One thing's for certain...you've never had caramel apple cupcakes quite like this one. Every single bite is going to have you craving more.
Preheat oven to 350
In the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, mix the white cake mix, eggs, melted butter, and heavy cream until well blended. Add the apple extract, and the green food coloring gel, and blend until well mixed, and the desired color of green.
Line 2 - 12 count, or 1 - 24 count muffin tin with cupcake liners, and ladle the cupcake batter into the liners, filling them 2/3 full. Bake at 350 degrees for 18 - 22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Place the cupcakes on a wire rack to cool.
Wash the Apples, and dry with paper towels. Cut the tops off the Apples, and dip them in the Marzetti's caramel apple dip, and place them on parchment lined cookie sheets, and place them in the freezer to set. NOTE: Save the rest of the apple for a pie, cobbler, pork and apple dinner!
In the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, mix the softened butter and Crisco until smooth and creamy. Add the Vanilla and mix well. Add half of the powdered sugar, and half of the heavy cream, and mix until well blended.
Add the rest of the powdered sugar a little at a time, alternating with the remaining cream until all ingredients have been added Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl, and blend again until smooth and creamy. Place the mixing bowl in the refrigerator for one hour to chill the Frosting.
When the frosting is chilled, and the cupcakes are completely cool, place the frosting in a pastry bag with the large star tip, and starting on the outer edge, pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes swirling up to a point.
Drizzle a little caramel over the cupcake, and down onto the frosting and cupcake.
Remove the apple tops from the freezer, and place an apple top on the top of the frosting.
Serve and Enjoy!
NOTE: Marzetti's caramel apple dip is usually found in the Produce section close to the Apples. If you cannot find this brand of caramel apple dip, simply use another brand of caramel topping, but, make sure it's thick and not runny, because it won't stick to the apples if it's runny.
ALSO: Don't throw away the apples you cut the tops off of. You can either slice them up and place them in a Ziploc bag, and refrigerate them to be dipped in caramel dip for a snack, or you can save them to make a pie, or Apple Crisp, or to be eaten with cheese. You can slice and freeze them if you need to use them at a later time, and if you're in a hurry, you can pull them from the freezer ready to use. I freeze mine tossed in sugar, brown sugar and cinnamon for a pie. If you don't have time to make pie crust, simply use already made from the dairy case, and when you add the fresh apples, it's semi homemade, and so delicious! You can also serve the baked pie with caramel dip and ice cream for a really great dessert!