The only thing better than a delectable slice of warm chocolate cake is a cake that literally fits in the palm of your hand!
Yes, cupcakes are one of the most enduring desserts of all time, but who invented this popular treat?
The first cupcake is credited to Amelia Simmons, author of the classic cookbook, “American Cookery,” published in the late 18th-century. This cookbook is responsible for introducing timeless American desserts.
While “American Cookery” documented the first cupcake recipe, the cupcake tradition itself likely goes back farther in history.
Today, consumers enjoy different types of cupcakes, including mass-produced treats from Hostess and Little Debbie.
If you’re not hungry already, brace yourself. Here are several cupcakes that never go out of style in the kitchen.
The Classic Simple Cupcake
The original cupcake recipe published in “American Cookery” is still the foundation for many cupcake recipes enjoyed today.
Amelia Simmon’s recipe calls for 4 eggs, 2 cups of sugar, a cup of butter, and 3 cups of flour. You’ll notice that Amelia’s recipe doesn’t use milk, vanilla extract, or baking powder, three common ingredients in modern cupcake recipes. The only wet ingredient in Amelia’s recipe is eggs.
Many simple cupcake recipes call for vegetable oil, water, and salt. A pinch of salt actually helps balance and enhance sweetness.
Simple cupcakes have a light vanilla taste. You can reduce the amount of sugar for a subtlety sweet cupcake.
You can also use an easy white cake or yellow cake boxed mix to create simple and delicious cupcakes.
The Timeless Chocolate Cupcake
Next up on the list is everyone’s favorite. The classic chocolate cupcake has been enjoyed (and reinvented) for centuries.
Like simple vanilla cupcakes, chocolate cupcake recipes vary. You also have to decide if you want a light chocolate cupcake versus a super-moist dark chocolate cupcake.
Chocolate cupcake recipes start with the same ingredients as vanilla cupcakes, including all-purpose flour, baking powder, a pinch of salt, eggs, sugar, vegetable oil, and vanilla extract. Many recipes also call for baking soda and buttermilk.
You’ll also notice that chocolate cupcakes often call for both granulated sugar and brown sugar. Brown sugar really enhances that chocolate taste.
Of course, the biggest difference between chocolate cupcakes and simple cupcakes is the cocoa itself.
Make sure to use powdered baking cocoa. There are different types of baking cocoa, like regular and dutch cocoa. If you want super chocolaty cupcakes, go with rick dark dutch cocoa with a higher cacao percentage.
Remember, baking cocoa itself is not sweet; it’s actually quite bitter! Therefore, chocolate cupcakes call for more sugar than cocoa. The ratio is typically 1 cup sugar for every half-cup of cocoa.
Sweet Strawberry Cupcakes
Strawberry cupcakes are perfect for dessert lovers who prefer the sweetness and tartness of fruit compared to dense, rich chocolate.
Like previous cupcake recipes, strawberry cupcakes also call for flour, sugar, eggs, baking powder, salt, and vanilla extract. Like chocolate cupcakes, strawberry cupcakes often call for milk, as well. Many recipes require cornstarch and a higher proportion of egg whites to egg yolks.
What makes these cupcakes different is the addition of fresh strawberries. Buy at least a dozen strawberries, as most recipes call for eight large strawberries at the very least. If you’re using small strawberries, buy at least two dozen to be on the safe side.
You’ll also need a food processor for strawberry cupcakes. Slice up your strawberries and throw them in the processor to create a smooth strawberry puree. Put a few slices to the side for decoration.
Like chocolate and vanilla cupcakes, boxed strawberry cake mix is also available. Since homemade strawberry cupcakes are a little more labor-intensive, a boxed mix is a good idea when you’re low on time.
Strawberry cupcakes are also delicious with a crumble topping or buttercream frosting!
Red Velvet and More Types of Cupcakes to Know
Simple vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry cupcakes are the “big three” every beginner baker should know. Once you master these three easy recipes, start experimenting with more cupcake recipes, like cream-filled, lemon, red velvet, coconut, and chocolate chips.
You can even make “boozy” cupcakes with champagne and spiced rum!
These fancier cupcake recipes start with similar ingredients to your classic cupcakes. You’ll also need additional baking tools, like a pastry bag for cream-filled cupcakes.
Red velvet is one of the most popular cupcake recipes. This cupcake is known for its signature red coloring, but it’s just a light chocolate cake. Think of red velvet as a mix of chocolate and vanilla.
Unlike traditional chocolate cupcakes, red velvet cupcakes call for a fraction of the cocoa. While a chocolate cupcake recipe may call for a half of a cup of cocoa, a red velvet recipe would require just a one-fourth cup. Your red velvet cupcakes may also need buttermilk and vinegar.
Of course, every red velvet cupcake recipe needs red food coloring! If you don’t want to use traditional food coloring, you can always use organic plant-based alternatives.
Red velvet cupcakes are traditionally served with sweet cream cheese frosting. This type of frosting calls for cream cheese, confectioner’s (or powdered) sugar, vanilla extract, butter, and salt. You can use simple buttercream frosting, as well.
Must-Have Tools for Baking Cupcakes
You can’t make cupcakes without the right baking tin! A reliable muffin tin is the first baking tool on your list. If you want to get fancy, you can display your cupcake creations on a 5 tier round pro cupcake tower.
The next item on the list is paper cupcake cups. Paper baking cups aren’t technically necessary, but they make the baking (and eating) process a cinch.
If you’re using canned frosting, all you need is a simple butter knife. However, if you want to create a fancy frosting look, use a pastry or frosting bag with decorative tips.
Wake Up and Smell the Cupcakes
What’s that amazing smell?
That’s the aroma of future cupcakes baking away in the oven!
Follow these recipes, tips, and hacks to create different types of cupcakes in your kitchen. Don’t forget to visit the blog to discover more culinary secrets.