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Everett, WA, United States
I love trying new recipes and baking for my friends and family.
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Monday, August 22, 2011

Strawberry Cupcakes

This has to be one of my favorite cupcake recipes ever. White cake dotted with strawberry pieces and topped with strawberry meringue buttercream.... mmmm. These cupcakes taste just like strawberry shortcake. They are delicious.

Both the cake and frosting recipes come from Martha Stewart's cupcake cookbook. I made a combination of regular and mini cupcakes for a little barbeque that Matt and I hosted at our house. It isn't the easiest recipe, but it is so fun to make and it is worth it for the deliciousness of these sweet little cupcakes. Here is the recipe!

2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cake flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
3 large eggs, plus 1 egg white
1 cup milk
2 cups finely chopped strawberries

Preheat oven to 350 and line muffin tins with paper liners. Sift together both flours, baking powder, and salt.

With an electric mixer on medium high speed, cream butter, sugar, and vanilla until pale and fluffy.
One of the best pieces of advice I've read about baking is that the creaming of the butter and sugar is something that needs lots of time. Some recipes say 3 minutes. I usually cream the butter by itself first and then add the sugar and go for another 3 minutes. You can't over-do this part of the mixing. The lighter and fluffier the butter and sugar, the lighter and fluffier your cake! Isn't it nice to hear you can't mix it too long at this point? I am always worried about mixing it too much or not enough, but this step is pretty fool proof. Whew!

Add the eggs (and single egg white) one at a time, beating until each is incorporated. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture in two batches, alternating with the milk, and beating until well combined. Fold in chopped strawberries by hand.

Divide batter evenly among cups, filling each three-quarters full. Bake until golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out cleanly. I baked the mini cupcakes for about 15 minutes and the full-size cupcakes for 25 minutes.

Allow the cupcakes to cool completely before frosting.

And now, for the wonderful frosting. This frosting is the best part of the cupcakes, in my opinion. It has a beautiful, silky texture, isn't too sweet, and gets its pretty pink color from the strawberries alone... no added food coloring.

Strawberry Meringue Buttercream

1 1/2 cups fresh strawberries, coarsely chopped
4 large egg whites
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/2 (3 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature

Puree strawberries in a food processor... looks like beautiful jam, doesn't it?

Combine egg whites and sugar in the heatproof bowl of a standing mixer, set over a pan of simmering water. Whisk constantly by hand until mixture is warm to the touch and sugar has dissolved.
I usually lift up the whisk and rub the mixture between my fingers to make sure I can't feel any grains of sugar. If it is smooth and feels warm, it's ready.

Attach the bowl to the mixer with the whisk attachment and gradually increase to medium-high speed. Mix until stiff peaks form. Continue mixing until the mixture is fluffy and glossy and completely cool, about 10 minutes.

One way to check if the meringue part of the frosting is ready is to try the upside-down beater test. If the egg whites stand on their own in a little peak, you are ready to add the butter.

With the mixer on medium-low speed, add the butter a few tablespoons at a time, mixing well after each addition. Once all butter has been added, scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula and switch to the paddle attachment. Beat on low speed until all air bubbles are eliminated, about 2 minutes.

At this point, you could add vanilla and have a basic swiss meringue buttercream, which on its own is delicious and makes a great basic frosting for cakes and cupcakes.

Add strawberries and beat until combined. Frost your beautiful strawberry cupcakes with this frosting and enjoy!


  1. I LOVE these cupcakes. But for some reason, I remember them with a slightly different topper? :)

  2. I was thinking the very same thing Erika... :)