Moist Buttermilk Cupcake Recipe

These buttermilk cupcakes are a favorite! When added to a homemade vanilla base, the buttermilk adds a delicious, rich flavor with a slight tang. It also holds a buttercream frosting well for an easy make-ahead cupcake to help you prepare for a party.

Add this to your recipe box and try it next time you need an easy and impressive cupcake. No buttermilk on hand? No problem – see the easy buttermilk recipe below.

A horizontal image of a white cake plate with frosted vanilla buttermilk cupcakes with purple sprinkles scattered about.
This is the perfect make ahead cupcake recipe because the buttermilk keeps them moist.

RELATED READING: The Best Easy Vanilla Cupcake Recipe – Perfect for Kids!

Homemade Buttermilk Cupcakes

Here at Ruffles and Rain Boots, we aim to bring you the most delicious treats that are easy enough for anyone to make. I’m a certified cupcake fanatic – just look at how many original cupcake recipes I’ve shared!

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Whether you need cupcakes for a party, or just something sweet to enjoy at home, this recipe is a winner. The buttermilk elevates a classic recipe and results in a super-moist cupcake that holds its form really well. See below for frosting recommendations for this cupcake.

Love this but can’t work on it now? Save this to a cupcake or dessert pin board or share it to Facebook. Either way will make it easy to find when you’re ready to begin.

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RELATED READING: Boozy Cupcakes You Can Make at Home (No Need for the Bakery)

Ingredients and Tips for Buttermilk Vanilla Cupcakes

If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, that is not a problem. Make your own buttermilk with 1 tablespoon of either lemon juice OR vinegar combined with 1 cup of milk. Let the mixture sit for about 10 minutes at room temperature, stir it, and then use it in this recipe.  

  • Cake flour
  • Baking powder
  • Salt
  • Butter, room temperature
  • Vegetable oil
  • Granulated sugar
  • Eggs, brought to room temperature
  • Vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
  • Buttermilk
Vertical image of buttermilk cupcake ingredients of flour, butter, eggs, and more.

The Best Frosting Recipes for Vanilla Based Cupcakes

Here are some frosting recipes that will pair perfectly with this buttermilk base. The top choice is always a classic buttercream (flavored or with a vanilla hint) because it’s quick, easy, and made with simple ingredients.

Vertical image of frosted vanilla cupcake, piping bag, and decorated background with text which reads the best and easiest cupcake frosting recipe.
This buttercream frosting is quick, delicious, and easy to make.

How to Make This Make Ahead Cupcake Recipe

First, preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and line a cupcake pan with liners. Set aside.

Combine the dry ingredients in a medium bowl by whisking together the cake flour, baking powder and salt.

Beat the softened butter and oil in a large bowl, or bowl of a stand mixer, for 3 minutes, until the texture is smooth.

Vertical image of a clear glass bowl with oil and butter for cupcake batter on a white counter.

Slowly add the granulated sugar while beating on low. Switch to high once added, and beat for an additional 3 minutes, until light and fluffy.

Add the eggs one by one, mixing completely after the addition of each egg. Then, pour the vanilla into the mixture and combine.

Add half of the dry ingredients to the large bowl of batter, and then half the buttermilk, mix, then add the remaining half and beat again, until the batter is light and fluffy.

Fill each of the cupcake liners no more than 3/4 of the way full.

Vertical image of a partially filled cupcake tin on a white countertop.

Transfer the pan to the oven, and bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Remove the cupcakes from the oven, transfer the pan to a cooling rack, and allow the rack to cool completely before frosting.

Fit a pastry bag with the 1M star tip and add your frosting of choice, then frost the cooled cupcakes.

Vertical image of cupcakes frosted in a pan on a white counter with unfrosted cupcakes tipped on their sides.

More Cupcake Recipe Like This You Might Like

Please Save or Share This Easy Buttermilk Cupcake Recipe

Your shares are how this site grows and I am sincerely grateful. Please save these cupcakes with buttermilk to a baking recipes pin board or share it with a food group on Facebook.

A vertical image of a cake stand with frosted cupcakes and text which reads buttermilk vanilla cupcakes.
Yield: 24

Buttermilk Vanilla Cupcakes

A square close up image of a vanilla cupcake in brown paper liner with white frosting and purple sprinkles scattered on a countertop.

These buttermilk vanilla cupcakes are a favorite due to their slightly tangy, sweet profile. Adding buttermilk will also increase the moistness of the cakes, allowing you to prepare these in advance and still deliver a beautifully rich, moist dessert.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Total Time 38 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cups cake flour (can substitute 1 1/4 cup all purpose + 1/2 cup cornstarch)
  • 2 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs, brought to room temperature
  • 1 tbsp vanilla bean paste or 2 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/3 cups buttermilk (see notes to make your own)

Instructions

    1. First, preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and line a cupcake pan with liners. Set aside.
    2. Next, you’ll want to combine the dry ingredients in a medium bowl by whisking together the cake flour, baking powder and salt.
    3. Beat the softened butter and oil in a large bowl, or bowl of a stand mixer, for 3 minutes, until the texture is smooth.
    4. Slowly add the granulated sugar while beating on low. Switch to high once added, and beat for an additional 3 minutes, until light and fluffy.
    5. Add the eggs one by one, mixing completely after the addition of each egg.
    6. Pour the vanilla into the mixture.
    7. Add half of the dry ingredients to the large bowl of batter, and then half the buttermilk, and beat, then add the remaining half and beat again, until the batter is light and fluffy.
    8. Fill each of the cupcake liners no more than 3/4 of the way full.
    9. Transfer the pan to the oven, and bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
    10. Remove the cupcakes from the oven, transfer the pan to a cooling rack, and allow to cool completely before frosting.
    11. Fit a pastry bag with the 1M star tip and add your frosting of choice, then frost the cooled cupcakes.

Notes

To Make This Gluten Free:
Use a combination of 1:1 ratio gluten-free flour and cornstarch to create your own gluten-free cake flour
Use salted butter in your gluten-free baking (instead of unsalted) for added flavor

Buttermilk Recipe:
Add 1 tablespoon of either lemon juice or vinegar to 1 cup of milk. Let the mixture sit for about 10 minutes at room temperature, stir, and then use it in this recipe.

Additional Notes:
Make sure you use room temperature butter for maximum rise during the whipping process.
Do not fill liners more than 3/4 full.

Did you make this yummy recipe?

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