Smarties cupcakes recipe

(295 ratings)

Smarties cupcakes are the perfect treat for parties, picnics or barbecues and they only take 20 minutes to make.

Smarties cupcakes
(Image credit: Getty Images)
Preparation Time10 mins
Cooking Time10 mins (may need an extra 5 mins)
Total Time20 mins
Cost RangeCheap
Nutrition Per PortionRDA
Calories282 Kcal14%
Sugar31.9 g35%
Fat12.1 g17%
Saturated Fat4.5 g23%
Protein4.3 g9%
Carbohydrates38.4 g15%

These Smarties cupcakes are a triple chocolate treat with a rich sponge, icing and generous scattering of sugar-coated chocolates on top. 

This simple but indulgent cupcake recipe will be a hit with children and adults who have a sweet tooth. Using condensed milk in the icing and cake batter gives a rich fudge-like flavour we think you’ll enjoy. 


For the cupcakes:

  • 100g (3 1/2oz) plain flour
  • 25g (1oz) cocoa powder
  • 250g (9oz) condensed milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2tsp vanilla extract
  • 85g (3oz) 70% fat buttery spread
  • 1 1/2tsp baking powder

For the frosting and decoration:

  • 200g (7oz) icing sugar
  • 2tbsp cocoa powder
  • 55g (2oz) 70% fat buttery spread, softened
  • Few drops vanilla extract
  • 1-2tbsp condensed milk (try Carnation condensed milk)
  • 2 boxes mini smarties, to decorate




  1. Heat the oven to 180C (160C fan, Gas 4) and line a 12-hole muffin tin with cupcake or muffin cases.
  2. Put the flour, cocoa powder, condensed milk, egg, vanilla extract, buttery spread and baking powder in a bowl and beat with an electric hand mixer for 2 - 3 minutes until pale and fluffy.
  3. Spoon the cupcake mixture into the cases and bake for approximately 10-15 minutes until springy to the touch and golden brown. Cool slightly then transfer to a cooling wire rack to cool completely.
  4. For the frosting and decoration: Beat the icing sugar, cocoa powder, buttery spread and vanilla with enough condensed milk to bring the mixture to a soft consistency. Spread or pipe onto the cakes. Decorate with the Smarties.

Watch how to make Smarties cupcakes

Top tips for making Smarties cupcakes

When you make the icing, don’t worry if it looks very dry to begin with. After a few minutes of beating you will have a smooth glossy icing. You can add a little more condensed milk if it still looks too dry but you shouldn’t need more than 3 tbsp total. 

What does condensed milk do in cupcake batter?

Not only does using condensed milk in your cupcake batter deliver a rich, sweet flavour, Kirstie explains: ‘It also helps the ingredients become a smooth batter and gives the cakes a moist finish.’

Can you bake cupcakes with Smarties in?

Yes if you like, add 50g Smarties to the cupcake batter or white chocolate chips work nicely too. 

How to decorate a cake with Smarties?

It’s very easy to decorate cakes or cupcakes with Smarties. You’ll need something to stick the Smarties down. This recipe uses a condensed milk chocolate icing but you could simply melt some chocolate instead. You could also make a simple icing of icing sugar and water if you’d like some colour contrast. Consider using orange juice instead of water for a tasty chocolate orange cupcake flavour. 

If you can’t find Smarties, use whatever chocolate-treats you like. You could also use chopped nuts, banana chips, silver balls or just keep them plain. 

It’s best to use an electric hand whisk to combine the ingredients quickly and evenly. This one from Kenwood is a great reliable choice. 

KENWOOD Handmix Lite Hand Mixer Silver - View at Currys

KENWOOD Handmix Lite Hand Mixer Silver - View at Currys

This is an essential piece of equipment for any keen baker. It will make light work of combining batter ingredients and ensures everything is mixed thoroughly and evenly. This mixer has five speed settings which is more than enough. The 1.1 metre power cord should give you plenty of freedom when it comes to choosing where in your kitchen to do the cake prep. 

Try our chocolate cupcakes recipe if you find condensed milk too sweet. You might also like our mini cupcakes or rainbow cupcakes which are bright and colourful but have a simple vanilla flavour. 

Jessica Ransom
Senior Food Writer

Jessica is a freelance food writer, stylist and recipe tester. She previously worked as Senior Food Writer at Future. While at Future Jessica wrote food and drink-related news stories and features, curated product pages, reviewed equipment, and developed recipes that she then styled on food shoots. She is an enthusiastic, self-taught cook who adores eating out and sharing great food and drink with friends and family. She has completed the Level 1 Associate course at the Academy of Cheese and is continually building on her knowledge of beers, wines, and spirits.