Perfect One Bowl Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

/// October 12th, 2012

My Perfect One Bowl Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting are sure to become your favorite!

Classic Vanilla Cupcakes are light, fluffy, and flavorful. Best you'll ever bake!

Last week I asked you guys what recipe you’d most like to see on Baker by Nature and the response for Classic Vanilla Cupcakes was (awesomely) overwhelming!

Classic Vanilla Cupcakes are light, fluffy, and flavorful. Best you'll ever bake!

Lucky for us, I’ve had this incredible one bowl vanilla cupcake recipe on the blog for years. It just needed a little… facelift 😉

So here we are! New photos, tons of tips and tricks, and a foolproof recipe for Perfect One Bowl Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting. I hope you’ll make them, fall in love with them, and share them with everyone you know.

Classic Vanilla Cupcakes are light, fluffy, and flavorful. Best you'll ever bake!

Tips and Tricks for Recipe Success:

  • This recipe calls for cake flour. Cake flour is extra finely ground, which gives our vanilla cupcakes their silky soft texture. In most grocery stores you can find cake flour in the baking aisle. If you can’t find it – don’t fret! You can buy it here online, or make your own! Making your own cake flour is easy, and only requires two ingredients: cornstarch and all-purpose flour. Here’s what you do: For every 1 cup of flour called for in the recipe, remove 2 Tbsp of flour. Then add in 2 Tbsp of Cornstarch for every 1 cup of flour (you’re replacing the tablespoons of flour taken out with cornstarch). Sift this mixture a few times (you want it well combined) and that’s it – you just made ready-to-use cake flour.
  • For the best flavor, I highly suggest using Pure Vanilla Extract.
  • Before you begin baking, make sure your butter, eggs, sour cream, and milk have all come to room temperature. Cold ingredients do not bond!
  • When you measure your flour, be sure you’re not packing it into the measuring cup. Packed flour will yield dense and dry vanilla cupcakes.
  • For the vanilla buttercream frosting, you’ll want to make sure your butter is VERY soft before creaming it.
  • To decorate, I frosting the cupcakes using this kit with the open round tip.
  • If you’d like your frosting to be stark white, omit the vanilla extract.
  • To keep this a “true” one bowl recipe, simply wash out the bowl you make the batter in and use it again to make the frosting 😉
  • You will need a handheld electric mixer or stand mixer for this recipe.

Question! What recipe would you like to see next? Your wish is my command 😉

Classic Vanilla Cupcakes are light, fluffy, and flavorful. Best you'll ever bake!

If you try this recipe for If you try this recipe for Perfect One Bowl Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting, let me know what you think! Leave a comment below, and don’t forget to snap a pic and tag it #bakerbynature on instagram! Seeing your creations makes my day ♥

Classic Vanilla Cupcakes are light, fluffy, and flavorful. Best you'll ever bake!

Btw, you can find the adorable “piece of cake” fork you see in my photos HERE 😉

Perfect “One Bowl” Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 2 dozen cupcakes (some may even get 2 and 1/2 dozen)

Serving Size: 1 cupcake

Simply perfect Vanilla Cupcakes made in just one bowl! Top with vanilla buttercream and get ready to fall in love.


  • For the Vanilla Cupcakes:
  • 2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, very soft
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 cup full-fat sour cream
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 3 and 1/4 cups cake flour
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
  • 2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, very soft
  • 4 to 5 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract (omit if you desire a stark white frosting)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt


  1. For the cupcakes:
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F). Line 2 cupcake tins with paper liners; set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl using a handheld electric mixer, beat the butter, vanilla, and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. On low speed, beat in the sour cream, then the milk. Turn mixer off. Add in the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Use a fork to lightly toss the dry ingredients together. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the dry ingredients into the batter, mixing just until combined. Be sure not to over mix here or you cupcakes will be dense!
  4. Spoon batter into prepared cupcake tin (filling 1/2 way each - not more or they'll overflow) and bake for 18-20 minutes. Cool completely before frosting.
  5. For the Frosting:
  6. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl using a handheld electric mixer, beat the butter on medium-speed until completely smooth. Reduce the mixer speed to low and gradually add the confectioners sugar, no more than a 1/2 cup at a time. Once all of the sugar has been incorporated, pour in the milk and vanilla extract. Once all of the ingredients have been incorporated, increase the speed to medium-high and beat for 2 to 3 minutes, or until fluffy.
  7. If the frosting appears too thin, add a little confectioners' sugar, one tablespoon at a time; if the frosting appears too thick, add a little more milk, one tablespoon at time.

Classic Vanilla Cupcakes are light, fluffy, and flavorful. Best you'll ever bake!

You may also enjoy:

Brown Butter Funfetti Cake

Brown Butter Funfetti Cake

68 thoughts on “Perfect One Bowl Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

  1. Alice @ Hip Foodie Mom

    These vanilla cupcakes look soooo yummy!! Dude, you’re making me want to bake some RIGHT NOW. . and I think I will. . tomorrow! Printing this recipe now! and love your photos. . esp the aerial shot of the sprinkles. . beautiful!

  2. Jo-Ann

    THANKS so very much!!!!!!!!!!!!!! these are just as good as Magnolia Bakery Vanilla cupcakes.I JUST LOVE your cupcakes.and so do all the people I make them for. A forever fan,!!!I am making them for my daughter in law’s baby shower. they are her favorite too. Again many thanks. Jo-Ann

  3. Dawn

    Do these need to be refrigerated? Will they transport well? I need to take them to a school function and the last time I made buttercream with just butter, it melted. It was not this recipe.

    1. bakerbynature Post author

      Hey Dawn! I would refrigerate them *until you travel with them, then they should hold up just fine :) I have driven over 40 minutes with these cupcakes and they’ve never “fell” or melted 😉

  4. Lynda Salley

    I will be making these for Christmas, but also need some chocolate ones. How would you adapt this recipe to make them chocolate? Any ideas? Thanks!

  5. Jamie Lee

    Hi! Can you tell me what icing tip you used to frost these and any quick tip for how you did it? I love the way they’re frosted! Thanks for the recipe! Trying it out tonight!

    1. Jamie Lee

      Okay, one more question…Did I read somewhere that this makes 2 dozen cupcakes and the icing will be enough for the cupcakes as well? I’ve been reading too many recipes trying to find the perfect one!! Thank you!

      1. bakerbynature Post author

        Hi Jamie. Sorry for the late response. You should have enough frosting for the cupcakes, if you don’t plan on piling the icing on really high. The icing recipe easily doubles if needed 😉

    1. bakerbynature Post author

      Hi Haley. I’ve never tried myself, but if you do I recommend adjusting the baking time as needed. I would keep a close eye on it since I don’t know exactly how long it will take to bake 😉 Good luck!

  6. Michelle

    I quartered the recipe to make only 6 cupcakes and added a dash of red sprinkles to the cupcake batter for a confetti look. They turned out perfect!!! Super fluffy, moist and delicious. Used 2% milk though and all purpose flour so I think they would have risen a bit higher if I followed your recipe perfectly, but glad they turned out so well using what I have. Thanks so so much! Yum :)

  7. funny smile

    Made these a couple of times. And everyone looooves them. Never going to make vanilla cupcakes any other way from now on.

  8. mrs. White

    I just made these!!! They are AMAZING!!! no cake mix is any easier, I made them up in literaly 5 min. I could smell the butter as soon as they came out and they are supper moist and creamy. And thats without the frosting because I just had to try one still warm!

    1. bakerbynature Post author

      Hi Mrs. White. Thank you so much for your kind comment! I’m so happy to read you enjoyed this cupcake recipe – and I definitely understand eating one warm from the oven 😉

  9. Kayla

    These cupcakes look amazing! My daughter is 2 and loves to be with me in our tiny kitchen baking, so this recipe will be perfect for our activity today!!!! We can’t wait to bake them together! As soon as I asked if she wanted to make cupcakes she smiled and ran to the kitchen…guess I know what we’re doing right now!

    1. bakerbynature Post author

      Hi Kayla! That is SO cute! I was a nanny for many years before taking the leap to blogging full time so I know how much fun it can be to bake with little ones :)

  10. Hailey

    Hi! These look fabulous. I have two questions: (1) I’m planning on making these in HUGE quantities for an event -literally, hundreds- and was wondering if there is anything I need to know about transporting them, or anything about doubling and tripling the recipe. And (2) how long does it take to make these, and how many are made per one batch? I apologize for being the third person to ask the later, but the answers for the two other similar questions had two different answers! I very much appreciate your time to answer all of these questions. Can’t wait to enjoy them!! :)

    1. bakerbynature Post author

      Hi Hailey. While I’ve never made them in large batches before, I would think as long as you double (triple, etc) the recipe exactly it should work just fine :) Typically the batter comes together in less than 10 minutes – for one batch. Multiple batches will obviously take more time. I typically get two dozen cupcakes from this recipe, with enough frosting for all 24. As for transporting them, I would make sure to chill them for a good 2 hours and transport them in a cool car/van, you don’t want to risk the frosting melting. Good luck!

  11. Hannah

    How much icing does this recipe make? I’m planning on making four dozen cupcakes and wasn’t sure how many times I should multiply the recipe.

    1. bakerbynature Post author

      Hi Hannah. The recipe makes just about (give or take) enough frosting for two dozen cupcakes. I would double it if you plan on modestly frosting the cupcakes, or triple it if you’d like to have enough to really slather it on.

  12. Heather

    I feel like I have made close to 50 variations of vanilla cupcakes, searching for a tried and true go to recipie!! This is it! Amazing!!

  13. Amy

    Would this be enough to frost and fill a two layer cake with standard round 9in cakes.

    Or should i add a extra butter stick and some more powderes sugar?

    Also can i use heavy cream instead of milk?

  14. Carol

    Good day. I just made these heavenly clouds. I must say I had to exercise self control otherwise I will eat all. They are the perfect light,soft cupcakes. However I made one change I used the creaming method. Thanks for the work you are doing. God bless you.

  15. Andrea B

    I have the Pesto Cake Flour and it states don’t add baking soda or salt. It states its included in the flour.Will the measurement of flour still remain the same? Thanks

  16. Peggy Miller

    These cupcakes were absolutely mind blowing. They were so light, airy, flavorful and simply beautiful to look at. I shared these with several neighbors and they thought they were the best cupcakes that they have ever tasted. The cupcakes were so easy to prepare. Thanks for sharing!!!


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