Vanilla Cupcakes

Vanilla Cupcakes Recipe

Matt Taylor-Gross / Food Styling by Debbie Wee

Active Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
45 mins
12 cupcakes

These vanilla cupcakes are the answer to any birthday party, picnic, potluck, or any event that deserves a little treat. What sets these cupcakes apart is the rich vanilla flavor. Don't skimp on the quality of the vanilla extract you use here; the simplest recipes require the highest quality ingredients.

Be sure to pull out your eggs and milk from the fridge several minutes or an hour before you start making this cupcake recipe, so the ingredients can come to room temperature. This helps ensure that they mix well with the other ingredients. Chilled temperature eggs and milk won't break down as easily when mixed with other ingredients. As well, they will in turn chill the butter in the recipe, and the result will be a somewhat lumpy batter. When the ingredients are room temperature, everything melds together nicely.

This cupcake recipe is a perfect blank slate you can easily personalize for whatever occasion. Swirl a couple of tablespoons of sprinkles or chocolate chips in the batter for a fun addition. You can frost them with any number of frostings, from vanilla to chocolate, cream cheese, or lemon.


  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch

  • 1 ¼ teaspoons baking powder

  • teaspoon salt

  • ¾ cup granulated sugar

  • 2 large eggs (at room temperature)

  • 1 ¼ teaspoons pure vanilla extract

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (melted)

  • ¼ cup vegetable oil

  • ½ cup milk (at room temperature)


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper or foil liners.

  2. Whisk flour with cornstarch, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl.

  3. Using a handheld electric mixer, beat sugar with eggs and vanilla extract at medium-high speed in a large bowl until smooth and thickened slightly, about 3 minutes. Add butter and oil and beat until incorporated, scraping bottom and side of bowl. Add dry ingredients and milk in 3 alternating batches, beating well between additions. Carefully pour batter into lined muffin tins, filling them about two-thirds full.

  4. Bake cupcakes in the center of oven for 20 to 23 minutes, until springy and a toothpick or cake tester inserted in center comes out clean. Let cupcakes cool slightly in the muffin tin, then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely. Frost and top cupcakes as desired. (See recipes for Chocolate Frosting, Cream Cheese Frosting or White Buttercream Frosting.)

Make Ahead

The unfrosted cupcakes can be wrapped in plastic and stored at room temperature for up to 2 days or frozen for up to 1 month.

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