This fresh Strawberry Cupcakes recipe features a light and tender vanilla cake with bits of fresh strawberries, topped with a fluffy fresh strawberry buttercream frosting. The perfect spring and summer dessert!
Easy Strawberry Cupcakes Recipe
Fresh, sweet, fragrant strawberries – they’re a highlight of summer. And they take these Strawberry Cupcakes to a whole new level, with fresh strawberries in the cake AND in the strawberry buttercream frosting!
This fresh strawberry cupcakes recipe features a light, tender vanilla cake with bits of sweet, juicy strawberries folded into the batter. And to finish off the cupcakes, a strawberry frosting that gets its pink color and strawberry flavor all-naturally. There are no artificial colors or flavors – just like my fresh raspberry buttercream that everyone loves so much!
This fresh strawberry dessert is a beautiful way to celebrate all the deliciousness of our spring and summer seasons. Whether you serve them for Mother’s Day, a graduation party, or birthday celebration, they’re a delight!
Why You’ll Love These Strawberry Cupcakes
Strawberry cupcakes are so very pretty, and they taste fresh and springy. They’re guaranteed to make any occasion feel extra special!
Here’s why we make this easy strawberry dessert again and again:
- Full of fresh strawberry flavor. Using fresh strawberries brings the best strawberry flavor to these cupcakes. Because there are strawberry bits folded into the cake and also incorporated into the frosting, you’ll get plenty of fresh strawberry flavor in each bite.
- A one-bowl cupcake recipe. No, you’re not dreaming! This strawberry cupcakes recipe needs just one bowl to prepare the cake batter, making it super easy to put together. You can also easily incorporate all the ingredients without an electric mixer, which helps to speed up the process (and the cleaning!).
- Amazing frosting. I’d argue that the frosting alone is reason enough to make this recipe. Take buttercream, which I love with all my heart, and then add an easy, fresh strawberry puree – and it’s pure heaven!!
What You’ll Need
Check out the list below to make sure you have everything you need to make these cupcakes.
Scroll down to the recipe card at the end of this post for the exact ingredient amounts and full instructions.
For the Cupcakes
- Milk – Milk adds moisture and richness to the cupcakes. I like to use whole milk but any milk should work.
- Vegetable Oil – Adds richness and helps keep the cupcakes soft and the crumb tender.
- Eggs – These help bind the cupcake batter together, plus add rich flavor and moistness.
- Pure Vanilla Extract – Vanilla enhances the sweetness and flavor of the strawberries.
- Sugar – To sweeten the cupcakes.
- Flour – Flour gives the cupcakes structure. Make sure to measure using the spoon and level method, as adding too much flour can result in a dry cupcake.
- Baking Powder – Helps the cupcakes rise so they have a light and tender crumb.
- Salt – Salt helps balance out the sweetness of the cupcakes.
- Strawberries – Use the freshest, ripest strawberries you can find to infuse these cupcakes with the best color and flavor. If the strawberries look beautiful AND smell fresh and strawberry-fragrant, that means they will very likely have great strawberry texture, color, and flavor.
For the Buttercream
- Strawberries – Again, be sure to use only super fresh, ripe, fragrant strawberries for the best texture, color, and flavor.
- Lemon Juice – Lemon juice adds a bit of acidity to brighten the flavor of the buttercream. I use fresh lemon juice for the best flavor, but you could use bottled lemon juice in a pinch.
- Butter – Butter adds richness and structure to this creamy, fluffy frosting. Make sure it’s fully softened (but not melty) so it incorporates smoothly with the powdered sugar.
- Powdered Sugar – Powdered sugar sweetens the buttercream and gives it structure.
- Pure Vanilla Extract – For additional flavor.
How to Make Strawberry Cupcakes
Follow along with my method below to make perfect strawberry cupcakes with strawberry buttercream:
For the Cupcakes
- Prep. Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line a regular muffin/cupcake tin with 12 paper liners and set aside.
- Whisk wet ingredients. In a large bowl, whisk together the milk, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla.
- Whisk in the sugar. Add the sugar and whisk to combine.
- Stir in the dry ingredients. Next, add the flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix with a rubber spatula just until no large lumps of flour remain.
- Fold in the fresh strawberries. Now, gently fold in the diced strawberries.
- Add batter to prepared pan. Divide the cake batter evenly between the 12 wells.
- Bake the cupcakes. Place the muffin tin in the oven and bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out just clean.
- Cool the cupcakes. Remove the cupcakes from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Then remove cupcakes from pan and let cool completely before frosting.
For the Buttercream
- Puree strawberries and lemon juice. Place the diced strawberries and lemon juice in a food processor and pulse until they form a smooth puree, about 1 minute.
- Strain out the strawberry seeds. Strain the strawberry sauce through a fine mesh sieve, extracting as much strawberry juice as possible. Discard the seeds.
- Beat the butter. Place the softened butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on medium-high speed until the butter is very smooth, about 30 seconds.
- Add the powdered sugar. With the mixer on low speed, mix in the powdered sugar.
- Add the strawberry puree. After all of the powdered sugar has been incorporated, add the strawberry puree and vanilla extract.
- Whip the frosting. Turn the mixer to high speed and beat for 1-2 minutes, or until the frosting is very light and fluffy and the strawberry puree is fully incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Frost the cupcakes. Transfer the buttercream to a piping bag and frost the cooled cupcakes, or simply use an offset spatula or spoon to add frosting to the cupcakes.
Tips for the Best Cupcakes
Here are a few tips to help you make the very best strawberry cupcakes:
- Use the FRESHEST, BEST strawberries! This is key for making cupcakes with the best texture, color, and flavor of fresh strawberries.
- Divide batter evenly. I like to use a kitchen scoop to divide the batter evenly between the cupcake liners, to ensure the cupcakes bake evenly and look the same size.
- Bake in the center of the oven. Place the pan in the center of the oven to allow for the best air flow to bake the cupcakes evenly.
- Let cupcakes cool. When you pull the muffin pan from the oven, place it on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Then remove the cupcakes from the pan and set on the wire rack to cool completely.
- Allow cupcakes to cool fully before frosting. This is important. If the cupcakes are still warm when you add the frosting, the heat will melt the buttercream and make it slumpy.
- Soften the butter! It’s also very important to let the butter soften before making the frosting. This will ensure a smooth, uniform consistency, without lumps. And it will whip into luxurious fluffiness! The butter should be softened, but not melty, and you should be able to easily leave an indentation when you press a finger into it.
- Strain the strawberry seeds. I like to strain the strawberry seeds. If you want to leave them in, that’s fine. Just know that they can clog up piping tips if you plan to pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes. If your mesh sieve isn’t fine enough to strain the small seeds, first line the sieve with a layer or two of cheese cloth.
- Add more powdered sugar. If you’d like the frosting sweeter or thicker, add more powdered sugar, a bit at a time, whipping after each addition.
How to Store Homemade Cupcakes
Store any leftover cupcakes in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days. Serve cold or bring to room temperature before eating.
More Strawberry Desserts to Try
- Strawberry Cream Cheese Pie
- Strawberry Muffins with Lime Glaze
- Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble
- Strawberry Shortcake Scones
- Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler
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For the cupcakes
- ½ cup whole milk
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon Morton kosher salt
- 1¼ cups finely diced fresh strawberries
For the buttercream
- 2 cups diced fresh strawberries
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
- 5 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the Cupcakes
- Preheat oven to 350° F and line a regular muffin tin with paper liners.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the milk, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla. Add the sugar and whisk to combine.
- Next, add the flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix just until no large lumps of flour remain.
- Gently fold in the diced strawberries.
- Divide the batter evenly between the 12 muffin wells.
- Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out just clean.
- Remove the cupcakes to a wire rack and let cool for 10 minutes. Then remove cupcakes from the pan and let cool completely before frosting.
For the Buttercream
- Place strawberries and lemon juice in a food processor and pulse until they form a smooth puree, about 1 minute.
- Strain the strawberry sauce through a fine mesh sieve, extracting as much liquid as possible. If your sieve is not very fine, add a layer of cheese cloth before pouring in the strawberry sauce. Discard the seeds.
- Add the softened butter to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on medium-high speed until the butter is very smooth, about 30 seconds.
- With the mixer on low speed, slowly mix in the powdered sugar.
- Once all of the powdered sugar has been incorporated, add the smooth strawberry puree and vanilla extract.
- Turn the mixer to high speed and beat for 1-2 minutes, or until the frosting is very light and fluffy, scraping down the bowl as needed to keep everything incorporated. If you'd like the frosting sweeter or thicker, add more powdered sugar, a bit at a time, whipping after each addition.
- Transfer the buttercream to a piping bag and frost the cooled cupcakes as desired - or simply add the frosting using an offset spatula or even a spoon.
Store any leftover cupcakes in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 520Total Fat: 20gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 55mgSodium: 109mgCarbohydrates: 84gFiber: 2gSugar: 69gProtein: 4g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by Nutritionix. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee accuracy. If your health depends on nutrition information, please calculate again with your own favorite calculator.