The Sweetest Crumb

Basic Buttermilk Cupcakes

Hello hello!

Did you guys have a good weekend? Mine was great and filled with a lot of baking. It was my nephew’s birthday, so to celebrate, I made cupcakes!

I’m basically a cupcake fiend – I’ve made cupcakes for all occasions: birthdays, pastry day at work, watching Bachelor with my friends on Monday nights… I’ve had a lot of people ask me for the cupcake recipes I use and have even had a few friends over for cupcake teaching sessions. I figured today was a perfect time to share my basic cupcake batter with you guys! Once you get the hang of a basic batter recipe and have a reliable buttercream frosting up your sleeve, you’ll be unstoppable in the cupcake department!

So my advice is to start with the buttermilk cupcake recipe below and the swiss meringue buttercream (both from Martha Stewart). Then you can play with different batters – devil’s food cake, red velvet, etc. And different frostings or even flavouring your buttercream with delicious things like homemade caramel, ripe strawberries or rich chocolate… MMmmmm!

To give you guys some ideas, here’s a few photos of cupcakes I’ve made in the past:

buttermilk cupcakes with swiss meringue buttercream grass and marzipan ladybugs:

fruitcake cupcakes with seven minute frosting and meringue mushrooms:

banana (robot) cupcakes with honey buttercream frosting:

buttermilk cupcakes with swiss meringue buttercream and marzipan bumble bees:

billiard ball cupcakes, decorated using buttercream and coloured sanding sugars:

devil’s food chocolate cupcakes, with chocolate butterflies:

cookie monster cupcakes, decorated with buttercream and Scotch mints for eyes:

Ok so to get you guys started… here’s my buttermilk cupcake recipe! And here is the swiss buttercream frosting. Enjoy!

Buttermilk Cupcakes

butterfly cupcakes

By Genia Rodnyansky Published: February 10, 2013

  • Yield: 30 cupcakes

adapted from Martha Stewart's "Cupcakes"


  • 3 cups cake flour
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 2 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 1/4 sticks unsalted butter room temperature
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 5 large eggs room temperature
  • 3 egg yolks room temperature
  • 2 cups buttermilk room temperature
  • 2 tsp vanilla


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Sift together the dry ingredients: the two flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
  2. Use an electric mixer at medium-high speed to cream butter and sugar together until pale and fluffy. Reduce speed to medium and add eggs one at a time, mixing to combine after each addition. Add yolks and mix until combined.
  3. Reduce mixer speed to low and add in flour mixture in three additions, alternating with buttermilk in two additions. Add in vanilla and mix until batter is fully combined.
  4. Spoon batter into a muffin tray, lined with paper cups. Fill each cup about 3/4 full.
  5. Bake for about 20 minutes, rotating trays halfway. You will know the cupcakes are done when a cake tester comes out clean when inserted.
  6. Let cupcakes cool and decorate with frosting of your choice.


    • Using some cake flour for these cupcakes helps ensure that the cupcake is light and crumbly. You can buy cake flour at most places where you get all-purpose flour. Since cake flour is more crumbly than all-purpose flour, make sure you sift it to get rid of any clumps.
    • If you don’t want to use paper liners when baking cupcakes, you can bake them right in a well-greased muffin tin.
    • Decorated cupcakes can be stored in the fridge, in an airtight container for 2 days. Undecorated cupcakes can be frozen for 2 months in an airtight container.

    4 comments on Basic Buttermilk Cupcakes

    1. Jill
      February 12, 2013 at 1:18 pm (2710 days ago)

      This post couldn’t come at a better time–I have to make cupcakes tonight for my sister and I think I’m going to use this recipe for them!

      BTW, love your blog, and all your baking creations. You are super talented! :)

      • Genia Rodnyansky
        February 12, 2013 at 4:41 pm (2710 days ago)

        Thanks so much! Good luck with the cupcakes – let me know how they turn out :)

    2. Martha Sorren
      August 6, 2014 at 5:11 pm (2170 days ago)


      I’m writing an article for on unique cupcakes and I thought your pool ball recipe would be perfect.

      I’m writing to ask permission to link to your recipe and use your photo. We will of course provide credit. My deadline is August 7, so your quick reply would be much appreciated!

      You can see similar stories I’ve written here:

      Thanks so much,

      • Genia Rodnyansky
        August 7, 2014 at 1:18 am (2170 days ago)

        Hi Martha,

        Thanks for reaching out. I just sent you an email about your request :)


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