VEGAN TWINKIES! (and a Twinkie Kit Review)

February 25th, 2011 2:36 pm by Kelly Garbato

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Holy guacamole, I did it! I totally made Vegan Twinkies®! And so can you – just follow this recipe from Shmooed Food! It’s easy, yo! And delicious. Soooooo delicious….

All you need is a canoe pan (also useful for making vegan corn dogs!) and icing injector. Hostess packages these together as a Twinkie set, but you can find generic versions online as well. (More on that later.)

For the especially frugal among us, a few regular ol’ cupcake pans and a pastry bag set works just as well. In fact, the recipe actually makes 16 Twinkies – but since I only own one eight-cavity canoe pan, I ended up making a dozen+ cupcakes too.

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Tip: for extra creamy goodness, inject the cream into your Twinkie horizontally (side to side) vs. vertically (bottom up). Ram a chopstick completely through the Twinkie before injecting the cream; this will allow for maximum fill. Sideways (at three points) is easier than lengthwise, especially if you’re working with a blunt instrument. If yer doin’ it rite, you should be able to see the top of the Twinkie puff up with cream. If you’re especially lucky, some cream will even make it all the way through and spurt out the other side. It’s like a volcano of yum, y’all!

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Also, whereas the recipe for Fluffy White Cupcakes says that you should fill each cupcake cavity just 1/4 full with batter, this makes for a rather flat cupcake. I recommend upping it to 1/2 full, since a taller cupcake means more room for cream! Plus, it’s next-to-impossible to punch holes through an inch-high cupcake without causing a crumbly mess. Truuuust me.

Of course, you can add a dollop of cream on top, too: replicate the iconic Twinkie swirl, smother it like a true cupcake, paint it with a smiley face – whatever your heart desires. Just make an extra batch of cream so that you have enough, kay? (Methinks the leftovers would taste delish in an ice cream recipe – but then I think the same of all my leftovers!)

In case you’re wondering how much I adore my Twinkie set, here’s the review I posted on Amazon. If you find that it’s helpful, hop on over to Amazon and say so. Please and thank you!

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VEGAN TWINKIES®!

4 out of 5 stars

After coming across a recipe for vegan Twinkies® online, I knew I had to get my hands on a DIY Twinkie® kit. Hostess makes its own “official” Twinkie® bake set which, while totally cute and retro and nostalgia-inducing, is both expensive and hard to find online. Also, the kit includes all sorts of items that I don’t have any use for: in addition to the canoe pan and icing injector (which purportedly is a useless piece of junk), there’s a rubber spatula (I have several already!), Twinkie® carrying case (these babies won’t get any further than my kitchen counter!), and recipe booklet (not vegan, no thanks!). Luckily, generic versions of the set – such as this canoe pan and decorating kit from Norpro – are easy to find online.

The Norpro set comes with the two tools essential to making vegan Twinkies®: a canoe pan and icing injector. Though I’ve only used it once, the canoe pan is heavy-duty and looks as though it will hold up over time. My only complaint is that the set only comes with one eight-cavity pan – whereas every recipe I’ve found online produces 16 Twinkies®! Unless you buy a second pan, you either have to bake the batch in two halves or make cupcakes using the extra batter. (Which is just as delicious, don’t get me wrong – but it’s not really the same now, is it?)

As for the injector: it’s constructed of plastic and is a little on the cheap side, but once I got a feel for it, it proved easy enough to use. I found that the cream goes in much more readily if I poke holes into the Twinkies® beforehand (using chopsticks, sideways at three points). Still, you’ll have to stop to refill the injector several times, and the apparatus is difficult to put back together with greasy hands (the cap sort of snaps onto the tube, but the connection isn’t especially secure). If you own a conventional cake decorating set – i.e., a pastry bag with tips – you may be better off using that instead. The injector set included in this kit comes with nine pieces: eight tips and the injector itself.

All in all, I’m happy with the purchase – but not too keen on buying a whole ‘nother set, just for the extra pan.

Next up: vegan corn dogs!

(I’ve been vegan since the mid-aughts and allergic to milk my entire life, so I’ve never partaken in the store-bought, dairy-laden confections. Some local vegan bakeries make their own versions – Golden Girls, holla! – but these tend to be pricey and hard to find. Being able to make my own desserts and candies is a real coup. Score: Team Vegan!)

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5 Responses to “VEGAN TWINKIES! (and a Twinkie Kit Review)”

  1. Nicole Says:

    This is simply awesome. You’ve just set my imagination into baking overdrive.

  2. Kelly Garbato Says:

    I can’t wait to try the Australian Lamingtons, with the all-over coating of chocolate icing! Ditto: a vanilla Twinkie with strawberry cream. So many possibilities…

  3. Vegan Vanilla Buttercream Ice Cream » V for Vegan: easyVegan.info Says:

    […] snacking on some vegan vanilla buttercream frosting (left over from my first and only batch of VEGAN TWINKIES!!!, natch). As sugary sweet and headache-inducing as it can be, that shit is ADDICTIVE. (Even more so […]

  4. Kelly G.’s Pancakes and Sausage ON A STICK! » V for Vegan: easyVegan.info Says:

    […] You might remember that I promised to veganize this, um, “foodstuff” last mofo, after the husband baked Lightlife Smart Bacon into a batch of blueberry pancakes. He found it an excellent idea, but I couldn’t get past the blueberry-bacon flavor combo. (Ewww!) This year I thought I’d up the ante, and boy did I. But not in a gross way! These baked sausage pancakes are delicious, and surprisingly easy to make. All you need is a batch of pancake batter, eight vegan sausage links and a canoe pan. (Like you’d use to make vegan Twinkies. Which I’ve also done!) […]

  5. O is for Old-Fashioned Chelsea Waffles » V for Vegan: easyVegan.info Says:

    […] but you know what? Totally worth it. Barley malt is the same thing I use to flavor the cream in vegan Twinkies (but in powdered form), so that should give you an idea of how awesome these waffles really […]

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