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This whole story started years ago with a wish on a cupcake. When my mom wished not to be alone and we were reunited.
Henry to Lucy and Jacinda src

Cupcakes are a pastry featured on ABC's Once Upon a Time. They first appear in the first episode of the first season.


Before First Curse

In the Emerald Castle, Zelena puts a platter with a green-frosted cupcake in front of her and uses magic on a mirror to see the moment her mother abandoned her. "You gave away the wrong child, mother", she says aloud, before blowing out a single green candle on the cupcake. She is then interrupted when one of her flying monkeys arrives with a special delivery. Later, Hades finds the cupcake and picks it up, mistaking it for Zelena celebrating her own birthday. However, she coldly refutes this, stating she doesn't know her own birthdate, only the day her mother abandoned her. He wonders if she's celebrating her "abandonment day", but she says she isn't celebrating anything and angrily blows out the re-lit candle. Hades then hands the cake back to her while he explains how he thinks he can help her with the time travel spell she is attempting to enact. ("Our Decay")

The Blind Witch resides in a gingerbread house in the Enchanted Forest, which she uses to lure children into. Inside the house, there are many sweets and pastries inside to tempt those who enter. Hansel and Gretel go in and see the Blind Witch asleep in a chair. Little do they know, she only awakens after a child takes a bite of one of the goodies on the table. Unable to resist the sight of the sweets before him, Hansel takes a large bite of a cupcake and causes the Blind Witch to stir from her sleep. ("True North")

During First Curse
In Boston, a young bail bonds person named Emma heads home to her apartment with some groceries. Since it is her twenty-eighth birthday, she bought a small cupcake for herself. Lighting a blue star candle on the cake, Emma silently makes a wish before blowing it out. Coincidentally, the doorbell rings, and she opens the door to find a young boy, Henry, claiming to be the son she gave up ten years ago. ("Pilot")

After First Curse

At home, Regina attempts to open Henry's mind to the greatness of magic and by showing him that by having it, obtaining anything is possible. To further illustrate this, Regina conjures a puff into her palm, making a giant cupcake materialize out of thin air. She promises him she can teach him this and so much more. Henry is not interested and helps her see how dependent she is on magic, and the last thing he wants is to become like her. ("We Are Both")

In Wonderland, the White Rabbit is picked up by the Red Queen to her castle. Sitting by the queen's dinner table, which is decorated with cupcakes and pastries, he affirms that everything went smoothly and Alice is back, but the queen still wants him to continue working for her or else. ("Down the Rabbit Hole")

In Wonderland, Alice works on a plan to track down Cyrus, her great love who is cursed to be a genie. She proposes to her friend Will that they find Cyrus' genie bottle and make three harmless wishes. Will says that he thought there was no such thing as a harmless wish, but Alice says that if you wish for something small and innocent like a cupcake, it should be fine. However, this plan never comes to pass. ("Trust Me")

After Third Curse
When the serum queen wishes for Emma to have never become the Savior, Emma is transported to the Wish Realm, where she is given a life in which she grew up as a princess and the Dark Curse was never cast. During her birthday celebration in the Royal Castle, she makes a wish on a candle shaped like a blue star, which is sitting on a cupcake. When asked by Grumpy what she wished for, she replies, "Not a thing. Everything I could ever want is right here." ("Wish You Were Here")

After Fourth Curse

On her birthday, Alice, stuck in Gothel's tower, lights a candle on a cupcake and blows it out after making a wish. When nothing happens, she muses to herself that perhaps she'll have better luck next year. Suddenly, the roof starts shaking before it is ripped away by a giant troll, who, unknown to Alice, was conjured by her own magic. The troll then holds out his palm for her to hop on and escape the tower, much to Alice's excitement. ("The Girl in the Tower")

After traveling to New Wonderland, Cinderella finds Alice at the Tea Party in the Infinite Maze, where two old cupcakes are sitting on the table.[1] ("Pretty in Blue")

Later, Alice meets a young woman named Robin who helps her to realize she made the troll because she didn't want to be alone. Robin assures her she will be with her, which allows Alice to finally say goodbye to her old friend, who turns into a statue. Afterward, Robin helps Alice celebrate her birthday with a lit cupcake before they both leave together. ("The Girl in the Tower")

After Fifth Curse

After Regina casts Drizella's curse to save Henry's life, the Blind Witch assumes the identity of a baker named Hilda and begins to run a bakery in Hyperion Heights. Although their number one seller is gingerbread, the bakery also offers other treats, such as cupcakes.[2] ("The Eighth Witch", "A Taste of the Heights")

At Henry's apartment, Lucy makes frosted cupcakes for her parents which are topped with individually lit candles. She explains to them that they're to make up for all the celebrations they missed because of the Dark Curse. Henry tells them about how his own mother made a wish on a cupcake that spurred on his reunion with her, and now that he has been reunited with his family, he doesn't know what to wish for. Jacinda admits that she feels the same way. The three of them smile at each other and then blow out the candles together, but Henry opens his eyes to see he is now alone. Rumplestiltskin of the Wish Realm reveals himself to be the culprit. As he samples the icing on the cupcakes, he explains that he kidnapped them to his realm and won't give them back until Henry forfeits Weaver's dagger to him. ("Homecoming")

After Sixth Curse
Years after their adventures in Wonderland, Cyrus and Alice have a young daughter. After getting refreshments for his family, he returns with a pot of tea and a plate of red velvet cupcakes as Alice reads stories of her past adventures to their daughter. ("And They Lived...")


Production Notes

  • The part where Wish Rumplestiltskin samples the icing on the cupcakes in Henry's apartment in "Homecoming", was pitched by director Steve Pearlman to Robert Carlyle the night they were shooting the scene. Pearlman had asked the prop department to have enough cupcakes available in case Robert Carlyle liked the idea, which he did. While they were filming it, Pearlman was afraid that the actor would get lead poisoning because of the number of times he sucked cream and the make-up off his finger, or get a sugar high. They did at least 20 takes of the scene, where Robert Carlyle ate the frosting every single time.[3]





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