Cinnamon Swirl Cupcakes With Brown Sugar Frosting
Vanilla cupcakes with a cinnamon swirl running through it and topped with a cinnamon brown sugar frosting – the absolute best cupcakes ever! These simple cupcakes take less than 30 minutes to prepare and are a cinnamon lovers dream.
Cinnamon is one of my favorite spices to use in baking (just check out this cinnamon crunch banana bread) and I love sprinkling a bit of cinnamon sugar over these cupcakes.
Tell me about this recipe!
- The vanilla cupcakes are based off of my recipe from my strawberry filled cupcakes. This simple recipe is made by creaming the butter with the sugar before adding the rest of the ingredients.
- The cupcake batter is layered with cinnamon sugar and then swirled together, giving you a cinnamon swirl in every bite!
- The cinnamon brown sugar frosting is an American buttercream which is so simple to make. Butter is first creamed with brown sugar before the remaining ingredients are added.
The printable recipe card with the full list of ingredients and instructions can be found at the bottom of this post
- Yogurt: I’ve used full fat natural yogurt for the cupcakes, but you can substitute it with sour cream.
- Butter: I always use European style butter, like KerryGold, due to the higher butterfat content. This will make your cupcake much creamier and richer, and will make your frosting more creamy!
- Buttermilk: If you don’t have buttermilk on hand you can substitute it for milk.
How to make this recipe
Step 1: Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt.
Step 2: Whisk the cinnamon and sugar together and set aside.
Step 3: In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until smooth and airy.
Step 4: Add your eggs and vanilla extract, then add your sour cream. Make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl so everything is properly mixed.
Step 5: Add in your dry ingredients and mix on low speed. With the mixer running, slowly pour in the buttermilk.
Step 6: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Place 12 cupcake liners in your cupcake pan. Scoop one tablespoon into each liner, then sprinkle over 1 teaspoon of cinnamon sugar. Add another tablespoon of batter. Use a toothpick to swirl the cinnamon sugar and batter together, then sprinkle another teaspoon of cinnamon sugar. Bake for 20-23 minutes.
Step 7: In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the butter and light brown sugar together on low speed. Add in your confectioners’ sugar a bit at a time, mixing on low.
Step 8: Increase the speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes until it becomes thick. Stop the mixer and add the salt, vanilla and cinnamon. Mix again on medium for 2 minutes. Turn your mixer to your lowest speed and slowly pour in your heavy cream. Mix for another minute. Use a Wilton 1M tip to frost the cupcakes and then sprinkle over more cinnamon sugar.
- I highly recommend using a weighing scale and measuring out your ingredients the metric way. It makes a huge difference to your baking and is the most accurate way to bake!
- I make sure that all of my ingredients are at room temperature before I start the recipe, so pull out all of the ingredients about 2 hours before you start baking.
- Allow the cupcakes to cool completely before frosting them.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you use brown sugar instead of white sugar in frosting? Yes! In most American buttercream recipes you use confectioners’ sugar, but this recipe uses both confectioners’ sugar and light brown sugar.
Is this frosting smooth? Because this frosting uses light brown sugar as well as confectioners’ sugar, it does have slightly more texture than a more traditional American buttercream.
How do I store these cupcakes?Store the cupcakes in the fridge for up to 5 days. Let them sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before eating.
Other Cinnamon Recipes
Swedish Cinnamon Rolls
Cinnamon Crunch Banana Bread
Gooey Caramel Cinnamon Rolls with Pecans
Snickerdoodle Apple Bread with Crumb Topping
Make sure to tag me on Instagram @alpineella and leave a review below if you’ve made this recipe! If you want more baking ideas, you can follow me on Pinterest
Cinnamon Swirl Cupcakes With Brown Sugar Frosting
- ▢ 210 grams (1 3/4 cups) all purpose flour
- ▢ 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- ▢ 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- ▢ 113 grams (1 stick) unsalted butter room temperature
- ▢ 198 grams (1 cup) sugar
- ▢ 2 eggs room temperature
- ▢ 120 grams (1/2 cup) sour cream room temperature
- ▢ 120 ml (1/2 cup) buttermilk room temperature
- ▢ 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Cinnamon Sugar Swirl
- ▢ 50 grams (1/4 cup) sugar
- ▢ 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Cinnamon Brown Sugar Frosting
- ▢ 226 grams (2 sticks) unsalted butter room temperature
- ▢ 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ▢ 107 grams (1/2 cups) light brown sugar
- ▢ 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- ▢ 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- ▢ 339 grams (2 3/4 cups plus 1 tbsp) confectioners' sugar
- ▢ 60 ml (1/4 cup) heavy cream
- Preheat the oven to 350°F/175°C. Line a 12-cup pan with cupcake liners. This recipe makes 13-14 cupcakes.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.
- In a small bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon
- In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar together on medium-high speed for 2 minutes. It should become light and fluffy.
- Add the eggs and vanilla extract, then beat again on medium speed
- Add in the sour cream, beating on medium-low speed until well combined
- With the mixer running on your lowest speed, add the dry ingredients
- With the mixer still running on low, slowly pour in the buttermilk. Stop the mixer.
- Use an ice cream scooper to fill each cupcake liner with 1 tablespoon of batter. Sprinkle over 1 teaspoon of cinnamon sugar, then another tablespoon of batter. Take a toothpick and swirl the batter together then sprinkle over another teaspoon of cinnamon sugar.
- Bake for 20-23 minutes. A toothpick inserted will come out clean with no crumbs. Let cool completely. Your cupcakes might have split at the top, almost like a muffin – this is ok!
- In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and brown sugar together on low speed until well combined.
- Slowly start adding the confectioners’s sugar on your lowest speed
- Increase the speed to medium-high and beat for a 2 minutes until it becomes very thick.
- Stop the mixer and add the salt, vanilla, and cinnamon in to the bowl. Beat on medium-high speed for another 2 minutes.
- Turn the mixer to your lowest speed and pour in the heavy cream. Beat until it becomes very creamy and spreadable.
- My recipes have been developed and tested in metric grams. I highly recommend using a weighing scale and measuring out your ingredients the metric way. I have provided a conversion to US cups but please note that I haven’t tested the recipe with this method. Just click on ‘US CUSTOMARY’ above the list of ingredients.
- Ingredients: I make sure that all of my ingredients are at room temperature before I start the recipe, so pull out all of the ingredients before you start baking.
- Butter: I use European style butter, like Kerry Gold, in my recipes. This will make your frosting much creamier and richer.
- Salt: If you don’t have kosher salt, halve the amount of salt called for in the recipe. 1 teaspoon kosher salt = ½ teaspoon fine salt.
- Buttermilk: If you don’t have buttermilk you can substitute sour cream.
- Storage: Store the cupcakes in the fridge for up to 5 days. Let them sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before eating.