Vanilla Bean Cupcakes

I had posted these previously in a forum where someone was searching for a moist vanilla cupcake recipe, but thought I’d re-post in the “official” recipe section to make it a little easier to find ;)

This is the recipe I’ve been using for my vanilla cupcakes and have had lots of success with them coming out nice and moist! The only thing I’ll caution on is this – if you’re only baking one dozen at a time, leave the rest of your batter in your bowl and re-whip with a spatula just before filling the next batch of cupcake liners to be baked (immediately placing them in the oven.) For some reason, the batter tends to “break down” if you don’t do this and won’t give you the same lovely results.

Vanilla Bean Cupcakes


  • 3 cups cake flour
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
  • 1 cup unsalted butter softened to room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 5 large eggs, at room temp
  • 1 1/4 cups buttermilk, at room temp
  • 1 1/2 Tsp vanilla


  1. Preheat oven to 350. Line your cupcake pans with paper cups.
  2. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Place butter in the bowl of a stand mixer, fitted with a paddle attachment. Split and scrape the vanilla pod into the butter, discard pod. Beat for 3 minutes on medium-high speed until the butter is light and creamy in color. Stop and scrape the bowl. Cream the butter for an additional 60 seconds.
  3. Add the sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, beating 1 minute after each addition. Scrape the sides of the bowl before each addition. Add the eggs one at a time. Reduce the mixer speed. Stir vanilla into the buttermilk. Add the dry ingredients alternately with the buttermilk. Mix just until incorporated. Scrape the sides of the bowl and mix for 15 seconds longer. (Be careful not to over-mix!)
  4. Spoon the batter into the prepared cupcake pan. Bake 18 to 20 minutes or until the cake is lightly brown on top or a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs attached.

Tags: recipe anniversary birthday baby shower engagement valentine back to school wedding thanksgiving cupcakes

Becky, North Carolina,


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Dayna Robidoux ...

Awsome, cant wait to try this I have been looking for a good vanilla cupcake recipie!!!

Sugar Tales ...

Oh, sounds interesting! I have to make some vanilla cupcakes soon. I will definitely try this out! thanks for sharing!

Tiffany Palmer ...

I just tried this recipe…I didn’t have vanilla beans and I used salted butter because I use it in all my baking…but any way, it’s amazing! I have been trying vanilla cake recipes out for awhile and none have a good flavor and texture so I have been sticking to the wsc recipe. This one was perfect! I can’t wait to try it with the vanilla beans to see how much better it will taste. I now have a new go to vanilla cake recipe. Thanks!!! <3

Becky Pendergraft ...

SweetBee, so glad you enjoyed it! I use this with and without the vanilla beans (I usually just add in a little extra vanilla flavoring if not using the beans) and either way I love the taste and texture of these cupcakes! So glad you enjoyed them! :)

Jessica ...

Hi ButRCream! Have you done a cake version of this? I know cake recipes can be used for cupcake and cupcake for cake but sometimes they come out a little different. Hope that made some sense….just wondering like SweetBee I’m always searching for a really good vanilla that can live up to the balance I get with WASC.

Becky Pendergraft ...

Jessica, I have NOT tried any cakes with this recipe – not sure how it would work to be honest! I have been using Sweetapolita’s “Fluffy Vanilla Cake” recipe with great success (I have heard others have difficulty with it though, so not sure if elevation or humidity plays a part in the success of the recipe) but here’s a link to it in case you haven’t already used it.
It may be the cupcake recipe would work well for cakes – if you decide to give it a go, let me know how it turns out! :)

Jessica ...

Ty ButRCream! I just saw your reply, sorry been slacking it seems. I will have to check hers out but going to try out your cupcake recipes very soon :)

abigails1 ...

great would this be plain flour you use not self raising and how many cupcakes do you get from this my cupcakes are quite large thank

Becky Pendergraft ...

This uses “Cake Flour” and I usually get 3 doz regular-sized cupcakes from this recipe :)

Jessica ...

ButRCream I did both recipes (although I said I would try them soon, that turned out to be almost a year later lol) I made the recipe you linked and also your recipe. Did yours as cupcakes and also a mini cake tier (about a 4 inch round). Did sweetapolita’s as a 9 inch tier. They are great but I love yours alot more! Was more moist and had a nice butter/vanilla flavor to it. It also baked just fine as a cake. Next time I will try it in a bigger tired cake, like a 8" to see how it holds up. Thanks for the recipe!