Home > Cupcakes > Basic Cupcakes and Three Variations

Basic Cupcakes and Three Variations

By: Anna Hinds BA (hons) - Updated: 18 Jun 2013 | comments*Discuss
 
Fairy Cake Cupcake Cake Batter Coffee
CakeUlator Information Graphic

The cupcake (or fairy cake if you’re of a certain generation) is an icon of the 21st century. Crowned with a swirl of glossy meringue or buttercream icing, and sprinkled with twinkle dust or stars, it’s the Victoria Sponge’s glamorous little sister.

Cupcakes are cheap AND easy…

You’ll pay pounds for a small box of cupcakes from a fancy bakery. But these little cakes, though adorably cute and appealing, cost very little to make at home. So stop buying those gorgeously adorned, hideously expensive cupcakes, and make a whole tray of your own. Okay, so the decorations may not be quite so professional, but you can afford to do a few practice runs.

You don’t have to be a goddess to create a tray of cupcakes. In fact (whisper it) they’re possibly the easiest thing to bake – ever. Use our all-in-one processor method, throw the ingredients into the mixer, and you’ll have a tray of cupcakes ready in moments. They take 15 minutes in the oven, so it’s quite possible to make and eat a batch after dinner – or after getting in from the school run. Decorating the Cakes is something that you can take very seriously, or treat as a hilarious family activity. Laughing at one another’s efforts to recreate Peppa Pig or write initials with icing can be almost as fun as scoffing your creations afterwards.

Get creative with your cupcakes…

Start with our basic recipe and once you’ve tried that, invent some new favourites of your own. Pop a toffee in the middle of the cakes… top with your kids’ favourite sweets... or pour a splosh of coffee liqueur into the batter. Who knows what you can do – and how great it might be?

Classic Cupcake (or Fairy Cake) Recipe

Easy to make and even easier to get carried away with. You’ll be able to whip this up in seconds. Then spend the next few days dreaming up gorgeous variations…

You need:

  • 110g (4oz) unsalted butter
  • 110g (4oz) caster sugar
  • 110g (4oz) self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1tsp pure vanilla extract

To make:

Preheat the oven to 180ºC and line a 12-hole muffin tray with cases. The easiest way to proceed is with a food processor or mixer. Just put in all of the ingredients and blitz until thick, smooth and light. If you are working by hand, cream the butter with the sugar, then beat in the eggs, one at a time, and the vanilla. Finally sift in the flour and fold until you have a smooth batter. Spoon the mixture into the cake cases and bake for about 15 minutes, or until the tops are risen and pale gold.

Some Variations to try...

Espresso & White Chocolate

Dissolve 2tsp instant espresso powder into 1tbsp boiling water, and add this to the cake batter before baking. Top with a white chocolate ganache: simply melt 100g high-quality white chocolate (with pure cocoa butter – we like Hotel Chocolat’s white chocolate drops) with 100ml double cream. Cool slightly before spreading over the cupcakes, and sprinkle with cocoa powder before serving (like little cappuccinos).

Lemon

Finely grate the zest (avoiding the white pith) of a lemon into the cake batter, and squeeze the juice into a cup (but save it for the time being). Bake as usual. When the cakes are nearly ready, sift 4tbsp icing sugar into the lemon juice and stir to dissolve. When the cakes come out of the oven, stab each one all over with a skewer. Pour a teaspoon of the lemony syrup over each cake, tilting it so that the syrup runs into the little holes. Top with lemon buttercream.

Chocolate and Peanut Butter

To make a Chocolate Cupcake, simply add 2tbsp of really good cocoa powder to the cake batter (and a spoonful of milk if the batter seems too thick to drop off the spoon). You could ice it with vanilla buttercream or white chocolate ganache (above), but peanut butter makes an interesting topping. Cream together 75g unsalted butter with 175g sifted icing sugar, and when thick and fluffy, beat in 125g smooth peanut butter. Use a piping bag or spoon to top the cooled cupcakes.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
[Add a Comment]
When using ready made rolled fondant icing can I use a thin layer of buttercream to seal my cake before laying the fondant over, if so could I miss out the thin layer of sieved apricot jam?
Atlaspix - 4-Dec-12 @ 7:54 AM
How much cocoa butter can I add to my 1 kilo white compound chocolate? to make it taste better?
halu - 22-Nov-12 @ 11:11 AM
@Hellie - The sweetened mascarpone with strawberries is a great idea - yum!
CakeBaker - 6-Jul-11 @ 11:34 AM
I've just made these classic cupcakes and they turned out beautifully! Topped them with slightly sweetened mascarpone and fresh strawberry for a strawberries and cream theme, and they're light and moist and yum. Compliments all round. Thanks!
Hellie - 5-Jul-11 @ 6:26 PM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
FIND LOCAL CAKE MAKERS AND SUPPLIERS...
IN TOWN / POSTCODE:
Latest Comments
  • CakeBaker
    Re: Making and Decorating Cake Pops for Adults
    jan - Your Question:How long will cake pops lastOur Response:This depends on what you make and d
    9 February 2017
  • jan
    Re: Making and Decorating Cake Pops for Adults
    how long will cake pops last
    7 February 2017
  • CakeBaker
    Re: How To Freeze Cakes
    Non - Your Question:Now being mid Januaary and having made two Christmas cakes, marzipaned and Iced (Ready rolled) I have an entire cake…
    18 January 2017
  • Non
    Re: How To Freeze Cakes
    Now being mid Januaary and having made two Christmas cakes, marzipaned and Iced (Ready rolled) I have an entire cake untouched! How can I…
    17 January 2017
  • CakeBaker
    Re: Creating a Perfect Strawberry Jam
    glyns - Your Question:Good comments ,iam a newby just got my maker bread was good ,jam was good trying a fudge cake now ,it…
    9 January 2017
  • glyns
    Re: Creating a Perfect Strawberry Jam
    good comments ,iam a newby just got my maker bread was good ,jam was good trying a fudge cake now ,it does smell devine hope…
    7 January 2017
  • Petticoats
    Re: The CakeUlator Cake Costing App
    Hi can you tell me how much will this cost me please?
    2 January 2017
  • CakeBaker
    Re: Scottish Dumpling
    Bobby - Your Question:What cloth should I use for my clootie dumpling? I have tried this method but water got inside the mixture. And do you…
    14 December 2016
  • Bobby
    Re: Scottish Dumpling
    What cloth should I use for my clootie dumpling? I have tried this method but water got inside the mixture. And do you cover the whole mixture…
    13 December 2016
  • Yorkie
    Re: CakeOmeter: Convert Baking Tin Sizes
    I want to make a Christmas Cake in a 2lb loaf tin but can only find recipes for round or square cakes. Which size recipe…
    14 November 2016
Further Reading...
Our Most Popular...
Add to my Yahoo!
Add to Google
Stumble this
Add to Twitter
Add To Facebook
RSS feed
You should seek independent professional advice before acting upon any information on the CakeBaker website. Please read our Disclaimer.