Saturday, December 11, 2010

The Ridiculous Cupcake Maker

I don't normally pick on things like this--I'm usually content to shake my head and chuckle at the absurdity of [fill in the blank here]. But I decided this Cupcake Maker was ridiculous enough (up there with the Hot Dog Toaster) that I'd give it some special attention.

I saw one of these for the first time in last weeks JC Penny's Christmas sale catalog that came in the mail. After a quick Google search, I found that almost every maker of small kitchen appliances sells one. Which brings me to my one and only question: WHY? Why on Earth would someone want one of these?

Here are my top 5 reasons why this is a ridiculous appliance:

5. It must be a pain to clean. Just looking at the pictures make me cringe when I imagine cleaning each little cup without being able to submerge the whole thing. Granted, I'm making assumptions about the can't-submerge thing.

4. They take up precious real estate in your cupboard. I don't know about you, but I don't have extra cupboard space coming out my ears, and small appliances like these take up space I'd rather have for other things. Useful things.

3. You can only use it for one thing. OK, maybe you can use it for two things if you use it to make muffins, but it's still silly to have such a limited-use kitchen appliance. Most especially when you can accomplish the same exact thing with a cupcake pan and your oven.

2. It only makes 7 cupcakes at a time. What a waste of time! Can you imagine how long it would take to make a decent number of cupcakes? I know, what if you only want 7 cupcakes? Well, why make only 7 when you have to make a mess either way. And who ever only wants to make 7 cupcakes. Just saying. And (are you ready?) they are mini-cupcakes! Now, I thought the whole idea was bad enough, but when I realized they are mini-cupcakes I just about died. Bah! Who are they kidding?!

1. They cost an average of $30 (when you buy them on sale). All my offended culinary sensibilities come down to this: If you have $30 or more burning a hole in your pocket and you're hankering for a new addition to your kitchen armory, you should use it to buy a multi-tasking kitchen tool like a good knife or a nice sauce pan...or several cupcake pans that go in the oven. That you already have.


(photo credit: I snagged it off of


  1. My best guess is an item aimed at non-bakers who want an adult easy-bake oven. Little do they know, they will be minding that thing for an entire afternoon to bake through a single batch of cupcake batter.

    Have you seen the mini pie maker that looks just like it? Probably marginally more useful, but equally silly.

    I wonder how many other appliances they can model after the George Foreman electric grill... Hmm. I want to see one that bakes a 20lb turkey!

  2. of my first thoughts after seeing it in the catalog was "Easy-Bake Oven". I bought my oldest daughter one when she was 5 (mostly because I wanted one *so* bad when I was a kid and never got one), and it was a miserable thing to use!

    I once helped a neighbor pack her kitchen for a move and pulled one sandwich maker after another out of a cupboard. I was astounded, 1. that there were so many different ones, and 2. that people actually buy them. Ahh!

    Oh, have not seen the pie maker. I'll have to look for it ;)

  3. Ha! I totally agree with you! The very first thing that popped into my head was that it only makes 7. Waste of space!

  4. Can't think why? but I am sure if we start thinking real hard, we will find other "useful" ways to use it ... let's imagine 7 mega shrimps in batter ... if we want to make money, we should pull our ideas and make a book out of it. That's usually phase II for these kind of items. Often find these appliances at golf tournament ... that's how I got the George Foreman Grill ... used it once to find out it does exactly the same thing as my Tefal pan ... but I had a real fun Saturday!

  5. I agree! However, my mom LOVES to buy me and her this kind of stuff! I've had to garage sale (after she's forgotten she gave me) all sorts of appliances...chocolate milk mixers for example. What the heck??? What about a spoon?

  6. @Sherrie, *too* funny that your mom buys you appliances like these :) Love the Chocolate Milk mixer...spoons are so over-rated...ROFL *;)*

  7. I think it would be great for single people, or if you want to make just enough for a family dinner desert, that bakes them real fast!

  8. They are energy savers for single people who do not want an entire dozen cupcakes! Mini isn't mini muffin size...these are larger. My daughter, a pastry chef, thinks they are great! A friend has one and loves it (She is single, in an aprtment and has a boyfriend who loves it as well!) No heating up an oven on hot summer days...sorry, the list FOR it goes on and on...cornmuffins, quiche, mini anythings!!!

  9. Actually, My kids and I love this thing... My two daughters 8 and 6 love to make a plate of cupcakes and take to a friend. In fact they do it a few times a week. It is easy to clean, we just use the liners and then wipe (very non stick) and they have made many other things with it as well. For my little one the oven is not a real option and this is something they can use themselves. Yes we started with an easy bake but this doesn't suck like that did. Just off hand They have made, brownies, cupcakes, muffins, quiche, mini pudding pies, tarts, and much more. I found it funny that you were so negative about something you have never even owned???? where I am from we call that being a Hater.. oh yeah I am from the same place as you. :) found your post looking for more fun things to make.

  10. @Anonymous (from 11/25)--I think it's fabulous that your girls like it so much and have gotten so much use out of it. My opinion that a particular kitchen gadget is silly (for all the reasons above) does not make me a 'hater', nor do I need to have used one to have that opinion. I'm thrilled that there are people for every kitchen tool, even the ones I will never buy. I'm sure in some small way it keeps our economy rolling along.

  11. I am a college student and love this. Boo ya.


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