Jordan Miller ’23, Managing Editor

Among all the delicious treats in the world, the one that holds the warmest place in my heart is the classic vanilla cupcake. I developed a passion for baking around the age of twelve after my mom took my best friend and I to a baking class taught by a winner of Food Network’s Cupcake Wars. I instantly developed a love for creating my own treats and coming up with my own delicious recipes. After almost 9 years of working on my baking skills, I can say with confidence that I have mastered the vanilla cupcake.

My recipe became so popular that my family started begging me to bake them for every occasion. Birthday parties, Christmas, Thanksgiving, grad parties— you name it! Every July 4th, my extended family hosts a cake baking contest. Of course, I enter every year and use my vanilla cake recipe as the base, and to no one’s surprise it wins every time.

Consider yourself special that I am sharing this recipe with you. However, I think that it would almost be cruel to withhold such an amazing thing from the public. It deserves to be known, because it is just that good! I am going to guide you through the step-by-step process of making the most mouth-watering vanilla cupcakes you will ever make in your life.

First, prepare all your ingredients. You are going to want to set out a ½ stick of butter about an hour before you are ready to start. You want the butter to be softened, but not completely melted. Also set aside one egg, ½ cup of white granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, 1 cup of unbleached flour, 1 teaspoon of baking soda, 1 teaspoon of baking powder, ¼ teaspoon of salt, and a ½ cup of vanilla yogurt (whatever kind you prefer!) Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. Begin by beating the butter with the sugar for about 2 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla extract and beat until combined.

In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Slowly add into the butter mixture. Beat until thoroughly combined and add the vanilla yogurt. The batter should be pretty thick. This should yield about 12 cupcakes. 

Now, you are ready to put them in the oven! Bake them at 325 degrees for about 13 minutes (be sure to check on them). You will know they are done when you place a toothpick in the center of the cupcake and it comes out clean. Let them sit in the pan for 5 minutes after they come out of the oven, and then place them on a cooling rack.

Source: Jordan Miller

After they are completely cooled, ice them with your preferred frosting! I usually do a simple vanilla buttercream or a chocolate frosting. This vanilla cake base works well with any cupcake you want to make! In the past I have added Oreos, chocolate chips, peanut butter, and much more. The possibilities are endless. They are a wonderful staple for parties or if you just feel like baking a treat on a rainy afternoon. I will admit it took me a while to master this recipe, so do not be frustrated if they don’t turn out perfect on your first try. Just have fun with it, and enjoy!