

Why We Love This Recipe

  • Gorgeous dessert: These whimsical ocean themed cupcakes are bursting with vibrant colors that will make a beautiful presentation for any Little Mermaid birthday party or beach-themed party.
  • Fun and easy recipe: The good news is this easy cupcake recipe starts with a boxed cake mix. The colorful frosting and candy tails make these cupcakes so much fun to create with the kids.
  • Irresistible treats: Beyond their beautiful colors, these cupcakes deliver on flavor too. They’re moist, fluffy, and delectably sweet. They’re sure to please any mermaid fan in your life. 

Mermaid Cupcakes Ingredients

Ingredients:

  • Box of white cake mix + ingredients on the back- water, oil, egg whites)
  • Bag of bright pink candy melts
  • Bag of blue candy melts
  • Unsalted butter softened to room temperature
  • Vanilla extract
  • Powdered sugar
  • Milk
  • Mermaid sprinkle mix
  • Pink, teal and purple gel color

Optional: Pearl & mermaid edible luster dust, or edible glitter

How to Make Mermaid Cupcakes

For the Candy Mermaid Cupcake Toppers

Note: To make the edible mermaid tails, you’ll need mermaid tail molds. We used 3-inch molds, but any similarly sized mold will work.

Step 1. Start by melting the pink candy melts by placing them in a microwave safe bowl. Heat in 30 second intervals, stirring well between, until nice and smooth.

Pink candy melts melted in white bowl

Step 2. Add the melted pink candy to a piping bag and snip off the tip.

Note: If you don’t have a piping bag, you can use a plastic sandwich bag with the tip of the corner cut off.

Melted pink candy in piping bag

Step 3. Pipe the melted candy into your mermaid tail mold. It’s okay if you overfill the molds a little bit.

Step 4. Take a small spatula that has a flat edge and scrape it across the edges of the tails to make a smooth edge.

Melted candy added to mermaid tail mold

Step 5. Place the mold into the refrigerator for about 5 minutes.

Step 6. Once the tails are dried and set up, gently remove them from the silicon mold,

Step 7. Repeat this process to make 6 pink tails. It goes faster if you have more than one mold to work with.

Step 8. Using a food safe paint brush, brush some of the pearl edible shimmer onto the pink tails.

Mermaid tails brushed with edible shimmer with paintbrush nearby

Step 9. Repeat this process for the blue candy melts to make 6 blue tails.

Tip: Making the tails are easier if you have 2-3 molds to do at the same time. If the candy at the end of your piping bag starts to solidify, just push that bit out until the candy melts are flowing again.

For the Mermaid Cupcakes

Step 1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Step 2. In a large mixing bowl on medium speed, mix together cake mix, water, oil, and egg whites.

Step 3. Add 3-4 drops of teal gel food coloring and mix to combine. You can add extra color, if you want a deeper shade of teal.

Cake batter with blue food coloring in glass bowl

Step 4. Place cupcake liners into a 12-cup muffin tin. Fill them about 2/3-3/4 full of cupcake batter.

Step 5. Place them in the oven and bake according to the package directions, at 350 for approximately 18 minutes. You’ll know your cupcakes are done when a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Allow the cupcakes to cool to room temperature before frosting.

Cake batter poured into muffin cups

​For the Colorful Swirled Frosting

Step 1. In a large mixing bowl, use your stand mixer or a hand mixer to beat the butter until smooth.

Butter creamed in a clear glass bowl

Step 2. Next, add the vanilla and powdered sugar. Mix well until frosting starts to form.

Step 3. If the vanilla buttercream frosting is too thick, add an additional tablespoon of milk, if it is too thin you can add 2 tablespoons of powdered sugar at a time to get it the right frosting consistency.

Step 4. Once the frosting is mixed up, divide it evenly into 3 separate bowls.

Buttercream frosting in glass bowl

Step 5. Add 3-4 drops of pink gel coloring to the first bowl and mix to combine. You can add more if you want a darker shade of pink.

Buttercream frosting colored with pink food coloring

Step 6. Spoon the pink frosting onto a piece of plastic wrap that’s about a foot long and wrap up the ends.

Pink frosting in plastic wrap

Step 7. Repeat this step with the teal and purple frosting.

Pink, purple and teal frosting in plastic wrap

Step 8. Once you have your three frosting colors wrapped up, snip off one end of the twisted plastic wrap.

Step 9. Prepare a plastic piping bag with a 1M star tip, and place all 3 together into the piping bag. 

Step 10. Push the frosting down to get it started.

Tip: In my experience, for best results, push some of the frosting out on some parchment paper before you start on the cupcakes. This helps you get an even amount of the 3 colors when you’re frosting.

Blue-green colored cupcakes with pink, purple and teal frosting

Step 11. Swirl the frosting onto each cupcake.

Step 12. Finally, add the mermaid sprinkles and one of the candy mermaid tails to the top of each cupcake.

Cupcakes with mermaid sprinkles and mermaid tails sticking out the top

Mermaid Cupcake Recipe Variations

  • Chocolate cupcakes:  If you’re making these for chocolate fans, you can simply swap out the white cake mix for chocolate. You will lose the pastel color, but the frosting will make up for it. 
  • Coconut pineapple cupcakes: Tropical flavors with a mermaid theme go hand in hand. Add shredded coconut to the batter and some very well-drained crushed pineapple to the batter.
  • Strawberry cupcakes: Strawberries are the ideal summer flavor. You can swap out the white cake mix with a strawberry cake mix. You can also add freeze-dried strawberries to the cake batter. This gives the cupcakes the flavor you want, without changing the texture like fresh strawberries will. 
Mermaid cupcakes with pink and blue tails
Can I Make These Cupcakes into Mermaid Cake?

Absolutely! Just bake the cake the same way you would any boxed mix. Then just add swirls of the frosting to the top of the cake. Add lots of sprinkles and place the candy tails in different places along the top of the cake. You can even use graham cracker crumbs on one end to look like a beach.

Can I Make Mini-sized Mermaid Cupcakes?

You sure can. Of course, they will take less baking time. The candy tails may be a little too big for mini cupcakes. Instead, you can use little sugar pearls on the top of the cupcakes instead.

Mermaid cupcakes with white napkin

Can I Use a Different Type of Frosting?

We used a simple homemade buttercream frosting for these gorgeous mermaid cupcakes, but you can also use your favorite cream cheese frosting recipe.

You can also take a short cut and use premade canned frosting you get in the baking aisle in the grocery store. If you use premade, just add in a little bit of vanilla extract and whip it well with the electric mixer to give it a fluffy texture like homemade frosting. 

Mermaid cupcakes with pink and blue mermaid tails sticking out of the frosting

How Do I Store These Cupcakes?

These mermaid cupcakes can sit out for a short period at room temperature when serving at parties.

For leftovers or if you made them a day in advance, you’ll want to keep them stored in the fridge in an airtight container. When ready to serve, remove the cupcakes from the refrigerator and let them come to room temperature before enjoying. 

Frosted cupcakes are best when served within 2-3 days of making them. 

Mermaid cupcake with bite taken out

Mermaid Birthday Party Ideas & Printables

If you’re making these for a mermaid themed party, you’ll want to check these out too…

Want More Delicious Cupcake Recipes?

If you thought these mermaid cupcake ideas were fun, you should check out some of our other fun cupcake recipes!

Mermaid Cupcakes for recipe card
5 from 43 votes

Mermaid Cupcakes


Course Desserts & Sweets
Cuisine American
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
These Easy Mermaid Cupcakes, with swirls of colorful frosting and a fun candy mermaid tail, are sure to make a splash at your next party!

Ingredients
 

Instructions

FOR THE CANDY MERMAID CUPCAKE TOPPERS

  • Start by melting the pink candy melts by placing them in a microwave safe bowl. Heat in 30 second intervals, stirring well between, until nice and smooth.
    12 ounces Bright pink candy melts
  • Add the melted pink candy to a piping bag and snip off the tip.
  • Note: If you don’t have a piping bag, you can use a plastic sandwich bag with the tip of the corner cut off.
  • Pipe the melted candy into your mermaid tail mold. It’s okay if you overfill the molds a little bit.
  • Take a small spatula that has a flat edge and scrape it across the edges of the tails to make a smooth edge.
  • Place the mold into the refrigerator for about 5 minutes.
  • Once the tails are dried and set up, gently remove them from the silicon mold,
  • Repeat this process to make 6 pink tails total. It goes faster if you have more than one mold to work with.
  • Using a food safe paint brush, brush some of the pearl edible shimmer onto the pink tails.
    Optional: Pearl & mermaid edible luster dust
  • Repeat this process for the blue candy melts to make 6 blue tails.
    12 ounces Blue candy melts
  • Tip: Making the tails are easier if you have 2-3 molds to do at the same time. If the candy at the end of your piping bag starts to solidify, just push that bit out until the candy melts are flowing again.

FOR THE MERMAID CUPCAKES

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • In a large mixing bowl on medium speed, mix together cake mix, water, oil, and egg whites.
    1 box white cake mix + ingredients on the back (water, oil, egg whites)
  • Add 3-4 drops of teal gel food coloring and mix to combine. You can add extra color, if you want a deeper shade of teal.
    Teal gel color
  • Place cupcake liners into a 12-cup muffin tin. Fill them about 2/3-3/4 full of cupcake batter.
  • Place them in the oven and bake according to the package directions, at 350 for approximately 18 minutes. You’ll know your cupcakes are done when a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  • Allow the cupcakes to cool to room temperature before frosting.
  • Cake batter poured into muffin cups

​FOR THE COLORFUL SWIRLED FROSTING

  • In a large mixing bowl, use your stand mixer or a hand mixer to beat the butter until smooth.
    1 cup unsalted butter
  • Next, add the vanilla extract and powdered sugar. Mix well until frosting starts to form.
    2 tsp. vanilla extract, 4 cups powdered sugar
  • If the vanilla buttercream frosting is too thick, add an additional tablespoon of milk, if it is too thin you can add 2 tablespoons of powdered sugar at a time to get it the right frosting consistency.
    1-2 tbsp milk
  • Once the frosting is mixed, divide it evenly into 3 separate bowls.
  • Add 3-4 drops of pink gel coloring to the first bowl and mix to combine. You can add more if you want a darker shade of pink.
    Pink gel color
  • Spoon the pink frosting onto a piece of plastic wrap that’s about a foot long and wrap up the ends.
  • Repeat this for each different color.
    Purple gel color, Teal gel color
  • Once you have your three frosting colors wrapped up, snip off one end of the twisted plastic wrap.
  • Prepare a piping bag with a 1M star tip, and place all 3 together into the piping bag.
  • Push the frosting down to get it started.
  • Tip: In my experience, for best results, push some of the frosting out on some parchment paper before you start on the cupcakes. This helps you get an even amount of the 3 colors when you’re frosting.
  • Frost the cupcakes using a swirling motion.
  • Finally, add the mermaid sprinkles and one of the candy mermaid tails to the top of each cupcake.
    Mermaid sprinkle mix

Notes

To make the edible mermaid tails, you’ll need mermaid tail molds. We used 3-inch molds, but any similarly sized mold will work. It also helps if you have more than one, just so you can make several at a time.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 579kcal | Carbohydrates: 90g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 41mg | Sodium: 328mg | Potassium: 35mg | Fiber: 0.5g | Sugar: 73g | Vitamin A: 475IU | Calcium: 101mg | Iron: 1mg
The nutrition information provided is an estimate and can vary based on cooking methods and ingredients used.

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