Rainbow cupcakes

If you occasionally read food blogs or browse Instagram, chances are you’ve seen some variety of rainbow cakes/cupcakes. I have to admit that they’ve been on my baking bucket list for a few years. So I finally took the plunge!

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I normally bake chocolate cakes, the goal was rainbow, so I needed a white cake recipe. After some googling, I worked off of some combination of this recipe and this one.

Ingredients: (makes ~24 cupcakes)
For the cake:

  • 2 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup = 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cup white granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk, room temperature

For the frosting:

  • 1 cup whipping cream (or heavy cream)
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Directions: 
Cake batter:

  1. If you’re just using this recipe for regular cupcakes/cake, preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit now. If you’re using it for rainbow cupcakes/cake preheat the oven when you’re done with the cake batter section of the instructions.
  2. Sift together (or just mix thoroughly if you don’t want to sift) flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl, and set aside.
  3. Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. If you’re using a stand mixer or a hand mixer, this should take around 3 to 5 minutes. If you’re mixing by hand, this takes anywhere from 8 to 15 minutes depending on your mixing speed and tenacity.
  4. Add eggs one and a time and mix until fully incorporated. Add vanilla.
  5. Alternate adding the flour mixture and the milk, and fully mixing after each addition. I started with the milk and ended with the flour, but starting and ending with flour should be fine as well. I would not advise ending with milk.

Making a rainbow:

  1. Divide batter evenly between 6 bowls.
  2. Use food coloring of your choice to color the batter appropriately. Oddly enough, most food coloring boxes come with red, yellow, green, and blue. So the color combinations you need to know are: red and blue make purple, and red and yellow make orange.
  3. Use food coloring of your choice to color the batter appropriately. Oddly enough, most food coloring boxes come with red, yellow, green, and blue. So the color combinations you need to know are: red and blue make purple, and red and yellow make orange.
  4. Use food coloring of your choice to color the batter appropriately. Oddly enough, most food coloring boxes come with red, yellow, green, and blue. So the color combinations you need to know are: red and blue make purple, and red and yellow make orange.
  5. Line a muffin/cupcake pan with cupcake liners. To be honest this could’ve been down at any point prior, but I didn’t remember until this point.
  6. Carefully spoon and smooth out layers of batter into the liners. Alternatively, you can place the batter into ziplock bags and pipe layers into the liners. Layers should be relatively thin (maybe 1/2 cm per layer?) in order to ensure that all the colors will fit.
  7. Bake for 18 to 22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Mine took around 20 minutes.

Frosting:

  1. Using a sturdy whisk, or the whisk attachment on your stand mixer, whisk together cream, sugar, and vanilla until stiff peaks form.
  2. Transfer frosting to a piping bag, or use a spoon to frost your cooled cupcakes.

Notes:

  • Something that I often forget until I’m partially into a vanilla cake recipe is that it tastes like sugar cookies?
  • You can use a different cake batter recipe, as long as it bakes into a yellow/beige/white cake.
  • The piping/ziplock bags will be significantly faster.
  • This works for rainbow cakes as well. Just bake the colors in separate pans, and stack! You may need more frosting to frost a cake though.
  • The frosting is not very sweet. Add more powdered sugar for a sweeter frosting.

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