Unicorn Cupcakes are astonishingly pretty, delicious, and also easy to make. Perfect for themed parties, these are meant to be a hit with everyone.
These Unicorn Cupcakes are so pretty and tasty, that is perfect for themed parties, and is a hit with kids and adults alike! I am obsessed with the color purple, and I love making Galaxy Cupcakes, Magic Purple Cake, and Purple Muffins.
Unicorn Cupcakes Recipe
Unicorn Cupcakes are so pretty and tasty! My love for purple color goes way back, and that’s why I am always excited when I get the chance to make purple desserts.
I made these Unicorn Cupcakes for my son’s birthday party last year and somehow I forgot to post them. I was browsing through my photos yesterday and was pleasantly surprised when I found these.
The cupcakes were a huge hit with kids and adults. What’s not to love about them? They are soft and moist and topped with sweet vanilla buttercream. The best part of this recipe is that it’s easy to follow and you can make the cupcakes in any color you would like!
What do you need to make Unicorn Cupcakes:
- baking powder
- vegetable oil
- vanilla extract
- food coloring
What do you need to make Unicorn Cupcakes Frosting:
- powdered sugar
- vanilla extract
- food coloring
Can you make them gluten-free?
Yes! Simply substitute the all-purpose flour with a 1:1 type of gluten-free flour.
Unicorn Cupcakes Recipe Tips:
- I used my go-to recipe for the cupcake batter for the Unicorn Cupcakes recipe, you can use any recipe that you like. I like this one, as the cupcakes are moist and soft. You can also use a store-bought cupcake mix to save time.
- You can add different flavors to the batter, almond extract, vanilla extract or cherry extract are delicious options.
- For the best cupcakes and for them to rise nicely in the oven, do NOT over-mix the batter.
- Make sure the oven is preheated and the ingredients are at room temperature.
- After you put the cupcakes in the oven, do NOT open the oven door for 15 minutes.
Colorful Buttercream Expert Tips:
- When making the buttercream, it has a lot of sugar so it can hold its shape when piped. I do not like the taste of shortening, that’s why I only use butter in my frosting. If you want to use shortening, to create a stiffer buttercream, replace half of the butter with shortening. The sugar amount stays the same in both cases.
- Be extra careful when working with food gel coloring. It can easily stain your hands, counter, or carpet. Cover the surfaces accordingly.
- When piling the colors on top of each other on plastic wrap, try to use the same amount of each color. Also, don’t add too much buttercream, eye it so it can fit in the piping bag.
Let cool completely and refrigerate, covered loosely with plastic. It can keep for up to 4 days.
- First, you can freeze the cupcakes BEFORE they have been frosted. Let them fully cool to room temperature, wrap in plastic wrap and after that in aluminium foil or add to freezer-safe bags. Freeze for up to 3 months.
- Also, you can freeze the already frosted cupcakes. Place them in the fridge for the buttercream to harden.
- Next, wrap each one individually in plastic wrap and after that in foil, or add to freezer-safe bags and freeze for up to 3 months.
- Also, after you can add them to an air-tight, freezer-safe container and freeze.
- When ready to use or intend to serve, place them in the fridge overnight to thaw.
Can you make these in other colors?
Yes! This recipe is great because you can just play with the colors as you please to match the theme you are going for.
A few suggestions would be:
- Red, White, and Blue – for a patriotic dessert
- Pastel Colors – for an Easter theme
- Dark Blue, Purple, and Black – for a galaxy themed party
just mix and match to create the perfect dessert!
Tools/Ingredients used to make the Unicorn Cupcakes Recipe:
- Violet Gel Food Color – This is such a gorgeous shade of purple and you can add more or less to desserts to create different shades.
- Rose Pink Gel Food Color – this color is so bright and beautiful, I like having the larger container, it will last you forever.
- Americolor Soft Gel Food Color – a set of 12 in gorgeous shades, a must-have if you love colorful desserts!
- Gold Star Cupcake Wrappers – these are so pretty, would be an amazing addition to your cupcakes.
- Twinkle Twinkle Little Star Confetti Table Set – perfect table set for a Galaxy or Unicorn themed party.
- Silver Stars Edible Glitter – add the sky to your cupcakes with edible glitter!
Prep time: 30 minutes Cook time: 20 minutes Total time: 50 mins
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups sugar
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- 2/3 cup water
- Purple/Violet Gel Food Color
- 2 cups /4 sticks/550grams unsalted butter (room temperature)
- 8-9 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3 tablespoons milk
- Purple Gel Food Color
- Blue Gel Food Color
- Pink Gel Food Color
- Orange Gel Food Color
- Preheat oven to 350°F degrees.
- Add cupcake liners to a cupcake/muffin pan. Set aside.
- To a large bowl add dry ingredients: flour, sugar, baking powder and salt, whisk to combine. Set aside.
- Add milk, vegetable oil, vanilla extract and eggs to a mixer bowl and whisk until fully combined, about 1 minute on medium speed.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and beat until well combined. Stop once to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a spatula.
Slowly, with the mixer on low speed, add the water and 10 drops of purple gel food color to the batter and mix just until combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure everything is well combined. If you want the color more intense, add more gel color, stir to combine, careful not to over-mix.
- The batter is thin, I find it easier to add it to a pancake dispenser, this makes filling the cupcake liners much easier and mess free.
- Fill the cupcake liners just a little over half.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with a few moist crumbs NOT raw batter. In my oven, the cupcakes were perfectly done at the 20-minute mark. Do NOT open the oven until 15 minutes have passed. Start checking on the cupcakes at the 15-minute mark. If you are baking mini cupcakes, they may be done in 9-12 minutes, start checking after 9 minutes.
Remove the cupcakes from oven and allow to cool for 3-5 minutes in the pan, then remove to a cooling rack to finish cooling.
- Add butter to a large mixer bowl and mix until smooth.
- Add 4 cups of powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
- Add the vanilla extract and milk, mix until smooth.
Add the remaining 4 cups of powdered sugar and mix until smooth. If the buttercream is too soft, add more sugar, 1/2 cup at a time.
- Divide buttercream equally into 4 medium bowls.
- Add a few drops of purple gel food color to one of the bowls, about 7-10 drops, and stir with a spatula to fully combine. Set aside.
- Add a few drops of blue gel food color to one of the bowls, about 7-10 drops, and stir with a spatula to fully combine. Set aside.
- Add a few drops of orange gel food color to one of the bowls, about 7-10 drops, and stir with a spatula to fully combine. Set aside.
- Add a few drops of pink gel food color to one of the bowls, about 7-10 drops, and stir with a spatula to fully combine. Set aside.
- Start by preparing your work area, gel food color can easily stain your working surface so cover it with parchment paper or plastic wrap.
- Fix a piping bag with a large star tip, or any other piping tip that you like. Set aside.
- Cut about 15 inches of plastic wrap and place it on the counter. In the middle of the plastic wrap add about 1/3 of the purple buttercream, spread it into a 6x6inches square.
- Top it with 1/3 of the blue buttercream, and carefully, spread it on top of the purple square. Top it with 1/3 of the orange buttercream, and carefully, spread it on top of the blue layer.
- Top it with 1/3 of the pink buttercream, and carefully, spread it on top of the orange layer.
- Before adding the buttercream to the plastic wrap take a look at the piping bag you will be using, some are smaller and some are larger, so make sure the buttercream wrap once rolled is not larger than the piping bag, as it won't fit.
- Roll the wrap, so it forms a tube, and place the wrapped buttercream inside the piping bag. Do a first, pipe and dump test, to get the buttercream closer to the tip.
- Pipe the buttercream onto the cupcakes and decorate with edible glitter stars or sprinkles.
- Repeat with the rest of the buttercream and cupcakes.
- Refrigerate cupcakes at least one hour before serving.
- Store in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.