My Favorite Vanilla Cupcakes

These Vanilla Cupcakes will easily become your go-to cupcake recipe! This simple dessert is made completely from scratch using the reverse creaming method. It’s the best vanilla cupcake you will ever taste!

These soft, light, and buttery cupcakes topped with a swirl of buttercream are guaranteed to be your new favorite!

Fluffy, soft vanilla cupcakes

Everyone Needs a Vanilla Cupcake Recipe That Always Turns Out Perfect!

Today we’re taking it back to basics! This vanilla cupcake recipe is one I shared many years ago, back in 2013 but I thought needed an update. The recipe remains the same, but I wanted to include some more tips and tricks for ultimate cupcake success. PLUS, I felt like they needed some pretty new pictures!

A classic vanilla cupcake might seem like a basic or no-brainer type of recipe to bake, but I will tell you that it took me many years to perfect! There was a lot of trial and error that went into this recipe to get the texture moist, light, and soft! So many recipes I have tried in the past have been too dense, or too dry, or too too oily. But this one is soft, buttery, and light in texture with the perfect dome.

Buttery, soft vanilla cupcakes

How To Make The Best Vanilla Cupcakes

The trick I use in this cupcake recipe is the Reverse Creaming Method. I have used this in a few other recipes on my site, like my Confetti Cupcakes and LOVE how they turn out. Reverse creaming produces an ultra-fine crumb, which makes these cupcakes super tender!

What Is Reverse Creaming?

Reverse Creaming is when you mix the butter into the dry ingredients before mixing in the remaining ingredients and liquids. Generally when you bake a cake you cream the butter and sugar together to start and then add the dry ingredients in alternating additions with the wet.

Reverse creaming evenly combines the butter into the dry ingredients creating a coarse sand texture, coating all the dry ingredients with fat, and then add in the remaining ingredients. We’re always told when making cake batter NOT TO OVER MIX! because over-mixing batter can cause more gluten to form, creating a denser, less light and airy cake. BUT reverse creaming coats the flour in fat which minimizes gluten formation. This also creates smaller air particles being formed in the mixing, producing a finer crumb, and a perfect dome.

How To Make The BEST Vanilla Cupcakes

How To Make Vanilla Cupcakes

Let’s get started, the process is super easy, but just make sure to follow a few quick steps to ensure perfection!

  1. Use room temperature butter cut into cubes. This allows the butter to mix into the dry ingredients easily and efficiently without large clumps!
  2. Place all your dry ingredients into the bowl of your stand mixer and turn the mixer onto low and mix for 1 minute. This essentially does the same thing as whisking or sifting the dry ingredients, only easier!
  3. When you mix the butter in, start with a few cubes at a time. Bu the time it’s all mixed in you will want it to look like Parmesan Cheese!
  4. After you add your wet ingredients to the dry make sure you scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl so you make sure you get everything mixed in evenly.
  5. When you fill your liners with the batter, fill them 2/3 full, which is about 1/4 cup. I use a measuring cup, or a large scoop to portion it out to ensure every liner is filled exactly the same.
  6. Bake them until the domes have formed and they are set!

Soft and fluffy vanilla cupcake recipe

What Frosting Recipe Should I Use On Vanilla Cupcakes?

  • Buttercream. Of course this is my go-to on vanilla cupcakes! And it’s what I have frosted on the cupcakes in the pictures featured here!
  • Chocolate Frosting. A vanilla cupcake with chocolate frosting is a classic, and my Creamy Chocolate Frosting Recipe is the BEST!
  • Perfect Party Frosting. This recipe is a marshmallow buttercream with sprinkles INSIDE! It’s a fantastic recipe!
  • Pumpkin Butter Frosting. This is a great recipe to give your cupcakes a fall twist!
  • 2 Ingredient White Chocolate Buttercream. Creamy, decadent, with the perfect amount of sweetness, this recipe is silky and rich!

Feel free to get creative with your frosting. I used a Wilton 1M tip for the swirls in these photos, and it’s my go-to piping tip! And of course don’t forget the sprinkles!

Print

My Favorite Vanilla Cupcakes

  • Author: Shelly
  • Prep Time Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield Yield: 24 cupcakes 1x
  • Category Category: Dessert
  • Method Method: Oven
  • Cuisine Cuisine: American

Description:

This vanilla cupcake recipe is easy, soft, and moist! The perfect birthday cupcake topped with a tall swirl of frosting!


Ingredients:

  • 1 3/4 cup cake flour
  • 1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 cup butter, room temperature, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

Recipe for Vanilla Buttercream


Instructions

1. Prepare oven and muffin tin. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line muffin tin with cupcake liners and set aside.

2. Combine dry ingredients. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment add the cake flour, all purpose flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt and stir together using paddle attachment for 1 minute on low speed.

3. Add butter and eggs. With mixer still on low, drop in butter, a few cubes at a time, continuing until all butter is in and mixer resembles coarse sand. The add in the eggs one at a time until combined.

4. Add milk and vanilla. With mixer still on low slowly pour in milk and vanilla. Turn the mixer to medium and beat for 2 minutes until batter is smooth, scraping sides of bowl as necessary, making sure batter is well combined.

5. Add batter to cupcake tin and bake. Fill liners 2/3 full (about 1/4 cup batter) and bake for 15-20 minutes until centers are set and toothpick comes out clean.

6. Cool and decorate! Allow to cool completely before frosting.


Notes:

Store airtight at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Keywords:: cookies and cups, vanilla cupcake recipe, best vanilla cupcake recipe, cupcake recipe, buttercream

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The Best Vanilla Cupcakes Recipe

Hi! I’m Shelly and I’m an addict. Of the buttercream sort. I started this site a few years ago as a way to justify my sugary, buttery obsession with desserts. It has worked out well for me so far, because as it turns out you guys all love sugary, buttery desserts too! It feels good to know you're not alone, doesn’t it?

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Wally Rodriguez
Wally Rodriguez
July 2, 2020 5:53 pm

Hi there,
I would like if I can substitute some of the butter for oil.
Thank you in advance.

T.Rina
T.Rina
June 30, 2020 4:08 pm

Hi! Can i make this with soy milk and margarine?

Brooke
Brooke
June 5, 2020 1:22 pm

Excellent recipe and easy to make. Loved them.

Heart
Heart
March 3, 2020 5:16 am

Can i use only all purpose flour?

karnic
January 30, 2020 2:58 pm

Looks beautiful! One thing…the eggs? I’m assuming they’re added one by one after the butter step? Or do you whisk them with the other wet ingredients and add them that way? Thanks!

Teresa
Teresa
January 7, 2020 8:20 pm

Hi Shelly,

So, I just finished making this and followed the recipe to the T, but my cupcakes turned out flat. No dome at all. Disappointed

Any pointers, please.

Thanks

Teresa
Teresa
January 7, 2020 4:03 pm

Hi Shelly,

I’m looking into making these. What are the measurements for a dozen?

Thanks,

Teresa

Teresa
Teresa
January 7, 2020 3:20 pm

Hi Shelly,

I’m thinking about making these. What would he the measurements for half a dozen?

Thanks!
Teresa

Sharon Goad
Sharon Goad
January 6, 2020 2:34 pm

does it have to be cupcakes
can you make this same recipe into a bunt cake or layer cake ?

Patricia Jones
January 5, 2020 8:02 pm

Was wondering if you can change the cupcake recipe into a cake, my dad loves vanilla cake. T

Patricia Jones
January 5, 2020 7:59 pm

I love seeing your recipes, my dad loves vanilla cake, can you use this recipe to make it into a cake instead of cupcake? Thank you, Patricia Jones

Morgan
Morgan
December 13, 2019 11:53 am

I’ve been searching for the perfect cupcake, and I finally found it! I absolutely LOVE these.

If I wanted to bake this as a layer cake, what pans/baking time should I use?

Tab
Tab
December 8, 2019 8:18 pm

Can I use a hand mixer with standard beaters?

Nicolette
Nicolette
November 11, 2019 9:05 pm

Could I use this same recipe for a 2 layer cake??
Thanks:)

Melinda
Melinda
August 9, 2019 2:45 am

Can I make this without a stand mixer and the paddle attachment?

Shelly Hi! I’m Shelly and I’m an addict. Of the buttercream sort. I started this site a few years ago as a way to justify my sugary, buttery obsession with desserts. It has worked out well for me so far, because as it turns out you guys all love sugary, buttery desserts too! It feels good to know you're not alone, doesn’t it?

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