Go Back
+ servings
Strawberry cupcakes with ruffly pink strawberrhy buttercream.

Strawberry Cupcakes

Heather Smoke
These delicious strawberry cupcakes start with fluffy and moist vanilla cupcakes, filled with homemade strawberry compote, topped with a swirl of strawberry buttercream.

All recipes on Curly Girl Kitchen are developed for high altitude at 5,280 feet.

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 45 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Total Time 1 hr 20 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 30 -32 cupcakes


  • Saucepan
  • Muffin Pans + Paper Liners
  • Stand Mixer with Whisk Attachment
  • Piping Bag + Tip 2D


Strawberry Compote

  • 2 lbs fresh or frozen strawberries, washed, hulled and chopped
  • 1 ½ tbsp lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp Turbinado sugar (or Sugar in the Raw)

Vanilla Cupcakes

  • 3 ¼ cups cake flour, spooned and leveled
  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp coarse Kosher salt (if using table salt, use half the amount)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large egg whites (save the extra yolks for another use)
  • 1 ½ cups buttermilk, room temperature
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

Strawberry Buttercream

  • 2 cups unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tbsp meringue powder, optional
  • ¼ tsp coarse Kosher salt (if using table salt, use half the amount)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup pureed strawberry compote (see instructions on filling the cupcakes)


Strawberry Compote

  • In a large saucepan, combine the chopped strawberries, lemon juice and sugar. Let sit for 15 minutes until the strawberries start to release their juice.
  • Set the saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil. Stirring frequently, simmer the strawberries until the juices thicken into a syrup, and the compote is reduced to about 2 1/4 cups.
  • Remove the pan from the heat, scrape the strawberry compote into a container, cover and refrigerate until well chilled. You can make the strawberry compote up to 3 days in advance and keep refrigerated.

Vanilla Cupcakes

  • Preheat the oven to 350. Line a standard-sized muffin pan with paper liners. If you only have one 12-cup muffin pan, you'll have to bake the cupcakes in batches.
  • In a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
  • In a liquid measuring cup, measure and whisk together the eggs, egg whites, buttermilk, melted butter, oil and vanilla extract.
  • Add the liquid ingredients to the dry, and whisk until well combined, about 15 seconds.
  • Use a 1/4 cup measuring cup to spoon the cake batter into the paper liners, filling them no more than 2/3 full.
  • Bake the cupcakes on the center oven rack for about 14-15 minutes, until the tops spring back when lightly touched.
  • Cool the cupcakes in the pan for 2 minutes, then use a spoon to gently lift them out of the pan and onto a cooling rack.
  • If you have more batter to bake, refill the pan (without stirring up the batter again), and bake the remainder of the cupcakes.
  • Cool the cupcakes completely before filling and frosting.

Filling the Cupcakes

  • To fill the cupcakes with the strawberry compote, take the chilled compote and lightly strain any excess liquid, but don't throw away the liquid.
  • Use a cupcake corer to remove a small plug from the center of each cupcake, then fill the cupcakes with the strawberry compote. Make sure to reserve 1/4 cup of the strawberries for the buttercream.
  • Blend or puree in a small food processor the remaining 1/4 cup strawberries with the strained strawberry liquid, until smooth. Set the puree aside to use for the buttercream.

Strawberry Buttercream

  • In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the softened butter on medium speed for 1 minute until smooth.
  • Separately, combine the powdered sugar, meringue powder and salt. With the mixer on low, add the dry ingredients by spoonfuls, mixing just to combine.
  • Add the vanilla and the strawberry puree. Whip the buttercream on medium speed (#6 on a Kitchen Aid mixer) for about 4-5 minutes, scraping the bowl occasionally, until very light and fluffy. Turn the speed down to Stir, and mix for 1 minute.
  • Scoop the buttercream into a piping bag fitted with tip 2D. After filling the cupcakes with the strawberry compote, pipe swirls of buttercream on top.


  • The leftover strawberry cupcakes should be stored in an airtight container and refrigerated, for up to 3 days.  Let come to room temperature before serving.
  • If you want to make this recipe in advance, you can make the buttercream and compote 3 days in advance and keep refrigerated.  Make the cupcakes no more than 1 day in advance and keep stored in an airtight container.  I recommend not filling or frosting the cupcakes until the day you're planning to serve them, since the strawberry filling can soak into the cupcakes and stain the cake.
  • This full recipe makes about 30-32 cupcakes.  You can easily cut this recipe in half for 15-16 cupcakes.
Keyword Cupcakes, High Altitude Cupcakes, Strawberry
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!