Two, no six, no twelve, BAKERS DOZEN! (and a blogiversary?!)

Well damnit, apparently this blog is now officially two years old! See, people don’t believe me when I tell them that I almost forgot my actual birthday last year, perhaps now they’ll see that I really am that forgetful!

I just want to say thank you to my readers – I know a lot of you have been with me from the earliest days, through my many design changes, rants and tantrums. Your comments and emails help me stay motivated and keep this blog going, despite how tired and uninspired I may feel :) So, thank you for reading :) Now, onto the post!

That about says it all, doesn’t it? Though I’ve never had the chance to visit the Magnolia bakery, after this video clip became famous a few years back, it helped spread the word about the cupcake awesomeness around the world, even reaching us down here in Australia!

However, that wasn’t quite enough endorsement for me…to be honest, it took me awhile to actually find out that Magnolia was a real bakery and not something just made up for the sketch. It wasn’t till my friend presented me with a box of three little, rainbow frosted cupcakes a few years back. I took an initial bite and recoiled at the sheer sweetness of the frosting, but once I scraped it off and managed to just taste the cupcake, I’d fallen in love!

In the early days of this blog, I professed something to my then tiny readership – an intense fear of cupcakes. After a few forays into the world of these cutesy miniatures, I managed to lessen the fear, but I’m afraid that true love was yet to blossom. After encountering these cupcakes, I knew that it really was love – pure, sweet (how sweet!) and true, these cupcakes took my breath away and stole my heart!

In terms of flavour, they’re nothing spectacular – just plain vanilla cupcakes topped with lemon buttercream frosting (the original was vanilla and too sweet for my liking), but they are insanely moist and have a beautiful tender crumb. Once paired with a pastel-tinted frosting, the end product is just almost too adorable to eat :)

And if that wasn’t enough temptation, how about the fact that they’re extremely easy to churn out? In fact, I made 75 of these suckers on Friday night for a seminar without breaking a sweat, and reports back from the seminar was that the attendees wolfed them down to the very last crumbs :) Not that I think you should make 75 of them, but make one batch and share the Magnolia Bakery cupcake love :)

Vanilla Cupcakes w/ Lemon Buttercream
(Adapted from More From Magnolia)

Ingredients (makes approximately 24 cupcakes)
225g cups self-rising flour
190g cups all-purpose flour
225g unsalted butter, softened
360g caster sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C and line two 12-cup muffin tins with cupcake papers.

2. Sift the flours together in a small bowl and set aside. Measure out the milk into a cup and stir in the vanilla and also set aside for now.

3. In a large bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugar gradually and beat until fluffy, approximately 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

4. Add the flour in three parts, alternating with the milk and vanilla. With each addition, beat until the ingredients are incorporated but do not overbeat (this will make them very tough, I speak from experience!). Using a rubber spatula, scrape down the batter in the bowl to make sure the ingredients are well blended.

5. Carefully spoon the batter into the cupcake liners, filling them about three-quarters full. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center of the cupcake comes out clean.

6. Cool the cupcakes in the tins for 15 minutes. Remove from the tins and cool completely on a wire rack before icing with Magnolia’s buttercream frosting.

Lemon Buttercream Frosting
(Adapted from More From Magnolia)

225g unsalted butter, softened
2 cups pure icing sugar*
4-6 cups soft icing mixture*
1/2 cup milk
2 tbsp lemon juice (original called for 2 tsp vanilla extract)

8 cups of pure icing sugar (confectioners sugar) is a LOT of sugar, and the first time I made this frosting as is, it literally made my teeth ache in a most unpleasant fashion. Soft icing mixture is just pure icing sugar cut with a starch (mine is cut with tapioca starch), which helps to add bulk and a little firmness without so much of the sweetness, so I used it in my frosting (as this recipe does not make a ‘true’ buttercream) with great reported success!

If you want to make the magnolia recipe, use the vanilla and 6-8 cups of pure icing sugar – but be warned about the tooth-achey sweetness and sugar rush!

1. Place the butter in a large mixing bowl. Add the 2 cups of pure icing sugar and 2 cups of soft icing mixture and then the milk and lemon juice. On the medium speed of an electric mixer, beat until smooth and creamy, about 3-5 minutes.

2. Gradually add the remaining sugar, 1 cup at a time, beating well after each addition (about 2 minutes), until the icing is thick enough to be of good spreading consistency.

You may not need to add all of the sugar. If desired, add a few drops of food coloring and mix thoroughly. (Use and store the icing at room temperature because icing will set if chilled.) Icing can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Undressed and ready for the eatin’!

[tags]Magnolia bakery, recipe, baking, sweets, desserts, cupcakes[/tags]


  1. Allison says:

    Hi Ellie,

    What is the ratio of sugar to starch for the soft icing mixture?
    I love reading your blog and the great pictures that accompany it!


  2. @Allison – Hi Allison, I’m not entirely sure – I’ve emailed the sugar company that I buy my mix from but haven’t heard back from them yet :(

  3. Hi Ellie!
    Great recipe – my cupcakes were a hit. I just found that there was too much butter in the icing, and it began to split about ten minutes after I whipped it up. I probably should have added more sugar to thicken it up a littlle – is that what you’d reccomend?

  4. @Tory – Absolutely – try whipping at a very high speed but if doesn’t have a full, fluffy consistency then it would probably need more sugar.

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