Easy Vanilla Cupcakes with Cinnamon Buttercream Frosting

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Easy Vanilla Cupcakes with Cinnamon Buttercream

Hands down, these are the EASIEST cupcakes I’ve EVER made.  I have Sally from Sally’s Baking Addiction to thank for that.  This is her recipe for Very Vanilla Cupcakes with only one very minor change.

Sally’s recipe calls for 1/2 a vanilla bean in addition to 2 teaspoons of vanilla, and I did not have a vanilla bean.

So, what do you do when you need a vanilla bean?  You call your son who works at a neighborhood grocery store, less than 2 miles away at 10pm on a Friday night.

Of course, this particular store only carries “organic” vanilla beans of three different varieties, and they are priced at $5.99, $10.79 and $12.79.  Those prices are for ONE vanilla bean.  Are you people crazy??!!

So since I haven’t won the lottery lately, I opted to make the recipe with just the 2 teaspoons of vanilla, but you know what… They’re still soft and sweet with a very vanilla flavor.  I think I’ve found my new go-to vanilla cupcake recipe.

I did order some reasonably priced vanilla beans online last night, so I will be trying this recipe again very soon, once my order arrives.

Let me show you just how easy this is… Anytime I can make a recipe and only dirty one bowl, I am ALL in!    The fewer dishes to wash, the better!

Instead of measuring my dry ingredients into a bowl, I measured them onto a piece of parchment and then just used the knife that I used for leveling the dry ingredients to gently mix the dry ingredients together.

Either in a bowl or on a piece of parchment, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Dry Ingredients

In a medium bowl, melt your butter, and add in your sugar, combining the two ingredients.  It will be gritty.  Then add in egg whites, yogurt, milk and vanilla, and use a whisk to blend ingredients together.  OK, here is where I realized I had forgotten to take a photo of the wet ingredients, duh…

Wet and Dry Ingredients

Add the dry ingredients to the wet and blend well with a whisk until combined.  The batter will be very thick and smooth.

Vanilla Cupcake Batter

Fill 12 lined muffin cups and bake at 350°F for 20 minutes.

Ready for the oven

Mine were ready at 22 minutes.

Fresh from the oven

Let cool in the pan for about 5 minutes, then move to a cooling rack, until completely cool, about an hour.

Easy Vanilla Cupcakes cooling

I frosted these with Cinnamon Buttercream Frosting and then topped them off with Cinnamon Sugar for a little added sparkle and cinnamon flavor.

Easy Vanilla Cupcakes I

Sometimes you just need things to be easy with no complications, and I can guarantee you that this recipe will not disappoint.  They are incredibly easy, but oh so good!

Easy Vanilla Cupcakes

Thanks Sally!  These cupcakes are DA BOMB!  I can’t wait to try them with the vanilla bean seeds added.

Easy Vanilla Cupcake Single

Happy Saturday Everyone!  Prayers go out to the Houston Firefighters who lost their lives yesterday, and their families.  God Bless.

Easy Vanilla Cupcakes II

Easy Vanilla Cupcakes with Cinnamon Buttercream Frosting

 

Vanilla Cupcakes

  • 1 and 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/4 cup greek yogurt
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.  Line a 12 count muffin tin with cupcake liners.
  2. In a medium bowl or on a piece of parchment paper if you’re lazy, combine your flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Gently mix to combine.
  3. In a large microwaveable bowl, melt the butter and then stir in the sugar.  Mixture will be very gritty.
  4. Stir in egg whites, yogurt, milk and vanilla extract with a whisk and and combine until smooth.
  5. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and whisk until thick and smooth with no lumps.
  6. Divide batter evenly (my favorite tool here is a #16 ice cream scoop, as it’s the perfect size for evenly dividing the batter) between the 12 liners.  I always tap my pan on the counter top a few times to get out any air bubbles.
  7. Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, depending on your oven, or until a cake tester or toothpick comes out clean. Mine were perfect at 22 minutes.
  8. Cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then move to a cooling rack until completely cool, about an hour.
  9. Frost with Cinnamon Buttercream frosting – recipe follows.

Cinnamon Buttercream Frosting

  • 1 stick butter
  • 3 and 3/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 heaping teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream; more if needed (I used 4)
  • 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon mixed together (for sprinkling on top after frosting)
  1. Beat butter with an electric mixer until light and fluffy.
  2. Add in the powdered sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and heavy cream and beat until light and fluffy, adding in more heavy cream if necessary, to get the desired consistency.
  3. Using a spatula or decorator bag (or a ziplock bag with the corner cut off), decorate or frost the cupcakes.  I had a small amount of frosting leftover.
  4. Combine the granulated sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle on top of the finished cupcakes for a little added sparkle and cinnamon flavor.
  5. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for 3-4 days.

Recipe Source: Cupcake – Sally’s Baking Addiction

Frosting – Slightly adapted from The Cake Mix Doctor



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Greek Yogurt Pound Cake with White Chocolate Strawberry Sauce

Greek Yogurt Pound Cake with text

Ever make something wonderful and then forget to take photos before it’s eaten? Guilty as charged!  Since I forgot to take photos before all the pound cake was gobbled up last weekend, this post was postponed until I got home so that I could take more photos.  So I got busy with other things this week and forgot all about it until now.  Let’s just pretend that it’s still last weekend and go from there.  This recipe makes two large pound cake loaves, so I just happened to have another at home.

From last weekend: What a glorious Mother’s Day Weekend this has turned out to be! We are out doing some camping (OK, RVing, we don’t actually rough it) with 3 other couples and the weather could not be more perfect for being outdoors. Most of our campouts include a Saturday night dinner potluck with everyone contributing something to the meal. This time we decided that everyone would bring their own meat to grill and we’d all do side dishes, desserts, etc. My contribution to the meal is a slightly modified Sour Cream Pound Cake with White Chocolate Strawberry Sauce.  I made the pound cake before we left home for camping and wrapped it up tightly in foil and put it in my RV freezer. I’ll whip up the ridiculously quick and easy white chocolate sauce just before serving. Pound Cake is a wonderful spring and summertime dessert because you can dress it up so many ways, with sauces, fresh berries and other fruits, or even frosting. This pound cake is modified from Paula Deen’s Grandmother Paul’s Sour Cream Pound Cake.  Paula is my favorite southern cook of all time.  In fact, David and I went to her cooking show in Dallas last September.  We really enjoyed her show (she is highly entertaining) and she is just as genuine in person as she comes across on her TV show.

The two-ingredient decadent and sweet white chocolate strawberry sauce comes from Bake or Break and takes no time at all in the microwave.  The ease of this sauce by using strawberry preserves is sheer genius.

Greek Yogurt Pound Cake

Greek Yogurt Pound Cake

2 sticks butter, softened

3 cups sugar

1 cup greek fat-free yogurt

3 cups flour

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

6 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 325°F.  In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar together with an electric mixer and then add the sour cream until well blended.  Combine the flour and baking soda and add it to the creamed mixture alternately, with the eggs, beating each egg well, before adding the next.  Add in the vanilla and blend well and pour the batter into a greased and floured bundt pan or (2) 9 X 5 inch loaf pans.  Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a cake tester or toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean.

White Chocolate Strawberry Sauce

1/2 cup strawberry preserves

1/2 cup white chocolate

Melt the white chocolate in a microwaveable bowl until melted when stirred, about 30-45 seconds.  Add preserves to the melted white chocolate and stir until well blended.  Serve over sliced pound cake.

Greek Yogurt Pound Cake 2

Microwave (from scratch) Banana Pudding… Yes, I said microwave!

The microwave is probably the most under utilized piece of cooking equipment in your kitchen.  Most of us use it for popping bags of microwave popcorn and re-heating leftovers.  Banana Pudding is a traditional southern dessert that I’ve been eating and making for most of my life and invokes some wonderful memories of Sunday dinners growing up.  My grandmother would stand over the stove for the 20 or so minutes it would take to make banana pudding and faithfully stir until the magic came together.  She was a wonderful cook and role model, but she often used short cuts such as god forbid, Jello Cook and Serve pudding.  I didn’t know what a from scratch banana pudding was until I was grown and made it myself.  Wow!!  What a revelation!!  Granny didn’t know what she was missing, but now that I do, I always make my pudding from scratch.  I knew there had to be an easier way than standing over a hot stove, so I did a little experimenting with the microwave one day and found that you can get the same results, but much easier and quicker.

Microwave Banana Pudding

Microwave Banana Pudding

Inspired by Original Nilla Banana Pudding

1/2 cup sugar

1/3 cup flour

3 egg yolks

1 pinch salt

2 cups whole milk

1/2 teaspoon real vanilla extract

3-4 ripe bananas, sliced

1 box Nilla Wafers or any other brand of Vanilla Wafer cookies

Whisk together sugar, flour, salt, egg yolks and milk in a large glass mixing bowl or glass 4-cup measuring cup, until well blended.  Microwave on high for 2 minutes, remove and whisk.  Microwave for 2 more minutes, remove and whisk.  Microwave for an additional 2 minutes, removing and whisking in the vanilla.  In a 1 1/2 to 2 quart baking dish or casserole dish, layer Nilla Wafers, bananas and pudding mixture and repeat layers with Nilla Wafers.   We like it just like this, no meringue or anything else on top.