Glittering Gold: Vanilla Cupcakes

When you learn to bake, one of the first things you learn is the cupcake. Simple vanilla, with more vanilla buttercream… if you don’t like vanilla you are kind of in trouble. If you come across an amazing family recipe for these things, that can be baking gold. So inspired by the gold that i think this recipe is when i was taught is over 8 years ago, i decorated these beauties with a simple golden sheen.

I love buttercream, but i find a lot of it is too much on a cupcake, it is overly sweet and much too hard to eat completely. When using a buttercream icing rather than piping it on, i use a swiping technique. I place a thick gloop on the peak of the cupcake before squashing it down and spending it around the top of the cake.

These cupcakes went down a treat with the little sisters… they lasted about three days, because i hid the cake tin! Let me know your favourite type of baking recipe or cupcake decor.

Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Icing (12):


  • 175g butter, room temperature
  • 175g self – raising flour
  • 175g caster sugar
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs


  • 175g butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 350g icing sugar
  • dash of milk
  • decorations!!!


  1. Preheat the oven to 180C degrees and put 12 cupcake cases into your tin.
  2. Cream together the butter and sugar, once combined mix roughly until the mixture is really pale in colour.
  3. Add 1 egg and a third of the flour mix until completely combined. Repeat this with the rest of the eggs and flour, adding the baking powder in at the end with the vanilla extract.
  4. Scoop the mixture into the cupcake liners. Spread them evenly between the cases, the mix will fill them almost to the top. Thats what you want so you get the perfectly risen cakes when baked.
  5. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and the tops of the cakes are firm. Remove from the oven and leave to cool.
  6. For the icing. Place the butter into a bowl and mix hard until pale. Add the icing sugar bit by bit. When the mixture starts to get too stiff or dry, add the vanilla extract and a dash of milk. Mix until pale and of a good consistency.
  7. Cover the cupcakes in buttercream. Pipe or spread. Cool for 10 minutes in the fridge before adding decorations so the buttercream is from and doesn’t smudge.


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