Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Vanilla Cupcakes - Magnolia Bakery's Best Selling Cupcake

These are the cupcakes that supposedly started the whole "Cupcake Craze" by appearing on Sex And The City.  When I go to NYC and visit any one of the numerous Magnolia Bakeries, I always have their Vanilla Cupcake with Vanilla Buttercream.  They have a wonderful Vanilla flavor and the tops get kind of crusty like a sugar cookie. I knew I had to duplicate them, so I bought the cookbook, More From Magnolia: Recipes from the World Famous Bakery.  These are now my favorite vanilla cupcakes to make from scratch and they are the perfect base for any of my yummy frosting recipes.

A note about self rising flour:  if you are baking in high altitude (above 3,000 feet) do not use self rising flour.  Self rising flour already contains baking powder and salt so there is no way to adjust the amount of baking powder you put in the recipe.  To replace self rising flour in any recipe use this formula: replace each cup of self rising flour with a cup of all-purpose flour, 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. I learned this the hard way with this recipe.  The first batch I made overflowed their baking cases and then fell and sunk in on themselves.  Still tasty but not very attractive.

Magnolia Bakery Vanilla Cupcakes
Servings:  24


1 ½ cups self-rising flour (see the note above about self rising flour)
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Prep Time: 30 minutes / Total Time: 55 minutes / Line 24 muffin tins with cupcake papers.

In a small bowl, add the flours; stir to combine; set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter using an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth.  Add the sugar gradually and beat for 3 minutes or until fluffy.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Add the dry ingredients in three parts, alternating with the milk and vanilla.  With each addition, beat until the ingredients are incorporated but do not over mix.

Spoon the batter into the cupcake liners, filling about 3/4 full.  Bake in a 350° oven for 20-25 minutes.  Cool the cupcakes in the tin for 10 minutes.  Remove cakes from the tins and cool on a wire rack before icing.  Ice with your favorite Buttercream.


  1. Hi,

    I've tried this recipe several times and it tastes great but when left after cooking they become hard and dry.

    Any suggestions on how to make them moister?


  2. I'm sorry you are having trouble with dry cupcakes. Try under baking them a little bit and always store in an air tight container. Because there are no preservatives in from scratch homemade cupcakes they do dry out faster than cupcakes made from a mix. They are best eaten the day of or with in a day or two.

  3. Thank you so much for this tip. I have the Magnolia Bakery cookbook & love this recipe. However, the cupcakes always seem to overflow & then cave in. They taste great but look horrible for presentation. Thank you again, I will try out the tip :)

  4. Greetings Somer, Check out my post on High Altitude baking. More great tips. Just cut your leavening agent (Baking Powder or Baking Soda) in half in your recipe. If the recipe calls for 1 teaspoon only use 1/2 teaspoon. That should help with the High Altitude.

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