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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!

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
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My Favorite Vanilla Cupcakes

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

Description

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


Ingredients

Scale
  • 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.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 cupcake
  • Calories: 168
  • Sugar: 15.2 g
  • Sodium: 90.9 mg
  • Fat: 4.7 g
  • Carbohydrates: 28.5 g
  • Protein: 3 g
  • Cholesterol: 31.2 mg

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

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257 comments on “My Favorite Vanilla Cupcakes”

  1. Hi please can you advise what measurements you have used for a cup? Is it 8oz per cup for all the ingredients? Or do the ingredients differ in terms of the metric measurements? Thanks

  2. Hey . Can we substitute butter with oil ? Or do I have a seperate recipe using oil for vanilla cupcakes ?

  3. Thank you for this delicious vanilla cupcake recipe! This recipe deserved a review. I followed the recipe exactly as written. It had the perfect texture I was looking for and resembled a combination of a light pound cake and sponge cake. Yummy even without frosting!

  4. Wally Rodriguez

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

    1. I don’t bake with margarine, but I know that most brands say they can be substituted! Let us know if you try it!

  5. 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!

  6. 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

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