RE:Framed: Don’t Judge a Cupcake by it’s Frosting

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A while back, on one of my posts, I was asked what matters to me more; the look of my cupcake, or the ease of access in eating the cupcake. This question required me a bit of time because I decided to survey people to see what their opinion on the frosting was. Of course, it seemed only reasonable that I dedicate a whole blog post to that comment 🙂

View the post here

The comment stated:

So Zainab, you served me two cupcakes on two different days.

The first cupcake you sent me, you said you had to rush, and so the frosting was flat on top, no decorative design,but yet when I ate it I literally almost choked as I had never tasted something that amazing. That flat top of frosting was literally the best way I had ever seen anyone prepare a cupcake, it made eating the cupcake so easy and it was a perfect balance between cupcake and the frosting, it was heaven.

The second cupcake looked like the one above, with a fancy frosting on top. The taste was still god-like, yet I found it harder to eat, much harder. I had to play twister with my mouth and yet still got frosting all over my face.

I’m not going to lie, the second cupcake looked a lot nicer, yet was so hard to eat I almost didn’t want to go through the trouble. But the first one, while looking a little ugly, was so much easier to eat and was still delicious. As a baker yourself, I’m curious, what is more important to you, the look of the cupcake or the ease of access for your customers, because that flat top cupcake design might be a revolution in the way of cupcakes as a lot of today’s cupcakes, even Kristie’s, look nice and taste great, but they’re so cumbersome to eat.

To answer your question, BOTH factors are very important to me. I did a test with my Red Velvet cupcakes by taking them to school and asking for feedback on the presentation, not taste. 9 out of 10 people said they preferred the cupcake that was frosted with fancy swirls, even though eating it was a bit more ‘messy’ as the frosting was smeared all over everyone’s mouth.

Both are Chocolate Cupcakes with Nutella Buttercream frosting. 9 out of 10 people preferred the cupcake to the right.

Both are Chocolate Cupcakes with Nutella Buttercream frosting. 9 out of 10 people preferred the cupcake to the right.

Isn’t that what all the fun in eating a cupcake is though? Getting frosting all over your mouth… and nose?

I really like both of the styles of cupcakes. The ‘flat top’ cupcake is simple, but classy. It’s most commonly found at bake sales and birthday parties.

The other cupcake is more elegant and fancy, however, it tastes the same. To me, presentation matters, but that’s not what sells the cupcake. The taste is also 50% of the test. I would eat both (I think I need to take a break and do that right now) and if people prefer one over the other, it’s absolutely their choice.

I’m not biased on choosing one style of cupcake over the other, but I do like to switch it up a bit and sometimes bring in the ‘flat top’ cupcakes. Either ways, the consumers love it.

I hope that answers your question.

To all my wonderful readers, what would your opinion? Do you prefer the fancy swirls or the ‘flat tops’? Comment below for feedback!




5 thoughts on “RE:Framed: Don’t Judge a Cupcake by it’s Frosting

  1. To be completely honest, I would prefer the “flat tops” for eating cupcakes, because I’m one of those people who does the sandwich technique (Where you break off the top and flip it over so the frosting is even spread out). For SOCIAL MEDIA (*cough* Instagram) purposes, I would grab the fancy swirls!

  2. Sadly though, for a lot of bakers, it seems that you have to be an established bakery such as Sprinkles or Cassey’s or Susie Cakes to be able to pull off the flat top without people saying that the cupcake didn’t look nice and they didn’t pay like 2 dollars for a flast top cupcake.

  3. I don’t know, something about the flat-tops just make them look really casual and cute, like a flats versus high heels kind of debate. I also think the flat-tops would look better decorated than the swirly frosted ones since sprinkles or a little flower applique won’t overpower the simpler cupcake as much.

  4. Thanks for answering my question! Sorry for the late response, but I really appreciate the effort you took into answering! I loved the fact that you did a survey, and I think it speaks a lot about the human mind and perception when it comes to taste. People do tend to bias themselves to things that might look great, but might not taste great, but that look alone biases them enough for them to believe that what they are eating is great, I believe this is called Taste Perception, if I’m not mistaken. But being aware of this phenomenon sort of lets a person bypass it, so to me, both cupcakes tasted the same, so WHEN (NOT IF) I buy again from you, I’ll definitely request a flat top!

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