Easy Strawberry Cupcakes with Basil Buttercream

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These homemade Strawberry Cupcakes come with a delicious and herbal basil buttercream frosting for a unique and refreshing take on dessert! You’ll love these fancy strawberry cupcakes that perfectly combine the flavors of strawberry and basil.

Strawberry Basil Cupcakes
Strawberry basil cupcakes are the perfect light and refreshing dessert for the spring and summer.

Why You’ll Love Strawberry and Basil Cupcakes

Strawberry desserts fall into two categories: those that taste like freshly picked strawberries, like local hand-churned strawberry ice cream, and those that have an intensely sweet strawberry flavor, like strawberry lollipops or the strawberry syrup drizzled over diner strawberry cheesecake. I’m a huge fan of the former. Pile too much sugar into strawberry desserts and you lose that berry patch simplicity.

These strawberry basil cupcakes fit comfortably into the first category. They are made with food-processed fresh strawberries, and basil sugar is used instead of plain sugar to give the cupcakes a more vibrant taste.  Instead of hiding the cake’s flavor behind a sweeter strawberry frosting, the basil buttercream complements the strawberry and brings out its flavor even more.

These are the strawberry cupcakes I’ll reach for again and again in the dog days of summer when no fake flavor will do and the earth is ripe for picking. Top them with the suggested basil buttercream or even a Strawberry Buttercream Frosting for delicious results every time!

What You’ll Need to Make Strawberry Basil Cupcakes

Basil Sugar
This simple homemade basil sugar is the secret ingredient for these strawberry cupcakes. It infuses them with delicious basil flavor!

For Strawberry Basil Cupcakes

  • Cake Flour – I suggest cake flour for this recipe; don’t use self-rising as you’ll be adding leavening agents.
  • Basil Sugar – see recipe below.
  • Baking Powder and Baking Soda – use both for these cupcakes to ensure light, fluffy, and tender strawberry cake.
  • Salt
  • Butter – let it come up to room temperature so it’s easy to beat into the batter.
  • Eggs
  • Greek Yogurt – provide some additional moisture and a little bit of sour tangy flavor.
  • Oil – I suggest canola or vegetable oil.
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Fresh Strawberries – these cupcakes are excellent for their fresh authentic strawberry flavor, so I recommend you get the freshest berries possible!
  • Whole Milk

For Basil Buttercream

  • Butter
  • Basil Powdered Sugar – see recipe below.
  • Powdered Sugar
  • Salt – this will help enhance the sweetness of the frosting and balance out the flavors.

To make strawberry basil cupcakes, you’ll need basil sugar and basil powdered sugar. See the second recipe below for those.

How to Make Basil and Strawberry Cupcakes

For Strawberry Basil Cupcakes

  1. Combine dry ingredients in a mixing bowl (basil sugar, cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt).
  2. Add the butter and mix until combined.
Start by combining your dry ingredients well to prevent lumps in your strawberry and basil cupcakes.
  1. In a separate bowl, whisk together wet ingredients (egg, yogurt, oil, and vanilla).
  2. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until just combined.
  3. Fold in pureed strawberries.
  4. Stir in the milk until a smooth batter forms.
  5. Fill your cupcake liners about three quarters full.
  6. Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes or until done.

For Basil Buttercream

  1. While the cupcakes bake, beat butter for frosting until fluffy.
This homemade basil buttercream is so easy to make with just a few steps!
  1. Add in basil powdered sugar a bit at a time. Repeat with regular powdered sugar.
  2. Mix in salt, then pipe or spread onto cupcakes once cooled.


Do strawberry and basil go together?

Absolutely, the sweet and fruity taste of the strawberries is only enhanced by the fragrant and herbal basil. These two ingredients are often combined in cocktails, but they also work perfectly in strawberry cupcakes.

What else can I use as frosting for these basil strawberry cupcakes?

For a different take on these cupcakes, top with whipped cream, regular buttercream, cream cheese frosting, or a strawberry buttercream. You could even go with a citrus flavor like lemon or lime for a zingy addition to the flavor profile!

What is the secret to super moist cupcakes?

These strawberry basil cupcakes contain Greek yogurt in the batter, which is a great way to add some extra moisture without making the cupcakes too heavy.

More Cupcake Recipes You’ll Love

Did you make this recipe? Leave a review!
Strawberry Basil Cupcakes
Print Pin
4 from 4 votes

Strawberry Basil Cupcakes with Basil Buttercream

Strawberry and basil are a classic pairing, and these cupcakes are no exception.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 16 cupcakes
Calories 386kcal
Author Stefani


Cupcake Ingredients

  • 1 cup basil sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups cake flour not self-rising
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 1/3 cup greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup canola oil or vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup pureed fresh strawberries
  • 1/4 cup whole milk

Basil Buttercream Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 2 cups basil powdered sugar
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  • Preheat oven to 350 F.
  • In a medium-sized mixing bowl, mix basil sugar, cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • Add butter and mix until fully combined.
  • In a small mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, yogurt, oil, and vanilla until smooth.
  • Add egg mixture to flour mixture and mix until just combined.
  • Mix in strawberries until just combined.
  • Mix in milk until just combined.
  • Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full.
  • Bake for 20 minutes or until cupcakes bounce back when lightly touched.

Basil Buttercream Instructions

  • In a medium-sized mixing bowl, beat butter until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes on high speed.
  • Mix in basil powdered sugar a little bit at a time.
  • Mix in powdered sugar a little bit at a time.
  • Mix in salt.
  • Pipe or spread onto cooled cupcakes.


Calories: 386kcal | Carbohydrates: 53g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 59mg | Sodium: 193mg | Potassium: 82mg | Sugar: 42g | Vitamin A: 480IU | Vitamin C: 3.5mg | Calcium: 35mg | Iron: 0.3mg
Have you tried this recipe?Click here to leave a comment and rating!
Basil Sugar
Print Pin
5 from 1 vote

Basil Sugar

Once you make the basil sugar, simply replace some or all of the sugar in your baked goods with the basil sugar to add a whole new complexity to your desserts.
Course Condiments
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 16 servings
Calories 48kcal
Author Stefani


  • 1 large handful of fresh basil leaves
  • 1 cup sugar


  • Rinse basil leaves and gently pat dry with a towel.
  • Pulse basil leaves in a food processor until they are as small as you can get them. Don’t worry if there are still some big pieces since you’ll process them further in a bit. You should end up with about one packed tablespoon of chopped up basil. Add more basil or remove some if you are too far off.
  • Place processed basil and sugar in a small bowl and use a spoon to mix well, pressing the basil into the sugar.
  • Place the basil sugar in the food processor and pulse to fully combine.
  • If not using within three days, store in the freezer until ready to use.
  • If basil sugar starts to get clumpy, pulse again in a food processor just before using.


You can follow these same instructions with powdered sugar for use in basil frosting!
Yield 1 cup


Calories: 48kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Sugar: 12g
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