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Adorable Mini Cupcakes Recipe

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These adorable vanilla mini cupcakes are the perfect bite of vanilla cake and sweet cream cheese frosting! What makes this the best mini cupcake recipe is the combination of butter and sour cream. Many cakes use oil instead of butter, but I found that the butter gives a rich and amazing flavor while still having a light and fluffy texture. Switch up the food coloring to make these cupcakes work for any holiday or festive gathering.

If you love these mini cupcakes, be sure to try my mini chocolate chip muffins, mini chocolate chip zucchini muffins, mini banana muffins, and mini blueberry muffins next time. The muffins are made with a similar base, but also have some nutritious whole wheat flour and oats added in for light and fluffy muffins that are great packed in lunches or served as an after-school snack.

Close up of a mini cupcake with pink frosting and sprinkles.

Estimated reading time: 7 minutes

Mini cupcakes on a cake stand.

What You’ll Love About Mini Cupcakes

  • Cute and adorable
  • Customizable for holidays or celebrations
  • Perfect bite-sized treats
  • Sweet enough, but not cloyingly sweet
  • Moist and rich vanilla cake
  • Sweet and creamy frosting
  • Made with simple ingredients

Mini Cupcakes VIDEO


  • Flour – We’re using an all-purpose flour to keep these mini cupcakes light and fluffy.
  • Sugar – You’ll need granulated white sugar for the cupcakes and powdered sugar for the frosting.
  • Baking powder, baking soda, sea salt
  • Butter – Use high-quality butter, you’ll need it in both the cupcakes and the frosting. Butter isn’t always used in cake recipes, but I think it gives the cupcakes incredible rich flavor.
  • Milk – You can use whatever milk you have on-hand, but the recipe has been tested with whole milk.
  • Sour cream – This helps give the muffins a moist texture.
  • Egg – Use a large, high-quality egg.
  • Vanilla – Use high-quality vanilla for the best flavor.
  • Cream cheese – Use full-fat cream cheese for the best flavor.
  • Food coloring and sprinkles – These are optional, but definitely fun.
  • Tools – Mini muffin pan, mini muffin liners, small cookie scoop
Ingredients to make mini cupcake recipe.

How to Make Mini Cupcakes

This is an overview on how to make mini vanilla cupcakes, the detailed instructions can be found below in the recipe card.

Mix dry ingredients. In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and sea salt.
Bowl with dry ingredients for mini cupcakes.
Mix wet ingredients. Melt the butter in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Whisk in milk. Whisk in sour cream and vanilla. Whisk in egg until smooth. See notes below if mixture is lumpy.
Wet ingredients for mini cupcakes in a bowl.
Mix mini cupcake batter. Stir wet and dry ingredients together, just until combined.
Batter for mini cupcakes in a bowl before mixing.
Fill mini cupcake liners. Divide mixture into the mini cupcake pan lined with mini liners, about 3/4 full.
Mini cupcake pan with cupcake batter.
Bake cupcakes. This method uses a higher initial baking temperature to help give the cupcakes height and then a lower baking temperature to finish. Let cool completely before frosting.
Make frosting. Beat together butter, cream cheese, and vanilla. Sift in powdered sugar and beat until smooth and creamy. Add in food coloring, if using.
Cream cheese frosting in a mixing bowl.
Decorate cupcakes. Pipe frosting onto cupcakes and immediately sprinkle with sprinkles if using.

How to Customize this Mini Cupcakes Recipe

Mini Christmas Cupcakes

To turn these into Christmas cupcakes, use Christmas sprinkles and use green and red food dye for festive frosting. Try my Christmas tree cupcakes too!

Mini Halloween Cupcakes

To turn these into Halloween cupcakes, use yellow and red food coloring to make an orange frosting and use black sprinkles. You could also do a monster theme with bright frosting and eyeballs, like these Halloween cookies. (And don’t forget to try my Halloween Oreo truffles!)

Storage Instructions

Store the cupcakes in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Let the cupcakes sit out for 20 minutes or so before serving so they can come to room temperature.

Because the frosting is made with cream cheese, they do need to be refrigerated.

Mini cupcake with frosting cut in half.

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If you like this recipe for mini cupcakes, you might also like some of these other easy treats:

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Close up of a mini cupcake with pink frosting and sprinkles.

Vanilla Mini Cupcakes Recipe

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These adorable vanilla mini cupcakes are the perfect bite of vanilla cake and sweet cream cheese frosting! Easy to make and perfect for celebrations.


Units Scale

Mini Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tsp. vanilla

Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 1/4 cup softened butter
  • 4 oz. cream cheese
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • food coloring and sprinkles (optional)


Mini Cupcakes:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together all-purpose flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and sea salt.
  3. In a medium bowl, melt butter. Add milk and whisk in. Add sour cream and vanilla and whisk. Add egg and whisk until smooth. (If mixture is lumpy, gently heat in microwave for 15 seconds and whisk until smooth, but if you whisk ingredients in separately it should be ok.)
  4. Stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients and stir just until combined, being careful to not overmix.
  5. Divide mixture into mini muffin tin, filling about ¾ full and bake for 5 minutes. Lower heat to 350 degrees and bake for 8-10 more minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a muffin comes out clean. Let cool before frosting.


  1. Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, beat butter, cream cheese, and vanilla together until smooth.
  2. Sift in powdered sugar and slowly beat until smooth and creamy. Add in food coloring if using. 

Keywords: mini cupcakes, mini cupcake recipe

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