How to Make Unicorn Cupcakes

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Unicorn cupcakes are the sweetest, most magical  treats around.  And these DIY unicorn cupcakes, though they look really impressive, are actually really simple to make.  Just follow this easy tutorial to make your own magical confection.

Tutorial for making these easy and magical unicorn cupcakes.

I declare this week to be Unicorn Week!  Because we all need a little magic in our lives, and also, I got to make these fun unicorn cupcakes for my friend's daughter's birthday party.  

The last time I did a unicorn birthday party, it was for my eldest daughter's fifth birthday, and it was before I was blogging.  I definitely didn't get all the unicorny goodness out of my system with just that party.

Two unicorn cupcakes decorated with gum paste unicorn horns, ears, flowers, and colorful sprinkles on a black chalkboard background.

I was so excited to make these cupcakes...  and couldn't help myself and made several other fun unicorn projects, too.

Other Unicorn Crafts and Recipes:

Unicorn cupcake displayed in a disposable plastic wine glass filled with a rainbow of miniature gummy bears.

Look at the super cute way my friend displayed the cupcakes, too!  A rainbow of mini gummi bears filling a plastic wine glass.  (The kids were super adorable at the party, taking turns toasting the birthday girl with their glasses full of gummi bears.)

Tips for Making Unicorn Cupcakes:

  • Give yourself enough time!  You need to make the unicorn horns and ears at least a day before you put them on the cupcakes.  Or else you'll have a droopy, sad unicorn horn. You can make the gum paste unicorn decorations days--weeks--months! in advance.
  • Oops!  Did you ignore the first tip?  You can form the unicorn horn around a toothpick.  Just warn party-goers that the horn isn't edible before they take a big bite! 
  • Sprinkles are always good, but sprinkle mixes are downright magical.  Mix shapes and sizes of spinkles to create a truly special look.
  • Finish the cupcakes with a spray of Super Pearl luster dust spray (PME is my favorite brand, but Wilton is easier to find in local craft stores).  It adds a pearlescent shimmer to the whole cupcake and is the perfect finishing touch for magical unicorn cupcakes.

A metal tray with 20 unicorn cupcakes on a white marble surface.

How to Make Unicorn Cupcakes

One chocolate cupcake topped with white icing, colorful sprinkles, and a gum paste rose, unicorn ears, and unicorn horn.

How to Make Easy Gum Paste Roses for Unicorn Cupcakes:

I'm going to start this tutorial by showing you how I made the roses for the cupcakes more quickly than I've ever made roses before.  This is the technique I've used in the past (and it's still great), but I bought a new style of gum paste rose cutter recently and I have to say, I LOVE it.

Easy gum paste rose cutter, with gum paste that has been rolled out and cut into the shape with the cutter.  The cut out shape is on top of a square of black foam, and a . yellow ball gum paste shaping tool rests next to the ruffled edges of the gum paste.

You only have to cut out one shape from the gum paste.  ONE.  This is the exact one I bought at my local cake decorating store, but this collection of three sizes is a better deal (buy here).  Just cut out your scalloped rectangle of gum paste, thin the edges by rubbing the petal edges using a ball tool while the gum paste is on a piece of foam.

Photo showing a gum paste rose cutter, the rolled out gum paste from which it was cut, and the cut piece folded in half the long way.

Fold the gum paste piece in half, paint a bit of vodka or Everclear along the bottom folded edge (to act as glue), and roll up the rose.  It's as easy as that.

Collection of pink and white gum paste roses drying on waxed paper on a white marble background.

Bam, tons of roses!  I'm pretty sure I'm never going back to the old way of making roses.

Unicorn cupcake displayed in a disposable plastic wine glass filled with a rainbow of miniature gummy bears.

You don't need to be an expert or an artist to make these edible unicorn themed cupcake toppers.  They're made out of gum paste (kind of like edible sugar play dough).  I like Satin Ice brand gum paste the best.  

Edible Unicorn Horns for Unicorn Cupcakes:

Progression of steps to make a unicorn horn out of gum paste, from ball to snake shape to twisting the snake into a unicorn horn shape.

  1. Color your gum paste first, by kneading in gel food coloring (I used Americolor Egg Yellow).
  2. Pinch off a small ball of gum paste.  Roll it into a snake of dough, tapering the gum paste to a point at each end.
  3. Fold the long piece of gum paste in half, and twist it together.
  4. To give the unicorn horn some extra shimmer, I gave it a spray with gold PME luster spray.  I love the PME brand (better than the easier-to-find Wilton product).  


How to Make Unicorn Ears for Unicorn Cupcakes:

Small red silicone rolling pin next to rolled out white gum paste being cut into unicorn ear shapes with a leaf shaped gum paste cutter.

I made the unicorn ears by cutting out a basic ear shape using one end of a leaf shaped gum paste cutter I have in my collection.  It came in a beginner's kit years ago, and I have no idea what that it might be called, but I know it's made by Wilton.  You could really also just use a sharp paring knife to cut out the ear shapes.  If you don't have something like this on hand, I wouldn't bother trying to track one down for this project.

Gum paste unicorn ears tutorial progression, showing the cut shape, the painted cut shape, and the shape pinched into a Unicorn ear shape.

I painted the ear with a little bit of pink gel food coloring thinned with Everclear to add some color, and it also acted as a perfect glue when I pinched the bottom of the ear together to form the shape.  

One chocolate cupcake topped with white icing, colorful sprinkles, and a gum paste rose, unicorn ears, and unicorn horn.

Let the horn and ears dry overnight (or you could make the pieces far in advance of the party).  Ice your cupcake, add a few sprinkles, and stick the ears and horn in the icing.  Pure cupcake magic.

Not feeling the DIY urge?  I love these glittery unicorn cupcake toppers I found!

Other Unicorn Tutorials You Might Like:

Felt Unicorn Horn Headband Tutorial

Navigational image leading reader to unicorn gift bag tutorial

Navigational image leading reader to watercolor painted unicorn sugar cookies tutorial

Nicole Wills, creator of Tikkido

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