Thin Mint Cupcakes

While I'm sure Thin Mint cupcake recipes have been out there on the internet for years I'm going to pretend I'm clever in coming up with my own version. For that reason, I didn't even bother Googling the subject for fear that my own creativity would be tainted by others' ideas. So if this has already been done I apologize for the repeat recipe. If it hasn't you can applaud me for my genius. :)

Thin Mint Filling

26 Thin Mint cookies, finely crushed (I used a food processor)
4 1/2 ounces cream cheese, softened

Blend crushed Thin Mints and cream cheese until fully mixed. Shape into 1" balls, place on a baking sheet, and refrigerate while making the batter.

Chocolate Cupcakes
Recipe adapted from Family, Stamping and Food

24 Thin Mint Cookies
2 cups flour
1 cup cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup melted butter, cooled
2 eggs
1 cup milk
2 1/2 ounces Andes Creme de Menthe baking chips
1 tablespoon heavy cream

1) Preheat oven to 350 F. Line 24 cupcake wells with paper liners. Place a Thin Mint cookie in the bottom of each liner.
2) Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Set aside.
3) Beat sugar and melted butter together on medium speed until well combined.
4) Add eggs and beat to combine.
5) Beginning with the flour mixture, add flour and milk alternately with three additions of flour and two additions of milk, beginning and ending with flour. Beat until just combined.
6) Fill cupcake liners 1/3 full with batter. Place Thin Mint truffle in the center of each and top with more batter until 2/3 full. Bake in preheated oven for 19-26 minutes or until tops of cupcakes spring back when lightly touched.
7) Cool in pan on rack for ten minutes, then remove from pan and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
8) While cupcakes are still warm, melt Andes baking chips and heavy cream in a saucepan over low heat until smooth. Spread a thin layer of chocolate on top of each cupcake.

Mint Buttercream
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 cups powdered sugar
3 tablespoons heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon peppermint oil
Green food coloring (optional)

1) In a large mixing bowl, cream butter for 45-60 seconds.
2) Add powdered sugar and beat until the mixture comes together.
3) Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add heavy cream, peppermint oil, and food coloring (if desired). Beat until combined and then beat an additional 45 seconds. If necessary, add more powdered sugar for desired consistency.