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Campfire birthday cake cupcakes in citrus halves - oranges and grapefruit - with candles lit, ready for the party to begin.

Bake a Campfire Birthday Cake — Let’s Party

Are any of your camping crew the kind whose annual birthday wish is to go camping? And, of course, would like an authentic campfire birthday cake? If so, 50 Campfires offers this delicious solution.

The use of orange or grapefruit rinds in place of cupcake papers is more than a neat camp cooking twist. It actually gives you a bit more margin for error in baking in the Dutch Oven with coals. If you get it too hot, the rind mind burn a bit, but it protects the batter inside. Leaving a bit of citrus flesh and juice in the rind also adds a great flavor booster.

One important hint! As tempted as you’ll be to want to dive into these as soon as you take them out of the Dutch Oven, let the cakes cool COMPLETELY before frosting. Otherwise you have an ooey gooey mess as the frosting will melt and run everywhere. (We didn’t say it wouldn’t be delicious – just messy!)

Give each “cupcake” a candle and you have a wonderful campsite celebration dessert. It’s time to blow out the candles and party.

Bake a Campfire Birthday Cake -- Let's Party
 
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These make great mini-birthday cakes or a delicious chocolatey cherry dessert for any occasion.
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American Camping
Serves: 10-12 large cupcakes
Ingredients
  • 1 box chocolate cake mix
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup cold water
  • 1 tsp. almond flavoring
  • 1 tsp. Grand Marnier
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 4 Tbsp. cooking oil
  • 1 can cherry pie filling
  • 1 can chocolate frosting
  • several grapefruits and/or large oranges
Instructions
  1. Cut citrus fruits in half across the sections. Cut around and scoop out the flesh leaving half rind “cups” intact. Use a spoon to scrape out as much remaining fruit as you want, but leaving some flesh and juice behind adds flavor to the cake. Set aside the citrus flesh for a salad or eating as is.
  2. Mix all the cake batter ingredients in large bowl until well combined.
  3. Spoon into orange or grape fruit rinds. Fill them just over half way.
  4. Place rind cups in lined Dutch oven.
  5. Place coals on top and bottom to achieve 350 degrees.
  6. Bake for about 20 minutes, but start checking doneness at 15 minutes.
  7. Cakes are done when a skewer or toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  8. Carefully remove from Dutch oven and allow to cool completely before frosting and adding birthday candles.
Ingredients for campfire birthday cake cupcakes on citrus halves spread out on camp kitchen

Working with a boxed cake mix and canned frosting makes this an easy recipe to whip up in any camp kitchen, or even on the picnic table at your campsite.

The first step in making campfire birthday cake cupcakes in citrus halves is cutting the citrus. Both oranges and grapefruit work well.

First step is to cut your oranges across the middle. Grapefruit makes larger cupcakes and taste great, too!

Scooping the fruit out of an orange half to make campfire birthday cake cupcakes in citrus halves.

Next, scoop out the fruit with a spoon. It works best if you cut around the fruit close to the rind with a knife first. Don’t throw the fruit away. Eat is as you go, or save for a delicious citrus salad.

Citrus rinds ready for filling to make campfire birthday cake cupcakes in citrus halves.

Okay, you’re collection of rinds is ready to go. Leaving some fruit inside boosts the citrus flavor in the cake. It’s really good.

Breaking an egg into the batter for campfire birthday cake cupcakes in citrus halves.

Mix the cake mix following the directions in this recipe. You’ll be varying from what it tells you on the box, so maybe you want to throw the box in the fire to avoid confusion!

Adding can of cherry pie filling to the batter for campfire birthday cake cupcakes in citrus halves.

Add a whole can of cherry pie filling to the batter mix. This adds flavor and moisture. Because this cake is so moist, it also gives a little extra margin for error when cooking in a Dutch oven.

Spooning batter into citrus halves for campfire birthday cake cupcakes in citrus halves.

Spoon the batter into the citrus halves, but only fill them half way up. Any more and you’ll probably get overflows as they bake.

Campfire birthday cake cupcakes in citrus halves lined up in a lined Dutch oven.

Place the “cupcakes” into a lined Dutch oven. The preformed liners make this a snap, and clean up is ohhhh so much easier.

Campfire birthday cake cup cakes in citrus halves being checked after 15 minutes on the fire.

Start checking the cupcakes at about 15 minutes. You don’t want these beauties to burn.

Inserting a wooden skewer into the center of the largest campfire birthday cake cupcakes in citrus halves.

They are done when a wooden skewer inserted into the center of the largest cupcakes comes out clean.

Adding frosting to the top of a campfire birthday cake cupcake in a citrus half.

Allow the cupcakes to cool ENTIRELY before trying to frost them. If they are warm at all, the frosting will melt and slide off to make a mess.

Campfire birthday cake cupcakes in citrus halves - oranges and grapefruit - with candles lit, ready for the party to begin.

It’s time for the party! These cupcakes are delicious and fun for everyone — including the birthday girl or boy.

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