The Hummingbird Bakery vanilla cupcakes recipe

(5390 ratings)

These Hummingbird Bakery vanilla cupcakes are topped with candy-coloured vanilla frosting and sprinkles...

Hummingbird Bakery vanilla cupcakes recipe
(Image credit: Hummingbird Bakery)
  • Nut-free
  • healthy
Preparation Time40 mins
Cooking Time25 mins
Total Time1 hours 5 mins
Cost RangeCheap
Nutrition Per PortionRDA
Calories400 Kcal20%
Sugar56 g62%
Fat15.3 g22%
Saturated Fat8.8 g44%
Salt0.29 gRow 4 - Cell 2
Protein2.2 g4%
Carbohydrates63.2 g24%
Salt0.29 gRow 7 - Cell 2

The perfect alternative to a traditional birthday cake, these vanilla cupcakes by The Hummingbird Bakery as easy to recreate at home.

The Hummingbird Bakery specialises in pretty cupcakes in a range of colours and flavours, but their vanilla cupcakes recipe has always been a staple. With a light, airy, moist sponge and a subtle vanilla taste, they are as close to cupcake perfection as you can get. The Hummingbird Bakery has shared its recipe with us so you can now make their favourites at home.


  • 120g plain flour
  • 140g caster sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • a pinch of salt
  • 40g unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 120ml whole milk
  • 1 egg
  • ¼tsp vanilla extract

For the frosting:

  • 250g icing sugar, sifted
  • 80g unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 25ml whole milk
  • a couple of drops of vanilla extract

You will also need:

  • hundreds and thousands or other edible sprinkles, to decorate
  • a 12-hole cupcake tray, lined with paper cases




  1. To make this cupcake recipe, preheat the oven to 170°C (325°F) Gas 3.
  2. Put the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and butter in a freestanding electric mixer with a paddle attachment (or use a handheld electric whisk) and beat on slow speed until you get a sandy consistency and everything is combined. Gradually pour in half the milk and beat until the milk is just incorporated.
  3. Whisk the egg, vanilla extract and remaining milk together in a separate bowl for a few seconds, then pour into the flour mixture and continue beating until just incorporated (scrape any unmixed ingredients from the side of the bowl with a rubber spatula). Continue mixing for a couple more minutes until the mixture is smooth. Do not overmix.
  4. Spoon the mixture into the paper cases until two-thirds full and bake in the preheated oven for 20–25 minutes, or until light golden and the sponge bounces back when touched.
  5. A skewer inserted in the centre should come out clean. Leave the cupcakes to cool slightly in the tray before turning out onto a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
  6. When the cupcakes are cold, spoon the vanilla frosting on top and decorate with hundreds and thousands.
  7. Beat the icing sugar and butter together in a freestanding electric mixer with a paddle attachment (or use a handheld electric whisk) on medium-slow speed until the mixture comes together and is well mixed.
  8. Turn the mixer down to slow speed. Combine the milk and vanilla extract in a separate bowl, then add to the butter mixture a couple of tablespoons at a time. Once all the milk has been incorporated, turn the mixer up to high speed.
  9. Continue beating until the frosting is light and fluffy, at least 5 minutes. The longer the frosting is beaten, the fluffier and lighter it becomes.   

Watch how to make vanilla cupcakes

Top tips for making this vanilla cupcakes recipe

These vanilla cupcakes would make the perfect food gift for friends and family. Just pop into a cupcake box and tie it with a ribbon. Iced cupcakes will last around 3-4 days in an airtight container.

This recipe is from The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook by Tarek Malouf and The Hummingbird Bakers. Photography by Peter Cassidy, Published by Ryland Peters & Small, Text © Tarek Malouf and The Hummingbird Bakers, Photography copyright Ryland Peters & Small. VIEW AT AMAZON | £11.94 (opens in new tab)

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