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Patriotic Cupcakes


With fourth of July just around the corner, I wanted to make some patriotic cupcakes! I used my favorite red/blue velvet cupcake base, filled them with patriotic-colored compotes (blueberry and raspberry), and topped them with a vanilla buttercream, and Fourth of July sprinkles (as I like to call them). I don’t think I could make these cupcakes more patriotic if I tried 😀

Red and Blue Velvet Cake Batter:

  • 2 cups cake flour
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 3/4 cups granulated white sugar
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process)
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 3/4 cups vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • red and blue gel food coloring
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 teaspoons white vinegar
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoon instant coffee, dissolved in 1 Tbsp boiling water

Vanilla Buttercream:

  • 4 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted lightly to remove any lumps
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup shortening
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • dash salt

Bake time: 12-14 minutes

Yield: 24 cupcakes

Preheat oven to 350. Line cupcake tins. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, cocoa powder and salt. Set aside. In a large bowl, combine the sugar, vegetable oil, eggs, buttermilk, vanilla and red food coloring. Stir in the coffee, and white vinegar. Combine the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients a little at time, mixing after each addition, until just,combined. Divide the batter between two bowls, and add blue gel food coloring to one, and red gel food coloring to the other. Mix until desired color is reached. Remember, a little food coloring goes a long way 😉 Fill each cupcake liner 2/3 full. I decided to mix the colors in some of the cupcakes, by layering the batters on top of each other. I also made some mini cupcakes. Bake for 12-14 minutes (mini cupcakes bake for 6-8 minutes), until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Remove cupcakes from tin, and let cool fully on a wire rack.

Combine the softened butter, shortening, vanilla, salt, and powdered  sugar in a large bowl. gently mix by hand, then finish combining with a hand mixer. Whip until the frosting is fluffy. Color 1/4 of the frosting red, and 1/4 of the frosting blue.


I used a star tip, and swirled red, white and blue frosting for some of the cupcakes. To do a colored-swirl frosting, streak the sides of your piping bag with red frosting on one side, and blue frosting on the other. Fill the center of the bag with the white frosting, and pipe swirls onto the top of each cupcake.For the miniature cupcakes I made, I frosted them with a plain vanilla buttercream, and added patriotic sprinkles to the tops!


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Kayley Humm

Friday 3rd of July 2020

Hi Chelsey! Thanks so much for sharing your recipe (I love all of your recipes :)). I am currently baking these and the recipe seams to make quite a bit more than 24. I'm also having to double the recommended baking time for standard sized cupcakes. Do you know why that might be? Thank you!

Melody Rodriguez

Wednesday 24th of June 2020

Hi I am planning on making these cupcakes for 4th of July but I’m not sure how much blue & red food gel to put in the buttercream in order to make it like yours. I make your cakes & buttercream all the time & everyone loves them!!

Samantha Ortiz

Thursday 18th of June 2020

Hello, I recently tried doing the recipe and the colors came out dark and it did not grow nicely. I am just trying to figure out what I did wrong.


Friday 4th of July 2014



Saturday 5th of July 2014

Thanks :D