Recipe Review

For Gorgeous, Bakery-Style Confetti Cupcakes, This Is Your Recipe

published Jun 6, 2023
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funfetti cupcake with frosting and sprinkles on top placed on a marble surface
Credit: Photo: Lucy Schaffer; Food Styling: Brett Regot

As I searched for recipes to include in this showdown, I was intrigued by this one from Sugar Spun Run. First, it uses both butter and oil in the batter — perhaps for flavor and moisture, respectively. It also includes buttermilk, an ingredient I love to use in cakes for richness and complexity. And it calls for egg whites to be beaten to stiff peaks and folded into the batter for added lift. Would the extra step of beating egg whites take this recipe to the top of the pack? 

How to Make Sugar Spun Run’s Confetti Cupcakes

This cupcake recipe was slightly more involved than the other ones I included in this showdown. While the oven preheats, you line a 12-count muffin tin with paper liners, although a footnote tells you that the recipe actually makes 15 standard-sized cupcakes, or 12 standard-sized plus 8 to 10 minis — so you’ll need to prepare pans accordingly. I used two regular muffin pans to make 15 standard-sized cupcakes.

The batter comes together by first beating together butter, sugar, and oil until creamy, then stirring in some vanilla extract. You’ll then whisk together all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt in a separate bowl. You’ll add the flour mixture and some buttermilk alternately to the butter mixture until well-combined. You’ll then beat egg whites to stiff peaks and fold them and your rainbow sprinkles into the batter. You’ll divide the batter among the prepared muffin cups and bake at 350°F for about 18 minutes.

For the buttercream frosting, you’ll beat unsalted butter with an electric mixer until it becomes creamy, then stir in some salt. Next, you’ll add powdered sugar a half cup at a time, beating each addition until completely mixed before adding the next. You’ll then mix in some heavy cream at medium-low speed, then crank the speed up to high and beat for 30 seconds until creamy. Finally, you’ll stir in some vanilla and spread or pipe the frosting onto the cooled cupcakes.  

Credit: Photo: Lucy Schaffer; Food Styling: Brett Regot

My Honest Review of Sugar Spun Run’s Confetti Cupcakes

The batter for these cupcakes was quite thick; almost like pound cake batter. I noticed that the sprinkles bled the least into this batter, perhaps because of its thickness, and the finished cupcakes were gorgeous. They baked up tall and had a wonderfully tender crumb, but the flavor of the cake itself was a bit bland. They were moist, thanks to the combo of butter and oil, but I was surprised that they didn’t have more richness from the buttermilk.

Thankfully, there was a ton of fluffy, soft, creamy frosting to pile on top. As noted, the recipe was a bit more involved, in that you had to separately beat together the batter with a mixer as well as beat egg whites to stiff peaks, but the cupcakes were tender, and the frosting was positively dreamy.  

If You’re Making Sugar Spun Run’s Confetti Cupcakes, a Few Tips

  1. Whip egg whites first. If you, like me, use a stand mixer and have just one bowl for it, go ahead and beat the egg whites to stiff peaks first and remove them to another bowl before making the batter. They’ll hold their peaks until you need to fold them in, and you won’t have to wash the bowl between tasks.
  2. Add more extract. To amp up the flavor, try adding another 1/2 teaspoon vanilla (2 teaspoons total), or keep the vanilla where it is and add 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon almond extract.
  3. Add whites in stages. Step 8 of the recipe instructs you to fold beaten egg whites and sprinkles into the cupcake batter. Try this instead: Fold in about one-third of the egg whites to loosen and lighten the batter first, then fold in the rest with the sprinkles.

Overall rating: 8/10