Stir up one batter three ways, then add on buttery icing, plus cute flourishes, for head-of-the-class results.

Advertisement

Ingredients

Vanilla Cupcakes
Buttercream Three Ways

Directions

Vanilla Cupcakes
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a standard 12-cup muffin pan, or use paper liners. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.

    Advertisement
  • With an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition; add vanilla, and mix until combined. On low speed, beat in half the flour mixture, followed by milk; end with remaining flour mixture. Mix just until incorporated (do not overmix).

  • Divide batter among prepared muffin cups, filling each 2/3 full. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of a cupcake comes out clean, 22 to 24 minutes. Cool cupcakes in pan, 5 minutes; transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Frost with your choice of buttercream.

Buttercream Three Ways
  • VANILLA BUTTERCREAM: With an electric mixer, beat butter until light and fluffy. On medium speed, beat in confectioners' sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down bowl as necessary. Mix in vanilla. Increase speed to high, and beat until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Makes 1 1/2 cups.

  • RASPBERRY BUTTERCREAM: Make Vanilla Buttercream, then beat in jam.

  • CHOCOLATE BUTTERCREAM: Place chocolate in a large heatproof bowl set over (not in) a saucepan of simmering water. Heat, stirring occasionally, until smooth, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat, and cool to room temperature. Make Vanilla Buttercream, then beat in melted chocolate.

  • TIP-TOP TOPPINGS: Fresh fruit (blueberries, blackberries), dried fruit (pineapple, cherries, cranberries), caramelized bananas, salted peanuts, sliced almonds, colored sanding sugar, fresh mint.

Cook's Notes

To Make Chocolate Cupcakes Reduce flour to 1 1/4 cups, and add 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder. Makes 12.

To Make Black-and-White Cupcakes
Prepare both vanilla and chocolate batters; fill muffin cups with 3 tablespoons of each, side by side. Makes 24.

Reviews (32)

117 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 23
  • 4 star values: 41
  • 3 star values: 28
  • 2 star values: 18
  • 1 star values: 7
Rating: 3 stars
05/09/2015
I made this for a kids birthday party, and I thought it was just ok. The cupcake was more muffin-ish in texture as opposed to sponge-cake like. I will continue to look for a good cupcake recipe.
Rating: Unrated
02/07/2013
Just tried the recipe and I really like the flavor of the cupcake. It was lightly sweet with a hint of the butter and vanilla. My husband agreed the texture needs tweaking. He described it between a cupcake and cornbread. I thought it was more like spongecake myself. I happened to have used vanilla that is double strength so that may be why I had a better flavor.
Rating: 1 stars
02/06/2013
I just made and they turn soooo weird and sweet... I trully did not like at all... and the thing that the bday is just in a few hours so I will have to offer this... The thing is that by hurry I did not read the reviews, only read the stars and tought it would be good. Do not make them.
Advertisement
Rating: Unrated
08/21/2012
i am writings to you comrade martha, from Volgrad in Russia. In motherland we have name for these, we call them syeltortes meaning salty treasures. as I live in the artic circle with my tribe, we can eat only these treasures while nothing else grows in barren crop fields, therefore me and my family eat these for the winter months, when sun doesn't rise. these cakes will preserve well with their thick and salty batter, so will provide much comfort for me while in this icy wilderness. Think of me
Rating: Unrated
08/26/2011
I really like this recipe but I tinkered with a few things after reading the reviews. I cut bake time down to 18-20 minutes and added orange zest to give it some extra flavor. Hope this helps if anyone decides to try it again!
Rating: Unrated
03/05/2011
Well, if I had read these comments first, I may not have made them but they are in the oven so it is wait and see!
Advertisement
Rating: Unrated
03/05/2011
Well, if I had read these comments first, I may not have made them but they are in the oven so it is wait and see!
Rating: Unrated
07/20/2010
AGREE, AGREE, AGREE,....wish I had found this before I made these. What was Martha Stewart and staff thinking when they came up with this one. I wish a true "food scientist" could tell us what happened in this recipe. I am a noviced baker and I surely thought when I made these I really had no baking skills. Glad I found monkeyfaceperson and OLillian's comments...STOP DON'T MAKE THESE CUPCAKES
Rating: Unrated
06/28/2010
HELLO ISN'T THIS MARTHA STEWART MISS PERFECTION! WELL UM OK THESE CUPCAKES WERE WORTHLESS I REPEAT WORTHLESS AND NO I AM NOT BEING A NEGATIVE PERSON! OKAY I AGREE WITH YOU OLILIAN!!!!
Rating: Unrated
05/16/2010
I don't believe this recipe ever went through a test kitchen. Horrible, horrible, horrible! Taste-free and tough. I ripped the recipe out of the magazine ages ago and finally made the black-and-white version for a party tonight. I'm known as a good baker and was mortified when we started eating them. Yuck! Had to look it up on this website and leave a comment.
Rating: Unrated
05/16/2010
I don't believe this recipe ever went through a test kitchen. Horrible, horrible, horrible! Taste-free and tough. I ripped the recipe out of the magazine ages ago and finally made the black-and-white version for a party tonight. I'm known as a good baker and was mortified when we started eating them. Yuck! Had to look it up on this website and leave a comment.
Rating: Unrated
07/23/2009
I really like these cupcakes. Mine were dry but very good. I love them.
Rating: Unrated
05/18/2009
I was disappointed in the vanilla ones. Mine turned out tough, dry and tasteless.
Rating: Unrated
05/10/2009
yammme its so good
Rating: Unrated
02/23/2009
I wish I'd read the comments before I made these. I made the plain cupcakes with Billy's vanilla buttercream. The buttercream recipe turned out good, but the cupcakes are very dense and dry like a lot of the comments say. They practically taste like cornbread muffins! And there's almost no flavor, not that more vanilla would have helped. Martha's recipes are usually really good, like the pumpkin cupcake and the coconut cupcake recipes I've tried. Definitely won't use this one again though! : P
Rating: Unrated
11/23/2008
instad of sugar can you use confectchons sugar
Rating: Unrated
10/13/2008
Actually, I am a professional baker, and the smaller the good you bake, the hotter the oven, this way they cook quicker, and dries less. Probably the oven is too cold, and they are taking too long to cook, which extracts the moisture over the long cooking time.
Rating: Unrated
10/13/2008
You have to watch cupcakes, just like cookies! The dryness may be because of your oven--it may be too hot! Don't write off a good recipe. The key is to watch as they bake! Hawa, baking for 48 years
Rating: Unrated
09/14/2008
Not sure where my first post went so I apologize if this is duplicated. I just made these using extra 2% milk as the batter seemed too thick with 1/2 cup. I probably used a total of 3/4 to 1 cup (didn't measure). They turned out great. It's the first time I've ever made a good homemade cupcake.
Rating: Unrated
09/14/2008
I just tried these cupcakes but the batter seemed too thick with only 1/2 cup milk so I added some (didn't measure but probably another 1/4 to 1/2 cup extra until it looked right) and used 2% milk. Baked 20 minutes in a convection oven and they are fantastic. I've never made a good homemade cupcake until now.
Rating: Unrated
09/05/2008
Oh, oh, I was all set to try recipe but not after so many negative comments. I will use however the idea of trying a coffee flavor in another cupcake recipe.
Rating: Unrated
09/04/2008
I am always eager to try recipes from Martha Stewart and made these for my daughter's birthday party. I was very disappointed by them being so dry and that I didn't sample them before serving them to our guests.
Rating: Unrated
09/04/2008
Cookiesgalore has some wonderful ideas. I will try the applesauce and the instant coffee. Yum, yum. And, sheilaparnell, thanks for the dryness warning.
Rating: Unrated
09/03/2008
Very pretty but very dry! I will not make again!!
Rating: Unrated
09/03/2008
Very pretty but very dry! I will not make again!!
Rating: Unrated
09/03/2008
If you substitute 1/4 C. applesauce for 1/4 c. milk, it should make it more moist, less crumbly. Also, why not try coffee cupcakes? Same chocolate recipe, but add 3 heaping tablespoons of instant coffee (regular or espresso)? Coffee also enhances the flavor of chocolate more.
Rating: Unrated
07/25/2008
Simply lovely! :D
Rating: Unrated
07/25/2008
I also felt that the cupcake was very dry. It has a good taste but it crumbled everywhere. I will not be making this recipe again.
Rating: Unrated
07/16/2008
Chocolate cupcakes were OK--if you want a delicious similarly easy recipe, try the chocolate cupcake recipe from Everyday Food 2003 (October, I think).
Rating: Unrated
05/07/2008
The cupcakes were somewhat dry and the chocolate was not tasty. Will not try these again.
Rating: Unrated
02/13/2008
Vanilla, raspberry, or chocolate butter cream. Here is the link to the butter cream recipe. http://www.marthastewart.com/portal/site/mslo/menuitem. 58031cf9775720e593598e10d373a0a0/?vgnextoid=0d2c6e3aeba64110Vgn VCM1000003d370a0aRCRD
Rating: Unrated
02/06/2008
Where is the Buttercream recipe????