Easy Little Pandas


I made some cute chocolate cupcakes for you today.


And they’re mini, too. It’s hard to tell in this picture I know.


But because the cupcakes were mini, I was able to use chocolate chips to dress them up as sweet little pandas.


Chocolate chip covered pandas that are super easy to make.


First frost your cupcakes. Use a decorator bag with Ateco Tip #807 and you can whiz right through this part.


Pipe a small mound of frosting on top. You don’t need to cover the cupcake completely.


Because you will be pressing it into a bowl of sanding sugar to cover all the frosting. And when you do, the frosting will spread out and cover most of the top.


Like so.

Then you can start making panda faces.

Insert a chocolate chip sideways and towards the bottom for a nose.


Then press two chips pointed side down into the frosting to start on the eyes and two more in position for the ears.

I used Ghiradelli dark chocolate chips because they are a little larger in diameter and were better for panda proportions.

And the great thing about covering them in sanding sugar first, is that you can easily reshape the face if necessary without getting frosting all over your fingers.


If you want to add mouths, try black or chocolate jimmies and press them into the frosting.


Then you just need to finish the eyes.


Use a black edible ink pen to draw on white confetti sprinkles for dotted eyes and then attach them to the chips with a tiny bit of frosting to hold them in place.

You could also just pipe frosting on for eyes if you want to skip the pin and sprinkles.


There you go. Easy little pandas.

Chocolate Cupcakes

Chocolate Cupcakes

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • 1-1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup natural unsweetened cocoa
  • 1-1/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2/3 cup whole milk
  • 2/3 cup hot water


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit.
  2. Fill mini cupcake tray with cupcake liners.
  3. In a large bowl, mix dry ingredients together with a wire whisk.
  4. Add eggs, oil, vanilla and milk and mix until combined.
  5. Add hot water and mix. Fill cupcake liners about 3/4 full.
  6. Bake for 15 minutes. Cool and decorate.
To decorate, you’ll need:

  • Frosting (I used the one from this post)
  • Decorator bag and Ateco tip 807 (or just use a ziploc bac and cut an end off)
  • White sanding sugar
  • Chocolate Chips (I used Ghiradelli dark chocolate chips for their size)
  • Jimmies (Chocolate or black and you could also just leave them off)
  • Pastel confetti sprinkles (just the white ones)
  • Black edible ink pen



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

320 comments on “Easy Little Pandas”

  1. what kind of frosting did you use.

  2. Did you use the Ghirardelli chocolate-candy making wafers or the actual semi-sweet baking chips?

  3. So adorable cant wait to try it .
    What cuer than cupcake pandas :D

  4. how many mini cupcakes would this recipe approx. make?

  5. this is just the cutest little cupcake ever! But you know what would be really cool was that instead of a chocolate cupcake it could be a black and white in the inside? did someone say oreo cupcakes perhaps? ;) i also was wondering if you could make marble cupcakes, or maybe even tye dye! that would be awesome :)

    I LOOOOOVVVVVVEEEEEEEEEEE YOUUUUUUU BAKERELLA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! <3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3



  8. My daughter LOVES pandas and her birthday is coming up so I do believe these will be a part of her party!!! SO very cute! Thanks for sharing!!!

    Seriously, if I had ten percent of your talent… I would have been so smug :P

  10. the many faces of Po…these are sooo cute!

  11. Want to make these. Is sanding sugar different than granulated sugar? Approx what is the size/brand of the confetti? Would you still get the same effect with the Wilton eyeballs? It looks like you can get different expressions by using the confetti. I just think the ones I have found are too small. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thank you.

  12. I love the way you make it nice thanks

  13. How many cupcakes does the receipt yield? I don’t want to make too many of these, but they’re just a must for a friend’s bday who loves pandas.

  14. Awesome! Thank you so much for the instructions!!!

  15. These are so cute, and the recipe is so easy and delicious,
    Thanks for sharing ^~^

  16. i just wanted to say thank you!! we made this recipe 2 days ago and it was a home run!!! thanksss!! for posting!!

    saludos from Venezuela!!

  17. My sister is a PANDALOVER #1 class.. So when she became 30 in July.. I’m going to make these!Thanks!!!

  18. My 2 yr old loves pandas. I can’t wait to make these and see the surprise on her face. Thank you!!

  19. I just love them

  20. how many cupcakes does the recipe above make?

  21. My family does not like buttercream. What other icing would work? Would cream cheese frosting be ok?? thanks

  22. Hermosos y muy fáciles! Soy de Argentina y sigo siempre tu blog. Gracias por compartir todos tus secretos.

    You´re very generous!


  23. Hi !
    It’s really beautifull and seams really good ! I would like to try your recipie but can you say me what is the size of the cup ?
    We don’t use “cup” for give a quantity in France, but only g or ml.
    Thank you very much

  24. Made these with my best friend for her birthday and made brown bears as well using nutella for topping! they were great & we loved them :)

  25. These were amazing, and I typically don’t like chocolate cupcakes! Thank you for sharing the recipe!

  26. These are absolutely adorable, and they look so easy to make. Thank you for sharing!

  27. These are precious and look super easy! Thanks for the tips!

  28. woww! so cute, thans for sharing :)

  29. Hi, I’m from South Africa, please could you let me know if I need to make the full amount of frosting as per your frosting recipe or would just half do. Also what is sanding sugar, can’t think that I’ve seen anything like that in the supermarkets here in SA.

  30. OMG – I MUST make these for my son’s daycare! Why? Because it’s called Panda Bear, of course!!! Perfect! :D Thank you!

  31. You are so surprising! How do you come up with all these cute treats, what kind of magic do you use?? I wish I could be as inspired with great ideas as you are! :) You are amazing, thanks!

  32. Fantastic!! I will definitely try this one!
    Thanks for sharing!

  33. I am definitely going to make these, nice job. I admire your work :)

  34. so cute!! I had a lousy evening, and then I saw these adorable little pandas and I got huge smile on my face… great idea, thanks

  35. so cute!! I had a lousy evening, and then I saw these adorable little pandas and I got huge smile on my face… great idea, thanks!

  36. I’m making these for Mother’s Day! THey are so cute.

  37. Super cute n adorable….love it

  38. I love these and can’t wait to make them — sometime sooner than my daughter’s 2nd birthday in December :)

  39. Oh.My! Those are so cute! I wonder if I can talk one of my daughters into having a panda themed party?

  40. Made these this weekend with my little boy who thought they were fantastic. Posted piccies on my blog too and linked back to you. Thanks for the inspiration!

  41. I LOVE PANDAS!!! this is so cute!!!

  42. These are so much fun to make! If you’re making regular sized cupcakes use Hershey Kisses instead of chocolate chips. It works great! :)

  43. These are so, so cute. And easy too. And mini. Those things I like (as a mother). Thankyou Angie.

  44. Hi these panda cupcakes are adorable!! Where can I find the frosting recipe???

  45. These are so cute and I think I could actually make these turn out!

  46. Angie! Using those chocolate chips!?!? Pure genius! I love how your mind works!

  47. Hi,it´s so lovely and easy.

  48. These are so adorable! I love the different expressions you created.

  49. These are SO CUTE and look like somthing I could actually do. LOVE them

  50. Oh my gosh these are ADORABLE!

  51. Too cute for words. You are so clever and have such a great eye for using ordinary things to make exraordinary creations!

  52. Oh em gee! So, so, so, cute!

  53. hi, i was just wondering how big your mini cupcake was because i wanted to buy normal sized chips, not bigger chocolate chips like the ones you used. i am planing to make these for someone soon so please reply soon! thanks. :)

  54. These are adorable! Made me smile!

  55. Thanks, made these with ny 2 & 4 year old today! so fun!

  56. Adorable! I’m Chinese so I will always have an excuse to make pandas! Thank you!

  57. I made these very cute Pandas Cup cake today to my daughter’s school,
    They turn very adorable,
    Thanks Bakerella!!!

  58. Oh dear I’m sorry I thought it was cookies. Its a cute little cupcakes great treats for kids.

  59. The cutest little cookies I ever see and I bet it taste fabulous!

  60. These cupcakes are absolutely to die for. You should make your own recipe book with all of this.Every blog post should be a book page.

  61. These would go great at a kids tea party. So adorable and they don’t look to difficult to make. Perhaps the kids at the party can decorate them.

  62. awesome.. im new to this so i hope this doesn’t sound stupid.. what is sanding sugar?


  63. I love these, must make them sometime. A co-worker just asked if I saw them already…of course!

  64. These are SO CUTE! cupackes = delicious, pandas = adorable, its the perfect combination
    They look encouragingly easy to create, I just might have to get into the kitchen right now x

  65. Those little cupcakes are absolutely adorable ! I’d love to make some because they seem so easy to make !

  66. never thought I could use chocolate chips this way. thanks for sharing another great idea!

  67. They just brightened up my day! : ) Much cuteness

  68. Does anyone know what size the cupcake tray is?

  69. Brilliant.

    I know what I’m doing for my husband’s Thursday night Bible study!

  70. Love the little one on the left, with the smaller mouth :>

  71. absolutely adorable, as is everything you do!!!!!

  72. Wonder if these would work well with coconut,
    Sanding sugar is expensive in Australia (as a teenager)
    They are awesome.

  73. I love that they are minis! I love the sweet little expressions on their faces! I love the super easy way you frosted them..and I really love how cute they are!

  74. they’re so cute! i’ve never seen cupcakes like that before. i’m gonna try these with my kids. thanks!

  75. I think I’ll be making these for my baby’s first birthday! Thank you for your blog — you inspire me and bring a lot of cheer into my usually dreary workdays!

  76. I love that you were able to use the chocolate chips for so much of the panda. (everyone has those in the house!!) Thank you for sharing. :o)

  77. You always do AMAZING things!!!! I would love to have some :D

  78. Oh wow so cute and EASY – my favorite combination. I think I will use this for our son’s bday party – He LOVES Kung Fu Panda! Thank You!

  79. Amazing!! You are incredible!!

  80. OH MY GOODNESS!! These are soo adorable! These will definilty be made ASAP! :)

  81. UH, yeh, this is adorable lol

  82. the pandas are the cuttest…… My grandson’s Birthday is next week. He loves Curious George. Can you show me a cute way to make cupcakes that look like George for him.
    Thanks so much.

  83. I’d love to make these – how many mini cupcakes does the recipe yield??

  84. These are adorable! How many mini cupcakes does the recipe yield?

  85. C’est adorable!!!

  86. i lav it!!! and u are awesome BAKERELLA!! <3

  87. These are so cute I want to cry!

  88. Those bears have the most adorable, expressive faces.

  89. !!!! I think these are probably the CUTEST cupcakes i’ve ever seen!

  90. Adorable and easy. Such a great idea!!

  91. Absolutely adorable (and easy enough that I feel like making some myself)!

  92. Those are so CUTE! Question. What kind of edible pen do you use? I bought some and they are awful. They don’t write well at ALL. I also wanted to send you a few pictures of the cake pops I made…I’m just a mom and don’t have a fancy blog, but I thought you would be proud of me :) You inspire me! Anyways, where do I send the pictures?

  93. These are adorable! My friend’s favorite animal is a panda, so I need to make these for her! :D

  94. Wow!
    These are really adorable – and I bet they are really tasty, too!
    I could have never dreamed of using chocolate chips like that!

  95. These are so cute! Love them, thanks for sharing with great step-by-step photos!

  96. Love how you always give your creations personalities!

  97. These are incredibly cute! I CANNOT wait to try making some! Yum yum yum!

  98. These are so cute!!!!!!

  99. I love these! I so will make em’! Thanks Bakerella

  100. these are absolutely adorable. perfect if you are doing a Kung Fu Panda theme!! Thanks for the inspiration!

  101. Oh my gosh! These are so adorable! I can not wait to make these for my niece and nephew! It really does look so easy too. :)

  102. OH MY! I absolutely LOVE pandas and can’t wait to make these! Super cute and love the dark chocolate chips for more of a panda look!

  103. very cute!! i want to try making some

  104. ahh im so in love with these pandas bakerella!

  105. I think I will make these……..just because!

  106. I can’t decide which one is the cutest! I’d feel weird to bite one of them.. But I would.. :)

  107. They look adorable as well as super simple to do! MUST get those chocolate chips!!

  108. Those are precious! How do you get your cupcakes so evenly rounded on top!? I love their different expressions.

  109. Way too cute! Whoo-hoo! You have done it again, Bakerella!

    Hey I was wondering if you could come to Bloomington, Indiana’s Barnes & Noble and do a book signing!

    Thanks, Grace

  110. These are the cutest!! My daughter and I think they are even too cute to eat, but we would force ourselves to anyhow.

  111. Trop mignons !
    So pretty !
    J’adore !
    Hello from Switzerland

  112. I love how such a cute little cupcake is made with the simplest ingredients. I cannot imagine not having everything except maybe the sanding sugar!

  113. You left me speechless…….wow!!! I think I am going to try to bake them for my little nephew’s birthday…You always give us great ideas, thanks!!!

  114. Super fun!

  115. So cute! I wonder what I could use to change them into koalas? My daughter’s soccer team is the Koalas and i’ve been looking for a cute Koala snack for their last game.

  116. Adorable!!! You make the cutest animals. You should make a book out of them :)

  117. Ha..these are the very best ever! Their expressions bring them to life. I love these as I am a bear collector and these are just too cute to resist. I plan on making these real soon.Thanks so much Angie!

  118. Thank you Mema! I have that tip! :)

  119. They are so cute!

  120. OK so can you just have your own baking show already? Because EVERYTHING you do is so insanely, utterly adorable, such genious and completely inspirational that I am beside myself! If there is a better word for “YOU ROCK” then that my girl is you. :)

  121. So cute! Great idea and can’t wait for an occasion to make.

  122. Ack!!! You do the cutest faces! Like the little girl with the unicorn stuffy in the Despicable me movie I just want to hug these guys they are too cute!!! I have pinned some panda cupcakes before but I just love the nose and eyes and fur on your guys!!!


  123. These are sooo….awwww Cute!!
    Going out right now to get the stuff to make these…
    I was thinking yo could do a reg cupcake and use hersey kisses to.. what do you think Bakerella?

  124. These are SO cute! Love it!

  125. these would be great for a birthday party. my son is very into the Little Pim video panda. that would make a nice themed party – Little Pim panda and language acquisition. maybe have all the flags of the world somewhere as decoration.

  126. pan-da-dorable… thanks for sharing!

  127. It’s absolutely ridiculous how cute these are!

  128. LOVE!! I love how adorable they are and how easy! You have such a talent for making simple things beautiful.

  129. Love, love these!

  130. Bravo- they’re adorable!

  131. too cute & easy, gotta love it!

  132. These are SUPER cute. I love pandas (and all things chocolate, and cake… ) Gotta try these out. You are SO creative!

  133. Just too cute! I cannot wait to make these for my nephew! I was just at our Zoo with him on Friday. Next visit, I’ll pull these little cuties out after we come back to my house.

  134. To Monica Lasarati – 350 degrees will be fahrenheit. That equates to about 176 degrees celsius.

  135. They can’t be any easier and adorable…

  136. they are so cute!! I think I’m in love!!

  137. I am cupcake challenged but these look do-able! Thanks!

  138. I just love the simplicity and sheer cuteness of these! So great.

  139. These are the cutest Angie!! Hope you have a great week girl! xoxo

  140. so cute..

    thanks for sharing.


  141. These are wonderful! I can’t wait to make them!

  142. Simply adorable!!! :)

  143. OMG! These little guys are SO cute! My favorite is the one with the little smirky smile!

  144. Those are very cute, and so easy. Thanks for the idea!

  145. so cute, love all the different faces!

  146. OMG! These lil pandas are so so adorable, and wow easy to make with your fabulous instructions! You are so amazing Lady!!!!! Thanks for sharing this super easy, yet adorable cupcake today!

  147. I just died of the cute! Btw, if I do not want to use sanding sugar is there an alternative? Thank you.

  148. Sooo cute!

  149. completely ridiculously adorable!

  150. You make everything look so easy to do!

  151. Those are adorable! I’ll have to try them.

  152. Theses are just too cute! I love the little one who looks shocked.Rx

  153. So freaking cute! Love them!

  154. Adorable! They’re perfect!
    You always manage to thrill, Angie. Thanks for another amazing idea – I know my students at school will go ga-ga for these!

  155. How darling-perfect for a kiddie party :D

  156. Oh HELP – these are soooo darn CUTE! :-)

  157. So nice! And it seems to be easy. Thanks

  158. Hi Bakerella! I am gonna try out your recipes this weekend. One question though – Do you use Celcius or Farenheit? Or if anybody can help me, please? Thanks :)

  159. Looks good and very cute.

  160. wow, they are so cute:) super!

  161. They are soooo cute ! Amzing how a little mouth makes them come alive . Thank you . Hope you are feeling great after all you have been through last year.

  162. So simple and so cute too! Thanks for sharing as always :)

  163. They are so cute…thanks for the detailed tutorial…really perfect

  164. They are too cute!!! I love them!!!

  165. Super cute, and it looks easy enough for me!

    Thanks for the step-by-step

  166. They look absolutely great! Thanks for this great post :-)

  167. Thank you for that. how fantastic. You make it look easy as pie!

  168. So cute!!
    When I saw it I remembered Kung fu-Panda…

  169. I loooooove these, making them soon!

  170. So adorable (and really yummy looking too!)

  171. This is AWESOME! Thank you so much! Can’t wait to try it out! :)

  172. perfect lil pandas! awesome idea for party!

  173. Adorable,
    I love you Bakerella, you are so talented

  174. These are so cute! I’m thinking of using this idea for my sisters 1st birthday, because they look really like something I could actually do!

  175. They look so fluffy, it’s adorable! and the nose with side turned chocolate chip is such a good idea, it looks terrific.

  176. they’re really cute. Perfection!

  177. super-cute! can’t wait to try it myself..

  178. Very cute! It is nice to find another jimmie sayer-I thought it was only a Northeast thing ;)

  179. So, so cute. I can’t wait to try it myself :D

  180. Sooooo cute! Love it.And mini sizes make everything better ;)

  181. These are adorable and look SO easy to make.

    Holly I think the Wilton 1A is pretty darn close to the Ateco #807

  182. These are just precious! You are so talented!

  183. those r ADORABLE !

  184. Thank you! I will try to make this and hopefully bring it to my daughter’s school fare next month.

  185. I’m wondering if there’s a corresponding Wilton tip to the Ateco #807? I really don’t want to have to order another tip if I don’t have to.

  186. Absolutely adorable! It’s really cool that you can customize the expression by simply using different arrangements for the sprinkles.

  187. Those are just darling!! They just make me smile! I love how super easy they are to decorate. Thank you so much for sharing! I can’t wait to make these with my daughter, I know she will absolutely love them!!

Leave a Comment »