Valentines Cupcakes | Strawberry Vanilla Swirl Cupcakes

Hello you lovelies! As I like to around every season and special occasion, I’ve recently been playing around with different Valentines themed bakes and I wanted to share this one because I think they turned out gorgeously. This recipe is definitely the best standard cupcake recipe I have, but it’s really adaptable and you can add whatever you want to fit with your taste; flavourings, marshmallows, chocolate chips – go for it! I’ve gone for a long-term favourite flavour combo of mine with salted caramel and vanilla flavouring, but I’m definitely going to try a strawberry infused sponge version soon. I think they’d make a gorgeous addition to any Valentines, whether spent with a partner, family, friends, or a night in with the cat and all the food! (This is honestly my life and I’m not upset about it hahaha!)

I have a mixture of different recipes where I measure in grams and cups, if you use grams you can easily convert them online, but I actually love the ease of just pouring in the cups – if you’re after a good set of measuring cups have a look here, or here for cute copper ones.

Cupcake ingredients:

  • 1 cup of self raising flour
  • 1 cup of coconut flour (this can be subbed for self raising flour too, but I love the texture this adds!)
  • 1/2 cup of brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup of caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • A pinch of salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup of vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean extract
  • 1 teaspoon salted caramel flavouring (you can swap this for any, like strawberry or fruit extracts!)
  • 1 cup buttermilk (you can substitute this for milk and nut milks)
  • (Optionally) If you’re going down the ol’ strawberry route finely chop a few strawberries and add them to the mixture. The mixture is nice and thick so they won’t sink.

Buttercream ingredients:

  • Butter (I use vitalife vegan butter)
  • Icing sugar
  • Vanilla extract (and/or) salted caramel extract
  • Red and pink food colouring
  • Strawberries for decoration

Method:

  • Turn your oven to 180 degrees Celsius and line a muffin tray with cupcake cases – I make about 14 out of this recipe so if you’re using a twelve hole tray you’ll have a few extra.
  • Mix together both flours, sugars, baking powder and salt – using a whisk will make sure it’s properly combined.
  • I use a kitchen aid mixer for this bit, but you can use a handheld electric whisk too (or go old school and get a work out with a normal whisk) – beat together the eggs, oil, vanilla extract, caramel flavouring and buttermilk on a high speed.
  • Beat in the dry ingredients, adding a little at a time and mixing until super creamy, thick, and fully combined.
  • Spoon evenly in your cupcake cases and bake for 20-25 minutes. The old “fork coming out clean” trick works here.
  • Leave to fully cool before decorating.

To decorate:

  • Once fully cooled, make the icing. Measurements vary depending on how much icing you’d like, but I add three large spoonfuls of butter to my kitchen aid mixer and whisk until lighter in colour and fluffy.
  • Next up, gradually add as much icing sugar as needed to form a light buttercream that sticks to the whisk when lifted. Add a couple of drops of your extracts and mix.
  • Spoon your mixture into three even sperate bowls, add red food colouring to one (a few drops should do, mix and add more to get the colour you want,) pink to the other and leave the third plain.
  • Spoon each one into a separate piping bag (I use these as they’re super cheap and do the job fabulously.)
  • Cut off all the tops of the bags and squish all three bags into a new piping bag. (So you’ll have the three bags in one, which makes for the beautiful colour transitions.) My favourite nozzles for piping cakes are this and this one from Wilton, add whatever one you prefer and get piping in a swirl around the cake!
  • Cut up some strawberries and add them on top to decorate.

Ta-dah! There you have the most swoon-worthy Valentines cupcakes! Will you be making them?

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