Easy Vanilla Cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream

This no fuss little treat is simply the best one I’ve ever nicked off the net. Minimal steps to perfection- if you have 20 mins to spare, give this one a try!

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For around 24 fluffy & light cupcakes, you need ..

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 cup of softened butter
  • 3/4 cup castor sugar (add a little more, if you like yours sweeter.)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence

 

The steps are so easy..

 

  • Preheat oven to 170c; line muffin tray with cupcake papers.
  • Cream butter and sugar till light and fluffy.
  • Beat in eggs one at a time.
  • Add flour (mixed with baking powder and salt) alternating with milk beat well; stir in vanilla.
  • Scoop evenly, about ¾, into cupcake liners in tray and bake for 20-22 minutes. Let cool in tray for about 10 mins before cooling completely on wire rack.

 

The Chocolate Buttercream, though an added step, is essential to this simple cupcake- as it adds a rich & satisfying finish. Plus it looks so great!

 

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting:

 

  • 75 g softened butter
  • 1 tbs heavy cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1 tbs unsweetened cocoa powder-press through a sieve to break up lumps.
  • 175 g sifted icing sugar

 

To make the frosting..

 

  • In a medium bowl, whisk butter till pale & fluffy.
  • Add & mix in cream & vanilla.
  • Finally, whisk in the icing sugar & cocoa, making sure there are no lumps.
  • Choose the piping nozzle that works for you & frost the cooled cupcakes!

 

Sometimes, I scoop out a tiny bit of cake from the centre, about half way through a cupcake & begin piping at this point, swirling my way to the top! Simply filling in more icing only enhances the deliciousness of every bite!

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Retro Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

I love all things Retro Americana; especially food that was popular during the 1940’s & 1950’s. So, no surprises here, the Red Velvet Cake / Cupcakes easily tops my list of retro food favorites 🙂

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Have to say-this is the most satisfying thing I’ve baked. The intense red, lightness & the sheer deliciousness of the RV cupcake just gets dreamier with the right amount of cream cheese frosting. Having tried a couple of recipes, oh about 50 times or so, I’ve finally settled for this easy one. Seems just wrong not to share…

Makes about 20 delicious cupcakes.

  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt, if using unsalted butter (Traditionally oil is used instead of butter, but I find butter so much tastier. I use guilt free Nutralite)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 110 g butter or margarine softened
  • 1 1/2 cups castor sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 11/2 tsp red icing colour
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons distilled white vinegar (White vinegar reacts with the baking soda & creates an airiness that helps the cake rise more, making the cake fluffy.)
  • 1 tsp baking soda

All you have to do is:

  • Preheat oven to 180 c.
  • Line standard muffin pan with paper liner.
  • In a medium bowl, sift in flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt; keep aside.
  • In large bowl, cream butter and sugar with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, icing color and vanilla extract; mix well until icing color is well mixed– be sure to scrape down sides of bowl when necessary.
  • Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk to butter mixture, add water and mix well.
  • In small bowl, combine white vinegar and baking soda-then gently stir into cupcake mixture.
  • Spoon into baking cups. Bake 20-22 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  • Cool cupcakes in pan on cooling rack for 5 minutes.
  • Remove cupcakes from pan, cool completely before icing.

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For more moisture & a salty-sugary hit, I find cream cheese compliments this cupcake perfectly, so went the extra delicious mile to whip up this quick frosting. It’s much easier to make & more appetizing than it looks!

Easy Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 110 g unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 225 g cream cheese at room temperature
  • 1 cup icing sugar, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tbs milk, if need to make thinner.

Place butter in bowl and beat until light and fluffy, for about 2 minutes. Add cream cheese, and beat until well-combined and fluffy, about 2 minutes more. Add sugar and vanilla and beat until combined, about 2 minutes. If too thick, add 1 tbs milk.

Fill in prepared piping bag with nozzle of choice. I like being fancy with the piping, but you could just use a spatula or butter knife to apply frosting to cupcake, as creatively as you like.

Frosting the Cupcakes:

Once, the cupcakes are cooled, peel off the paper liner & slice the cupcake horizontally- as neatly as possible 🙂

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Pipe icing generously on lower layer, shut cupcake & pipe swirl on top! That’s it; gorgeous red velvet cupcakes are ready!

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