Easy Cupcake Recipe for Beginners

It doesn’t get much simpler than this. I’ve made this recipe several times with my children over the years. If you’re looking for an easy cupcake recipe for beginners, this is really straightforward and kids love it. Basic sponge on the bottom, topped with chocolate and sweets. For decoration, channel the Pizza Hut ‘Ice Cream Factory’ and let the kids use smarties, chocolate drops, jelly tops etc – they’ll love it!

Ingredients (serves 24)

  • 170g (6 oz) softened butter or margarine
  • 170g (6 oz) sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 170g (6 oz) self-raising flour

For decorating

  • 200g plain or milk chocolate
  • sweets to decorate (eg jelly sweets, smarties, chocolate buttons etc)


These should only take about 10 minutes to prepare, and 20 minutes to bake.

Preheat the oven to 180C (160C fan-assisted). Line a good-quality cupcake tray with cases, either paper or silicone.

Beat together the butter/margarine and sugar until light and fluffy.

Add the eggs one at a time. Beat the mixture continuously so it is well…..mixed.

Using a sieve (this may be where the kids get a little messy!), sift in the flour. Again, mix it in gently.

Using a tablespoon or dessert spoon, divide the mixture. This should make 24 cupcakes, so if you have two 12-place muffin trays then you can bake them both at the same time.

Bake for 18-20 minutes. The tops of the cupcakes should come out golden brown.

Take them out of the tray(s) and cool on a wire rack.

For the decoration, melt the chocolate. You can either do this the old-school way in a bowl suspended over simmering water, or use the microwave in short bursts. This definitely needs adult supervision, as melting chocolate can be fairly unforgiving. A few seconds too long and you won’t be able to use it.

Now, back to the kids – get them to drizzle the chocolate over the cupcakes and decorate with sweets.

Tip: If you like your cupcakes to be uber-fluffy, then at the ingredients-mixing stage add half a teaspoon of baking powder and half a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda.

If you’ve never made cupcakes before and want some inspiration for the equipment you will need, read this article first!

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