In case you’re new around here… you might not know that I have discovered the best vanilla cupcake recipe on planet Earth. If you don’t believe me, try them for yourself! You’ll soon understand.
These cupcakes are my go-to for so many occasions, because not only do they look SO elegant, they taste amazing. I often feel that bakery cupcakes (while lovely to look at) can be dry and a bit tough. There’s just no excuse for that. Eating a cupcake should be like eating a cloud. Period.
I’ve shared these cupcakes on Pretty/Hungry before in various forms (lemon, raspberry & white chocolate… strawberry cream cheese… wedding cake) but I’m posting them today in their purest form for you to enjoy!
I’m also excited because today’s post includes my first ever video tutorial! I thought that you might like to learn how to make icing flowers like the ones in these pictures. It actually isn’t as difficult as it might seem, and what a fun skill to have! If you’re ever hosting a birthday party or baby shower, you can really save a bundle by making the cupcakes yourself rather than buying them. And these are gorgeous enough for any event!
Ingredient snobs beware: These perfectly divine vanilla cupcakes start from a boxed cake mix. (I can hear the gasps in the crowd.) And as someone who can tend to be a bit of an ingredient snob myself, all I can say is that sometimes seemingly sub-par ingredients produce some pretty remarkable foods… and I wouldn’t want to miss out on a knock-out cupcake because of ingredient-snobbery. In other words, don’t knock em’ til you’ve tried em!
Here’s the video for your viewing pleasure. (Scroll down for the printable vanilla cupcake recipe. And for a more in-depth, step-by-step recipe, click here!)
You can find my preferred set of piping tips (including the flower tip) here! And you’ll also need a set of couplers, to keep the tips in place.
Perfect Vanilla Bean Cupcakes
~a boxed white cake mix
~1 C. flour
~1 C. sugar
~ 3/4 tsp. salt
~real vanilla and almond extracts (a teaspoon of each)
~1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste (or scrape out seeds from 1 vanilla bean)
~1/8 C. Canola oil
~1 1/3 C. water
~1 C. sour cream
~Icing of choice (here’s a great one to try!)
Preheat oven to 325. Prepare 2 or 3 muffin pans with paper liners. (This recipe will make about 30 cupcakes.) In a large bowl, whisk together the cake mix, flour, sugar, & salt. In a separate bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together the eggs, oil, sour cream, vanilla, almond extract, vanilla bean seeds, & water. Gently pour the wet mixture into the dry and beat on low with an electric mixer until just combined, then turn up mixer speed to medium and beat about 40 seconds, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula halfway through.
Evenly distribute cupcake batter into the muffin tins, filling each cup about 2/3 full. Bake for 16-22 minutes, until cupcake tops start to turn barely golden. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely, then frost as desired.
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