French Vanilla Cupcakes

These French vanilla cupcakes are full of deep vanilla flavor. They are delicious on their own but make a great base for your own tweaks and changes.

We were going to a potluck at church and supposed to bring food. I don’t know why this always stresses me out but it does. I mean, what food? What will everyone want? What will work? What if I make something and it turns out disgusting?

It was especially difficult Saturday because I worked until 3 and then still had no idea what I was making. Time frame? We were leaving the house at 5. Uh oh. Ya know what? Food Network to the rescue. After numerous viewings of Cupcake Wars I realized that I could easily put together 24 cupcakes in 2 hours.

french vanilla cupcakes

If I hurried.

These French Vanilla cupcakes are moist and very, very vanilla. Not boring, kiss-your-sister vanilla but seductive, exotic, fabulous vanilla. Deep, velvety, luscious vanilla.

french vanilla cupcakes recipe

I used Rose Chocolate Swiss Buttercream on half and Lavender Key Lime Swiss Buttercream on the other half.  You can use any frosting you like but I am really hooked on Swiss Buttercream. It is very rich, not too sweet, and totally amazing flavor-wise. Try it at least once.

If these are still not what you are looking for you’re sure to find one on my 50 Best Cupcakes on the Internet post.

French Vanilla Cupcake Recipe


French Vanilla Cupcakes
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
If you love vanilla these are packed full of deep, exotic vanilla flavor. They make a great basic recipe to use as a jumping off place for all kinds of twists and turns.
Serves: 24
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups of vanilla sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 egg yolks, room temperature
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup of buttermilk, room temp
  • 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
  • 1 1-inch piece of vanilla bean
  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Heat the buttermilk until it just simmers.
  3. Remove from heat and add the vanilla pod.
  4. Set aside.
  5. Beat butter and sugar on high until light and fluffy.
  6. Add eggs and egg yolks one at a time, beat thoroughly after each addition.
  7. Blend flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda, in a bowl.
  8. Cut open vanilla pod and scrape out seeds into the buttermilk. (You can dry the pod and use it to make vanilla sugar)
  9. Add vanilla to buttermilk
  10. Add ⅓ of the flour mixture to the butter mixture and beat on low until mixed.
  11. Add ½ the buttermilk.
  12. Continue to alternate the flour and buttermilk, ending with the flour.
  13. Scoop into cupcake papers about ¾ full. Bake for 18-20 minutes.
  14. Cool and frost with desired buttercream
You can replace 2 tablespoons of the buttermilk with vanilla brandy for a deeper flavor.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: carbs: 29.3 Calories: 203 Fat: 8.7

image: marye audet


These cupcakes are an intense vanilla and that means that you are only going to get the most intense flavor by using really good vanilla… It does make a difference. I use this vanilla and I just love it. Click on the image for more details.

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  1. Lillian says

    Please could you advise me whether the cup of butter is a normal 250ml? Or do you perhaps know the weight of butter to be used?
    Thank you so much

  2. says

    A client of mine requested a banana cream cupcake this week, so I’m going to be using your vanilla cupcake recipe with a banana custard filling and a banana butter cream frosting!!

  3. Demy says

    hello. i have made this recipe with 100gr sugar and it turned out better than with the 400gr. The only problem was that they did not rise at all and after i took them out of the oven and the cupcake pan, there was oil on the bottom. Is there a way to fix that?

  4. Erica says

    My husband has requested a French vanilla cake for his birthday on Wednesday, and I am definitely going to be making these cupcakes instead of an actual cake! I also don’t have any time to order/buy vanilla sugar,but I saw above you posted that you can just double the vanilla. Would I double both the vanilla extract and vanilla bean? Thank you for posting this recipe btw! I can’t wait to make these!

  5. Meredith says

    Is it going to make a big difference to not use vanilla sugar? Or can you find this somewhere in a store? I did read above where it says you can order it online or make your own but I don’t have time. Any suggestions?

  6. Tina says

    Hi, I was interested in making these and in the ingredients it has 2 tsp of vanilla extract listed, but it doesnt say where you added that?

    • marye says

      You can add it in with the buttermilk or with the creamed butter. It really doesn’t matter with vanilla. :)

      • Tina says

        Thank you for your response! I made these today and they were a hit! It came out to be 30 cupcakes for me and I frosted them with a Vanilla Buttercream frosting; absolutely delicious and will def make again :)

        • marye says

          YAY! There is nothing better than a really good vanilla cupcake! Ummm… unless maybe it is a really good chocolate one…. or pineapple… or…

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