Oh My Potluck!

Good recipes to share with friends.

Hummingbird Cupcakes and Cuckoo Frosting


Hummingbirds are really remarkable creatures. They can hover in one spot, swiftly change directions, beat their wings really darn fast, grow some beautifully coloured feathers and stick out their tongue better than Gene Simmons. They also can see colours in the ultra violet spectrum. That may mean they can see a dangerously sunny day. Don’t you wish you could be one? Seriously, think about how cool these traits are. How many other birds can do this? None, that’s how many.

This is the reason why scientists are working on developing unmanned aerial vehicles that fly like hummingbirds. A small, maneuverable UAV would be great for reconnaissance missions as well as making sure your plants get pollinated … right? They also blend in well with the environment, if your environment is the Americas, that is. If you want to find out more about hummingbird robots check out Regina Dugan’s TED talk; she’s the director at DARPA and shares some cool stuff.


Now that we all know how wonderful hummingbirds are, I honestly don’t know why these are called Hummingbird Cupcakes, so I didn’t change that part of the name with my usual half-witty pun. However, I figured the icing needed an equally awesome bird title and since it contains coconut: Cuckoo.


The cuckoo part of the title was directly inspired by a song I heard earlier in the day by Belle And Sebastian called “I’m A Cuckoo”. This is one of those bands that was so important to me in my teen years, I will always hold them in a special place in my heart. Feel free to share the love, here:

I don’t know why I have so much experience with hummingbird videos, but I also want to share this amazing video of people hand-feeding hummingbirds at Saltery Lodge, where the birds have become friendly with the kind people and visitors at the lodge.



Why are there so many hummingbird videos? Because they’re awesome. So why are these cupcakes given the name of this remarkable bird? I’ve figured it out: because they’re awesome, too, and even just a little bit healthier than some of those butter-filled cupcakes. So, enjoy.

Hummingbird Cupcakes and Cuckoo Frosting

(Found at Ambitious Kitchen)

Makes one dozen cup cakes.

  • 1 cup mashed banana (about 2 1/2 bananas)
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/3 cup crushed pineapple, drained
  • 3 tablespoons applesauce
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1 tablespoon butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk


  • 4 ounces or 113 grams cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup icing sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  1. Preheat oven to 350˚F (175˚C). Line a 12-cup standard muffin tin with cupcake liners and spray the inside of the liners with non-stick cooking spray to ensure they don’t stick.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine banana, applesauce, pecans and crushed pineapple.
  3. In a separate large bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.
  4. In a large bowl, beat the butter, oil, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla with an electric mixer on medium speed for 3 minutes. Add the egg and beat until fluffy for another minute. Fold in the banana mixture with a wooden spoon. Alternate adding in flour mixture and buttermilk and stir until just combined. Do not over mix.
  5. Fill lined muffin tins about 2/3 full. Bake for 16to 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Remove pan from oven and cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then remove cupcakes and transfer to the rack to finish cooling.
  6. For the frosting, beat the cream cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla in a large bowl until smooth.
  7. To toast the coconut: Preheat oven to 350˚F (175˚C). Spread out coconut in shallow pan and place in oven for 3-5 minutes. Watch the coconut very carefully so it doesn’t burn. You’ll want the coconut just slightly browned on the edges.
  8. Spread a generous helping of frosting on each cupcake then sprinkle the toasted coconut on top. Store the cupcakes in an airtight cupcake tote and take to the potluck.



4 comments on “Hummingbird Cupcakes and Cuckoo Frosting

  1. Sophie33
    May 26, 2013

    Yummmmmmm! What else can I say? I need them in my life!

    • kahht
      May 26, 2013

      Agreed. Everyone can use a little cupcake in their life.

  2. Lokness
    May 31, 2013

    YUMMMM!!! These cupcakes look very tasty! There is a hummingbird stopping by my screen door a few times a day recently. It is so cute! I may have to buy a hummingbird feeder to keep it staying around.

    • kahht
      June 1, 2013

      Oh that’s amazing! You should ask it what it thinks of cupcakes.

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This entry was posted on May 23, 2013 by in Cake, Sweets, Vegetarian and tagged , , , , , , .

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