Friday 21 August 2015

Vanilla Rainbow Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream.

Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu!

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

So, baking with children. My tips? 

Bake the simplest thing possible.
Honestly, children don't really care how many layers the cake has or how fancy the chocolate is, they just want to stir, crack eggs and lick the spoon.

Bake a recipe that you kind of know off by heart that way you can concentrate on them instead of checking your tablet/laptop/notepad every few minutes. Better still, measure out the ingredients beforehand. It makes everything so much easier.

Also, I find it's much easier to get the children round the kitchen table on chairs rather than crowding or sitting on the counters. 
I think it's much easier this way - they all get a chance to stir the bowl, see what's going on and nobody feels left out.

Also, choose a recipe that can be made with a bowl and wooden spoon. My earliest memories are mixing cake batter in the kitchen with my mother and licking the spoon was always the best bit. Stand mixers and electric mixers are brilliant but with children, you can't beat the good old-fashioned way.

Anyway, onto these vanilla rainbow cupcakes. I've lost count as to how many time I've baked these, usually with some sort of niece or cousin by my side. 

Sometimes we cover these with a vanilla buttercream, sometimes coloured, other times not. Once we tried a vanilla whipped cream.

 However you decorate these cupcakes, promise me you'll use a few sprinkles.

Cupcakes, previously: 12 recipes right this way!

A Simple List of Ingredients:
For the Vanilla Rainbow Cupcakes:
1. Margarine
2. Caster Sugar
3. Eggs
4. Vanilla Flavouring
5. Self-Raising Flour
6. Baking Powder
7. Milk
8. Food Colouring

For the Vanilla Buttercream:
1. Unsalted Butter
2. Icing Sugar
3. Vanilla Flavouring
4. Milk

Bismillah, let's begin!

First job? Get the oven on to 180C / Gas Mark 4. Take a 12 hole cupcake tin.

Grab some cute cupcake cases.

Ask the children to choose their favourite cases and pop them into the tin. Set aside until needed.

To make the vanilla batter, first we need margarine and caster sugar.

Into a large bowl, place 170 grams (6 ounces) Margarine. I prefer margarine to butter here because it's softer and easier to beat by hand. And, honestly, you can never taste the difference.

Give the margarine a good beat with a wooden spoon to get it a little loose.

Then, add in 140 grams (5 ounces) Caster Sugar.

Beat the sugar together with the margarine until creamy and well combined.

Next, take 3 large Eggs.

Crack each egg into a bowl and give it a beat with a fork.

Add the beaten eggs, one at a time.

Get the eggs well mixed in.

The batter may decide to curdle at this point and that's fine. Once we add the flour, all will be well.

Next, stir in 1 and 1/2 teaspoons Vanilla Flavouring.

Flour time! Take 200 grams (7 ounces) Self-Raising Flour and 1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder.

Add them both to the bowl and get stirring.

Finally, add 3 tablespoons Milk and stir it in.

Once you have a creamy, vanilla-scented batter on your hands and arguments are beginning as to who gets to lick the spoon first, we're done.

You could bake these as they are and they would be just as tasty, but we wanted a little colour.

This batter makes 12 cupcakes so I decided to separate it into 4 bowls.

The little one hasn't fully understood the notion of an over-beaten cake batter yet.

To colour the batter, I prefer using food colour gels. These are the ones I have. Liquid ones are fine too. We added a good squeeze of colour to each bowl. The eldest decided on a poppy red.

The youngest went for a fuschia pink.

I went for the turquoise.

And, the middle one decided on lilac.

Once all the colours have been stirred in, it's time to fill the cases. One more thing, when it comes to food colouring, I like to add a little extra because this helps the cakes keep their colour when baking.

To fill the cases, I gave each little person two teaspoons and told them to put a teaspoon of their mixture into each case. Also, the little one is still stirring away!

The filling is my favourite part of baking these cupcakes. Let the kids go for it and each cake will always be different from the last.

Once the cases have been filled 3/4 way full, it's time to bake. There's no need to swirl the batter or anything as I find the colours will all bake into each other creating a beautiful swirl effect.

Bake the cupcakes at 180C / Gas Mark 4 for 15-20 minutes until they have risen. A toothpick inserted into the centre of one should come out clean - this means they're baked!

Once baked, place them onto a wire rack to cool completely. You need them to be fully cool before you begin decorating.

Once cooled, spread or pipe them with vanilla whipped cream or vanilla buttercream.
The recipe for buttercream for 12 cupcakes will be in the written recipe at the end of the post. If you want step-by-step photos for a double buttercream batch, see this post.

As I said earlier, the beauty of these cupcakes is that each one will be different from the rest. Here are some photos from when we first baked these back in February.

We decorated these with coloured vanilla buttercream and sprinkles.

At the end of July, we baked more.

This time, we finished them with coloured whipped cream, sprinkles and strawberries.

Full Written Recipe:

Vanilla Rainbow Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream.

Prep Time: About 20 minutes.
Bake Time: About 20 minutes + additional cooling time.
Serves: Bakes 12 cupcakes.


For the Cupcakes
170 grams (6 ounces) Margarine
140 grams (5 ounces) Caster Sugar
3 large Eggs, beaten
1 and ½ teaspoons Vanilla Flavouring
200 grams (7 ounces) Self-Raising Flour
½ teaspoon Baking Powder
3 tablespoons Milk
4 Food Colour Gels/Liquids, as needed

For the Vanilla Buttercream
150 grams Unsalted Butter, at room temperature
337 grams Icing Sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons Milk
1 teaspoon Vanilla Flavouring


First, bake the cupcakes. Pre-heat the oven to 180C / Gas Mark 4. Line a 12 hole cupcake tin with paper cases.

Into a large bowl, place the margarine and caster sugar. Beat together with a wooden spoon until light and fluffy.
Add the eggs, one at time. Crack them into a separate bowl, beat with a fork, pour into the large bowl and mix in well.
Add the vanilla and stir in.
Stir in the baking powder and self-raising flour. Add the milk and stir it in too.

Divide the batter between four bowls. Add a drop or two of food colouring to each bowl. Stir until you get the colour that you want.
Spoon a teaspoon of each coloured batter into each paper case until all the batter has finished.

Bake in the oven at 180C / Gas Mark 4 for 15-20 minutes until risen and a toothpick inserted into the centre of a cupcake comes out clean.
Place onto a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the vanilla buttercream, place the butter into a large bowl. Beat with a wooden spoon or electric mixer for 5 minutes until smooth and creamy.
Add the icing sugar in two stages, beating well after each addition.
Add the milk and vanilla. Beat again for a further 5 minutes until pale, smooth and creamy. You can keep the buttercream as it is or colour it with food colour too.

Decorate the cupcakes with the buttercream and sprinkles. Enjoy!

This Time One Year Ago: 

This Time Two Years Ago:

Keep me in your duas please and enjoy your cupcakes,


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