Gluten Free Mini Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream

The easiest, no-mixer, gluten-free cake recipe meets a perfect three ingredient vanilla buttercream! So quick to put together and just begging to be decorated for the Super Bowl!
Em the Baker: Gluten Free Mini Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Let me just start this post off by admitting that I don’t really care about football at all. My parents are both intense football fans and I think it breaks their hearts a little every time they remember that I barely know what a touchdown is. Oh well. What I do care about is food. Luckily, football games like the Super Bowl (or maybe only the Super Bowl? are there other games like that? ugh.) necessitate a certain amount of food. You need dips, chips, main dishes, vegetables (I guess…), and of course, desserts. Lots of them. Like, enough to last you through four interminably long football quarters, plus a halftime show that will probably never live up to Beyonce’s, plus a bunch of really heartwarming ads that will probably definitely make you cry.

If you’re gluten free, fear not! Make these cupcakes and bring them to your Super Bowl party and everyone will love them and nobody will realize they’re gluten free, they’ll be too busy popping these mini cuties in their mouth during every play review and fumble and huddle and whatever other sports terms apply in this situation. Don’t ask me, I’m just here for the cake.

Em the Baker: Gluten Free Mini Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

You might be wondering, “Emily, why did you put green sprinkles on these cupcakes when neither team is green?” Well, I covered the tray in green sprinkles to represent the football field. It’s no snackadium, but I think it’s a pretty adorable way to plate these for a Super Bowl party. I dipped the cupcakes in green sprinkles because I don’t care which team wins and I didn’t want to offend any diehard Broncos or Seahawks fans with my sprinkle color choice. But I highly recommend you dip these in the colors of your team! Or in pink or red sprinkles for Valentine’s Day! Or in no sprinkles if you’re pressed for time/care even less about football than I do.

Em the Baker: Gluten Free Mini Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

The best part about these cupcakes is how fuss-free they are. Seriously, they’re just as easy as a box mix. You stir all of your dry ingredients together, you stir all of your wet ingredients together, you dump wet into dry, whisk for a minute, and boom. Perfect, lovely yellow cake batter just like you remember making as a kid, except way better because a) gluten free and b) you can say “homemade” and really mean it.

Em the Baker: Gluten Free Mini Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

The vanilla buttercream is just as easy. Butter, vanilla, and powdered sugar are all you need. If you’re one of those people who always thinks your buttercream tastes a little too buttery, here’s my biggest tip for you: whip the butter for longer than you think you need to. Five minutes on just the butter may seem silly or excessive, but the more you whip it the less chance you’ll have that off-putting straight butter taste when your icing is ready. And I just mean five real life minutes, not five football minutes which everyone knows last 10 times as long. It will all be worth it when you’re licking the excess frosting off the spatula and wondering why you don’t have that for dinner every day. Not that I do that.

Also, you’ll be left with a decent amount of leftover icing from this recipe if you frost these as much as I did. Lots of people like way more icing, some people like less, so adjust to your taste!

Em the Baker: Gluten Free Mini Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Hut, hut, bake!

Gluten Free Mini Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream
Prep: 5 minutes   Bake: 10 minutes   Makes: ~30 mini cupcakes

For cake:
1 ¼ cups all purpose gluten free flour (I used Cup4Cup.)
3 tablespoons corn starch
1 cup white sugar
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
½ cup butter, melted
2 eggs, room temp
½ cup milk (I used unsweetened vanilla almond milk.)
2 tsp vanilla
¾ cup butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla

1. Preheat oven to 350. For minis, line or grease a 24 cup mini muffin tin. For regular sized cupcakes, line or grease a 12 cup tin.
2. In a large bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients, including sugar.
3. In another bowl, whisk together the melted butter, eggs, milk, and vanilla.
4. Dump wet ingredients into dry and whisk well by hand.
5. Fill muffin tins ¾ full. Bake minis 9-11 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. For regular sized cupcakes bake 18-20 minutes.
6. Remove from oven and let cool in pan for 5-10 minutes. Carefully remove to a cooling rack and let finish cooling.
7. While cupcakes are cooling, make frosting: Using whisk attachment in mixer, whip the very soft butter on medium high for 4-5 minutes. Reduce the speed to low and add the powdered sugar. Once all sugar is incorporated, increase speed to medium high and add vanilla. Whip for 4 minutes, scraping down bowl, until light and fluffy.
8. Pipe or spread onto cupcakes. Roll sides in sanding sugar or sprinkles, if desired.

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