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
1 1/2 cups flour
2/3 cup cocoa
1 1/3 cups 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 milk
2/3 cup hot water

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Fill mini cupcake tray with cupcake liners.
  • In a large bowl, mix dry ingredients together with a wire whisk.
  • Add eggs, oil, vanilla and milk and mix until combined.
  • Add hot water and mix.
  • Fill cupcake liners about 3/4 full.
  • 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



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321 comments on “Easy Little Pandas”

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

  2. Love how you always give your creations personalities!

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

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

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

  6. 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?

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

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

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

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

  11. These are so cute I want to cry!

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

  13. C’est adorable!!!

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

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

  16. 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.

  17. UH, yeh, this is adorable lol

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

  19. Amazing!! You are incredible!!

  20. 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!

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

  22. 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)

  23. 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!

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

  25. 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!

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

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

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

  29. Brilliant.

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

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

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

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

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

  34. 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

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

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


  37. 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.

  38. 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.

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

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

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

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

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

  44. These are adorable! Made me smile!

  45. 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. :)

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

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

  48. Oh my gosh these are ADORABLE!

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

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

  51. Hi,it´s so lovely and easy.

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

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

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

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

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

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

  58. 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!

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

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

  61. Super cute n adorable….love it

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

  63. 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!

  64. 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

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

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

  67. 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!

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

  69. 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.

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

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

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

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

  74. 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 :)

  75. 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

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

    You´re very generous!


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

  78. how many cupcakes does the recipe above make?

  79. I just love them

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

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

  82. 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!!

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

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

  85. 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.

  86. I love the way you make it nice thanks

  87. 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.

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

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

  90. 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!!!



  93. 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

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

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

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

  97. what kind of frosting did you use.

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