Conversation Heart Cupcakes

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Nothing screams Valentine’s Day like conversation heart candies. This recipe takes those classic treats and infuses them into the fluffy batter and rich, colorful buttercream frosting of a cupcake. Conversation heart cupcakes are so fun to make and they actually taste like the sweet little candies they are named after. Yum!

Easy Conversation Heart Cupcakes

Do you remember opening that paper box full of small, colorful, heart-shaped candies as a kid? I sure do. Those little conversation hearts are a classic sign that Valentine’s Day is near. Not everyone is a fan of them, but I always have been. I’ve always want to make something fun and whimsical with them. And then it came to me…conversation heart cupcakes!

This recipe dissolves conversation heart candies into milk and incorporates the mixture into a light and fluffy cupcake batter. I was so pleased at how they turned out. You can actually taste the candies in the cupcake. Top it off with a big swirl of smooth, rainbow buttercream frosting (also infused with conversation heart flavor) and fondant hearts and you’ve got yourself the perfect Valentine’s Day treat.

Conversation heart cupcakes arranged on a cupcake stand with conversation heart candies scattered around.

Why You’ll Love This Cupcake Recipe

What’s not to love about a rainbow, candy-infused dessert? Not much! But let me fill you in on my favorite things about these conversation heart cupcakes.

  • Visual appeal. These Valentine’s Day cupcakes are so bright and colorful…a subtle pink cupcake topped with a rainbow of frosting? You might as well hang them on a wall and call it art.
  • You can taste the candy. My inspiration for these cupcakes was the little candies they are named after. I love that the flavor of those candies actually comes through in the cupcake and the frosting.
  • Nostalgia. As a kiddo, one of my favorite things about Valentine’s Day was conversation heart candies. To this day, their unique flavor really takes me back. These cupcakes carry that flavor and, if you’re anything like me, will transport your senses back to childhood.

Recipe Ingredients

Here is a general list of all of the ingredients you will need to make conversation heart cupcakes. Don’t forget to scroll to the recipe at the bottom of this post for more details on measurements, etc.

For the Fondant Hearts

  • White Fondant
  • Gel icing colors – I used pink, orange, yellow, blue, green, and violet to match the colors of conversation hearts. I like both Americolor and Wilton and both would work here. I will say that the violet Wilton gel color is more true to a nice purple.
  • Small Heart Cookie Cutter – I actually used the heart cutter from my linzer cookie cutter set, but if you don’t have one of those, these little heart cutters look great.
  • Food writer pen

For the Conversation Heart Milk

  • Milk – If you are dairy-free, go ahead and use your favorite, neutral, dairy-free milk substitute instead.
  • Conversation hearts – I tested using just pink and purple hearts and then using pink, purple and white. I personally really liked the flavor with the addition of the white hearts (it was a little stronger), but feel free choose your preference.

For the Conversation Heart Cupcakes

  • All-purpose flour – Make sure to measure your flour accurately. I recommend using a food scale. Feel free to use your favorite 1:1 gluten-free substitute if you don’t do well with gluten.
  • Baking powder – To give your cupcakes rise.
  • Salt – For flavor.
  • Unsalted butter – This should be room temperature.
  • Sugar – Regular granulated sugar.
  • Sour cream – For extra moisture to keep these cupcakes moist and tender.
  • Vanilla extract – For a touch of flavor.
  • Conversation heart milk
  • Egg whites – These are whipped to add lightness to the cupcakes. Using egg whites instead of whole eggs works best in these cupcakes. The lighter flavor of the egg whites allows the conversation heart flavor to come through more.

For the Buttercream

  • Unsalted butter – Should be room temperature.
  • Powdered sugar – For volume and consistency.
  • Vanilla extract – For flavor.
  • Conversation heart milk – Also for flavor and smoothing out the buttercream.
  • Salt – For flavor, as well.
  • Gel icing colors – I used the same pink, orange, yellow, blue, green, and violet as for the fondant hearts.


  • Ziplock bags
  • Clear wrap
  • Piping bag
  • Ateco 847 piping tip (or similar tip)

How to Make Valentine’s Cupcakes

Fondant hearts, conversation heart-infused milk, cupcakes, and buttercream…it all sounds like a lot but I promise that, If you follow my recipe closely, you will find yourself with cupcakes fit for a bakery. Here is a basic rundown of how to make conversation heart cupcakes. Check out the full recipe below for more detailed instructions.

Step 1: Make the Fondant Hearts (Do this 1-2 days ahead)

You could forgo the fondant hearts and just use the large sized conversation hearts on top of your cupcakes. But if you’re going to make them and customize them, here’s how.

  • Color. Take 6 pieces of white fondant and color 5 of them, each with a different color. I chose yellow, pink, orange, purple, and greenish blue to match the colors of conversation hearts. You can leave the last one white.
  • Cut. Roll out each color and cut into hearts using a heart-shaped cutter. Allow the hearts to harden for 1-2 days.
  • Decorate. Write cute love notes on each one using the food writer pen

Step 2: Make the Conversation Heart Milk

  • Dissolve the candies. Combine the warm milk and conversation hearts in a jar. Stir occasionally for about 1 hour until the hearts have dissolved into the milk.

Step 3: Make the Cupcakes

  • Combine the dry ingredients in one bowl.
  • Cream. Cream together the butter and sugar before adding the sour cream and vanilla extract.
  • Combine. Add half of the dry ingredients and combine before adding the conversation heart milk followed by the rest of the dry ingredients. Mix just until well combined. Don’t over mix.
  • Add the egg whites. Whip the egg whites into stiff peaks and fold them into the batter.
Cupcake tins with cupcake liners filled with batter for conversation heart cupcakes.
  • Bake. Spoon the batter into lined cupcake tins and bake at 350°F for 15-17 minutes. Allow the cupcakes to cool before topping with buttercream.

Step 4: Make the Rainbow Buttercream and Assemble

  • Make the buttercream. Beat the butter until smooth in a large mixing bowl before adding half of the powdered sugar and beating to combine. Incorporate the vanilla and a bit of the conversation heart milk followed by the rest of the powdered sugar and a pinch of salt. If the mixture is too thick, add more conversation heart milk until you achieve the desired consistency.
Rainbow buttercream in a piping bag, fit with a tip, and ready to top conversation heart cupcakes.
  • Color. Divide the buttercream into 5 bowls and color each a different color with the gel icing color.
  • Make a rainbow. Transfer each color to its own Ziploc bag and pipe the contents of each Ziploc into side-by-side rows onto clear wrap. Use the clear wrap to roll the rows into a log and place the log in a piping bag.
  • Frost. Pipe the rainbow buttercream on top of the cooled cupcakes and finish each one off with a fondant heart.

Tips and Tricks for Perfect Cupcakes

When making cupcakes, there are a few tips and tricks that will set you up for success. Here are some of mine.

  • Fold in the egg whites. The point of beating the egg whites is to introduce an airiness to the batter that will yield a fluffier cupcake. So when incorporating the egg whites into the batter, fold gently so as not to deflate all of the air out of the freshly whipped whites.
  • Don’t overfill. When filling cupcake liners with batter, it is important to only fill about halfway. The cupcakes will rise as they bake and you don’t want them to pop up over the liner.
  • Cool your cupcakes. If you try to add buttercream (or any frosting for that matter) to a hot cupcake, it will melt right off. So have patience and allow your cupcakes to cool before topping with luscious frosting.
  • Choose your colors wisely. You can use whichever colored conversation hearts you prefer but mix with caution. If you want to avoid a brownish hue, avoid mixing green and orange. Also, keep in mind that the white hearts have a stronger flavor, so if you are looking for that candy kick, incorporate those into your conversation heart mix.

How to Store

Conversation heart cupcakes are best stored in an airtight container for 3-4 days. You can leave them at room temperature or refrigerate them to keep them fresher, but they should be served at room temperature. I recommend adding the fondant hearts just before enjoying as they will absorb moisture and get soggy and the writing will run if left nestled in the frosting for too long.

Conversation heart cupcakes arranged on a cupcake stand with conversation heart candies scattered around.

Can I Freeze These?

You can freeze these Valentine’s Day cupcakes. Arrange the cooled cupcakes (frosted or unfrosted) in a single layer in an airtight container. Close the container and store it in the freezer for up to 3 months. When it comes time to enjoy, remove the desired number of cupcakes from the container and allow them to thaw in the fridge, then serve at room temperature.

More Valentine’s Day Ideas

Valentine’s Day feels like a great opportunity to bake. There is nothing like the gift of a sweet treat to brighten your sweetheart’s day. These conversation heart cupcakes are pretty divine, but here are some of my other Valentine’s Day faves.

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Conversation heart cupcakes arranged on a cupcake stand with conversation heart candies scattered around.

Conversation Heart Cupcakes

  • Author: Lindsay Conchar
  • Prep Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours 45 minutes
  • Yield: 12-14 cupcakes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


Conversation heart candies are dissolved into milk and folded into the batter of a perfectly fluffy cupcake. Top it off with a colorful swirl of buttercream frosting and you’ve got yourself the perfect Valentine’s Day treat.


Fondant Hearts

Conversation Heart Milk

  • 1 cup (240ml) warm milk
  • 2/3 cup conversation hearts (I recommend using white, pink and purple)

Conversation Heart Cupcakes

  • 1 1/4 cups (163g) all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 6 tbsp (84g), unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cups (155g) sugar
  • 1/4 cup (58g) sour cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp (150ml) conversation heart milk
  • 3 large egg whites, room temperature


  • 1 1/4 cups (280g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 5 cups (575g) powdered sugar
  • 1 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 34 tbsp (30-45ml) conversation heart milk
  • Salt, to taste
  • Gel icing colors (pink, orange, yellow, blue, green, violet)


  • 5 ziplock bags
  • Clear wrap
  • Piping bag
  • Ateco 847 piping tip (or similar tip)


Make the Fondant Hearts (Do this 1-2 days ahead)

  1. To make the fondant hearts, break off 6 pieces of fondant that are about the size of a golf ball. Leave one white and color the others – one yellow, one pink, one orange, one purple and one green (with a combination of green and blue color). I tried to match the colors close to conversation heart colors.
  2. Roll out one color of fondant at a time and use a heart shaped cutter to cut out the hearts. Set the hearts aside to dry out and firm up for a day or two.
  3. Once dry and firm, use the food writer pen to write conversation heart sayings onto the hearts.

Make the Conversation Heart Milk

  1. Add the warm milk and conversation hearts to a large jar or measuring cup and stir together. The candies will slowly dissolve in the milk. Let it sit, stirring every once in a while, until completely dissolved. It could take about an hour or so. You can do this a day or so ahead and refrigerate the milk until you need it.

Make the Cupcakes

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C) and prepare a cupcake pan with cupcake liners.
  2. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium sized bowl and set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light in color and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Do not skimp on the amount of creaming time.
  4. Add the sour cream and vanilla extract and mix until well combined.
  5. Add half of the dry ingredients to the batter and mix until mostly combined. Slowly add the conversation heart milk and mix until well combined. Add the remaining dry ingredients and mix until well combined and smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to be sure all ingredients are well incorporated. Do not over mix the batter. Set aside.
  6. Add the egg whites to a large mixing bowl and whip on high speed until soft peaks form.
  7. Carefully fold the egg whites into the rest of the cake batter in two parts, until no streaks of egg white remain.
  8. Fill the cupcake liners a little more than halfway full. Bake for 15-17 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out with a few crumbs.
  9. Remove cupcakes from oven and allow to cool for 2-3 minutes, then remove to cooling rack to finish cooling.

Make Fondant Hearts and Buttercream

  1. While the cupcakes cool, make the frosting. Add the butter to a large mixing bowl and beat until smooth.
  2. Add half of the powdered sugar and beat until well combined and smooth.
  3. Add the vanilla extract and 2 tablespoons of conversation heart milk and mix until smooth.
  4. Add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
  5. Add the remaining milk, as needed, and a pinch of salt and mix until well combined.
  6. Divide the buttercream into 5 bowls. Color one yellow, one pink, one orange, one purple and one green (with a combination of green and blue color). I tried to match the colors close to conversation heart colors.
  7. To make the swirl frosting, add each color of frosting to a ziplock bag. Then lay a piece of clear wrap out on the table. Trim the corner off of each ziplock bag. Pipe a thick row of each color of frosting side-by-side onto the clear wrap.
  8. Fold the clear wrap over into a long log. Twist both ends closed and trim off one end so that the frosting is right at the edge.
  9. Put the log into a piping bag with the open end of the log going into the piping tip. I used piping tip Ateco 847.
  10. Pipe swirls of frosting onto the cupcakes and top with the fondant conversation hearts or actual conversation heart candies.


Store cupcakes in an airtight container. Cupcakes are best eaten within 2-3 days. Keep in mind that the fondant hearts will soften over time from the moisture in the frosting. I suggest adding them shortly before serving.


  • Serving Size: 1 cupcakes
  • Calories: 487
  • Sugar: 60.4 g
  • Sodium: 68.9 mg
  • Fat: 22.1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 71.1 g
  • Protein: 3 g
  • Cholesterol: 58.4 mg


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About Lindsay

I'm a wife and a mom to twin boys and a baby girl! And I've got a serious sweets addiction! Bring on the treats!

Scripture I’m Loving

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” Matthew 11:28-29