"Parade" Cupcakes


Instead of one birthday cake, why not make a "parade" of cupcakes -- there won't be any battles over the biggest slice. Cream cheese frosting is given texture with sprinkles and nonpareils; raspberries and blueberries add a burst of color.


  • 3 cups cake flour, (not self-rising), sifted

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • 1 ½ cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

  • 2 cups sugar

  • 5 large eggs

  • 1 ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract

  • 1 teaspoon pure almond extract

  • 1 cup nonfat buttermilk

  • Cream Cheese Frosting for "Parade" Cupcakes

  • ½ pint blueberries, for decorating

  • ½ pint raspberries, for decorating

  • White sprinkles and nonpareils, for decorating


  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line two twelve-holed muffin pans with baking cups; set aside. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.

  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar on medium speed until pale, light, and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. With the mixer running, add the eggs, vanilla extract, and almond extract; beat until combined.

  3. With mixer on low speed, add 1 cup reserved flour mixture; mix until combined. Add 1/2 cup buttermilk; combine. Alternate adding flour mixture and buttermilk, ending with flour, until all has been incorporated.

  4. Fill each baking cup with 1/4 cup batter; batter should almost reach tops of cups. Bake until a cake tester inserted into the middle comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer tins to a wire rack to cool.

  5. Remove the cupcakes from tins, and frost with cream-cheese frosting. If desired, use a pastry bag fitted with a plain writing tip to pipe letters or designs onto cupcakes. Decorate with berries, sprinkles, and nonpareils.

Cook's Notes

You can also use raisins, chocolate chips, gumdrops, Red Hots, or nuts for decorations.

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