Easy Turkey Cupcakes {Thanksgiving}

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Quick and easy turkey cupcakes recipe, homemade with simple ingredients. These Thanksgiving cupcakes are decorated with chocolate icing, sprinkles, candy corns and mini peanut butter cups.

Thanksgiving is such a wonderful time of year to gather with friends and family. Not to mention all the great food! These cupcakes will be at a hit for adults and children at your next get together. And don’t forget to try these fun turkey dessert recipes as well: Oreo Turkey Cookies, Turkey Cake, and Turkey Topper. They are also great options for a meatless “turkey” dinner.

Easy Turkey Cupcakes (Thanksgiving Cupcakes) on White Marble Background.

Key ingredients for decorated Thanksgiving cupcakes

  • Candy corn– You either like them or you don’t, but this season brings them for better or for worse.
  • Cupcakes– Make them homemade or do the quick and easy route with a box mix.
  • Mini peanut butter cups– Be sure they are the mini version and not the regular size or the turkey face won’t be as cute.
  • Orange and red candies– You can choose a variety of different candies here, so be creative.
  • Eyeball candies– Stock up during the Halloween season or find them in your store’s special baking isle.
  • Melted chocolate– Use semi-sweet or milk chocolate as the “glue.” White chocolate will work but won’t blend into the background as well.
  • Chocolate frosting– Best used in a piping bag and don’t skimp.
Ingredient Shot For Decorated Cupcakes on Marble Background.

How to make easy chocolate turkey cupcakes recipe with candy corn?

  1. Bake– Cupcakes and allow them to cool.
  2. Swirl- Chocolate icing on top of each cupcake.
  3. Coat- Cupcakes completely with sprinkles
  4. Place candies- On the peanut butter cup with melted chocolate to make a face.
  5. Stick the face- Of the turkey onto the side cupcake.
  6. Push– Candy corns all around the other side.
Collage Image With Step by Step Pictures on How to Make Thanksgiving Turkey Cupcakes.


Substitute candy corns- With pretzels, orange and yellow M&Ms, or Reese’s Pieces.

Other frosting options- I used a chocolate buttercream, but you can also use German Chocolate Cake Frosting, Chocolate Ganache Frosting, or Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting. For a lighter brown/tan color you can use Brown Sugar Frosting, Caramel Frosting, Peanut Butter Frosting, or Maple Frosting.

Change cupcake flavors- Chocolate works the best in the color scheme, but you can also use vanilla, red velvet, or another one of your favorite flavors.

Switch up the sprinkles- Use different shapes and sizes of sprinkles. And although brown sprinkles will make it look the most like a turkey, you can also make a rainbow turkey or other various colors just for fun.

Add a filling- To the cupcakes for an extra surprise by making a whole in the center of the baked and cooled cupcake. Before frosting, fill up the whole with a Caramel Sauce, Dulce De Leche, Whipped Cream, Marshmallow frosting, marshmallow cream, small candies of your choice, or sprinkles.

Partially Eaten Cupcake on White Marble Background.

Tips and techniques

The red “wattle”– On the face is optional. You can skip it if you can’t find a long red candy. Licorice works, though, and is pretty easy to find.

Use a spatula– Or butter knife to smooth out the frosting onto the cupcake to form a nice dome shape.

Easy sprinkle coverage- Instead of trying to apply sprinkles by hand or with a spoon, simply fill a small bowl with sprinkles and turn the cupcake upside down to dip it in the bowl. Roll it around gently to completely coat. The frosting must still be somewhat wet. If you let it dry, the sprinkles won’t stick.

Use mini peanut butter cups– Instead of the larger ones because the size is more suitable for a face.

Get candies to stick- To the peanut butter cups with some melted chocolate of your choice.

You need a lot of frosting- To get all the sprinkles and candies to stick and look like a plump turkey. This is done easiest with a piping bag.

Allow cupcakes to cool- Completely before decorating them with frosting, because the icing will melt and make a mess and you won’t be able to make the cute turkey.

For the beak- Be sure to press in the M&M on its side, being sure that it is halfway into the peanut butter cup. This will make it look more like a beak and less like a muppet’s nose.

Complete all faces- At the same time so that you can expedite the whole process and avoid continually warming up the chocolate along the way.

Remove wrappers- From all candies, especially the peanut butter cups. And do so before making the faces.

Turkey Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups on White Marble Background.

Recipe FAQs

What if I don’t like candy corn?

Just decorate with pretzels. Another option is to use orange and yellow Reese’s pieces or m&m candies.

How do you make the dangling red wattle on the turkey face?

Use a long red candy like red licorice ropes or thin red gummy worms.


Room temperature- Leftovers can be stored in a covered box at room temperature for 1 day.

Fridge– Place in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. 

Freezer- Unfrosted cupcakes can be stored in a sealed container in the freezer for up to 1 month. Thaw, frost, and serve.

More Thanksgiving Desserts For Kids

Easy Thanksgiving Turkey Cupcakes on White Marble Background.
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Easy Turkey Cupcakes

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Decorating time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Quick and easy turkey cupcakes, homemade with simple ingredients. These Thanksgiving cupcakes are decorated with chocolate icing, sprinkles, candy corns and mini peanut butter cups.
Yield: 24 Cupcakes


  • 24 Chocolate cupcakes
  • 4 cups Chocolate buttercream icing
  • 2 cups Chocolate sprinkles
  • Mini Reese's peanut butter cups, Unwrapped but don't remove the candy liner.
  • 1 cup Melted chocolate
  • 48 Eyeball candies
  • 24 Orange m&m candies
  • 24 Long red candies , Optional, To make the dangling red wattle. Can use red licorice or thin red gummies too.
  • 2 cups Candy corns


  • Bake cupcakes and allow them to cool completely.
  • Fill a piping bag with chocolate icing and create a swirl on top of each cupcake.
  • Use a spatula or butter knife to smooth it out into a dome shape.
  • Place these cupcakes (frosting side down) into a bowl of chocolate sprinkles until fully coated.
  • Make the turkey face by sticking the eyeballs candies, orange m&m candies and the long red candy (optional) on the mini peanut butter cups with melted chocolate.
  • Stick this face on the side of the cupcake.
  • Push candy corns all around the other side of the cupcake to create the look of feathers. Enjoy!


  • Leftovers can be stored in a covered box at room temperature for 1 day or in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. 
  • Don’t ice or decorate warm cupcakes because the icing will melt.
  • Use mini peanut butter cups instead of the larger ones because the size is more suitable for a face.
  • The red “wattle” on the face is optional. You can skip it if you can’t find a long red candy. 
  • Scroll up to read additional tips and variations. 


Calories: 460kcal, Carbohydrates: 80g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 16g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 6g, Trans Fat: 0.004g, Cholesterol: 1mg, Sodium: 251mg, Potassium: 136mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 66g, Vitamin A: 27IU, Vitamin C: 0.1mg, Calcium: 63mg, Iron: 1mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Calories: 460
Author: Abeer Rizvi

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