Everyone loves these strawberry cupcakes. The recipe actually comes from Candice Nelson of Sprinkles Bakery. The strawberry frosting, however, is my very own. I wanted a thick strawberry frosting and came up with one that uses a strawberry puree I cook on the stove, reducing it down for big strawberry flavor.
In case you don’t know who Candice Nelson is, she is the founder of Sprinkles Cupcakes, claimed as the world’s first cupcake bakery and an illustrious judge on Cupcake Wars.
We love strawberry cake around here. Some years ago, a friend, Vickie, who would come to our home with a strawberry cake that was the best cake I ever ate. We couldn’t wait to rush through dinner to get to it.
She wouldn’t share her recipe and I don’t blame her, as she had some hopes at the time of entering it in a contest. I was neither a cake maker nor a food blogger at the time, and I was content to just consider myself lucky when she arrived at the doorstep with pink cake in hand.
When it came time for me fill a request for a strawberry cake, I could only find that old recipe of cake box mix and strawberry jello. That would not do for me at all. I vowed one day to find a recipe that would uphold the standard Vickie’s cake had set.
Sprinkles Strawberry Cupcakes Recipe from Scratch from Fresh or Frozen Strawberries
You can use fresh or frozen strawberries, but they should be organic, because strawberries are sprayed heavily. I like to take the strawberries and cook them down to a sauce if they are frozen. Whether fresh or frozen, I still like to cook the strawberries to a deep rich sauce.
I didn’t want any red food coloring or jello in my cake! You need to know that this cake will not be pink. It will be yellow or maybe take on a dark hue from the puree, but not pink. The frosting however, will be naturally pink from the strawberries.
I found the recipe on youtube where Candice herself bakes them. Be aware that some sites have her recipe written wrong and I took some liberty myself in adapting the recipe, cooking the strawberries to get a sauce instead of a fresh puree. You can make this with just a fresh puree (no cooking), but the deeper flavor comes from cooking them down.
Candice knows her cake texture, because this is perfect.
I am happy to report that I have made these several times. The feedback has been five stars all the way. They don’t have a strong strawberry taste, because they are fresh with no artificial help extract. However, my very own strawberry frosting is absolutely amazing and will drive the strawberry flavor.
Since I originally wrote this recipe, I’ve made a lot of strawberry recipes and strawberry cakes.
This is my favorite cupcake pan.
The Best Buttercream Frosting for Sprinkles Strawberry Cupcake Recipe
I’m very picky about my frosting and strawberry frosting is particularly moody. It can become too loose and runny very fast. I solved that problem with lots of butter and a little bit of cream cheese. I didn’t pipe for the cupcakes because that takes up a lot of frosting and the Sprinkles strawberry cupcake keeps it very smooth. I
If you want to pipe the frosting and find it a little too thick, add in a little more softened butter a tablespoon at a time.
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- 1½ cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 4 oz. unsalted butter (1 stick)
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 egg whites
- ¼ cup whole milk (can use butter milk too)
- ½ cup strawberry puree
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- STRAWBERRY BUTTERCREAM FROSTING
- 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- ¼ cup strawberry sauce (below)
- 2 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 3½ cups confectioner's sugar
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Strawberry Sauce
- 1 cup fresh or frozen strawberries
- ¼ cup water
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- Sprinkles are optional
- Sift together flour, baking powder, soda, salt. Set aside
- Mix together strawberry puree, milk, vanilla. Set aside.
- Cream butter until fluffy.
- Add sugar to butter until well mixed.
- Add egg and egg white on medium speed.
- Add half of dry ingredients on low speed.
- Add in wet ingredients (milk, strawberry mixture).
- Add remaining flour mixture just until mixed. DO NOT OVER MIX.
- Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.
- Cool, frost with strawberry frosting.
- FROSTING RECIPE STARTS HERE
- Mix butter and strawberry puree on medium speed.
- Add confectioner’s sugar, until smooth. Add Vanilla.