Introduction: Neapolitan Cupcakes

About: Community Manager for Instructables and Tinkercad.

Weeks ago, I was thinking about making layered cupcakes.  This started with the idea of making cupcakes that are all different flavors and then cutting them into three layers each and interchanging the layers to make super cupcakes.  This led me to thinking about what flavors I could do that would be different enough so it would be noticeably layered. I, of course, wanted chocolate and vanilla since they are so different in color.  I then thought about doing a caramel layer, but wasn't sure how to approach this.  Then I thought about strawberry.  This led to deciding to do chocolate, vanilla and strawberry since people already like those flavors together and this ultimately lead to deciding to layer the batter instead of layering the baked cake.

Crazy how ideas evolve, right?  This Neapolitan Cupcake is the outcome.  Hope you like it :)

Also, if you don't want to make a bunch of cupcakes, you can check out the Neapolitan Cake I made too!

PS: Cupcake is shown on my paper doily!  So nice to have around!

Step 1: Ingredients

You can make your cake from scratch if you would like.  I didn't want to take that risk, so I got packaged.  At first I couldn't find strawberry and was quite discouraged until I found out you could use a white cake mix with a 3 oz. package of strawberry jello and about 1/2 to 3/4 cup of strawberry puree to make strawberry cake easy.

Ingredients and Supplies:
  • White Cake
  • Strawberry Cake
  • Chocolate Cake
  • Frosting of choice - I had one of each
  • Cupcake Pan
  • A regular old soup spoon is helpful to have

Step 2: Layer It Up!

As you will see in Step 4, I had some trial and error with layering, but here is what I eventually did.
  • Cover the bottom of each cupcake slot with vanilla.  Remember that you will be adding two layers on top, so use your best judgement on how much to put in.  Some of my slots got really full, but I think it just make the cupcakes more defined at the end.
  • After you have the vanilla, it is time to add the chocolate.  After doing a pan of these, I got pretty good at making it all even.  My tip is to use a soup spoon and first drizzle it around the outside of the circle as you can see in the first picture with the chocolate on the vanilla.  Once the outside is done, just fill in the middle.  I found, that if you did the middle first and just dripped it in, it tended to push down into the cake below it which then made it hard to get the sides.  Also, I thought having runny batter would make it harder but that actually made it easier, because it would flow over the other batter easier.  The thicker it was, as my strawberry was, the harder it was to get it to completely cover the layer below it without having to keep adding more and more batter.  I actually ended up thinning mine by adding more water.  It all still came out good in the end.  
  • Now, top off your cupcakes with your strawberry batter and you are ready to bake.

Step 3: Decorate

Now it's time to decorate!  You can do them all with the same frosting or do them all different.  I decided to have them all different so people who preferred on flavor over another can get the one they like the most :)  I didn't do anything really special while frosting it besides trying to make it swirl like ice cream.

Also, even if you don't notice the layers much from the outside, you can sure see them on the inside :)


Step 4: It's All About the Order

When I first made these, I tried a couple different variations and I'm glad I did, because my original order did not come out as well as I had hoped.  *Note: the amount of cake mix you use of each layer can make a big difference.  Also, how well you evenly distribute the mix for each layer.  So some of the different combinations may work better for you than me.

From bottom to top:
Vanilla - Chocolate - Strawberry
Chocolate - Strawberry - Vanilla
Strawberry - Vanilla - Chocolate <- Original Order

From these test cupcakes, I determined that the best order was Vanilla - Chocolate - Strawberry because the dark color nicely separates the lighter ones.  (You could, of course, do this in reverse: Strawberry - Chocolate - Vanilla.)

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