It's my birthday! So I'm celebrating with funfetti vanilla cupcakes with chocolate fudge frosting. Yellow cake and chocolate frosting is the quintessential birthday cake I grew up with, as so many of us have, and it's a nostalgic combination I make for birthdays year after year. These funfetti vanilla cupcakes are deliciously soft, moist and full of vanilla flavor. The chocolate fudge frosting is light but rich, super chocolatey and creamy delicious. And we can't forget, it's not a true birthday cupcake unless there are lots and lots of sprinkles!
How to make funfetti cupcakes
These funfetti vanilla cupcakes are tender, buttery, and moist with a tight, delicate crumb. I've loaded these cupcakes with vanilla bean paste, but these are also great with almond extract. They're the perfect go-to vanilla cupcake. Pop in some sprinkles and they're the perfect funfetti cupcake.
These cupcakes are quick and easy to prepare. They use my favorite mixing methods, the reverse creaming method. Check out my Strawberry Rose Buttermilk Cake for more information on the reverse creaming method. Room temperature ingredients are key to a perfect cupcake. The egg, egg white, oil and vanilla bean paste are combined together in bowl and lightly beaten, to mix. The dry ingredients - cake flour, sugar, baking powder and salt - are mixed together in the bowl of a stand mixer. Room temperature butter is mixed into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. The milk is added just until the flour mixture is moistened, then the batter is whipped for a full 90 seconds. This aerates and stabilizes the batter for fluffy cupcakes.
The remaining milk is mixed in with the egg/oil mixture. The egg/oil mixture is added to the batter in two additions, scraping the bowl after each addition. Be sure to scrape the bowl when noted to make sure the ingredients are being thoroughly incorporated. Fold in the sprinkles of your choice. Divide the batter between the cupcake liners, filling about ⅔ of the way full. The cupcakes are baked a slightly lower temperature at 325F, so that bottoms and sides of the cupcakes don't get over baked while the middle is still baking. Do not over bake.
This cupcake recipe is super versatile. They're soft and fluffy, but still stable enough for a variety of fillings and frostings. The baked cupcakes will keep for 3 days at room temperature in an airtight container. I do not recommend refrigerating these, as I don' t recommend refrigerating scratch cupcakes in general. Unless they're individually wrapped, I find that they dry out a bit to much.
How to make the chocolate fudge frosting
This super chocolatey frosting is super light and creamy. There's lots of chocolate in it, but whipping the butter and the confectioner's sugar first, then whipping the buttercream after the chocolate is added ensures a light and creamy frosting, rather than a dense and cloying frosting. It's so good, it's hard to not just eat it out of the bowl with spoon.
I like to use bittersweet chocolate in my frosting to offset the sweetness from the confectioner's sugar. Choose a quality bittersweet chocolate that you like, because the chocolate flavor is front and center. Melt the chocolate in the microwave or over a double broiler until the chocolate is melted and smooth, and let it cool to room temperature. While the chocolate is cooling, whip the butter and the confectioner's sugar until super light and creamy. Add in the cooled chocolate, and beat again until combined. Add in the vanilla, milk and salt and beat on medium speed until light, creamy and thoroughly mixed. I like to whip the frosting for 3-5 minutes or so to get it really light and fluffy. Spread or pipe the buttercream onto the cooled cupcakes and top with your favorite sprinkles. Enjoy!
For more cake and cupcake recipes, check out these posts:
Funfetti Vanilla Cupcakes with Chocolate Fudge Frosting
Vanilla Funfetti Cupcakes
- ½ cup (119g) whole milk, room temperature
- 1 large egg, room temperature
- 1 large egg white, room temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla bean paste
- 2 tablespoons (26g) canola oil
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 ½ cups (175g) cake flour
- ¾ cups (150g) granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ¼ cup sprinkles
Chocolate Fudge Frosting
- 1 cup (170g) bittersweet chocolate, chopped or chips
- 1 cup (226g) unsalted butter, cubed and softened
- 1 ¾ cup (210g) confectioner's sugar
- ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon milk or cream
Vanilla Funfetti Cupcakes
- Heat the oven to 325F. Line two cupcake pans with paper liners and set aside.
- In a measuring cup, combine the egg, egg white, vanilla and oil. Whisk to combine.
- In the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the cake flour, sugar, baking powder and salt and mix on low speed for a minute to combine.
- With the mixer still running, add in the softened butter pieces. Mix on low speed until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. You should be able to gather a bit in your hand, squeeze and you have a solid piece. This means the butter is evenly distributed.
- With the mixer still on low, slowly pour in the milk, mixing JUST until the flour mixture is moistened. You will not use all the milk at this time. Pour the remaining milk into the bowl with the eggs and oil, and whisk to combine. Set aside.
- Turn the mixer speed to medium and whip for a full 90 seconds. The mixture should be whipped up, thick, and lighter in color.
- Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure everything is properly mixed.
- With the mixer speed on low, add the egg/oil/remaining milk mixture in two additions, scraping down the bowl after each addition has been mixed in.
- Once all the wet ingredients have been added, give the bowl a final scrape and mix with a spatula.
- Fold in the sprinkles. Evenly divide the batter among the cupcake liners, ⅔ full.
- Bake the cupcakes for 18-22 minutes, until a toothpick comes out with a crumb or two when inserted in the center of the cupcake. Don't over bake.
- Place the baked cupcakes on wire racks to cool for 2 minutes. Carefully remove the hot cupcakes from the pan and cool completely on a wire rack.
Chocolate Fudge Frosting
- Place the chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 30 seconds. Stir well. Return the chocolate to the microwave and heat for another 15 seconds and stir again.
- Continue heating the chocolate for 15 seconds, stirring after each increment, until chocolate is completely melted and smooth. Let the chocolate cool to room temperature.
- Combine the softened butter and confectioner's sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.
- Mix on low speed for one minute. Turn the speed to medium and beat for 5 minutes, stopping to scrape the bowl every so often.
- On low speed, add the cooled, melted chocolate. Mix for a minute, until everything is incorporated. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
- Add the salt, vanilla and milk. Increase the mixer speed to medium, and whip for 5 minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
- Pipe or spread the frosting onto the cooled cupcakes. Decorate with sprinkles.