Vanilla cupcakes served on a cake stand

Vanilla cupcakes

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(35 ratings)

Prep: 40 mins Cook: 20 mins


Serves 6 - 12

Decorate these easy vanilla cupcakes with buttercream and the topping of your choice. They're super-simple to make and taste divine – great as a teatime treat

Nutrition and extra info

  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: Per serving (12)

  • kcal287
  • fat16g
  • saturates10g
  • carbs34g
  • sugars27g
  • fibre0.4g
  • protein2g
  • salt0.44g
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    For the cupcake mixture

    • 120g butter, softened



      Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

    • 120g caster sugar
    • 1 egg



      The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition packed with protein and a…

    • 1 tsp vanilla extract
    • 120g self-raising flour

    For the buttercream icing

    • 140g butter, softened



      Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

    • 275g icing sugar
    • 1-2 tbsp milk



      One of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a 'complete' food…

    • A few drops of food colouring (optional)


    1. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 and line a 12-hole muffin tin with paper cases.

    2. Cream the butter and sugar together in a bowl until pale. Beat the eggs in a separate bowl and mix into the butter mixture along with the vanilla extract.

    3. Fold in the flour, adding a little milk until the mixture is of a dropping consistency. Spoon the mixture into the paper cases until they are three quarters full.

    4. Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes, or until golden-brown on top and a skewer inserted into one of the cakes comes out clean. Set aside to cool for 5-10 minutes. Then place on a wire rack.

    5. For the buttercream icing, beat the butter until soft. Add half the icing sugar and beat until smooth.

    6. Add the remaining icing sugar with 1 tbsp milk, adding more milk if necessary, until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Add food colouring (optional) and mix well.

    7. Spoon the buttercream into a piping bag and add a nozzle of your choice. Pipe in a swirl motion and then enjoy!

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    Comments, questions and tips

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    Lily Hogan's picture
    Lily Hogan
    28th Mar, 2020
    I was very excited about baking these, but when they came out they where raw and stodgy. also, the icing was to sweet so they where a bit sickly. I would recommend them to people who like sweet cupcakes but I would personally say not to leave them in the oven for the amount of time that good food suggests, maybe a little less sugar and more time would make them perfect.
    18th Mar, 2020
    I decided that I would try a different vanilla cupcake recipe whilst I was baking I found that they needed even longer than 15 mins after being properly baked through (sometime later ) they turned out to be quite nice but quite crumbly to the normal vanilla buns I bake wouldn’t mind trying to bake these again but would go back to the normal recipe I use.
    Flopsy Mopsy's picture
    Flopsy Mopsy
    15th Mar, 2020
    I have tried many recipes for cupcakes but was never successful so I gave up. This was the first time trying again for about a year and OMG I can't believe they came out so wonderfully light and moist. I won't touch another recipe - in fact I think I will print this one and frame it on my kitchen wall. Thank you so much whoever it came from x
    I love dogs's picture
    I love dogs
    10th Dec, 2019
    Baking disaster Made these buns and stuck to the method completely but they turned out horribly. The buns had sunk in the middle and were exceedingly raw. I was meant to be making these for a special occasion but had to start over because of the terrible state that they came out in.
    31st Jul, 2019
    Delicious! Inhaled by everyone
    30th Jun, 2019
    100% brilliant. Always my go to basic cupcake recipe.
    Odete Pestana's picture
    Odete Pestana
    31st May, 2019
    This is the third time I’ve made these cupcakes, not had any issues since first time so can’t understand what other comments are about! Definitely going down well, thank you
    Victoria Escreet's picture
    Victoria Escreet
    21st May, 2019
    I really can't reccomend this recipe. I followed it to the letter and they came out awful. They fell flat and sank...and were not fluffy, the complete opposite in fact. I usually do really well with cupcakes... I'm shocked at how bad these actually were.
    15th Feb, 2019
    Terrible recipe! Far too dense, cooking time all off and cakes sink. Don’t waste your time!
    19th Feb, 2019
    how rude, for me it was amazing, defenitley recommended
    Be the first to ask a question about this recipe...Unsure about the cooking time or want to swap an ingredient? Ask us your questions and we’ll try and help you as soon as possible. Or if you want to offer a solution to another user’s question, feel free to get involved...
    Lily Hogan's picture
    Lily Hogan
    28th Mar, 2020
    put the cakes in for longer , i dont want anyone in the raw mess i was in.also for the icing i would personally say less sugar.
    27th May, 2019
    I think this recipe should say 2 eggs for the amount of flour, sugar and butter then works perfectly!
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