Perfect Moist and Fluffy Vanilla Cupcakes

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These vanilla cupcakes might just be the best you’ve ever tasted. Moist and tender, they have the perfect, subtle vanilla flavor and are topped with the most incredible vanilla buttercream. Plus, they’re super easy to make!

Moist & Fluffy Vanilla Cupcake Recipe

A good vanilla cupcake is a must-have in any bakers book and finding a good one isn’t easy. After trying many, I decided that coming up with my own was the best path forward. After tons of testing and tasting, I finally came up with a recipe that combines the simplest of mixing methods with the perfect flavor and texture. The cupcakes themselves somehow manage to be dense, but not too dense, tender, and irresistibly moist all at once. A touch of sour cream adds moisture and highlights their subtle vanilla flavor, taking them to a whole new level of deliciousness. Top them off with my favorite vanilla buttercream and you’ve got yourself a cupcake that will give all of the others a run for their money.

And here’s the best part – making these cupcakes is as easy as whipping up a box mix, but the result is incomparably better. So, whether you’re a seasoned baker or a beginner, these cupcakes are perfect for you. Between my Easy Homemade Vanilla Cupcakes, Moist Vanilla Cupcakes, White Cupcakes, and these beauties, it’s hard to pick a favorite but these ones might just take the cake (cupcake?).

Overhead image of vanilla cupcakes with rainbow dots.

What Makes These Vanilla Cupcakes Different?

I have 4 vanilla cupcakes on my blog. They are all delicious and they all have their own unique ingredients, methods, and personalities. I want to talk about what sets these particular vanilla cupcakes apart.

  • Egg. Unlike my White Cupcakes, these cupcakes contain whole eggs. This gives them a little added richness and body as well as a deeper yellow color. Plus, you aren’t wasting any part of the egg.
  • Sour cream. Unlike my other vanilla cupcakes (with the exception of these White Cupcakes), this recipe uses sour cream which gives the cupcakes a wonderful springy tenderness and added moisture.
  • Levening agents. This is my only vanilla cupcake recipe that uses baking soda in addition to baking powder. Adding baking soda to recipes that contain an acid (such as the sour cream in this one) activates the leavening agent beautifully, allowing it to give an extra lift to the baked good. See my post on Baking Powder vs. Baking Soda for more information.
  • Butter. I used butter in this recipe. I love the rich flavor it brings to the cupcake. My Moist Vanilla Cupcakes use oil instead, which makes them moister but less rich in flavor, and my Easy Homemade Vanilla Cupcakes use both oil and butter (best of both worlds!). My White Cupcakes use just butter as well but at room temperature (see my next point). You’ll have to decide for yourself whether you prefer cupcakes with butter, with oil, or with both but try this one first. It’s a good place to start.
  • Melted butter. Another note on butter. Because this recipe doesn’t employ the creaming method, it is not necessary to have the butter softened at room temperature. You actually want it in melted, liquid form so that it mixes as easily as possible with the other ingredients.
  • Simple mixing method. While my Easy Homemade Vanilla Cupcakes and my White Cupcakes employ the creaming method, this recipe does not. Here all you have to do is combine the dry ingredients, combine the wet ingredients, and then put it all together. You’ll see the same, simpler method used in my Moist Vanilla Cupcakes.
  • Texture. These cupcakes are on the denser side of the cupcake spectrum but they still have a lovely moisture and tenderness to them (thanks sour cream!).
Ingredients for vanilla cupcakes.

What You’ll Need

Here’s what you’ll need to make these moist vanilla cupcakes. You probably have most of the ingredients in your kitchen already. Be sure to scroll to the recipe card below for precise measurements.

Vanilla Cupcakes

  • All-purpose flour – Be sure to measure your flour accurately, so you don’t end up with a dry cake. I always recommend a food scale, but the spoon and level method is also an option.
  • Baking powder and baking soda – The combination gives the best rise and texture in these cupcakes.
  • Salt – You need a little salt for flavor. Without it, the cupcakes will be bland.
  • Unsalted butter – No need to bring it to room temperature. You’ll be melting it for an easy mixing method.
  • Sugar – Sugar not only adds sweetness, but also moisture and it affects the final texture of the cupcake.
  • Vanilla extract – A good quality vanilla extract is perfect for a vanilla focused cupcake.
  • Eggs – Be sure to use large eggs, not small or extra large.
  • Sour cream – I like the extra flavor that the sour cream adds, but if you aren’t a sour cream fan, you can replace it with additional milk.
  • Milk – I recommend using 2% milk or whole milk.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

  • Unsalted butter – The butter should be softened to room temperature. If it is too cold, you will end up with a lumpy frosting.
  • Powdered sugar – For the ideal piping consistency, I recommend using the amount listed in the recipe. However, you can reduce the amount if’d you like to. Just keep in mind that it will be thinner.
  • Vanilla extract
  • Heavy cream – Helps add a creamy texture to the buttercream. You can add as much as needed to get the right consistency for the buttercream.
  • Salt – You don’t have to add salt to your buttercream, but it adds a little flavor and cuts down on the sweetness a bit.

How To Make Vanilla Cupcakes

These vanilla cupcakes are so easy to make! Here’s a quick look at how to do it. For more thorough instructions, scroll to the recipe card below.

Vanilla Cupcakes

  • Prep. Preheat the oven to 350°F and prepare a cupcake pan with cupcake liners.
  • Combine the dry ingredients. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • Combine the wet ingredients. Whisk together the melted butter, sugar, and vanilla extract. Whisk in the eggs followed by the sour cream and then the milk.
  • Put it all together. Whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.
  • Bake. Fill the cupcake liners about 3/4 full and bake for 18-20 minutes.
  • Cool. Remove the cupcakes from the oven and place on a cooling rack to cool.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

  • Make the frosting. Beat the butter until smooth. Mix in half of the powdered sugar followed by the vanilla, 1-2 tablespoons heavy cream, and the salt. Finally, mix in the remaining powdered sugar.
  • Get the consistency right. You can add a little extra heavy cream if you would like a thinner frosting.
  • Frost. Pipe the frosting onto the cooled cupcakes.

What’s The Secret To Moist Vanilla Cupcakes?

In order to make perfectly moist cupcakes, you need the right combination of fat, sugar, acid/leavening, and liquid/liquid-ish ingredients. These cupcakes really get it right. Not only do they have the perfect amount of sugar and also fat in the form of butter, but the addition of milk and sour cream brings the extra bit of fat and moisture that these baked goodies really need to stand out. Plus the acidic nature of the sour cream really helps to tenderize the glutens in the flour, making these cupcakes feel even more moist and silky smooth.

Closeup of vanilla cupcakes on a cupcake stand.

Pro Tips for Amazing Cupcakes

These moist vanilla cupcakes are hard to mess up but I just wanted to put a couple of useful tips and tricks in your hands to help you achieve outstanding results. Here they are.

  • Don’t over-mix. When whisking the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, mix just until everything is smooth and well incorporated. Over-mixing can cause the glutens in the flour to overdevelop, giving you tough, dense cupcakes.
  • 3/4 full. You will want to fill the cupcake liners just a little more than 3/4 of the way. If you overfill them, they will rise out of the liners and create a muffin top and/or fall in the middle, which you don’t want here.
  • Get the frosting right. To get the buttercream to the proper consistency, you may need to play with the amount of heavy cream you add to it. You’ll find everything you need to know on the subject in my post on how to get the right frosting consistency.
  • Cool before frosting. Allow your cupcakes to cool completely before applying the frosting. This prevents the frosting from melting and sliding off of the cupcakes.
  • Frost like a pro. We eat with our eyes first and frosting a cupcake right can really up its visual appeal. Check out my post on How To Frost Cupcakes to become a frosting pro.
Vanilla cupcakes on a cupcake stand.

How To Store Leftovers

These cupcakes are best eaten within 4-5 days. Here’s how to store them for best taste and shelf life.

  • Room Temperature and Refrigerator. Seal the cupcakes in an airtight cupcakes carrier or another airtight container that can accommodate the frosting and store them at room temperature for up to 2 days so that they don’t dry out as quickly. After that, they should be refrigerated because of the buttercream.
  • Freezer. Seal the cupcakes in an airtight container tall enough to accommodate the frosting and store them in the freezer for up to 3 months. Allow them to thaw at room temperature before serving. You can also freeze these cupcakes sans frosting and whip up a fresh batch of vanilla buttercream just before serving.

More Cupcake Recipes To Try

Cupcakes are the perfect sharable dessert. They bring everything you want from a cake to the table but with none of the messy slicing and serving. Here are some of my other favorite cupcake recipes for you to bring to your next soiree.

Download the previous version of this cupcake recipe here.

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vanilla cupcakes with multicolored sprinkles on wood and marble cake stand

Perfect Moist and Fluffy Vanilla Cupcakes

  • Author: Lindsay Conchar
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 12-14 Cupcakes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American


These vanilla cupcakes might just be the best you’ve ever tasted. Moist and tender, they have the perfect, subtle vanilla flavor and are topped with the most incredible vanilla buttercream. Plus, they’re super easy to make!


Vanilla Cupcakes

  • 1 2/3 cups (217g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup (168g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 cup (207g) sugar
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup (115g) sour cream
  • 3/4 cup (180ml) milk

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

  • 1 cup (224g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 4 cups (460g) powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 23 tbsp (30-45ml) heavy cream
  • Pinch or two of salt
  • Sprinkles, optional


Vanilla Cupcakes

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C) and prepare a cupcake pan with cupcake liners.
  2. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium sized bowl and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk the melted butter, sugar and vanilla extract together until well combined.
  4. Add the eggs and whisk together until well combined. Next, add the sour cream and whisk together until well combined. Now, add the milk and whisk together until well combined.
  5. Add the dry ingredients and whisk together until combined, but do not over mix.
  6. Fill the cupcake liners a little more than 3/4 full (60g) and bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  7. Remove cupcakes from the oven and place on a cooling rack to cool completely.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

  1. Add the butter to a large mixer bowl and beat until smooth.
  2. Carefully add about half of the powdered sugar and mix until smooth and well combined.
  3. Add the vanilla extract and 1-2 tablespoons of the cream and the salt to the frosting and mix until well combined.
  4. Add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until smooth. Add additional cream as needed to get the right consistency.
  5. Pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes. I used Ateco tip 844. Add sprinkles, if desired.
  6. Store cupcakes in an airtight container for up to 2 days, then refrigerate them. Best served at room temperature. They are best if eaten within 3-4 days.


See my newest Vanilla Cupcake Recipe.


  • Serving Size: 1 Cupcake
  • Calories: 459
  • Sugar: 42.9 g
  • Sodium: 176 mg
  • Fat: 25.1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 56.2 g
  • Protein: 3.4 g
  • Cholesterol: 46.6 mg


Share a Comment

Have a question? Use the form below to submit your question or comment. I love hearing from you and seeing what you made!

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  1. Camille

    These cupcakes are to die for and very simple to make! Best vanilla cupcakes I’ve ever made and my family agrees! Absolutely love them.

  2. Eileen Moran

    I had been looking forward to making these perfect light and moist cupcakes. I was very disappointed that they came out dense and dry. I re-read the directions many times because the steps didn’t make sense to me. There were little flecks of butter as stated but it melted and when I removed each cupcake from the pan there was a puddle of butter! Had to throw them all out!

  3. Rebecca

    I’m so pleased I found this recipe.. perfect sponge every time. I’m attempting to make my little boys birthday cake tomorrow and going to use this recipe. 

  4. Karina

    My kids love this recipe! I’ve been baking them for a couple of years now. They come out delicious Every time! Thank you!

  5. Misty

    I’m sorry to say I didn’t care for these at all. The cupcakes were very dense and not very flavorful. The frosting was not very flavorful either, perhaps due to the shortening. 

  6. Jane

    Was your baking powder nice and fresh? I like to buy smaller containers of baking powder because it stops working as it gets older. Weak baking powder will turn any quick bread/cake into dumplings.

  7. Lynette

    A favourite recipe that is used for all birthdays! My whole
    Family loves how moist these cupcakes are and they work with all my various frostings! 

  8. devyn

    all i have at home is lactose free 2% milk as my husband has a lactose allergy. will that work the same as regular milk?

  9. Katie

    As a chocolate cake lover myself I don’t usually make vanilla anything but I thought I’d try something different for my daughters birthday and found this recipe. This recipe was easy to follow and I was curious to see how cupcakes with sour cream in them and shortening in the frosting would turn out. Honestly they were very tasty and the frosting was so good too although I cut it in half. I didn’t have cupcake papers but these still cooked up nice although my first batch fell flat perhaps I over mixed them but they were still moist and delicious and with frosting on top who cares if they were flat!!! So all in all I’d say great recipe even for being vanilla ???? the only thing I would say is I used the cheap imitation vanilla and I’m guessing these would be that much better with real vanilla extract so next time I’ll spurge and use real vanilla. 

    1. Lindsay

      I would recommend storing in an air tight container. I usually keep them on the counter, but if you choose to use an all butter frosting, they are probably best refrigerated.

  10. Bryony

    I’m currently making these cupcakes as I stumbled across the recipe online. I followed the instructions to the letter (I think!) and when I take them out of the oven they are swimming in butter. Once they cool a little they do soak it back up and they taste amazing but they are very grease. I’m in the Uk and I really appreciated your grams conversion but just trying to figure out what I did wrong ????!
    They definitely passed the kids text though my two loved them! Thanks so much for taking the time to develop this receipe xx

    1. Lindsay

      I’m not necessarily sure you didn’t anything wrong. I don’t recall them having this issue, but several others have reported the same thing. You could try reducing the butter slightly. I also have several other newer vanilla cupcake recipes if you’d like to try them – here and here.

  11. Heather

    Whenever I find a recipe the most important part of the post are the comments I’ve found, that’s where I see where tweaks should be made, or how people found the recipe turned out, for this one, I read a few comments suggesting that this recipe wasn’t good, but others raved. I decided to trust the positive people and I’m so glad I did! I made the recipe exactly as written (I mean she said she made multiple batches to perfect it, she’s already done the leg work, why would I mess with that?) and the cupcakes were some of the best I have ever had! Truth be told, I’m not a cupcake person – the cake is too dry and crumbly, the icing too sickly sweet, I normally avoid them – but THESE cupcakes, holy crap! SO GOOD!!!! I had two. If that tells you anything!! Seriously people. Do it as directed, and start with 18 minutes in the oven, and add more as needed. For my altitude and oven 21 minutes was perfect! And when you check your tooth pick there should be a couple crumbs stuck on the side of the wood, but it shouldn’t be wet. Then take it out and follow the rest of her instructions!! She’s right guys, they are perfect! Thanks Lindsay!

  12. DAWN

    Tried your recipe on the weekend, the cupcakes came out wonderful!!!!! My kids and husband loved them and they were very moist.

  13. Chris Sol

    Tried these tonight, in Bergen, Norway. they were wonderful, my partner loved them and swallowed down two in rapid succession! 

  14. Sarah

    If I triple your recipe will it turn out just as good? Or should I make 3 separate batches of them? Thanks! I’m excited to try them!

  15. Megan O.

    My tip: have a backup plan when making these. I tried these cupcakes and they were a HUGE fail! i have never messed up baking quite like this. I followed the recipe to a T and they completely stuck to the liner. We are trying to figure out what to do with 6 dozen “crumbs” now. Guess I will have to buy store bought cupcakes for my daughters 2nd birthday.

  16. Grace

    I was wondering if this recipe could be made into a cake too? Like a 9×13 or something! I love this recipe and would like to make it into a cake to

  17. Margaret

    Today my daughter and i made these cupcakes. It is a simple recipe and the cupcakes taste great. The only thing I did wrong is that the cupcake doesn’t have much flavor. I wonder if my vanilla extract is old or if I did not put the correct amount of extract into the batter. However, this is more my fault. But being a new baker, this recipe made me look like a pro. Thanks for posting it!

    1. Lindsay

      Not sure what you mean about the curdling, but you could use greek yogurt. It does change up the texture of the cupcake though.

  18. Beth

    Just came across this recipe and made them, they are perfect! So moist, especially when stored in an air tight container. Makes them even better the next day. On my 2nd batch, I did add some extra vanilla, and some cream cheese flavoring for a little more flavor. Will be my go-to vanilla cupcake recipe. I have my own perfect buttercream frosting recipe I paired them with.

  19. Bella P

    Would Brown sugar, or natural honey work best for substituting the White sugar, I believe that it would take 3/4 cups of honey and, 1 cup Brown sugar if I were to choose one.

  20. Tatiana Konorat

    I would never ever say that vanilla cupcakes are awesome… until now. Your recipe is just perfect! Thanks a lot! Best wishes from Brazil.

  21. Sheri Biel

    I used this recipe to make a cake instead of cupcakes. I used a 9×13 pan. In comparison to making this vs using a box cake mix this recipe was half as deep as a box cake. When eating it, the cake was very dense almost like a pound cake. Did I perhaps over mix it? I tried beating it until it was smooth but I still had small chunks of butter in there so thats how I baked it. Where did I go wrong?

  22. Natalie Uhrik

    These taste great except they don’t pull away from the paper nicely. I’ve made them a number of times and same problem. I found that when I mix all the ingredients the butter stays lumpy. I leave the butter out overnight so it’s definitely room temp. Any tips?

  23. Em

    I just made these. I followed the recipe completely, but it did not work out. They are wet at the bottom from unincorporated butter and have almost a crust on the outside like cornbread. they kind of smell like cornbread too but I have no clue how that even happened. Rhese were for a bakesale but now I have to make a different recipe 🙁 I think I will stick to recipes where you cream your sugar and butter together first. 

  24. Christine Fong

    Hi! Do they eggs have to be at room temperature or fridge temperature? Large or medium eggs? Can’t wait to make this! I’ve been looking for a super easy vanilla recipe with vegetable oil and finally found it! Thanks!

    1. Lindsay

      I don’t believe I’ve ever tried it. The cupcakes would probably bake fine, but have a little different taste and texture, given the lower fat content.

  25. Gina

    I’ve made your moist vanilla cupcakes for two of my kids birthday parties and two class parties and everyone always asks me if they are from a bakery! Yay! I want to try your icing, but wanted to know the difference between adding water or cream. Will cream give it more flavor?

    1. Lindsay

      I’m glad you’ve enjoyed them! I don’t personally think there’s a huge difference. Some might think that it makes a creamier frosting, and certainly the larger batch you make that could be true. I tend to like to leave my cakes at room temperature, when appropriate, which I why I use part shortening and part butter. I use water so that the milk won’t spoil. If you are refrigerating it though, milk/cream would be fine.

  26. Lindsay

    Lindsay I love your recipes, have made these twice and i do use two bowls, first time they were great. Second time I didn’t cream my butter enough and ended up with a spongey cupcake that wouldn’t leave the rapper! Definitely think creaming the butter is important! I’ve made them a third time as I know this recipe is great! Your vanilla cake recipe is also a huge favorite! Not sure if it’s because we share a name or that you’re such a great Baker but I’ll never use another recipe!

  27. Melissa

    I made these and felt there was quite a bit of melted butter in the bottom of the muffin tin. The cupcakes were also a bit stuck to the bottoms of the liners. I am not sure where I went wrong. The flavor was delicious they just didn’t come out the way I had hoped. Any idea of what could have gone wrong? I baked them for 18 minutes. Maybe I will try your updated version with the oil and see how that goes. 

  28. Tamar

    Hi,  is it possible instead of butter with salt to use regular butter and add salt to the mixture? So how much salt? Thanks!

  29. Sarah Niederer

    Hi, I’ve made these cupcakes many times and I’m wondering how long I should leave two 8″ cake pans in the oven. Today I tried that and left them in for 25-30 minutes  but they were undercooked in the middle. I recently made your red velvet cake for my mom for her birthday and today I used that recipe to base the baking time on these vanilla cakes. Unfortunately it wasn’t enough, and half an hour at 350 wasn’t enough time either. Maybe 35 minutes will be enough? Also I was wondering how long to leave a 9 by 13 inch pan in the oven for if I want to use that type of pan. 

    Thanks, Sarah.

    1. Lindsay

      I haven’t ever made it in two 8 inch pans, but in three 8 in pans it was around 35 minutes. For only two pans, you’d probably need a new more minutes, maybe up to 40. I haven’t made it in a 9×13 to say.

  30. Anonymous

    I thought it interesting that you put sour cream in your cupcakes, because my mother has a family recipe for sugar cookies that requires sour cream. Anyway, you are right in saying that the sour cream adds fluffiness!! 🙂

  31. Beatriz

    Hello, I just finished making these cupcakes and omg they are amazing. I added a little more of vanilla since I thought it needed more. One problem I had was I didn’t have baking soda so instead I added a tsp more of baking powder. Still, they came up great and now I am just making the frosting. Thank you for sharing this recipe. I am looking forward to use more of your recipes. Much love for Arizona

  32. Rahul Academy

    Thanks for sharing this wonderful ideas for making the perfect cupcake. I like cupcakes and now, I enjoy this at home I follow your steps for baking perfect cupcakes.

  33. Ellie~K's

    These vanilla cupcakes are fantastic! I am a baker and every baker must have the “perfect” vanilla recipe- which I thought I had….until I made these! The crumb is perfect and the lightness! I did double the vanilla (I am big on the flavor anyway) and am happy to say that this now will be my go to recipe. They even rise perfectly as well! Thanks so much and great job!!

  34. Heather

    Hello there! I just found this recipe and am excited to try it. I am not much of a baker, so the easier the better! I do need to make about 30 cupcakes, so my question is: when multiplying the recipe are there any adjustments I should make?

  35. Green

    Hello, love this recipe! It’s become my go-to vanilla cupcake recipe. I have a party coming up though, and I want to make large cupcakes as opposed to the standard sized ones. Do you know how I should convert baking time and over temperature for that? I

    1. Lindsay

      I would leave the temperature the same. baking time would depend on just how big they are. Hard to say without me seeing it.

  36. Lisa

    I was craving a light, vanilla cupcake and these turned out great! My 2 year old son and I have fun making them as well (I love how easy they were)! I have not made the icing yet, but thanks for a wonderful cupcake recipe. I look forward to trying your other bakery items 🙂

  37. Libby

    I have made these cupcakes 3 times in the last month and they have been absolutely delicious every time. BEST CUPCAKE RECIPE EVER!!! thank you so much for sharing it. These will be the only vanilla cupcakes I make from now on. 

  38. Denise

    These cupcakes look delicious. I have a question about the sour cream and milk. Does it matter if I use a light sour cream and 1% milk? Will they affect the texture or flavor of the cupcake? I never buy full fat sour cream or full fat milk, so I was wondering if the light sour cream and 1% milk would change the texture and flavor of the cupcakes. I hope to hear from you soon. P.S. I love your book, I received it as a Christmas present.

    1. Lindsay

      I’m so glad you’ve enjoyed the book! Thank you! I typically would recommend full-fat ingredients. Things can get gummy as you start to remove the fat, as well as less moist. Light sour cream and 1% milk should be fine though. Just keep that in mind if it doesn’t seem as moist as you’d expect.

  39. Ana

    Ths is the perfect recipe! Thank you so much my boyfriend and I had been looking for a good recipe to use and the outcome was always not good at all, we were starting to think we were the problem. Later we stumbled upon your recipe and it worked great! Thank you so much they were delicious! The only thing was that our cupcakes needed more time to bake than 18 – 20 minutes but they cane out great so thank you! ????

  40. Divya


    Can I add buttermilk instead of milk? Buttermilk+sour cream (as mentioned in the recipe) – will this work?

  41. Jordanne

    Hi! This was posted 2 years ago but I would still like to try and ask. 😀
    Is your vanilla icing good for 22-24 cupcakes? or just enough for a dozen?
    I use all butter for my icing but I would like to try your recipe for valentines. I use a cup of butter and it is only enough for 1 dozen.
    Thank you!

    1. Lindsay

      Whether a cup of butter or half butter/half shortening, you’d have about the same amount of frosting. The amount you’d want depends on how heavy handed you are with frosting. Sounds like you might need two recipes worth of frosting for two dozen cupcakes.

  42. Veronica

    These recipes are wonderful! I usually do not comment, but I was compelled. My granddaughter and I bake every weekend and we have been baking your cupcakes. Always perfect. In a bold move, I decided to use gluten free flour and they were still perfect. The only difference is that I added 1/4 cup more milk and a 2 TBSP olive oil. We had these last night for the Super Bowl. 

  43. Gaminee

    So I’m making these as well speak. The butter was still left in bits making the batter a with small lumps. I was afraid of over mixing so I just left them. I did use room temperature butter, but maybe Bc of the cold milk it didn’t break down all the way? I really hope this works bc it’s for my daughters birthday tomorrow and I really don’t want to resort to box mix.

    1. Lindsay

      The lumps are fairly normal and the cupcakes should turn out fine. If for some reason you aren’t happy with them, I recently posted these vanilla cupcakes (a new recipe) with a video. They are super easy. If you prefer a cupcake that uses the creaming method, try these out. They have a filling and different frosting, but just make the cupcakes and use the regular vanilla frosting from these. I think the ones in the oven should be fine, but just in case. 🙂

  44. Lisette


    I have to make 30 cupcakes. Is ok to triple this recipe? I don’t mind having a few extra cupcakes.



  45. Maryam


    I just want to say i live by this recipe for my cupcakes and everyone loves it.

    Ive been trying to ace a vanilla cake but they always end up over cooked and brown on the outside before its conpletely cooked and it always on gas mark 4. Can i use this recipe for a 12inch cake? If so what quantities do i use and what can i do to ensure a moist and soft cake that doesnt looked dark on the outside. Thank you so much once again x

    1. Lindsay

      I’m so glad you enjoy them! I’m not terribly familiar with the gas mark you mention, but for this recipe it does turn out to be a fairly dense cake. You could try it and see if you like it though. There’s also this vanilla cake and this one (just swap out the almond extract for vanilla extract. Both are lighter as a cake.

  46. Tara

    I’m making cupcakes for my daughters birthday snack at school but I plan on making the minicupcakes for them instead would I just cut the time in half????

  47. Melody

    These are my FAVORITE cupcakes! They turn out great every time! This is the only recipe I use for vanilla cupcakes. So so so thankful for all your hard work and sharing this recipe.

  48. Fam

    These are the most moist and soft and airy cupcake i have ever made/tasted. Our family can’t get enough. Thank you so much.

  49. Lindsey

    Love these cupcakes. I made them for my nephews birthday and they were so good. The perfect consistency. Thank you!

  50. A

    Hi , Im from Australia. I tried this recipe and the icing didn’t come out right. Im not sure whether its because I had to substitute some ingredients such as the shortener with copha and also veggy butter rather than normal butter. Do they affect the form and taste?

    1. Lindsay

      What do you mean by not turning out right? Too thin, too thick? Something else? I’m not familiar with either copha or veggie butter, so it might be hard to say if they caused an issue.

  51. Barbara Gonzalez

    They really good. Question can I replace sour cream with buttermilk. I just went to the store last night and I’m hoping not to have to go back today. If it’s not recommended I will try this recipe another day I don’t want to mess it up.

  52. Patricia

    Thank you for your simple and wonderful recipe for an amateur like me! This is the only cupcake recipe that makes me feel accomplished when I sank my teeth into the products!

  53. Leigha Morgan

    So first off … Boo at all thOse neigh sayers … This recipe is the bomb dot com. It’s perfect and everything a moist cupcake should be with the perfect icing to match???????????????? its rich and a little dense but not overly so. But then again, aren’t cupcakes supposed to be a little indulgent? After all they are desserts!!! I don’t want to eat a lite version of a cupcake, I want the whole enchilada packed with all that buttery vanilla sugar goodness. If you want a pathetic cookie cutter cupcake go to the grocery store , yo, and stop bothering masters of sweets!

    I am going to have these at my wedding reception they’re so good.


  54. claudia

    I have never made cupcakes before… but I do cook a lot. I decided your recipe would be my first. I followed your instructions to a t… I noticed that the butter was super clumpy and then I remembered the 1000 baking showd where they cream the butter and the sugar first and I said, oops too late. I predicted that the butter chunks would never incorporate and they did not. Is there a reason you didn’t mention that the butter needs to be creamed with the sugar?

    1. Lindsay

      The butter does not need to be creamed. This cupcake doesn’t use that method. If the butter chunks were an issue, you can melt the butter prior to adding it.

  55. aline

    im not a professional baker and this is the first time a recipe on the internet acually worked, it was sooo good, great job!

      1. Abby

        Sorry if this was already answered, but there are so many comments it’s difficult to sift through, original Crisco or butter flavor?

  56. Heather McCarthy

    thankyou, thankyou, thankyou! I’m a bit challenged with cake making, and work told me we all had to make some cupcakes for a charity event we’re holding I had a bit of meltdown, then, I found your recipe and they worked out great 🙂

  57. Robin

    I doubled the recipe and did leave some butter chunks in the batter – put in the oven that way. The cupcakes came out in puddles of butter. Is this normal?

    1. Lindsay

      There can sometimes be a little moisture from the butter on the bottoms, but I definitely wouldn’t think you’d have puddles of butter.

  58. Megan

    Could you please let me know what I did wrong? When I added th butter to the ingredients in the bowl, it never mixed to be “smooth” & there was chunks of butter. The cupcakes were rubbery and stuck to the wrappers.

  59. numra

    These cupcakes are amazing. I made these for my family and they loved it so much, they ask me to make them every other day. Thank you for the amazing recipe. 

  60. annabelle

    I love so many of your cake recipes so we tried this recipe yesterday and I had pockets of cake like melted butter in them from clumps when mixing batter. Do you think my butter wasn’t quite soft enough? it had been out for hours and easily indented when touched. Does yours all mix in or is there clumps left when scooping? (I didn’t want to overmix.) Would melted and cooled butter work here as well do you think? Thank you so much!

    1. Lindsay

      This recipe does tend to end up with a few bits of butter in the batter. You can melt the butter if you prefer. Either way, they should bake fine.

  61. Ashley

    Hi! Thanks for all your hard work. 🙂 Do you think cake flour would be ok to substitute for all-purpose flour?

  62. Priscilla Ayorinde

    Thank you so much!!!!!! the recipe was perrrrrfect!!!!! like seriously.the sour cream makes all the difference.I’ll def become a regular on yur family loved an upcoming bake.

  63. Angie

    I tried this recipe but didn’t have sour cream so I used vanilla yogurt instead and I whipped the egg whites before folding them into the batter and they came out amazing. Will definitely be using this recipe again

  64. Amanda

    I made this frosting today and it is so good! Can’t wait to try more of your recipes. Should the frosting be refrigerated?

    1. Lindsay

      I don’t usually refrigerate it, but if you were going to keep it for longer than 3-4 days it’d probably be best to refrigerate it.

  65. Shelly

    Do these have a sour taste like sour cream?? It’s been a long time, but from what I recall, I did not like it!! Thanks!

    1. Lindsay

      I don’t think they taste like sour cream at all. It just adds a lot of moisture and a nice flavor – though not sour cream-like in my opinion.

  66. Ness

    I  was so excited to try this recipe, but very dissapointed in the end result. The cakes came out very dense, dry and bland. Didn’t taste like cupcakes at all. The frosting was so so, not great. I hate to leave negative comments, but they’re are much better recipes out there 🙁

  67. Amtul

    I am hugely disappointed, ironically it took me a very long time to attain a decent batter like consistency as the butter refused to melt and mix in.. There were lumps of butter all over my batter.

  68. Susan

    I am thinking of making these and your Tiramisu cupcakes for a baby shower. Can I make the cupcakes ahead of time and freeze them.? And can I frost them the night before and keep them in the fridge once frosted?

  69. Kyia Belle

    These look absolutely delish! I’m baking them right now and cannot wait to feed this sweet tooth 🙂

  70. huddy

    i want to make this recipe but im a little confused, if im right there are no eggs in this recipe. im thinking of making these for a 4th of july party and dont know if i should make them or not.

  71. Debbie

    Hi! I live overseas, and sometimes it’s hard to find recipes that I can make from scratch. No boxed cake mixes, boxed pudding mixes, etc. to purchase in stores around here. 🙂 I was super excited to find your recipe. I made the cupcakes for my daughter’s 14th birthday party, and everyone who tried them thought they were moist and tasty (even without frosting!). Just wanted to say thank you, and this will become a go to birthday cupcake recipe for our family.

  72. isaac

    i had high hopes for this recipe but even though i followed the instructions and ingredients exactly, they stuck to the cupcake papers and tasted as if they had no sugar…they tasted very much like dense pancakes. did anyone else get this result?

  73. Mariah

    Hey there,

    So I am in the middle of baking these cupcakes of yours. My batter is very thick, almost like a cookie batter? Is that normal? I am kind of nervous to see what they turn out like.

    1. Mariah

      Wow these cupcakes turned out amazing! They are so light and fluffy and just pure delicious! Thanks much for sharing your awesome recipe! I look forward to trying more of your lovely desserts.

  74. Brenda

    I was wondering if I could use cake flour instead of all purpose ? Would this cause a little fluffier consistency ? Im looking to use this recipe for a cake instead of cupcakes. Thanks

  75. Andrea

    I tried the vanilla cupcake recipe and it was really yummy ❤️ A little sweet but still yummy
    Thank you for sharing

  76. Max

    YES. I’ve been looking for a great cupcake mix and this exactly the type I was looking for. Tastes amazing and love the texture – all the other recipes I found were too dry. This one came out great on my first try. Thank you so much!

  77. Tasya

    Could you make the icing ahead? If so, how would you store it? My son’s party is on May 14. Wanted to see about saving time and making as much ahead of time as I can. Cupcakes are being made this weekend and put in the freezer until time to frost.

    BTW, love this recipe!!! 🙂

  78. Brandy

    This cupcake recipe is not good. I am a very experienced baker and cannot get this recipe to turn out “light and fluffy”. It’s dense, oily, and the cupcakes sink in the middle every single time. After four attempts and lots of wasted (expensive) ingredients, I’m removing this recipe from my collection. Ugh! So frustrating.

  79. Jenny

    Hi, I baked a batch of these cupcakes, and found the all went flat on me, I had to use self raising flour, do you this is is why, as the recipie says all purpose flour. Thanks

    1. Lindsay

      I would say it’s possible that self raising flower has something to do with it. Hard to say for sure as I haven’t used that kind of flour with these.

  80. Laurie Walsh

    I have to say i never bake anything from scratch especially cupcakes. But I wanted to bake something special for my sons 21st birthday since he does not like cake cake, but he loves cupcakes i thought i would try to bake them from scratch and surprise him and his coworkers at work yesterday. Needless to say they were not only a HIT with him but with everyone else. My oldest son and my husband who does not particularly care for cupcakes, raved about them as well. The birthday boy cannot quit eating them. So YES will definitely be making them again. Not only where the good but they were easy to make, and the icing was a hit as well. I am soo glad I tried them. 

  81. Luana

    These are literally perfect. Moist, sweet, just BEAUTIFUL! Best cupcake I’ve ever eaten. This is one to add to the recice book – I’ll never need another cupcake recipe again! Thank you!!

  82. Ashley

    I’m excited to give this recipe a try but I’m looking to make mini cupcakes. What would you suggest I alter in order to do that?

    1. Lindsay

      I haven’t made them as minis, but you’ll need to reduce the baking time. I’d guess starting at 8-9 minutes, then go up from there.

  83. Jennifer

    This cupcake recipe is delicious! I used this recipe to make a double layer 9 inch circle cake and a 9×13 cake (I doubled the recipe both times). It worked out perfectly. Also, I substituted vanilla yogurt for the sour cream (I didn’t have any sour cream on hand and didn’t feel like driving to the store). This is hands down my new favorite cake recipe!

  84. Elizabeth

    Stumbled upon your site when googling “light and fluffy cupcake recipe”. I make cupcakes each year for both my girls’ classes on their birthdays and have not found one that I love. While I did find some of the ingredients unorthodox for cupcakes (egg whites and all-purpose flour, which I changed to whole eggs and cake flour) the resulting item was grand. I thought it was a supremely good cupcake recipe and my husband, who is not a cupcake lover, said if he were to eat a cupcake, he would want this recipe for its “guts”. I was a bit turned off by the huge chunks of butter remaining in the batter (yes, despite your note) so may likely cream them next time prior to mixing everything. All-in-all, thank you for this delicious recipe!

  85. Hayley

    Just made these, amazing texture and beautiful flavour, but mine came out of the oven in a pool of butter. Might cut back a little next time

  86. Theresa

    These are amazing! Definitely moist and fluffy, and full of flavour. I made them for my son’s 1st birthday party this past weekend. Everyone loved them. I did make a cream cheese icing from your banana cake recipe instead, and I decorated the cupcakes like cookie monster. So much fun! I’m not much of a baker, but love a quality dessert. You’ve inspired me to bake more. Can’t wait to try more recipes from your blog.

  87. Clare

    These are gorgeous cupcakes, I made them about 2 hours ago and they are a rich pale yellow color, very fluffy but not filled with air bubbles, risen but not overflowing, and so delicious. Thank you for taking the time to make this recipe as great as it is, much appreciated,

  88. Sandra Chakrabarty

    I just made cupcakes today for the first time.
    I’ve always baked, but I’ve mostly stuck to cakes, pies, tarts, etc. However, recently I got inspired with the possibilities, so decided to start baking cupcakes.
    I found a random recipe online that was rated as being ‘the best’ lime cupcake recipe out there. The cupcake looked beautiful, perfectly round dome and golden colored; but the taste left something to be desired. Followed the recipe exactly, I even added 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract to get extra flavor. it’s extremely disappointing when you have a beautifully decorated cupcake with gorgeous flavorful icing, only for the cupcake itself to be mediocre. It wasn’t bad, but it didn’t make me go wow either. If anything, anyone eating the cupcake would remember the icing but completely forget the actual cupcake. I was tempted to just lick off the icing and forget about the cupcake. 
    But after reading your quest for the perfect vanilla cupcake, I’m excited to try again tomorrow using your recipe! 
    I do have one question though, for frosting – I tried using a frosting pipe but it was extremely difficult. I think the frosting was simply too ‘hard’. (Not enough liquid). Does shortening help with that issue? I’ve got no idea what shortening is actually used for, never used it before. 

    1. Lindsay

      When you say you used a frosting pipe, do you mean you tried piping frosting? I’m not sure what recipe you used previously, but the one above can easily be thinned out if needed by adding a little extra water or milk, if needed. The shortening acts much like butter and can actually be replaced with butter if you prefer. I like the shortening and the way it stays stable.

  89. Jenn

    I love this recipe!! Just wondering, if I wanted to add some chocolate chips to the batter is there anything I should do differently? Thanks!

  90. Laura

    These are delicious!! The only problem I had was that they still came away from the sides of the cases. Anything I can do to rectify this?


      I honestly haven’t that had problem with these cupcakes so I’m not really sure what to suggest. I’m not sure what would cause it.

  91. Ira

    I’ve been searching for moist cupcakes and finally, yours a winner! The ones I’ve tried always turned out to be dry. This time I made it with salted caramel frosting. Thanks Lindsay. You’re a star! I’ve gotta try your other recipes!

  92. David M Moore

    This frosting was cloyingly sweet. Had to salvage it with an 8 ounce package of Philly cream cheese. Even then, it was borderline sugar-shock. Two cups of powdered sugar would have been fine. I used three cups and tossed in the sour cream and it’S so-so.

  93. Lorie

    Two things. Paddle or beater attachment? Also the butter, should this be cut into smaller pieces first? I had some very large chunks after mixing. Thanks!


      Hmm, I’m under the impression the paddle and beater are the same. I googled to be sure. Which are you referring to? I don’t cut the butter into pieces, but it should be softened. You could even melt it a little bit to avoid the pieces of butter.

  94. Krista

    Love the pic but hate the cupcake my entire family of 5 kids spit it out. Boyfriend says the icing was good but the cake was horrible

  95. Angel

    Thank you so much for your vanilla cupcakes recipes. i made it this week and it was sooooo delicious! I will be talking about it on my food blog as well.
    thank you so much

  96. Kenny

    These cupcakes ARE amazing! I keep them in a fridge and take them out for 15mins and they taste even better! I used unsalted butter and added 1/2 tspoon salt. I also reduced the amount of sugar (caster sugar) to 3/4 cup and they’re just perfect. Next will try to make it into a cake. I still need to work on the buttercream though. I only used 1 cup of icing sugar and didn’t add water and the texture was “grainy”. Any tips to make it smoother? Thanks so much for the recipe! Did I mention it’s so easy to make too? 😉

  97. Hanieh

    HI, I baked them there were so nice and soft, after some days there are still fresh and soft but I have a problem after just 18 it was so crack on it and it raised up so much but after getting cold it was a bit down, I wanna know is it normal or not ? tnx a lot

  98. chloe

    hi I’ve tried your receipt today but I realised that the more I beat, the texture seemed to get tougher. may I know what has got wrong? thanks so much!

  99. Kirthana

    Absolutely delicious. Thanks for posting this. The only part of the recipe I changed , was the use of egg whites . I didn’t feel ike wasting the yolks, so I used two whole eggs instead . Put it all together in less than 15mins. Baked for exactly 20 mins @ 170 degrees centigrade ( for anyone wanting a conversion) . They came out perfect and are really moist . Definitely a keeper .

  100. Tania H.

    I love the recipe… I substitude the sour cream with yoghurt and they turn out amazing… Like what you said MOIST, FLUFFY and SUPER YUUUMMM…. These were dellicious.. Thank you… ????????

      1. sj

        I love your recipe! I’ve made the cupcakes and I got to say they are super moist and delicious. I also had to make my son a vanilla cake he wanted for his birthday and I didn’t want to use any other recipes I double the recipe and came really good. It’s definitely my go to vanilla cupcake and cake recipe. Thanks so much for sahring ❤

  101. Lisa

    This is a great recipe! I followed the recipe but added 1/4 tsp salt, and ended up not having 3 eggs so used 2 whole instead of 3 whites. Perfect!! I’ve been searching for a great recipe and so glad I came across this one. Thank you!

  102. Erin Ashley

    I just made these for a friends childs 1st birthday and I think I just tasted heaven! These are the best cupcakes I have ever made and eaten! Using this everytime to make the best cake ever! Thank you 🙂

  103. Trish

    Thank you so much for sharing your fabulous recipe. These cupcakes turned out the best. I substituted a little to suit ingredients I had at home. I used yoghurt and lemon juice instead of sour cream and 2 whole eggs instead of 3 egg whites. Very fluffy and superb flavour.


      I really prefer to use the sour cram – I think it adds to the flavor and moistness of the cupcake. If you don’t have it on hand though, you can replace it with milk.

  104. Hannah Williams

    These actually turned out to be some of the driest cupcakes I have ever made. It’s a shame because the flavor is nice. I stumbled upon this recipe by googling ‘moist cupcakes’. I’m not sure where I went wrong as I followed the recipe exact but I can see it has happened to some others so there must be something we’ve done that has given us a different result to all the other positive reviewers. Guttered!

  105. appy

    These are the most moist and fluffy cupcakes ever, I added some cinnamon for flavor and they turned out great, thank you! Made some for my best friend’s birthday and she loved them 🙂

  106. chloe

    hi! I know this is probably a terrible thing to ask, but I just have to – I’m thinking of making this for my almost one year old’s first birthday, and while I’m okay with giving him sugar, I would still like to cut the amount of sugar in this recipe because this ratio of flour to sugar ( 1 2/3 C to 1 C) would result in a fairly sweet cake. Do you think I would be able to get away with say 2/3 C sugar?
    Thanks! If I am asking a sacrilegious question do let me know… And I will search for another recipe, though I think I will try baking this cake when I next have the chance to bake a cake. 🙂 looks and sounds so lovely


      It’s not terrible, don’t worry. 🙂 You certainly can reduce the amount of sugar. I think they’ll still bake ok. 1/3 less cup shouldn’t be too bad, though it will affect the texture of the cupcakes a bit.

  107. Kerri

    I tried five different recipes trying to find a great vanilla and a great lemon cupcake recipe, and this one worked perfectly, as did the lemon version. Thank you! These were delicious!

    1. Kerri

      I just have to come back to comment that I realized the first three times I made these and the lemon cupcakes, I kept putting in 2/3 of the butter (1/2 c instead of 3/4 c) somehow. But the last time I made them, I used the full amount of butter, and they were much much too buttery. The texture just wasn’t the same, and the liners were coated in grease, I thought it was surprising, and just wanted to share in case anyone else had the same experience.

  108. Brooke McCulloch

    Yum!! These are beautiful, nice and moist and still fluffy, awesome work!!! The icing is delicious too, thank you for sharing!

  109. Sonya

    Hi, I’m baking these tomorrow for a group of little girls. I am using SMALL cupcake patty pan liners. Often American cup cakes are about a normal muffin size. I was thinking I would cook my small cupcakes for about 10-12 mins. Any thoughts?? Thanks and I’ll let you know the outcome.


      Are they mini sized? I haven’t actually made these mini before, so I don’t know for sure. 10-12 sounds like it could be right, but I’d start looking around the 8 minute mark, just to be sure they don’t over bake.

  110. Jared

    I just want to tell you your cupcakes look great and I can’t wait to try them!
    But can I please check with you what is the reason behind of not using the egg yolks but only the white? Does it contributes to the fluffy-ness?
    Can’t wait to hear from you! (:

  111. anne

    Thank you for this recipe it was definitely light and fluffy…however when I made it the cupcakes didn’t peel off the cupcake wrapper andstuck to the wrapper too much. Any advice on how to have it peel off?

    Thanks again!

  112. cassandra

    The best vanilla cupcake recipe. While ihavent used your icing, the cupcakes are perfectly moist. I also love the fact that you can make them the night before and they are still so fresh the next day. Often, I find that some recipes become quite firm and not AS fresh. Have made them about 8 times already.
    Thanks for sharing

  113. Szel

    Your cupcake recipe is fantastic!!! I have tried so many recipes and failed so many times… I was just about to give up when I read your blog. At first I was quite skeptical… all in one bowl?? will it works??
    It really works!! I The most fluffy and moist cupcake I have ever baked! ! am so happy now that I have finally found a great recipe ! Thank you.

  114. Carol

    Hi there! I just loved this recipe, I’m gonna try it tomorrow for sure!
    I was wondering (sorry if I say something wrong, I’m from Brazil and my english is not really good) about the egg whites, do you whisk them before (until stiff or not) or just add them to the batter? And what if I use the whole egg? Will it change too much?
    Do you think that adding chocolate chips would work?

    Thank you so much! Your website is beautiful!!


      The egg whites are just added to the batter. You could use one egg and one egg white, but it will change the texture just a bit. The batter is thick enough to hold chocolate chips well. Enjoy!

  115. Sarah

    I made these for a friend’s birthday, and added some sprinkles to the mix. I even messed up the recipe and didn’t use enough butter, but they still came out really good! Many people were sneaking back for seconds! Thanks for the recipe!

  116. Anna

    Hello! I was wondering if this recipe could be doubled? I need 24 cupcakes, so i would like to know if i should make two separate batches, or if this recipe can be doubled.

  117. Diane

    I have to admit- I was so wary of making a (cup)cake batter without doing the traditional creaming of the butter and sugar as the first step. I did beat the liquid ingredients by themselves, then added the whisked-together ingredients dry in three batches, mixing a little after each one, but not mixing for long at all. They turned out delicious. Thank you!

  118. Didn't work for me... :(

    The cupcakes seemed really yummy in the picture so I tried the recipe out. While I was mixing the batter I noticed LOTS of butter. LOTS of it. I had to mix it for a while to get the butter down to small chunks. After I had done that it seemed okay, so I threw it in the oven and set a timer. When I pulled them out of the oven, they looked delicious, other than some somewhat disconcerting holes in it, it looked almost like a mini sponge. I over-looked this, but when I tried them, even the frosting couldn’t hide the taste. The cupcakes tasted like cornbread. What did I do wrong? Am I the only one who had this issue?


      It sounds like the butter was too firm. It should be at room temperature, or you could melt it.

      1. Rachael

        Thanks! 🙂 I will try melting the butter next time or using two bowls and creaming the wet ingredients before hand. 🙂


      It definitely becomes a little denser after it cools and sits, but that seems to be pretty common in a lot of the recipes I’ve tried.

  119. Hudette

    Hi! I’m giving your recipe a try for my boyfriend’s upcoming birthday! just 2 questions though, may i know what cream specifically to be used for the icing- whipping cream or milk etc? And can i use this recipe to bake a cake instead of cupcakes? Thanks in advance dear! 🙂


      You can use any kind of milk or heavy cream. It’s mainly used to thin the icing out, so it’s preference Whatever you have on hand. And this recipe will make a cake, though you may want to double it depending on how tall of a cake you want.

  120. Desiree Morris

    I tried this recipe and you saved Mother’s Day. The first recipe I tried for a vanilla cupcake was doughy and came out tasting like a really sweet biscuit. This was a homerun. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  121. Charmaine

    I made this tonight and they were absolutely perfect! I couldn’t wait so I ate it without the icing and it was just lovely, wonderful vanilla flavor, light and buttery, super moist. I cannot wait until I make the icing next. Thanks for the recipe! 🙂


      I’m not sure that the cupcakes would bake well at a lower temperature. I haven’t tried it.

  122. Nerida Finch

    Thank you so much for your recipe. I’m very excited. I just won a cupcake bake-off at work. I added raspberries and white choc chips, and it was delicious. Thank you so much.

  123. Lisa

    Hello, I have a question/concern and wondered if you could advise. I know this is supposed to be a cupcake recipe and I did try the recipe the other day and totally loved it, so much so that I wanted to make this into a round cake. Well, it was a disaster. It was quite odd. The sides rose up, browned really fast and were very dried out before the center was even close to being done, at about 20 min. So I knew it was pretty much over then. At about 30 minutes of course the edges were totally inedible and the center was still not done, but I obviously didn’t continue. One thing at the start was, I’m totally afraid of over mixing so there were a lot of chunks in the batter, which there was some in the cupcakes too and they turned out great. Is it possible that it wasn’t mixed properly? Any other suggestions or a vanilla cake recipe you highly recommend? I never had this happen and a little afraid to try again. Thanks


      Hi Lisa, I’m so sorry to hear that. I’ve made this recipe as a cake many times and haven’t had that issue. You’re right that the batter normally has bits of butter, so that should be fine. It’s really hard to say what the problem was. If the center didn’t rise, it could be a number of things. Did you open the oven too soon? Maybe the baking powder was left out accidentally? It’s very hard to say, but this should definitely bake well as a cake. I hope it works out for you next time.

      1. Lisa

        Hi Lindsay, well after posting my comment I was really desperate to try again because I needed something for a birthday party the next afternoon and figured if it didn’t work Wal-Mart’s open 24hrs, lol. Anyway, I thought maybe the batter was too much for the 9″ round pan???? So I tried scooping out the equivalent of 4-5 cupcakes, putting that batter in a muffin pan aside and try that. Well, it seemed to work just fine, not sure why, but whatever, lol, it worked 🙂 Thanks!

  124. Kerri

    I recently made your s’mores cupcakes for my son’s birthday party. They were so wonderful that I knew when I needed a vanilla cupcake for my niece’s birthday today, that I needed to get the recipe from you! As expected, they turned out amazing! They are exactly what I was hoping for. Thank you so much for sharing your talents.


      Yes, it can. Depending on how big of a cake you want, you’ll probably want to double the recipe to get two good sized layers. I think in 8 inch pans it bakes for about 20 minutes.

  125. Jodie

    Hi! I came across your vanilla cupcake recipe and I am sold! I have liquid egg whites and was wondering how many tablespoons of those I need to equal 3 egg whites in your recipe!

    Thank you

  126. Megan

    I did the batter part for cupcake wars and the batter tasted good, I haven’t tried it cooked yet but can it last for 2 days like cooked ? And still not dry out?

  127. Danielle

    I absolutely LOVE this recipe. I have been trying out other recipes and my search has come to an end. I am wondering if you have a recipe for a chocolate cupcake? I have found one for a very rich chocolate cupcake but I am looking for a lighter one…


      Awesome! I’m so glad you enjoyed them! 🙂 This chocolate cupcake recipe is the chocolate version of these vanilla cupcakes. You could leave out the ganache filling, if you prefer. I have another chocolate cupcake, but it’s richer.

  128. Kim

    Maybe this has already been asked but what have you found is the best way to freeze cupcakes? Huge party next month and would like to get a head start…Thanks!!


      Any time I freeze cake or cupcakes, I wrap them twice – once with clear wrap, then again with aluminum foil.

  129. Melissa

    I was just wondering if you combine the butter and cream mixture into the flour mixture all at once or cream it together and then add the flour mixture to it.


      You add it all at once. Just make sure your butter is fairly soft so that it incorporates better.

  130. Jesse

    Just wanted to say that though I am a pretty good cook, I am normally a below average baker! I have no patients for the science and precision required, however I really wanted to make cupcakes for my daughters 3rd birthday this year. I saw this recipe and thought maybe, just maybe this one would turn out OK! OMG I’m so happy, these cupcakes are the best I have ever eaten, let alone BAKED myself! Thanks so much for your post, I will be happily baking these knowing that they will be perfect on the day.

  131. Julie

    I was so excited to find this recipe and try it. They were delicious! My only problem was they looked so beautiful coming out of the oven but then flopped. Do you know what can cause this? My kids want me to make them again but because they flopped they were a little dense in the middle. I am thinking maybe my baking powder was a little old? Or maybe I put too much sour cream? I weighed the sour cream to make sure I didn’t have any air pockets in the measuring cup. I am new at this, so please bear with me. Thank you! I can’t wait to try many other of your recipes.


      I’m sorry about that Julie. Did they have a kind of a sinkhole in the middle? It’s hard to say exactly what happened, but that can happen sometimes with this cupcake if the batter is over mixed. Once everything is added, you only want to mix it until it’s just combined and everything is mixed. You could also add another tsp of baking powder. I’ve been doing that lately.


      I’m not sure. It’s probably a flavor preference. The salt does add flavor. You could add some salt to offset the semi salted butter. Maybe 1/8 tsp?

  132. Tee

    I followed your recipe exactly and they came out amazing. It was everything you had promised….moist, fluffy, and delicious. They even looked perfect….the right colour, texture, no flattening out like others experienced. I wish I knew how to post a picture of it. My hubby and kids loved them! This is my new go-to recipe for vanilla cupcakes. Thank you!

  133. Laura

    I made the strawberry cupcakes on this site and they are PERFECT! However, i made these vanilla ones and well, oddly enough, they taste similar to cornbread? Not sure why, but regardless they all got tossed.

  134. Caroline

    Hi Lindsay! I just wanted to thank you so much for this wonderful cupcake recipe!! I have been on the hunt for a really good vanilla cupcake recipe for a while, and I must say your recipe is hands down my absolute favorite. It is so perfect in terms of texture, amount of sweetness, and moistness, and I must say I have experimented with a bunch of different recipes. I will definitely be making a lot more of these cupcakes in the future! Thank you again!

      1. Kim Saunders

        I wanted to light and fluffy vanilla cake recipe to make cupcakes for my son’s 5th birthday. I searched all around and settled on your version. I followed the recipe to a tee, and my cakes were dense and thick, not at all light and fluffy. I made two batches and they all came out that way……very disappointed.


      Yes, you can use it for a birthday cake. You may want to double the recipe, or at least use 1 1/2 recipes worth.

  135. MK

    Hi… I’ve made these for my sons Birthday party which is tomorrow… They’ve come out of the oven drenched in melted butter… the bottom of the case is all oily from melted butter and the trays have it in too… Idon’t understand what I did wrong??? They don’t look anything like yours they’re dark brown and crispy on top… really disappointed… have to ice them tonight as party is tomorrow…


      I’m so sorry about that. It’s really hard for me to say what it was from a distance. I hope you were able to make them work.

  136. Amber

    Hello!!! I haven’t made these cupcakes yet but I have made the caramel apple cheesecake blondie (well I have madebthat SEVERAL times… Who am I kidding!!!) so I trust your baking skills 100%. I am looking for a delicious plain vanilla cake recipe and I understand this stems from just that. By any chance can you steer me in the direction of that recipe??? I would like to make a mini cake and the accompanying cupcakes for a baby shower. Thanks!!!


      I’m so glad you enjoyed the caramel apple blondie cheesecake! This cupcake actually works as a cake as well – you’d just double the recipe. If you want the recipe this one is based on, find it here.

  137. Jess

    I am excited about making these cupcakes! Especially after reading all the reviews!
    I just wanted to confirm the temperature… 350 degrees?
    Is this in farenheit?
    I am assuming… but just wanted to confirm, and ask for advice on temperature in degrees celcius?
    Thanks 🙂

  138. Julie

    Would the icing still turn out okay if I subbed coconut
    Oil for the shortening. I don’t use shortening and only coconut oil, so I wanted to know if it can be done with that instead?


      I don’t know about the coconut oil. I’ve never tried it. You can sub the shortening for butter though.

  139. Maria

    I am definitely making these for my son’s birthday! Silly question, but my oven is electric and in Celsius, would I preheat and set it to the Farenheit equivalent?

    1. Arlyn

      The cupcakes are hit! Super yumm! My problem though is that they are not flat. They are like hill looking. I’m making them for school and I want to put nice frosting on top. Can you help me on how to keep them cooked flat. Big thanks! Again, the recipe is superb!

  140. Kristine Benson

    Best vanilla cupcakes i have found…..definitely a win! I just made them and they are awesome… 😀

  141. Whitney

    I’m in the kitchen a lot. Went to Cordon bleu in Paris to take pastry classes for a vacation. Made your vanilla cupcakes- Really GOOD! Went with all butter and vanilla paste in frosting instead of “hydro oil” ( could not bring myself to use shortening) and used 2 egg whites and 1 whole egg instead of all 3 whites and 16 min. bake time. This recipe WORKS AT HIGH ALTITUDE (7000ft) whoot whoot !
    Thanks for your good efforts!

    Who are these people that post “LOOKS like a good recipe”…. what the….. ??? GO Make em”


      Thanks Whitney! I’m so glad you liked them and it’s great to know they work at higher altitudes!

  142. Rich

    I have always thought that vanilla cupcakes are hard and rubbery until I get to taste this cake in a party, well I was wrong and I was able to consume 3. LOL! Since then I have been searching for “the best” VCC recipe and I think this is the one to beat 🙂 I just have a question though, do I need to melt the butter? , I am thinking it will crumble when I add it in blocks just like when making a bread ? I hope to get an answer before I make this recipe (I am actually excited)



      I’m so glad you enjoyed them! 🙂 You certainly can melt the butter. At room temperature, you might have a few bits of butter in the batter, but that’s ok too. Either way, they bake well.

  143. Mamta

    They look amazing! I am going to try this, however is it possible to replace sour cream with butter milk? If so, how much butter milk would be required? Thanx! xx


      I’ve never tried it, so I can’t say for sure. It might be a little dense, but should be fine. I really don’t know about bake time though, sorry.

  144. Sakuna

    I have one last question this may seem silly but can you make the cakes without vanilla extract? Will it still taste nice? Thank you in advance


      You can do it without the extract, but as for how it will taste, that’s probably going to be a preference thing.


      I’m glad you enjoyed the cupcake, I’m sorry the frosting didn’t turn out. If you describe what was wrong, maybe I can help?

  145. Sakuna

    In the recipe is it caster sugar or granulated? I really want to make these they look amazing! Should I use unsalted butter?


      I use regular granulated sugar. I also use salted butter, instead of adding salt to the recipe.


        I’m not really familiar with using cater sugar, but it’d be worth a try.

  146. yuni

    I followed the recipe and made sure I didnt over mix the batter but when I tried the cupcake after it had been cooked for 20 minutes, it was quite dense. It also tasted a little bit undercook, which it shouldnt have because the top of the cupcake was nicley browned. Do you know what might have happened? Thanks so much 🙂


      It’s really hard for me to say from afar, I’m sorry. Some people think the cupcake is a littler denser. It’s not super light or super dense. Kind of right in the middle.

  147. Lily

    I baked these cupcakes and they were so good! They were very soft and moist. They were perfect 5 mins after they came out of the oven. They were perfectly rounded, and very light. About 10 mins later, they went flat and became a little dense. Do you know what might have happened?


      They do fall a little after they come out of the oven – that’s normal. They shouldn’t fall down into the center of cupcake though, if you know what I mean (like a crater). If that happened, then the batter may have been over mixed.

  148. Theresa

    I had a vanilla cupcake from “Cupcake Charlies” last summer that was absolutely delicious… but it was almost $4.00!!!!! For ONE regular sized cupcake! So, I’ve been on the search for my first try at homemade cupcakes and I’m going to try this one tonight!!! However, I bought unsalted butter and will add 1/4 t. salt and see what happens. Wish me luck! I promise to come back and let you know how I did.

  149. Melanie

    I tried the vanilla cupcakes (and frosting) and to tell you the truth I was very disappointed. Followed both recipes to the T. I really felt they were VERY heavy and the frosting doesn’t have a lot of flavor. I did not take any shortcuts at all. I think it’s interesting that most people have not tried the recipe, just thought the pictures were nice. The pictures are lovely, but I was looking for a good scratch cupcake. Sorry. Keep up the good work with your blog!

  150. Yajid

    Hi! I just made these cupcakes and it is sooo moist and taste amazing but it isn’t fluffy as it should be. Do you think I over baked them? Or over beat them? Thanks so much!


      When you say fluffy, do you mean they sunk a little in the middle? That can be caused by over mixing the batter.

  151. fatima

    Hi! how are you? i absolutely LOVE the pictures they look insanely good and i would seriously love to give it a try but i just wanted to know before if i could use a substitute for sour cream ?

  152. Helen

    Wow! Tried this recipe today and I am in love! The cupcakes turned out to be very moist which is what I expect from a good cupcake. This is definitely going to be my go-to vanilla cupcake recipe!! Also, love how I can do this by hand, no fancy stand mixer needed.
    Thanks so much!! 🙂


      I’m so glad you liked them Helen! Great to know that mixing by hand worked too – I hadn’t done that. 🙂

  153. Ariale

    I’m just wondering why mine kind of sunk in the middle! I tried the recipe and loved it, when I looked inside the oven they rose! When I took them out and let them cool it sunk in the middle

  154. Margot

    I haven’t tried the cupcakes yet, but they were amazingly easy! Thank you!

    I don’t think my butter was warm enough or I didn’t mix long enough because I had melted butter in the bottom of the pan when I pulled the cupcakes out. The frosting is the best I’ve ever had. I can’t wait until I can try the whole shebang. Again, thank you fir such an easy recipe

  155. kimberly

    I’m so glad I found this! I’ve been trying so long to make the perfect cupcake and have failed and I almost gave up! Then I tried this recipe. Not kidding, this is hands down the best cupcake I’ve ever had. It is better than any box mix and world’s better than the mass market bakeries. I made a batch today and I almost cried. I’m proud of how they turned out. I only wish I had come up with it myself. I’m making my little nieces birthday cake and am definitely using this recipe! 1000 times thank you!!!!

    1. Marge

      Is the sugar granulated or is it caster sugar? Also should I add salt. I want to make these for a friends birthday they look amazing!


        I use regular granulated sugar. I also use salted butter, instead of adding salt to the recipe.

  156. Tessa M

    Hi, I was curious as to why you chose this method to mix your batter as opposed to the creaming method with the butter and sugar and also, why do you only use the egg whites – Thanks!

    Also, I have a hand mixer, roughly how long should I mix the batter, (you said until smooth), does the sugar grains need to melt?


      There are a couple reasons – one is that I wanted to have a simple method. The other is that for this particular cupcake, it actually produced better results. I played around with creaming the butter and sugar and ultimately preferred the results with this method. I used only egg whites for a couple reasons as well – to keep the cake whiter and also to lend a lighter cupcake.

      You shouldn’t need to mix the cupcakes for long. Just long enough so that the batter has all come together. The sugar will not melt during mixing.

  157. KC

    I just made these cupcakes and they are everything you made them out to be and more! Very moist, not overly sweet, buttery, and came out of the wrappers beautifully. I have been in search of a moist vanilla cupcake recipe for a very long time and I can now confidently say that my search is over! This one is a keeper! Thank you so much for sharing this recipe with all of us!

  158. Kerri Stella

    Hello Lindsay, I notice that you use egg whites only instead of the whole egg in your recipe. Does the egg yolk change the texture of the cupcake.

  159. Shanny

    I have, as many other who have commented, have searched high and low for a good vanilla cupcake recipe. I thought I had found one but lately after months of the perfect domed cupcake it seems like they are starting to sink a bit and I’m not sure why. So now after reading every single one of the comments above I am convinced and I am going to give your recipe a try tomorrow. Actually, my decision was already made after reading your description and looking at your photos. They do look like the perfect, moist vanilla cupcake!!! To add to other comments, the recipe I use (used probably after tryiing yours) calls for either sour cream or half sour cream and half full fat greek yoghurt so yes, it can be substituted with the same result. And I totally agree with you on the shortening in the frosting. I do not like the taste of butter so I use half and half and use whipped cream and whip the heck out of it to give it a fluffy consistancy and it takes away the strong flavour of the butter and just leaves you with the best frosting! It is so hard to keep the fingers out of the bowl! I’m looking forward to trying this recipe!

  160. Ini

    Hi. I don’t have sour cream my part of the world so I use 3/4 cup buttermilk instead. The cupcakes rise nicely in while baking but once they are out of the oven deflate and sink in the middle. Have tried every method I know but nothing seems to help. Any idea why?


      I would think the buttermilk would work fine as a replacement for the sour cream, though I haven’t tried it. But you should only use 1/2 cup, since the recipe calls for 1/2 cup sour cream. 3/4 is probably too much liquid.

      1. ini

        I use 3/4 cup buttermilk in place of 1/2cup sour milk and 1/2 cup milk because I think it would be toop much liquid in that case. Is it 200g of flour and 200g of sugar in metric units. I prefer to bake measuring in grams to cups.


        Oh, I see. You should be able to use 1 cup of buttermilk to replace the milk and sour cream, I’d think. It’s 200 g of sugar and 240 g of flour.

  161. Lacey

    I just want to say the cake and icing recipe is the best I’ve made so far!!!! I thought I read once when making a 8″ round cake to Double the recipe? Is that to make one pan or two pans?


      I’m so glad you liked them! Yes, when making an 8 inch cake, you’ll want to double it to get to layers, and you’ll want to bake it in two pans.


      Awesome! I’m so glad you liked it! Yes, to make an 9 or 8 inch cake, you’ll want to double it in two or three pans.

  162. Vanessa

    Hi Lindsay,
    I’m very excited to make these. Thank you for sharing your recipe and hard work!! Just curious, why egg whites instead of the whole egg?


      One reason is that egg whites lend a whiter cake. The other is that in theory egg whites should lend a lighter, less eggy tasting cake.

  163. maggie

    is this recipe a thick batter cupcake or thin? The cupcakes look amazing!! the pictures are perfect 😀 please reply ! <3