These homemade Twinkies rival the real deal from Hostess with their fluffy cream filling and sponge cake. Just like the ones from your childhood. But better.
This homemade Twinkies recipe is my own riff on the Hostess Twinkie. I rely on my yellow sponge cake, coaxed into that familiar oblong shape via some creative tin-foil folding, and a seven-minute frosting that’s airy, meringue-y, and reliably sweet as a cream filling. And I cram as much filling in the sponge cakes as I can contain without the cakes exploding. Which is sorta surprising seeing as I’ve never cultivated even a meager appreciation, let alone anything resembling the requisite reverence, for the snack cake. I’m just not that into them. Still, I find the moist, flavorful crumb and gobsmackingly sweet, fluffy filling of this divine little ditty outright irresistible. Especially when eaten slightly warm—something I can assure you will never happen with a Twinkie straight from the wrapper. Originally published April 5, 2011.–Erin Carlman Weber
- Quick Glance
- 50 M
- 1 H, 15 M
- Makes 12 Twinkie look-alikes
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Twinkies Cupcake Variation
You could bypass the whole arts-and-craft moment of jury-rigging oblong baking molds out of aluminum foil and instead make do with a standard muffin or cupcake tin, in which case you’d divvy the batter among the tin to make a dozen cupcakes, tweaking the baking time to 13 to 17 minutes and slathering the cooled muffins with the Seven-Minute Frosting. This approach will suffice only if you don’t mind a squat cupcake that’s sort of like a blond Hostess snack cake (minus the squiggle of icing on top, natch).
Recipe Testers Reviews
These homemade Twinkies were so much fun to make and eat. I took the easy way out and made them into muffins instead of the traditional Twinkie shape. I also made them gluten-free. The results were delightfully tasty, although not quite the way I remembered Twinkies tasting—but then, it’s been a long while. The sponge cake was light and airy and the filling was delightful. The batter had to be spooned, not poured, into the muffin cups, as it was too thick for pouring. Since I converted this batter to gluten-free, I can’t say if this is typical of the regular version. The baking time was also a bit longer for me at 20 minutes. To fill these, I inserted a pastry tip into the bottom of the cupcake. These disappeared quickly and all were delighted and happy to eat them.
Even if you don’t like Twinkies, this homemade Twinkies recipe is a keeper for the sponge cake alone. It was easy to make, tasted great, and I can see using it in other recipes in the future. I poured the batter into a muffin tin. The filling came together in about 3 minutes, although I beat it for the full 5 minutes to see what would happen. While the filling got somewhat chunkier, it didn’t affect the final texture when piped into the cake. There was more than enough filling, and it could have been reduced by a third. I also had leftover cake batter after filling my tin, so I poured the remaining batter into a couple bouchon molds, which served as a nice approximation to the Twinkie shape.
This homemade Twinkies recipe makes one of the best sponge cake recipes I’ve tried. It’s fantastic because it’s light, yet really moist. The 7-minute frosting is quite easy to make and works as a mock-Twinkie filling. Overall, Twinkies are much, much sweeter, and less spongy, than these homemade Twinkies. My kids preferred these plain, with no filling, whereas I preferred them with a jam filling and a sprinkle of confectioner’s sugar, much like my mother’s jelly rolls. Delicious! I’d make the sponge cake again (and again and again) because it was fabulous. I also would use it for tiramisu.