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Christmas Tree Chocolate Cupcakes – Using Cake Mix!

Make the most delicious holiday cupcakes for your loved ones with this recipe for Christmas Tree Cupcakes.

It is a simple recipe using a boxed cake mix that will leave you with some of the most adorable and impressive cupcakes for everyone to enjoy this holiday season.

Christmas Tree Cupcakes: Deck the Halls One Cupcake at a Time

Hey, cupcake enthusiasts and holiday lovers! Today, we’re merging the best of both worlds with our Christmas Tree Cupcakes. Imagine biting into a luscious triple chocolate fudge cupcake and then hitting the unexpected crunch and flavor of a “Christmas tree” made from pretzel sticks and candy melts. If you’re already dancing to “Jingle Bell Rock,” this one’s for you!


Can I use a different flavor cake mix?

Absolutely. You’re the star on top of this tree, so choose a flavor that you adore.

What’s the purpose of coconut oil in the recipe?

Coconut oil helps the candy melts achieve a smoother, more pourable consistency.

Do I have to use a piping bag for the frosting?

A piping bag gives you more control, but in a pinch, a zip bag with a cut corner works too.

Christmas Tree Cupcakes

Who says making decorative Christmas-themed cupcakes has to be difficult? If you want to make cupcakes that will make your loved ones smile, try this amazing cupcake recipe.

Tips and Tricks

Cake Consistency: Follow the box directions carefully to ensure you have moist, fluffy cupcakes as your base.

Melt Right: Melt candy melts in short bursts in the microwave, stirring in between, for the best consistency.

Frosting Texture: Start with 1 tablespoon of milk and only add more if needed for the desired frosting thickness.


Color Pop: Feel free to add colored sprinkles to the frosting for a more festive look.

Vegan Version: Use plant-based ingredients to make these cupcakes vegan-friendly.

Gourmet Flavors: Add peppermint extract to the frosting for a minty twist.

It is simple enough to prepare because it calls for a box of cake mix to use when making the cupcakes. You can select your favorite type of boxed cake mix, although the triple chocolate fudge one is so decadent and delicious. 

Where to Serve

These cupcakes will steal the show at Christmas parties, holiday dinners, or even as a fun project for kids during the holiday season. They’re also perfect for school celebrations.


Keep the cupcakes in an airtight container to maintain freshness. The frosting and candy melts will harden slightly, so they’ll stay pretty even when stacked with wax paper in between.

Common Problems and How to Avoid Them

Lumpy Frosting: Make sure your butter is at room temperature before mixing to avoid lumps.

Candy Melts Not Sticking: Ensure the pretzel sticks are dry so the candy melts adhere properly.

Over-mixed Cake: Follow the cake mix instructions to a T to avoid dense cupcakes.

Besides the boxed cake mix, you will need a few additional ingredients, including decorative sprinkles and pretzel sticks to make the trees and butter with powdered sugar to create the best frosting from scratch.

You can decorate these cupcakes by yourself or get the children to lend a hand. No matter who participates in the cupcake decorating, you will have a great time putting these sweet treats together.

Tips for Making This Recipe with Kids

Safe Melting: Adults should handle the melting of the candy melts.

Pretzel Placing: Kids can help by inserting the pretzel sticks into the cupcakes.

Sprinkle Duty: Kids love adding the final decorative touches, so hand them the sprinkle jar and let them go to town!

Topping Options

  • Mini star-shaped sprinkles for the top of the tree
  • Edible glitter for a snowy effect
  • Crushed peppermint candy for added flavor and crunch

How to Store Your Christmas Tree Cupcakes

If you need to store the Christmas Tree Cupcakes before bringing them to an event, line them one-by-one on parchment paper in a long plastic container with plenty of space. Do not stack the cupcakes because then the frosting will get ruined. 

You should put an airtight lid on top of the container to keep the frosting from drying out. You can put your Christmas Tree Cupcakes in the fridge to keep them fresh for five days or place them in the freezer and store them for several months, which may be something you want to do if you are preparing these cupcakes ahead of time.

Why This Recipe Works

Triple Chocolate Fudge Cake Mix: Provides a rich, chocolatey base that complements the candy and frosting.

Dark Green Candy Melts: Offer vibrant color and solid structure for our mini Christmas trees.

Pretzel Sticks: Give that needed crunch and hold up the “tree.”

Homemade Frosting: Allows customization of flavor and thickness, making the cupcake feel gourmet.

Decorative Sprinkles: Make everything festive and fun, and who doesn’t love a sprinkle or two?

What are some other fun Christmas Cupcakes to make?

Christmas Tree Chocolate Cupcakes - Using Cake Mix!
Yield: 12 cupcakes

Christmas Tree Chocolate Cupcakes - Using Cake Mix!

A fun cake mix chocolate cupcake with a tree made from green candy melts, and made into a fun Christmas tree shape!


  • 1 box of cake mix, I used triple chocolate fudge. (and ingredients for making them as directed)
  • For Christmas Trees:
  • decorative christmas sprinkle
  • 1 tsp of coconut oil or olive oil
  • 1 cup of dark green candy melts
  • pretzel sticks
  • plastic zip bag OR piping bag
  • wax paper
  • For Frosting:
  • (Recipe is enough to frost 12 cupcakes. If you need more, double the recipe)
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 1 ½ cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 – 1 ½ TBSP milk (depending on the desired thickness of your frosting)


  1. Bake Cupcakes as directed and allow to cool.
  2. While your cupcakes are baking lay out a sheet of wax paper large enough for you to work.
  3. Lay your pretzel sticks on the wax paper.
  4. In a small bowl add candy melts and oil, mix and microwave 30 seconds. Stir and microwave in 15 second intervals until well mixed and smooth.
  5. Pour candy mixture into a piping or zip lock bag. Snip a small end of the bag off with scissors.
  6. Starting about 2/3 of an inch up the pretzel stick, make a zig zag pattern back and forth up the pretzel stick doing larger zig zag motions at the bottom (for the widest part of the tree) and getting smaller as you work your way to the top.
  7. Once your tree is formed, sprinkle with Christmas sprinkles as desired.
  8. Repeat until you have enough trees for your cupcakes.
  9. Allow to cool at room temperature or place in fridge for 10 minutes to harden.
  10. While your Christmas trees are hardening, place room temperature stick of butter in a medium sized bowl. Using a hand mixer mix well. Add powdered sugar and vanilla. Mix again until well combined.
  11. Slowly add milk little by little, mixing in between until you get the thickness/ creaminess that's desired. I like it to be a bit thicker.
  12. Choose a piping tip and place into a piping bag. Snip the end off and spoon frosting into piping bag.
  13. Gently peel your pretzel Christmas trees off the wax paper.
  14. Ice your cup cakes as desired and top with a pretzel Christmas tree.
  15. You can also add sprinkles on top of the icing or even dust lightly with powdered sugar for extra Christmas decoration.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 389Total Fat 11gSaturated Fat 6gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 4gCholesterol 21mgSodium 417mgCarbohydrates 71gFiber 1gSugar 45gProtein 2g

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If you liked these Christmas Tree Cupcakes be sure to try these Incredible Christmas Cupcakes + Free Printable Cupcake Toppers

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