Strawberry Cupcakes With Strawberry Frosting

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These strawberry cupcakes are moist, flavorful, and loaded with fresh strawberries! They are perfect when frosted with strawberry buttercream.

cupcakes frosted with three types of strawberry frosting on a white background with some scattered strawberries

Ingredients

This recipe is an adaptation of my vanilla cupcake recipe (that’s been extensively tested and is a favorite for thousands of readers). To make these strawberry cupcakes, you’ll need eggs, sour cream, vanilla extract, cake flour (not self-rising), baking powder, baking soda, salt, sugar, lemon zest, unsalted butter, milk, and finely chopped strawberries.

The frosting is a strawberry buttercream that contains unsalted butter, strawberry puree, salt, and powdered sugar.

I use fresh berries in my strawberry desserts – like my strawberry banana bread and strawberry pavlova and any of my berry cupcakes (see my raspberry cupcakes and blueberry cupcakes for more examples). I wouldn’t have it any other way!

Strawberry cupcake cut open so you can see the inside

How It’s Made

Strawberry Cupcakes

If you’ve never made cupcakes before, start by reading my post on how to make cupcakes.

Start by preheating your oven to 350 F.

In a small bowl, whisk together eggs, sour cream, and vanilla extract until smooth.

Next, in the bowl of a stand mixer (you could also use a regular bowl and a handheld electric mixer), mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, sugar, lemon zest, and butter on high speed until fully combined.

Add wet ingredients into dry ingredients a little bit at a time and mix after each addition until they’re just combined.

Mix in milk, again until just combined.

Using fresh strawberries is the secret to perfect strawberry cupcakes. Finely chop them and add them directly to the batter. The better the berries taste, the better the cupcakes will taste.

Tip: Frozen strawberries have much more moisture than fresh strawberries. I don’t recommend substituting frozen strawberries in this recipe.

Stir in the chopped strawberries by hand. Stirring them in by hand ensures that the mixer doesn’t break up the strawberries. Doing this also helps keep you from accidentally overmixing the batter.

Mixing strawberries into batter

Fill cupcake liners halfway full. These cupcakes rise quite a bit during the bake. If you overfill the liners, they won’t bake up as nicely.

If you aren’t sure how high to fill the liners with batter, try baking a single test cupcake first to see how it rises. Then, adjust the fill level accordingly.

Strawberry cupcakes ready to be baked

Bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean.

Take the hot cupcakes out of the cupcake tin immediately and set them on the counter or a cooling rack to cool to room temperature before frosting.

Strawberry Buttercream

I always love strawberry frosting on my strawberry cupcakes! This recipe includes my strawberry buttercream. It’s the most popular choice as it is an extremely versatile frosting that doesn’t need to be refrigerated.

Strawberry Buttercream Frosting

Begin by beating butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until it’s light and fluffy. That typically takes three minutes.

Next, mix in strawberry puree and salt. I make strawberry puree by putting strawberries in a food processor and running it until I get a thick, seedy liquid.

Mix in powdered sugar a little bit at a time.

Finally, spread or pipe on cooled cupcakes.

Strawberry Cupcakes with conversation hearts for Valentine's Day

Expert Tips and FAQs

Frosting Options

If you are a cream cheese frosting lover, try frosting with my amazing strawberry cream cheese frosting. This frosting uses freeze dried strawberry powder to create an intense strawberry flavor.

Strawberry Cupcakes frosted with Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting

You also can’t go wrong with strawberry whipped cream. It is light and luscious, made with fresh strawberries, and turns your cupcakes into strawberry shortcake cupcakes (especially when you use some as a cupcake filling as well!).

Top with fresh or macerated strawberries for even more berry goodness!

Vanilla Cupcakes With Strawberry Whipped Cream Frosting

FAQs

Can I make strawberry cupcakes with a box cake mix?

Though I always prefer a from-scratch recipe, you can mix fresh strawberries into any yellow cake mix batter and then top them with this strawberry frosting to create your own version.

Can I use all-purpose flour in this recipe instead of cake flour?

Yes; the results won’t be dramatically different. The cake will be a little more dense.

Can I substitute yogurt for sour cream?

Yogurt can be substituted 1:1 for the sour cream.

My cupcakes came out gummy. What’s wrong?

It’s likely that you mixed the batter too much. Be sure that you mix it until ingredients are just combined and gently fold in the fresh berries with a spatula.

Why did my cupcakes overflow while baking?

Only fill your cupcake liners halfway. To be completely certain that you are filling the right amount, bake a single test cupcake before baking the rest of the batch.

Why did my frosting melt when I piped it onto the cupcakes?

Make sure the cupcakes are completely cool before frosting.

My frosting doesn’t look right. What could I have done wrong?

Be sure to beat the butter for at least three minutes so it’s light and fluffy. If your frosting is too wet, your strawberries could be too ripe and might be adding unnecessary moisture.

Can I use frozen strawberries in this recipe?

While you can typically use frozen berries and drain off excess moisture after thawing them, I don’t recommend using them in this particular recipe – especially in the the cupcakes themselves.

Did you make this recipe? Leave a review!
cupcakes frosted with three types of strawberry frosting on a white background with some scattered strawberries
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4.75 from 27 votes

Strawberry Cupcakes with Strawberry Frosting

These strawberry cupcakes are moist, flavorful, and loaded with fresh strawberries! Frost them with strawberry frosting for strawberry perfection!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 15 cupcakes
Calories 357kcal
Author Stefani

Ingredients

Cupcake Ingredients

  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup full-fat sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 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 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest zest from 1 small lemon
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup finely chopped strawberries about 5 large strawberries washed and with the tops cut off

Strawberry Frosting Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1/4 cup strawberry puree about 5 large strawberries food processed until they are a thick seedy liquid
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups powdered sugar

Instructions

Cupcake Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 F.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together eggs, sour cream, and vanilla until smooth.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, sugar, lemon zest, and butter on high speed until fully combined.
  • Mix wet ingredients into dry ingredients a little bit at a time until just combined.
  • Mix in milk until just combined.
  • Use a spatula to fold in chopped strawberries.
  • Fill cupcake liners halfway full.
  • Bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean.
  • Remove cupcakes from cupcake tin immediately and set on the counter to cool.

Strawberry Frosting Instructions

  • Beat butter for three minutes (or until light and fluffy) in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.
  • Mix in strawberry puree and salt.
  • Mix in powdered sugar a little bit at a time.
  • Spread or pipe on cooled cupcakes.

Notes

For the cupcakes:
  • You can use all-purpose flour in this recipe instead of cake flour. The results won’t be dramatically different. The cake will just be a little more dense.
  • Yogurt can be substituted 1:1 for the sour cream. 
  • Be careful not to overmix to keep your cupcakes from getting gummy.
  • Only fill your cupcake liners halfway. To be completely certain that you are filling the right amount, bake a single test cupcake before baking the rest of the batch.
  • Make sure the cupcakes are completely cool before frosting so that the frosting doesn’t melt.
For the frosting:
  • Be sure to beat the butter for at least three minutes so it is light and fluffy.
  • Use less ripe strawberries. Riper strawberries tend to be more moist and could end up making the frosting too wet.
  • Add the powdered sugar a little bit at a time and always start on low speed to keep it from making a mess in your kitchen.
  • While I don’t recommend frozen berries, if your strawberries were frozen, be sure to defrost them and drain off any excess liquid before using them.

Nutrition

Calories: 357kcal | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 74mg | Sodium: 211mg | Potassium: 105mg | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 645IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 45mg | Iron: 0.3mg
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Strawberry Cupcakes With Strawberry Frosting