My nine year old sister was having a unicorn themed birthday party, and asked for unicorn cupcakes (and I said yes). I was going to use fondant – everyone in my family loves fondant and I have a little bit of experience with it – and make one of those multi layer cakes coated in fondant that you see all over Instagram and Pinterest with a horn and eyes to look like a unicorn. I didn’t really want to coat a multi-layer cake in fondant (that sounded a bit scary) so I decided to make cupcakes and make fondant unicorns to put on top instead. (Maybe less scary? But what if my unicorns turn out looking like the mildly disturbing fails on Nailed It? Eek!) Anyways, it worked out pretty well, although this took me two days…very complicated for me to do.
To make the cupcakes, we bought a Gluten Free Funfetti Cake mix, which made 18 cupcakes – although we filled our cupcake liners pretty full. We used two paper liners (we were giving two to a friend) and sixteen silicone liners. I really like the silicone liners because you can just pop the cupcakes out and you can reuse them so they are more eco-friendly.
Next, we cut off the tops–some of them I tried using the dental floss trick where it’s kind of like you actually floss the cupcake and cut the top off, but that didn’t work that well so I just put the cupcakes one their sides and used a knife to cut off the top.
After that then I put a layer of frosting (made from powdered sugar, milk, cinnamon, and nutmeg) on and rolled out the fondant (I love Satin Ice fondant!) and used a can to cut circles to fit the top of the cupcakes. Then I put the cupcakes in the fridge while I made the unicorns.
For the unicorns, I used three colors of Satin Ice fondant: White, Pink, and Brown.
First, I rolled out a log of white fondant for the body, and a smaller one for the head. Set them aside.
Then roll out a very thin log. Fold it in half and twist it, then cut off a 1/2 inch piece and then taper off the tip. Put that on a plate and put it in the fridge or freezer – you need it to be chilled so that it won’t warm up into a puddle when you try to put it on your unicorn. Then take a little piece of brown fondant and you can either roll it to make tiny balls or use a small round frosting piping tip (and use a toothpick to help you push the little circle out) to make your eyes. Make two of them and put them on the plate in your fridge or freezer.
Now you need to make the legs and hooves for your unicorn! Set up your body on a thin layer of cornstarch on a baking tray, mat, or parchment paper. Then roll out a very thin piece of pink fondant and cut out little squares or circles to make your hooves. Set them aside. Then take a piece of white fondant, and roll it out into a log and cut it into four one inch pieces. Then flatten out one side of them a little bit for the feet, dab a teeny bit of water, and stick a hoof on. Repeat until you have done all four legs.
After that, you need to put your legs on your unicorn. Use a small clean paintbrush or your fingers to dab on a little bit of water on the upper part of the chest on your unicorn, and on both bottom sides. Then take two legs and stick them on the sides. These are the back legs. If they aren’t sticking, you can try dabbing some more water on or using a toothpick to push it on more. Now take the front legs, and stick them on to the upper part of the front of your unicorn. Yay!
Now to finish off the bottom part of your unicorn, you need to add a tail. Roll out a thin log of pink fondant, and cut it. One piece should be 3/4 inch long and the other one 1 inch long. Dab some water on the bottom back part of your unicorn, and stick on the shorter piece. Then add some more water on the pink tail, and stick on the second piece, then curve it a bit so that it is shaped kind of like an S.
Now we need to make the head! First, dab some water on the top part of your unicorn’s body. It should be flat – if it isn’t, use your finger to flatten it a bit. Then stick on the head, but don’t press down too hard, otherwise the head and body will flatten into a pancake!
Now take some water and dab it along the face. Then take your plate out of the fridge and stick the eyes on. (If you have too much water on the face, then some of the color from the eyes will run down and your unicorn will be sad and look like it is crying) Now cut off a little piece of pink fondant for a mouth, and stick it on. Next you need to make the ears. Take a flattened small piece of fondant, and fold it in half so it kind of looks like a flower petal, and put it on the head with some water. Repeat so that you have two ears. Now take the horn out of the fridge and stick it between the ears! Now roll out a thin log of pink fondant, and cut off some half inch pieces and one one inch piece. Twist the one inch piece a little bit so that it is a C shape, then dab water on the back of the head and stick it on so that it pokes out a little bit in front of the horn. Attach the rest of the mane. You’ve finished your unicorn!
Now put some frosting on your cupcakes, and use a spatula to slide your unicorn on. If you have any frosting sticking out, you can add some sprinkles. Yay! You finished! (Now repeat until you have done all of the cupcakes…)