These Independence Day themed cupcakes are sure to brighten up your next patriotic picnic, cook-out, or dinner party. They’re just as easy as baking regular cupcakes, but your guests will so impressed and never know your secret.
Be sure to check out the photos on this post for extra tips.
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, unsalted, room temperature
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs, large
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup milk
- red gel coloring, to color preference, about 1/4 teaspoon
- 1/2 cup (2 sticks) butter, unsalted, room temperature
- 2 cup powdered/confectioner’s sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- blue gel coloring, to color preference, about 1/8 teaspoon
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 12-cup muffin/cupcake tin with cupcake papers.
- Combine flour, baking powder, and salt together in a large bowl and whisk to combine.
- Combine butter and sugar in a large bowl and beat until light and creamed, about 2-3 minutes. Add first egg and stir at medium/high speed to combine well. Add second egg and stir at medium/high speed to combine well again. Stir in vanilla extract. Note: I did this step in my stand mixer (Kitchen Aide), so the next steps were extra easy, but a hand mixer or even whisking by hand will work.
- Starting and ending with the flour mixture, alternate mixing in the flour mixture and milk. Mix until just combined, careful to not over-mix (all flour should be incorporated). Note: I just left my mixer running on low speed so I didn’t have to mess with the mixer settings.
- Scrape down sides of bowl with a spatula and mix again to combine, as needed.
- Reserve 1/3 of the cupcake batter in a separate bowl. To the other 2/3 of the batter, mix in red gel coloring until batter is tinted to your liking, careful to incorporate gel but not over-mix.
- Evenly distribute 1/3 of red batter among cupcake cups. Optional – use an offset spatula to spread batter to a flat, even level.
- Evenly distribute the white batter among cupcake cups, using offset spatula to even layer, if desired.
- Repeat step 7 with the remaining red batter.
- Bake 18-22 minutes, until cupcake is cooked through (a tooth pick inserted in the center comes out clean).
- Place cupcake tin on a cooling rack. Note: Sis says to leave cupcakes in the pan while they cool so they don’t deflate.
- Allow cupcakes to cool to room temperature before frosting.
- Frost with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting, recipe follows, and top with sprinkles. Enjoy!
- Combine butter and 1 cup of sugar in a large bowl. Slowly stir until sugar is incorporated. Note: I used a stand mixer to make this frosting, because it’s much simpler that way, but a handheld mixer (or heck, probably some good ole fashioned elbow grease) should do the trick.
- Add 1/2 cup of sugar and stir until incorporated. Repeat with last of sugar. Add vanilla and stir until incorporated.
- Increase speed and beat mixture until it becomes light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
- Optional color step (if you’re coloring your frosting): Stop mixing. Add gel coloring, adding a little at a time and mixing into the frosting until evenly distributed. Repeat until frosting is tinted to your liking.