My new tradition with our friends is to make the person with the closest birthday whatever cupcakes they want when we see them. They can pick any type of cupcake and I’ll attempt to make it as best as I can. My friend asked for a vanilla butter cupcake with buttercream frosting. She wanted it to taste just like butter and it definitely did. This cupcake actually got someone to say it was the best cupcake they had ever had, which is pretty amazing for a vanilla cupcake. I can’t claim these as my own. I got the recipe from kiwisoutback, but I hope you enjoy it. I decorated the cupcakes to look like a wreath, which added to the Christmas feel. Directions for making the wreath are at the bottom. You can make this wreath using a cake mix and pre-made frosting. The presentation will certainly wow your guests!
For the vanilla cupcakes you need (24):
3/4 cup unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks)
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cups sugar
3 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups milk
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
For the frosting you need:
1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar (or as much until you like it)
1 teaspoon salt
green food coloring (until it’s a color you like)
Preheat the oven to 350 and line 2 cupcake tins with liners or grease them.
Next take the 1 1/2 sticks of unsalted butter and cream them with the 1 3/4 cups sugar until the mixture looks light and fluffy. Add the 3 eggs, one at a time. Then add the 3 teaspoons vanilla extract.
Add 1 cup all purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder and mix on low until just combined. Add 1/2 cup milk and mix on low until just combined. Add 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour and 3/4 cup milk and mix on low until just combined.
Using an ice cream scoop, scoop the cupcakes into the liners.
Bake for 18 minutes, more or less depending on your oven.
While they are cooling make the icing.
Beat the 2 sticks of unsalted butter using a stand mixer for 1 minute. Then add 2 teaspoons vanilla extract and mix on low. Then add 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar (or more if you want it sweeter) and the 1 teaspoon of salt and mix on low until well combined. Now mix in green food coloring until you like the color, mix on low to medium. I use food dye that I get at craft stores because it has a stronger color. It’s Wilton’s gel. You can get any color under the sun.
Put the frosting into a disposable pastry bag or a ziploc bag with the tip clipped off.
Now arrange the cupcakes in the shape of a wreath. 3 cupcakes on the bottom then 4, then 5 but take the center one out (so there are only 4), then 4 all lined up, then 3. This should give you a wreath shape. Then frost each cupcake so it looks like the cupcakes are connected. Decorate as you choose! You can add the candy cane cookies like I did, or use real candy canes.
Serve them and have all of yours guests wow-ed by your amazing skillz. You could also do this with boxed cake mix and pre-made frosting. Don’t feel like because you don’t make them at from scratch the cupcakes can’t be beautiful! Remember to always live and let’s create!