These raspberry cupcakes are packed full of so much raspberry flavor with raspberry cake, raspberry filling, AND raspberry frosting. And all the flavor comes from real raspberries!
You honestly will not believe how strongly these taste of raspberries! And there is no artificial flavoring or coloring, all the flavor is all-natural and comes from real raspberries. The tangy raspberry comes through in every bite and really tickles your taste buds with sweet and tart flavors. The texture of the cupcakes is wonderfully soft with a super moist crumb, and the raspberry Russian buttercream is incredibly silky and smooth.
These fresh raspberry cupcakes are a super cute spring bake, or great for something like valentine’s day because of their naturally pretty pink color. If you love raspberries, you might also love my Lemon and Raspberry Bundt Cake or my Raspberry Meringue Pie.
- Butter - Use unsalted butter and make sure it is at room temperature before you start baking.
- Sugar - White sugar is best for this recipe to make sure the raspberry flavor really shines through. Use extra-fine sugar (caster sugar in the UK).
- Flour - You can use all-purpose flour, self-raising flour, or cake flour. (If you use Self-raising flour make sure to leave the baking powder and soda out).
- Eggs - Use a large egg and always free-range if you can. Make sure they are at room temperature.
- Raspberries - You can use fresh raspberries or frozen raspberries. I used frozen for ease but either will work great.
- Milk - Use whole milk and make sure it is at room temperature.
- Condensed Milk - This is for the Russian buttercream. You want to use sweetened condensed milk, not evaporated milk.
- Vanilla Extract - Compliments and sweetens the raspberry flavor. Try to find a high-quality vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste, but not vanilla essence.
See recipe card for quantities.
There are three parts to this recipe, the filling, the cake and the frosting. The filling is a raspberry coulis, which we will also use to add the flavor to the cake and the frosting - so you'll kill three birds with one stone!
How to make the Raspberry Coulis
There are basically three things we need to do for the raspberry coulis, puree the raspberries, cook them and then sieve them. If I am using frozen raspberries I like to cook them first, simply for ease so I don't have to defrost them first. The recipe works either way so you can do whatever you prefer.
If you are using frozen raspberries:
- Pour all of the frozen raspberries into a tall saucepan with a little sugar and cook until it is boiling and thick bubbles start to burst on the surface.
- Place mixture into a food processor and blend until smooth.
- Pass the pureed raspberries through a sieve to remove any excess seeds.
If you are using fresh raspberries:
- Put the fresh berries in a food processor and blend until smooth
- Add the raspberry puree to a tall saucepan with the sugar and reduce the mixture until it comes to a boil and thickens slightly.
- Pass through a sieve to remove any excess seeds.
Allow your raspberry coulis to cool completely before using - I like to make it the night before.
The finished result will be kind of the consistency of ketchup (but a lot tastier!)
Note: You can also add a little squeeze of lemon juice to the puree to enhance the flavor if you like, but this is entirely optional.
How to make the Raspberry Cupcakes
This raspberry cupcake recipe is an adaption of my vanilla cupcakes, but with the addition of the fresh raspberry puree to bring in the flavor.
- Line a cupcake pan with cupcake liners and preheat your oven to 350°F / 180°C.
- Start by creaming the butter together in a large bowl until light and fluffy. I like to use a stand mixer for this with a paddle attachment on medium speed, but you could also use an electric mixer or do it by hand.
- Add the egg and mix until combined.
- In a medium bowl, combine dry ingredients, including flour, baking powder, and baking soda
- Add half of the flour mixture and mix in completely on a low speed.
- .Add the raspberry puree, vanilla extract, and milk and mix in completely. The batter should be a gorgeous pink color at this stage.
- Add the remaining flour and stir until combined. It's important not to add the flour until the wet ingredients from the previous step are completely mixed in, or you'll get a gloopy mess.
- Scoop the raspberry cupcake batter into your cupcake tins and bake for 17 minutes, or until you can press the top of them and they spring back.
- Let cool for a few minutes until they aren't too hot to touch, then transfer the raspberry cupcakes to a cooling rack.
How to make the Raspberry Russian Buttercream
This raspberry frosting recipe could not be any simpler!
- First of all, it is so important that your butter is at the right temperature, I find taking it out of the fridge about an hour before use works for me.
- Add the butter to the bowl of a stand mixer and whip it on high speed for 5 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl regularly with a rubber spatula. It should be lighter in color and super creamy.
- Slowly add the condensed milk, a little at a time, whipping in between additions.
- Add the raspberry puree and whip until combined.
- Whip on high speed for a further minute, letting the frosting thicken. It should be silky smooth and thick enough to pipe. (if it isn't, read this article from The Kitchen Magpie about how to fix broken buttercream),
How to assemble Raspberry Filled Cupcakes
- Once the cupcakes have cooled, core out the middle of the cupcakes to make a hole for the raspberry filling. I like to use a cupcake corer to make this super easy, but you could also use a knife or spoon.
- Spoon about a teaspoon of the raspberry sauce into the center of each cupcake. You can either put the little 'lids' back onto the hole, or just eat them as you go - it makes no difference!
- Spoon your creamy raspberry buttercream into a piping bag with the tip of your choice and decorate! If you don't want to pipe, you could also use a spoon or palette knife to spread the frosting onto your cupcakes.
- Finish off by decorating with fresh, juicy berries.
Flavor combinations - Raspberries go with so many flavors, try making:
- Lemon raspberry cupcakes by adding some lemon zest and lemon juice to the cupcake batter to make a moist lemon cupcake filled with raspberry.
- Chocolate raspberry cupcakes - use my chocolate cupcake recipe then combine with the raspberry buttercream and filling
Raspberry jam filling - if you'd like a thicker or sweeter filling, you could fill the center with raspberry jam instead.
Alternative frosting - If you don't want to make Russian buttercream frosting, you could try whipped cream instead with mashed raspberries and a little powdered sugar mixed through it.
These cupcakes are best stored in an airtight container on a base of kitchen towel to soak up any condensation. They will keep for 3 days like this.
Russian buttercream is a type of buttercream that uses sweetened condensed milk as a sweetener. This means there is no powdered sugar in the frosting like in American buttercream, and no granulated sugar like in a meringue buttercream. Its consistency is super smooth and glossy, it pipes like a dream and tastes delicious without being too sweet. It tastes like a cross between American Buttercream and Swiss Meringue Buttercream.
Yes! Normally to get this much flavor you would need to use an artificial flavoring, but because we reduce the raspberry puree by cooking it, we are making a super concentrated puree that won't add too much liquid to your batter. That means the raspberry flavor comes through really beautifully.
Raspberry Cupcakes with Raspberry Filling and Russian Buttercream
- Cupcake pan
- Stand Mixer
For the Raspberry Coulis
- 700 g Raspberries fresh or frozen
- ⅔ cup White Sugar
For the Raspberry Cupcakes
- ½ cup Butter 113g
- 1 cup White Sugar 200g
- 1 Egg
- 1 ½ cups All-purpose Flour 190g
- ½ cup Raspberry Coulis 120g (as prepared above)
- ⅓ cup Milk 80g
- 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
- ½ teaspoon Baking Soda
- ½ teaspoon Salt
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
For the Raspberry Buttercream
- 1 cup Butter 227g
- 1 can Condensed Milk 400g
- ½ cup Raspberry Coulis 120g (as prepared above)
- 12 Fresh Raspberries to decorate
Make the Raspberry Coulis
- Place the frozen raspberries and sugar in a tall saucepan and heat on medium heat until they are softened and reach a boil. Reduce mixture until thick bubbles are bursting on top. (See notes if using fresh raspberries).700 g Raspberries, ⅔ cup White Sugar
- Transfer to a blender or food processer and blitz until a smooth puree is formed.
- Pass the mixture through a sieve to remove any excess seeds.
- Let cool completely before using. The consistency should be kind of similar to ketchup.
Make the Raspberry Cupcakes
- Preheat oven to 350°F / 180°C and line a cupcake pan with cupcake liners.
- Cream butter and sugar together until pale and fluffy.½ cup Butter, 1 cup White Sugar
- Add egg and stir until combined.1 Egg
- Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl. Add half of the flour mixture to the batter and mix in completely.1 ½ cups All-purpose Flour, 1 teaspoon Baking Powder, ½ teaspoon Baking Soda, ½ teaspoon Salt
- Add the milk, vanilla and ½ cup of the prepared and cooled raspberry puree. Keep the rest of the puree for the filling and frosting later.⅓ cup Milk, 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract, ½ cup Raspberry Coulis
- Mix in the milk and raspberry completely, then add the remaining flour and stir in. It should be a beautiful pink colour.
- Scoop cupcake batter into cupcake liners and bake for 17 minutes or until the tops of the cupcakes spring back when you press them lightly.
- Let the cupcakes sit for a few minutes after removing from the oven, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Once cooled, use a cupcake corer or a spoon to scoop out a hole in the centre of each cupcake and fill with 1 teaspoon of raspberry coulis.
Make the Raspberry Russian Buttercream
- Make sure your butter is at the right temperature, not too hot and not too cold. For best results, remove your butter from the fridge one hour before making the frosting.
- Using a stand mixer, whip the butter on high for five minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl regularly.1 cup Butter
- Slowly incorporate the condensed milk, whipping in between additions.1 can Condensed Milk
- Add ½ cup of the prepared raspberry coulis and whip until combined.½ cup Raspberry Coulis
- Whip for a further minute to allow the frosting to thicken up. It should be beautifully glossy and thick enough to pipe. If it isn't, see notes.
If it is thin and soupy, the butter was probably too warm - place buttercream in the fridge for 10 minutes then try whipping up again. If it has curdled - the butter was likely too cold - try heating the buttercream very gently over a bain-marie until it just starts to sweat, then whip up for 5 minutes and it should be saved.