Food + Drink, Kids + Teens

Princess Cupcakes for a Royal Wedding

I’ve been kvelling like a distant-yet-adoring Auntie since Wills announced his engagement to the lovely Kate. She appears to have a good head on her shoulders, as well has hair on her head that has earned her the nickname Princess Shinylocks™ over at Jezebel.

There’s nothing about the Royal Wedding I don’t find fascinating, but as an avid home baker who has knocked out a couple of wedding cakes in my day, and as the author of the recipes in Chronicle’s Princess Cupcakes, I’ve been particularly interested in what would be served to the Crowned Heads of Europe and the other international swells lucky enough to score an invitation to the wedding reception.

It turns out William and Catherine (as they insist on being called—still can’t get used to it) are serving not one but TWO wedding cakes (as if I needed more reason to love these kids!).

She of the Shinylocks has requested a traditional English fruitcake, covered in classic white fondant. If it’s like any of the fruitcakes I’ve had, it will hold up very nicely in the British Museum for centuries to come.

His Highness, on the other hand, has excellent taste. His favorite is McVitie’s Chocolate Biscuit Cake. Now we’re talkin’!

McVitie’s Dark Chocolate Digestive Biscuits are hands-down the most delicious cookie you can buy in a grocery store. To have one in cake form would be almost too much to ask for. But ask Wills did, and get he shall. It’s good to be the (almost) King.

As soon as I learned such a creation existed, I decided I had to make one to nibble while I watched the wedding. It would be almost like being there!

Oddly, McVitie’s doesn’t have a recipe on their site for their chocolate biscuit cake. Luckily The Huffington Post did, and here is my slightly adapted cupcake version—all decked out in Princess Cupcakes’ adorable crown wrappers.

For the Cake
1 7-ounce sleeve of tea biscuits (McVitie’s if you can find them, Marias if you can’t)
1 pound dark chocolate (I like Trader Joe’s Pound Plus bars. Take away three little squares and you’ve got a pound)
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 stick butter, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules

Line 15 muffin tin cups with paper liners.

Break up the biscuits into a large bowl—they should be in bits no bigger than a 1/2 inch, but not completely in crumbs.

Chop the chocolate in a food processor—leave it in the food processor bowl.

Combine the cream, butter, vanilla, and instant coffee in a heavy 4-cup or larger glass measuring cup. Heat in the microwave for 2 to 2 1/2 minutes, until bubbly around the edges.

With the food processor running, pour the heated cream mixture into the feed tube and process until smooth.

Fold the chocolate into the biscuit bits. Fill the prepared muffin tin cups with the chocolate mixture about 3/4 full. Smooth with the back of a spoon, and tap the pans on the counter a few times to remove any air bubbles.

Place the cupcakes in the refrigerator to chill while you prepare the glaze.

For the Glaze
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
6 ounces dark chocolate (about 1 cup chopped)

Heat the cream, butter and vanilla in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, until just bubbling at the edges.

Add the chopped chocolate, stir, and cover the pan. Let the mixture steep for 5 minutes, then whisk until smooth.

Remove the cupcakes from the refrigerator and top each of the cooled cupcakes with a spoonful of the glaze, spreading with the back of a spoon to smooth.

Return the pans to the refrigerator and chill for at least 3 hours.

To serve, let the cupcakes come to room temperature.

I have a feeling once Kate gets a bite of this deliciousness she’ll never want to be in the same room with a fruitcake again. She and Wills have famously declared they will be living without servants, so she’ll be making biscuit cakes herself. And when she does she can make them look as cute as mine, because I sent Kate her very own Princess Cupcakes!

She can surprise her hubby with his favorite treat, or whip up a batch for the next time she gets together with her princess pals Märtha Louise, Mathilde, and Letizia, to dish about Stéphanie.

What’s your favorite wedding dessert? Leave a comment and tell us what you served, what you plan to serve, or what you’ve been served that really flipped your tiara. Three commenters will be chosen at random to win a copy of Princess Cupcakes! Winners will be chosen on Monday May 2nd at noon(ish) Pacific Time.

Good luck—to you and to the adorable couple!

Lara Starr
Marketing Manager

Lara Starr

Lara Starr is Chronicle’s Senior Publicist for Children’s books, and the author of Wookiee Pies, Clone Scones and other Galactic Goodies, Ice Sabers, The Very Hungry Caterpillar™ Cookbook and Cookie Cutters Kit, and Chef Olivia™. Tell her you like her sweater and she’ll tell you exactly what she paid for it.
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  • blythe April 27, 2011 at 10:57 am

    Did you really send cake to Kate Middleton? I love it!
    I work at a lot of weddings as an assistant photographer, and my favorite dessert served….a tie between mini pies and an ice cream sundae bar! I love when couples skip the cake and do desserts that might be nontraditional, but suit their tastes. 🙂


  • Bets April 27, 2011 at 11:00 am

    I love a good truffle at a wedding. The truffles at our wedding saved the cake was terrible.


  • scarlett April 27, 2011 at 11:13 am

    I hosted a crepes+cake party for my newly wed friends and their pals who could not make it cross country to the wedding. we had sweet+savory crepe buffet (taco bar style fill-it-yourself) and a Tiramisu cake and a red Spice cake. with so much sweetness, the savory crepes were a bigger hit than expected, btw.


  • April April 27, 2011 at 11:58 am

    I think you can find McVitties at Cost Plus/World Market stores.
    My bf is English and says that the benefit of those wedding fruitcakes is that you can save a piece and eat it at your 50th anniversary.


  • Sarah Z. April 27, 2011 at 1:33 pm

    We had the best cake decorator. She made us a gorgeous pink cake with delicate white flowers that perfectly matched our decor. The flavor was delicious. It was white vanilla cake with raspberry filling. Yum!


  • Marci April 27, 2011 at 1:33 pm

    My fave has been the Angelfood Waldorf.


  • @Chanaynaysf April 27, 2011 at 1:36 pm

    YOu can't go wrong or get more classy than deep fried oreo's!


  • Lex April 27, 2011 at 1:44 pm

    I love plain old vanilla cake with vanilla buttercream at weddings – but really, anything super-delicious has my seal of approval. As long as there's no fondant, that is…


  • Lindsay April 27, 2011 at 3:11 pm

    I love wedding cupcakes! I recently had a white cake with raspberry frosting, and it was delish!


  • christy April 28, 2011 at 6:37 am

    i love cupcakes!! Funfetti Cupcakes or Strawberry cupcakes…… Bananna Pudding and strawberry shortcake are always a hit!


  • hmo April 28, 2011 at 10:56 am

    We did a late night sundae bar at my wedding. People were so happy to see second dessert after all that dancing. And the ice cream was from the dairy I worked at when I was in high school!


  • Sara W. April 28, 2011 at 12:59 pm

    I went to a wedding that served pink cupcakes that were made with fresh strawberry cake. They were the best dessert I’ve had at a wedding!


  • GinnyW April 28, 2011 at 4:06 pm

    For a late fall wedding we served 7 flavors of beautifully decorated cheesecake. Everyone wanted a taste of each flavor so we went through a lot of cheesecake!


  • Sherri S. April 29, 2011 at 11:18 am

    I think small weddings with lots of pies are nice…pie is unexpected! I didn't make cupcakes, but I did bake scones for the wedding last night! Yum!


  • Cupcakes June 10, 2011 at 4:51 am

    Thank you
    I love wedding cupcakes to birthday cupcakes and everything in-between.The truffles at our wedding saved the cake was terrible.


  • Tiramisu maken October 24, 2011 at 4:54 pm

    Thanks for the recipe, I love it!


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