Fluffy and flavorful Funfetti Cupcakes made with classic vanilla buttercream. These easy homemade cupcakes will delight any sprinkle lover! The over-the-top sweetness and traditional vanilla taste is exactly what you want in a confetti cupcake.
I can’t write a blog post about Funfetti Cupcakes without nodding to the OG sprinkle cupcake: Pillsbury boxed cake! When I was a teenager, I lived for those frosted-with-a-butter-knife, sprinkle-filled cupcakes. Spare me your 9″ cake pan and give me cupcakes – the best way to enjoy a sprinkle-loaded cake! Let’s get one thing straight: I have zero qualms about boxed cake mix. It’s convenient, reliable, and, honestly, delicious. BUT if you’re looking for a simple, homemade cupcake with the classic funfetti taste (and a much shorter ingredients list) then I have the cupcakes for you!
My Funfetti Cupcakes are made with my favorite vanilla cake and vanilla buttercream. Add your favorite rainbow jimmies sprinkles to the batter and you will have perfect confetti cupcakes! For extra flavor, you’ll add a bit of almond extract to the cake batter. Not a fan of almond extract? Don’t worry, it’s not strong, and you won’t actually taste it. It melds with the vanilla extract to create a classic funfetti flavor. I’ve created this recipe to be baked as either mini or regular cupcakes – both are delicious! You’ll find the baking instructions for both below 🙂
Ingredients to Make Homemade Funfetti Cupcakes + Substitutions
- All-purpose flour is my go-to baking flour. I usually use an unbleached variety. If you want to makes these “better” you can technically sub up to 1/2 of the flour for something more nutrient-dense (like a white whole wheat flour).
- Plant-based butter is used in both the cake and frosting. I like using “butter” in this cake batter because of the flavor it adds. You can certainly use regular butter in both the cake and frosting if you aren’t dairy-free.
- Unrefined Sugar is my go-to sugar at our house. Regular white granulated sugar will also work (note the gram measurement in the ingredients list).
- Eggs bind the ingredients and help create that fluffy cake texture. I don’t recommend any substitutes (unless you have a tried a true that has worked in cakes before!).
- Vanilla extract + almond extract combine to create a delicious and classic funfetti cake flavor. I recommend using both. But if you don’t have almond extract on hand, you can use more vanilla extract its place.
- Oat milk is used in both the cake and frosting. Feel free to use your favorite plant-based milk or cow’s milk.
- Rainbow jimmies are necessary to create those little bursts of color we all love! You can choose whatever colors you’d like, but make sure the sprinkles are the “long” ones.
- Vegetable shortening is used along with the plant-based butter in the frosting. I like using shortening to stiffen the frosting, but it’s totally optional. You can use more butter in its place – you may need less liquid for the frosting if you choose to do this.
- Powdered sugar is necessary for the frosting, and no substitutes will work to create that classic American buttercream.
More Cupcake Recipes
- 1 3/4 cup (228g) all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup (112g) plant-based butter, softened (see Note 1)
- 2/3 cup (159g) unrefined sugar (or 134g granulated sugar)
- 2 large eggs, room temp
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp almond extract
- 1 cup (240g) oat milk (or milk of choice)
- 1/3 cup (~66g) rainbow jimmies sprinkles
- 3/4 cup (168g) plant-based butter, softened
- 1/2 cup (96g) vegetable shortening (see Note 2)
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/4 tsp almond extract
- 6 cups (720g) powdered sugar
- 3-5 Tbsp oat milk or water
- Bring your eggs to room temperature by placing them in a glass of warm water for around 10 minutes. Preheat your oven to 350°F and prepare your cupcake pan (mini or regular) with paper liners.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
- Prepare the cup of milk and set aside. In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, and then the extracts.
- Beat in 1/3 of the dry ingredients. Beat in 1/2 of the milk. Repeat until, finally, you beat in the final 1/3 of dry ingredients. Beat until batter is smooth and well combined.
- Stir in the sprinkles. Scoop batter into the cupcakes liners, filling 3/4 full. Bake mini cupcakes at 350°F for 10-12 minutes; bake regular cupcakes at 350°F for 14-16 minutes (or until a toothpick inserted into a cupcakes comes out clean).
- Allow the cupcakes to cool in the pan for 10 minutes before gently removing to a cooling rack to cool completely.
- Once the cupcakes are totally cool to the touch, you can make the frosting. In a large bowl, beat together the butter, shortening, and extracts. Add the powdered sugar and gently beat until mostly combined - it will look dry.
- Add the milk or water 1 Tbsp at a time, beating each time, until your frosting reaches a thick but spreadable consistency. If it becomes too thin, add more sugar. If it's too thick, add a bit more milk/water.
- Assemble the cake, adding an equal amount of frosting to a piping bag fitted with your favorite tip (I used a Wilton 1M). Pipe frosting onto the cupcakes and immediately top each cupcake with sprinkles - add the sprinkles as you go so they will stick to the freshly piped frosting.
- Store cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature.
- Stick butter (regular or plant-based) needs to soften at room temperature prior to beating. Tub "butter" can be used straight from the fridge as it's already soft enough.
- Shortening can be replaced with an equal amount of butter or plant-based butter. The frosting will need less liquid if you choose to forgo the shortening.