These Fresh Strawberry Cupcakes feature a soft and fluffy vanilla cupcake that is filled with both chunks of strawberries and a strawberry puree mixture. Then top it off with a mouthwatering strawberry buttercream that is truly irresistible!
This recipe was originally published in May of 2020, but was updated on May 10, 2021 with newer content and fresh pictures.
Strawberries are hands-down one of my favorite fruits. One of the reasons I love this time of the year is all of the fresh strawberries that are available at the grocery stores.
Have you ever had a strawberry cupcake that lacked flavor? Or worse, tasted really artificial? Well, I have and it's really unpleasant. That's why I wanted to create the absolute best homemade strawberry cupcake recipe that used real fruit. And after many baking attempts, I believe I have!
Fresh strawberries can be tasted throughout each bite because they are in both the cake batter and the buttercream frosting. Real ingredients just taste better!
Why You'll Love These Strawberry Cupcakes:
- The cupcakes are so soft and tender.
- Strawberries are in both the cupcake batter and buttercream.
- The strawberry buttercream is so creamy and bursting with flavor from the fresh fruit.
- There are no artificial colors or flavoring.
- This recipe makes 12 perfect cupcakes!
As stated up above, these cupcakes are made with 100% real strawberries. Because of that, I prepare the berries in three different ways in order to get that bright and juicy flavor within these cupcakes.
First, a simple strawberry puree that has been mixed together with milk and vanilla extract gets incorporated into the cake batter. This enhances the strawberry flavor and helps to create a soft cupcake.
Then, chunks of strawberries have been folded into the batter before baking.
Finally, a strawberry reduction is used for the buttercream. We reduce the strawberries on the stove to remove most of the water content, which then exposes even more strawberry flavor! The reduction becomes more of a jam-like consistency (thick not liquidy) so that the buttercream is thick and creamy.
Honestly, the strawberry frosting is my favorite part about this recipe! I can (and definitely did, ha!) eat it by the spoon full. It's so good and that's because of the fresh berries. No freeze-dried or artificial strawberry flavor happening in this cupcake recipe.
Baking Tips Before Starting:
- Measuring Flour: To help ensure you don’t add extra flour, follow these three simple steps: 1) Fluff up the flour using a fork. 2) Spoon the flour into your measuring cup. 3) Scrape a knife across the top of the measuring cup to level out the flour.
- Best Strawberries: The redder your berries are, the more sweet, juicy, and flavorful they will be, which is exactly what we're looking for! Try to avoid using underripe strawberries for this recipe.
- Room Temperature Ingredients: If an ingredient calls to be at room temperature before baking, do it. This helps to ensure the best quality in both flavor and texture.
- Fresh Strawberry Buttercream: Make sure the strawberry reduction is completely cooled before adding it to the frosting. In total, the reduction makes about 3 tbsp.
- Completely Cooled Cupcakes: Make sure the strawberry cupcakes have completely cooled before frosting them. If not, the frosting will start to melt off.
This is another one of those recipes that uses simple pantry ingredients, so there's a good chance you already have most of these at home in your own kitchens. 🙂
- All-Purpose Flour: The main structure for the cupcakes. Make sure you spoon and level the flour when measuring (see the note above under “Baking Tips”).
- Baking Powder & Baking Soda: Helps the cupcakes to rise when baking.
- Salt: Enhances all of the other flavors.
- Strawberries: In total, you'll need about one pound of strawberries for this recipe. The redder the berries are, the better!
- Milk: I used 2 %. This helps to create a moist interior.
- Vanilla Extract: Adds extra flavor to both the cupcakes and frosting.
- Unsalted Butter: Adds a delicious buttery flavor to the cupcakes and is also used in the buttercream.
- Sugar: Used for sweetness.
- Eggs: Two large eggs help to bind all of the ingredients together.
- Vegetable Oil: You can also use canola oil. This helps keep the cupcakes moist.
- Powdered Sugar: Used to sweeten and thicken the frosting.
How To Make Homemade Strawberry Cupcakes:
Here are my step-by-step instructions, along with some pictures to help visualize. I tried to be as thorough as possible when explaining each step of the process. Be confident! You can easily make these cupcakes too! 🙂
- Dry Ingredients: Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium-sized bowl.
- Strawberry Puree: Puree your strawberries in a blender on "pulse" setting for about 5 seconds. Measure out 1/3 cup of the puree and place in a small bowl. Reserve the remaining puree for the frosting later. Mix in milk and vanilla extract into the small bowl with the puree.
- Cupcake Batter: Cream together both the butter and sugar until fully combined and fluffy. Scrape down the sides as needed. Then, add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each one. Mix in vegetable oil. On low speed, gently mix in half of the flour mixture until incorporated. Then mix in the strawberry puree mixture, followed by the rest of the flour.
- Bake: Fold in the diced strawberries using a silicone spatula and divide the batter amongst the 12 cupcake liners, filling them up about 2/3 full. Bake 18-22 minutes.
- Strawberry Buttercream: In a small saucepan, take the rest of your strawberry puree from step 2 and heat over medium heat on the stove until thick and jam-like consistency Pour the cooked strawberry puree into a small heat-safe bowl and place it in the refrigerator to cool.
- Cream together the butter on high speed until creamy and light in color. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla extract and mix at low speed for about 30 seconds. Add the strawberry puree and beat on med-high speed until creamy (1-2 minutes).
Frequently Asked Questions:
Yes, they do. Simply place any leftover cupcakes in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They're best consumed within 3 days but can last up to 5 days.
Yes, you can. You can make these cupcakes the day before you want to serve them. Just keep them covered in the refrigerator. Then make your buttercream the day of, decorate, and serve.
If you made this recipe, please leave a comment and star rating below. I love hearing from you!
I hope this will become your families new favorite strawberry cupcake recipe! Fresh strawberries used in baking is truly the best and these cupcakes are so good because of that.
More Cupcake Recipes You'll Love:
- Banana Split Cupcakes
- Chocolate Covered Strawberry Cupcakes
- Easy Vanilla Cupcake Recipe
- Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes
- Snickerdoodle Cupcakes
Fresh Strawberry Cupcakes
- 12-count muffin pan
- Mixing Bowls
- Electric Stand Mixer
- 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/3 cup fresh strawberry puree (10 medium-sized strawberries)
- 1/4 cup milk, room temperature
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature (1 stick)
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 3/4 cup diced fresh strawberries
- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature (2 sticks)
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 tbsp strawberry reduction
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a 12-count muffin pan with cupcake liners. In a medium-sized bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- Puree 10 strawberries in a blender on "pulse" setting for about 5 seconds. Measure out 1/3 cup of the puree and place in a small bowl. Reserve the remaining puree for the frosting later. Mix in the milk and vanilla extract into the small bowl with the strawberry puree. Set aside.
- In an electric stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream together both the butter and sugar on med-high speed until fully combined and fluffy (about 1-2 minutes). Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Then, add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each one. Mix in vegetable oil.
- Add about half of the flour mixture, mixing on low speed just until incorporated. Then mix in the strawberry puree, followed by the rest of the flour. Be careful not to overmix!
- Remove the bowl from the stand mixer and gently fold in the diced strawberries. Divide the batter amongst the 12 cupcake liners, filling them up about 2/3 full. Bake 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the cupcake.
- Wait 5 minutes once the cupcakes are pulled out of the oven before transferring them over to a wire rack. The cupcakes need to cool completely before being frosted.
- Strawberry Buttercream Frosting: In a small saucepan, take the rest of your strawberry puree from step 2 and heat over medium heat on the stove. This process will take about 10 minutes for the puree to reduce (thick consistency, almost jam-like). Be sure to stir occasionally.
- Pour the cooked strawberry puree into a small heat-safe bowl and place it into the refrigerator (reduction must be completely cooled before using in the frosting).
- In your electric stand mixer using the paddle attachment again, whip together your butter on high speed until creamy and light in color (1-2 minutes). Scrape down the sides of the bowl several times to ensure all of the butter is evenly whipped. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla extract and mix at low speed for about 30 seconds. Add the strawberry puree and beat on med-high speed until light and creamy (1-2 minutes).
- Use a piping bag and your favorite frosting tip to frost the cupcakes. Store leftover cupcakes in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.