Pretty Pink Fairy Dust Cupcakes

I was invited to a 4th Birthday over the weekend and was asked to make some cupcakes. My only brief was pink and sparkles – so that is just what I did! I was planning to go all out with these cupcakes by making fondant flower and butterfly cupcake toppers but ended up getting a lot of unexpected work in the few days before the party, so had to quickly whip up a basic recipe in a couple of hours and do what I could. They were just a basic vanilla cupcake with buttercream frosting – the kind of cupcake that requires ingredients that I always have in the cupboard. I picked up some pink sprinkles for these particular cupcakes and had everything else I needed at home. Of course, being me, I got this recipe from Jennifer Graham’s The Crabapple Bakery Cupcake Cookbook.

Vanilla Cupcakes with Buttercream Frosting

pretty pink icing with pink sparkles and glitter 'fairy dust'!

Vanilla Cupcakes

Makes 24


  • 2 3/4 cups plain flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 200 grams softened unsalted butter
  • 1 3/4 cups caster sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk


  1. Preheat oven to 170°C and line muffin tin with cupcake papers
  2. Sift together flour and baking powder and set aside
  3. In a separate bowl, cream the butter for 1-2 minutes
  4. Add the caster sugar a third at a time, beating for 2 minutes after each addition
  5. After the last addition, beat until the mixture is light and fluffy and sugar is almost dissolved
  6. Add eggs one at a time, beating for one minute after each addition or until light and fluffy
  7. Add the vanilla extract and beat until combined
  8. Add a third of the flour to the creamed mixture and beat on low speed until combined
  9. Add half the milk and beat until combined
  10. Repeat process
  11. Add the remaining third of the flour and beat until thoroughly combined – do not over beat or mixture will toughen
  12. Spoon mixture into cupcake papers, filling each about three-quarters full
  13. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean
  14. Remove cupcakes from tray and place on a wire rack to cool
  15. Wait at least 30min before icing

Buttercream Frosting

Again, this recipe is from Jennifer Graham’s The Crabapple Bakery Cupcake Cookbook. It is the same recipe used for the icing on my Christmastime Cupcakes.


  • 200 grams softened unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 8 cups icing sugar


  1. Cream the butter for 1-2 minutes
  2. Add the milk, vanilla extract and half of the sifted icing sugar (4cups)
  3. Beat for at least 3 minutes or until light and fluffy
  4. Add remaining icing sugar and beat for a further 3 minutes or until light and fluffy and of a spreadable consistency
  5. Add extra milk if too dry or extra icing sugar if too wet
  6. Add food colouring/flavour (for my cupcakes I used 1/4 teaspoon pink food colouring)
  7. Pipe onto cupcakes in an ice cream swirl design
  8. Immediately top with pink sparkles/crystals and dust with edible glitter

As I was making these cupcakes for a child’s party, I made them in small patty pans. They look very cute when they are little as opposed to big ones. Feel free to do what you like and experiment. Even if you don’t make pretty pink fairy dust cupcakes, this is the most basic vanilla cupcake recipe that you can use and choose your own design.

Happy Baking!

Eleanor x

3 responses

  1. Pingback: Happiness Project: January | my subjunctive

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