My favourite cupcake recipes and ideas

I love cupcake recipes and ideas – they’re so quick to mix up and decorate, great for parties and barbecues. If I don’t eat them all first, obviously… I have the following go-to recipe scrawled on notepaper above my oven:

Vanilla cupcake recipe

Makes 12

  • 125g (4½oz) unsalted butter
  • 125g (4½oz) caster sugar
  • 125g (4½oz) self-raising flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract

cupcake recipes and ideas cupcakes

1. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/350°F (Gas Mark 4) and make sure your butter and eggs are at room temperature.

2. Cube the butter and beat until smooth. Cream the sugar into the butter gradually until the mixture goes pale.

4. Beat in the eggs, milk and vanilla using an electric mixer.

5. Fold in the flour carefully until the ingredients are just combined.

6. Spoon or pipe the mixture into cupcake cases, filling them two thirds full.

7. Bake for 15–20 minutes. Stick a knife in the middle – if it comes out clean they’re done. Allow the cupcakes to cool fully before decorating.

This is one of my favourite basic cupcake recipes and it’s easy to swap the vanilla for fruit juice or other flavouring ideas.

Cupcake recipes and ideas: beginner cake designs

cupcake recipes and ideas buttercream pipingA really quick way to decorate cupcakes is to top them with piped buttercream swirls. This is an easy technique to learn, and great for beginners or if you are short of time.

Drop a large open star tip into a piping bag and fill it with buttercream. Then pipe a swirl on the cupcake working from the outside inwards. Simple!

cupcake recipes and ideas puppy cakesThere are loads of great cupcake recipes and ideas in Bake Me I’m Yours… Cupcake Fun. I worked on this book last year and learned how to make sugarpaste cake topper designs from simple cut-out shapes. I recently made these puppy cupcakes for a friend (she got a new dog) ­– I copied the design from the book and it took less than 30 minutes to finish my batch!


If you want to learn cake decorating skills, cupcake recipes and ideas are a great place to start!



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