Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes

The ultimate summer dessert in a cupcake!

Don’t strawberries just scream summer? Although these days we can get fresh strawberries year round as well as access to the frozen variety, there is just something about the first ripe strawberries of the season that heralds all the things we love about summer: sunshine, barbecues, swimming pools…and Strawberry Shortcake! Now, with these Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes, you can enjoy the taste of summer whenever you want.

Traditional Strawberry Shortcake is usually made with sweet biscuits or spongecake, fresh strawberries, and whipped cream. This dessert favorite has been around for a long time–its first appearance seems to be in a British cookbook from 1588 and not long after that, Shakespeare used the name Alice Shortcake in his play, The Merry Wives of Windsor! By 1850, Strawberry Shortcake was well on its way to becoming one of the most popular desserts; in the United States, people have been known to throw strawberry shortcake parties to celebrate the harvest. With all of the enthusiasm for this iconic dessert, it’s no wonder it has finally found its way into a cupcake!

In Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes we get that lovely sweet and fruity flavor from the berries and the jam, underlying hints of almond and vanilla, and the most moist texture, thanks to the use of cake flour and rich buttermilk. It’s fun to watch your family or guests take their first bite because, surprise!!, there’s some of that delicious strawberry whipped cream frosting inside the cupcake as well!

These cupcakes make a wonderfully bright and yummy dessert on their own, but try serving them alongside a bowl of Strawberry Ice Cream (can you ever have too much strawberry? I think not!)

Why do we add instant pudding powder to the whipped cream?

We all love the flavor and airiness of a whipped cream frosting, but we usually don’t love to see it deflate on top of our cakes and cupcakes if it’s been sitting out for too long. That’s why mad genius bakers came up with the concept of stabilized whipped cream; by adding certain ingredients as you beat the cold heavy cream, the whipped cream frosting will last longer and be less prone to melting.

There are all kinds of things you can add as a stabilizer–cornstarch, gelatin–but for our Strawberry Whipped Cream, we are Team-Vanilla Pudding all the way. It’s the perfect ingredient to stabilize the delicate whipped cream, and it has the added benefit of providing the filling/frosting with some richness and depth of flavor.

You can use the leftover pudding mix in a variety of ways, too! Follow the pudding recipe on the box and alter the measurements to make a few little individual vanilla puddings! Or mix it into your smoothies. I know bakers who swear by adding vanilla pudding mix to cake or cookie recipes as the secret weapon to moist and tender baked goods.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons cake flour
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream chilled
  • 6 tablespoons instant vanilla pudding powder
  • Sliced strawberries for topping
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh strawberries small dice
  • 1/4 cup strawberry jam
Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes

How to Make Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes

Step 1: Preheat your oven to 350°F and line a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners.

Step 2: In a large bowl, whisk together cake flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes

Step 3: In a separate bowl, combine buttermilk, milk, vanilla extract, almond extract, vegetable oil, whole egg, and egg white. Mix well.

Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes

Step 4: Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Be careful not to overmix.

Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes

Step 5: Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake liners, filling each about two-thirds full.

Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes

Step 6: Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow cupcakes to cool completely.

Step 7: While cupcakes are cooling, prepare the whipped cream by beating the chilled heavy whipping cream with the instant vanilla pudding powder until stiff peaks form.

Step 8: Fold in the diced strawberries and strawberry jam gently into the whipped cream.

Step 9: Once cupcakes are cool, cut a small hole in the center of each cupcake and fill with a spoonful of the strawberry whipped cream mixture.

Step 10: Pipe the remaining whipped cream on top of the cupcakes and garnish with sliced strawberries.

FAQs & Tips

How to Make Ahead and Store?

The unfilled and unfrosted cupcakes can be prepared 2-3 days ahead of time and stored in an airtight container on the counter or wrapped tightly and stored in the freezer for up to one month. Once filled and frosted, the cupcakes will last in an airtight container for up to 3 days in the refrigerator, but the texture of the whipped cream will change and the cake could get soggy from the filling. Our best recommendation is that you not prepare the strawberry whipped cream filling and frosting until just before you plan to serve the cupcakes.

Chill!

In order to get the lightest and most airy whipped cream, your heavy cream has to be cold; otherwise; it won’t expand during the beating process the way it needs to. Actually, it’s a great idea to put your bowl and your beaters in the freezer for about 30 minutes before beating the heavy cream.

Be careful not to over-mix

Once you’ve combined your dry ingredients in one bowl and your wet ingredients in another, it’s time to mix them together: be gentle when adding the wet ingredients to the dry, as over-mixing can result in a tough cake dough (we may call a strong woman a “tough cookie,” but no one likes a tough cupcake!)

Fresh or frozen fruit?

We like fresh strawberries for this recipe, mostly for the texture but also because fresh strawberries are a bit sweeter than frozen. That said, you can use the frozen variety: just make sure you thaw them first, and then drain them well before incorporating them into the whipped cream

Is cake flour different from regular all-purpose flour?

It is. Cake flour is lower in protein and gluten than all-purpose flour and has a softer, more delicate texture, which makes it great for cupcakes!

Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes

Serving Suggestions

These Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes are the perfect ending to any meal, but given their beautiful color, they are especially great for holidays that celebrate the color red, like Christmas (serve them with Festive Eggnog Smoothies) or Valentine’s Day (pair them with this delicious Strawberry Basil Ice Cream), or add some fresh blueberries on top and these cupcakes become a Fourth of July treat! And if you’re like me and can’t get enough strawberries or think the more desserts the merrier, serve Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes alongside a Strawberry Ice Cream Soda, or homemade Vanilla Bean Marshmallows, or–for a truly decadent experience–drizzle them with The Best Chocolate Sauce Ever.

Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes

Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes

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Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 22 minutes
Total Time 52 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12 cupcakes
Calories 330 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons cake flour
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream chilled
  • 6 tablespoons instant vanilla pudding powder
  • sliced strawberries for topping
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh strawberries small dice
  • 1/4 cup strawberry jam

Instructions
 

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F and line a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners.
  • In bowl, whisk together cake flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
    Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes
  • In a separate bowl, combine buttermilk, milk, vanilla extract, almond extract, vegetable oil, whole egg, and egg white. Mix well.
    Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Do not overmix.
    Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes
  • Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake liners, filling each about two-thirds full.
    Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes
  • Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow cupcakes to cool completely.
  • While cupcakes are cooling, prepare the whipped cream by beating the chilled heavy whipping cream with the instant vanilla pudding powder until stiff peaks form.
  • Fold in the diced strawberries and strawberry jam gently into the whipped cream.
  • Once cupcakes are cool, cut a small hole in the center of each cupcake and fill with a spoonful of the strawberry whipped cream mixture.
  • Pipe the remaining whipped cream on top of the cupcakes and garnish with sliced strawberries.

Nutrition

Calories: 330kcalCarbohydrates: 35gProtein: 4gFat: 20gSaturated Fat: 10gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0.03gCholesterol: 60mgSodium: 188mgPotassium: 110mgFiber: 1gSugar: 25gVitamin A: 626IUVitamin C: 11mgCalcium: 69mgIron: 0.4mg
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