Food + Recipes

The Perfect Vanilla Cupcake

December 21, 2016

The height of sophistication is simplicity. – Clare Boothe Luce

I poured extra love into perfecting this classic little cake. Vanilla on vanilla is my son’s favorite and he recently requested it for his 6th birthday. The recipe uses simple ingredients that you probably have on hand. It starts with a cake that has an amazing crumb. The key is to use the spoon and level method. Packing flour into a measuring cup will give you a dense cake. Instead, stir the flour around first, spoon it into the measuring cup and then level if off with the back of a knife. This method will ensure you have light and fluffy cakes, yet sturdy enough to for a huge swirl of vanilla buttercream frosting… and there’s nothing like a heavenly homemade frosting. To add a little birthday jazz, I topped them off with naturally colored sprinkles. I hope you enjoy these little cakes as much as we do!

 

Gather

1 ⅓ cup all-purpose flour (or gluten-free flour)
1 ¼ teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
½ teaspoon sea salt
½ cup unsalted pasture butter, softened
1 cup coconut or granulated sugar
2 large pasture eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
½ cup full-fat sour cream

Vanilla Frosting
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted pasture butter, softened
3 cups confectioners sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons heavy cream

Preparation

Cupcakes

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 12-count muffin pan with cupcake liners, and a second muffin pan with 2 liners.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or in a large mixing bowl using a hand-held mixer), beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then the vanilla. Add in the sour cream and mix until fully combined.
  4. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined, making sure not to over mix the batter.
  5. Scoop the batter into the cupcake liners, filling them a little over half way full.
  6. Bake in separate batches at 350°F for 20 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted into the center of the cupcake comes out clean.
  7. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a couple of minutes before transfering to a wire rack to cool completely.

Frosting

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or in a large mixing bowl using a hand-held mixer) beat the butter on medium speed until smooth.
  2. Add in the confectioners sugar and vanilla and mix on low until well combined. Slowly add in the heavy cream, increase the speed to medium-high, and mix for a few more minutes until the frosting is smooth and well combined.
  3. Frost and decorate the cooled cupcakes as desired.

Store prepared cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2-3 days or in the refrigerator for up to five days. Makes 14 cupcakes.

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