Vanilla Bean Cupcakes

Pay no attention to the man behind the cupcakes. He’s a figment of your imagination. I obviously made these for the 4th of July and sadly the only really good picture of the cupcakes was the one with my brother-in-law Dave photobombing. But that’s ok, now you understand what kind of family I have. It’s a fun one!

I had a vanilla bean that was just itching to be used and I’ve had this recipe bookmarked for quite sometime now. I also couldn’t wait to make it so I could place the used vanilla bean into my sugar container. For those who never know what to do with the leftover vanilla bean, do not throw them away! Place them in sugar and you will have vanilla sugar to be used in all sorts of your baked goods. You will be happy you did it.

These cupcakes are very light in texture and oh, so yummy. I used my favorite buttercream icing and for this occasion I colored the icing red, white and blue to get that swirl on top. Be creative and have fun when making cupcakes, I know I do.

Vanilla Bean Cupcakes:

Yields about 30 cupcakes

  • 3 cups cake flour
  • 1 tbsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
  • 16 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 5 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups buttermilk, at room temperature
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
  1. Preheat the oven to 350° F.  Line two cupcake pans with paper liners.  Set aside.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the cake flour, baking powder and salt.  Whisk together and set aside.  Add the butter to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.  Scrape the vanilla bean seeds into the bowl of the mixer with the butter and discard the pod (or reserve for another use.)  Beat on medium-high speed for 3 minutes, until light and creamy in color.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat for one more minute.
  3. Add the sugar to the butter mixture, ¼ cup at a time, beating 1 minute after each addition.  Mix in the eggs one at a time until incorporated.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl after each addition.  Combine the buttermilk and the vanilla extract in a liquid measuring cup.  With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients alternately with the wet ingredients, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients and mixing just until incorporated.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix for 15 seconds longer.
  4. Divide the batter between the prepared paper liners, filling each about 2/3 of the way full (you will likely have batter left over after filling 24 wells.)  Bake 18-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Allow to cool in the pans 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.  Replace paper liners and bake remaining batter if desired.  Frost cooled cupcakes as desired.

Source: Annies Eats via Confections of a Foodie Bride, who adapted it from The Well-Decorated Cake


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