Funfetti Cupcakes

These fluffy and moist homemade funfetti cupcakes are the perfect birthday cupcake! Confetti cupcakes are full of sprinkles and can be topped with any frosting. Learn how to make birthday funfetti cupcakes from scratch with our tips.

I’m starting to wonder how funfetti cupcakes got their name. White cake with sprinkles somehow turned into funfetti cake.

Sprinkle cake would seem a little more obvious.

I’m not sure if this is correct, but funfetti seems like it could have been derived from the word confetti.. so even sprinkle confetti cake would make more sense.

But someone decided that FUNfetti was more fun then sprinkle confetti cake and it stuck.

Regardless of the name, there are sprinkles involved. Lots of sprinkles. There is nothing worse than a funfetti cake that is lacking on the funfetti side.

Our recipe calls for 1/2 cup of sprinkles in the batter, plus more sprinkles to top the cupcakes. When topping the cakes with sprinkles, you have full control over your desired sprinkle quantity.

I’m sure if you let your kids decorate the cupcakes they’ll be on the heavy sprinkle side like mine. I mean have you ever met a kid that didn’t like sprinkles?!

How To Make Moist Funfetti Cupcakes

Our recipe calls for a lot of moist ingredients. We use egg whites instead of whole eggs, sour cream and milk. Using egg whites only gives the batter a nice white look. The sour cream and milk are where the fat, flavor, and moistness come into play.

What Sprinkles to Use for Funfetti Cupcakes

Jimmie sprinkles are the best type of sprinkle to use when making funfetti cake and cupcakes. Jimmie sprinkles are the long, skinny “hot dog” shape sprinkle.

I do not recommend using nonpareils, the small round ball sprinkles, because their color tends to bleed during baking.

After much searching, I found that Walmart’s Great Value brand jimmie sprinkles are the best looking sprinkles because the colors are bright and the sprinkle mixture doesn’t contain brown sprinkles. I don’t want brown sprinkles because they don’t look appealing!

Funfetti Cupcake Ingredients

  • unsalted butter: makes the cake tender and helps with leavening 
  • granulated sugar: adds sweetness and flavor
  • egg whites: binds the cake together by providing structure 
  • sour cream: adds moisture and creaminess
  • milk: adds moisture 
  • vanilla extract: adds flavor
  • all purpose flour: flour is necessary to build structure
  • baking soda: helps to leaven and lift the batter, reacts with the sour cream
  • salt: just a pinch to balance the sweetness and enhances the other flavors of the cake
  • jimmie sprinkles: sprinkles are critical in homemade funfetti cake

How to Make Funfetti Cupcakes

  1. In a mixing bowl combine the butter and sugar, beat using an electric mixer, 1-2 minutes until fluffy. 
  2. Add in the egg whites, one at a time, lightly mixing with a spatula after each one. 
  3. Add in the sour cream, milk, and vanilla extract. Beat lightly with the electric mixer. 
  4. In a separate mixing bowl combine the flour, baking soda, salt and sprinkles. Gradually add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients a few spoonfuls at a time. Mix until just incorporated.
  5. Fill the muffin liners 1/2-3/4 full. Bake for 5 minutes at 400º F. Keeping the cupcakes in the oven, turn the heat down to 350ºF and bake for 8-9 minutes, or until a few moist crumbs remain on a toothpick when inserted into the center. Allow the cupcakes to cool completely before adding the frosting.

How Long Does it Take to Make Funfetti Cupcakes?

  • 10 minutes to prep the batter
  • 15 minutes to bake the cupcakes
  • 1 hour, at least, to cool the cupcakes
  • 15 minutes to make the frosting and frost the cupcakes

Frosting to Pair with Confetti Cupcakes

You can easily make the vanilla buttercream into any color you want with food coloring – I like wilton’s gel food colors because they are vibrant and a little goes a long way!

Here are more frosting options:

Frosting Piping Supplies

  • Piping bags – I love these bulk piping bags
  • Piping tips – Larger piping tips are better for frosting cupcakes. My go-to tips are the Wilton 1M2D, 12 and 199.

How to Pipe Frosting onto Cupcakes

I used a wilton 2D piping tip to pipe the frosting on these cupcakes. A wilton 1M and an Ateco 844 are both very similar to the 2D.

Start in the center of the cupcake, applying pressure to the frosting bag, going in a swirling motion until you reach the edge of the cupcake then lift the tip up and tip more frosting onto that base layer you just made, stacking the frosting and continuing in a swirling motion until you reach the center of the cupcake.

I also wanted to show various options for frosting the cupcakes.

Referring to the image above, on the far left is the simplest method – spread a small amount of frosting on top of each cupcake using a butter knife.

The center cupcake, the buttercream is piped on using a wilton 1M tip.

The cupcake on the far right does pack a lot of frosting, but I like the perfectly domed look. To achieve that look use a large cookie dough scoop, scoop up the buttercream and gently release it on top of the cupcake.

How to Freeze Unfrosted Cupcakes

Allow the cupcakes to cool completely. Wrap each cupcake in plastic wrap, then place inside a freezer ziplock bag or freezer storage container.

To thaw: place the bag or container of cupcakes on the counter overnight. Frost once fully thawed. 

How to Make Gluten Free Cupcakes

This recipe turned out great using gluten free flour! We love King Arthur Gluten Free Measure for Measure Flour. Follow the directions as stated, but substitute gluten free flour for all purpose flour. 

Tips for Making Cupcakes

  • Properly measure the all purpose flour using the spoon and sweep method.
  • Combine the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients just until they are combined. Over mixing could lead to dry, dense cake.
  • You’ll bake the cupcakes at 400º F for the first 5 minutes. This will help the cupcakes dome and rise. After 5 minutes, turn the heat down to 350º F while keeping the cupcakes in the oven.
  • Store these cupcakes covered on the counter.

More Funfetti Desserts

Subscribe to The First Year newsletter to get our recipes sent to your inbox! Follow along on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and Youtube. If you make this recipe, tag @beth_thefirstyear on instagram!

Funfetti Cupcakes

Yield: 12 cupcakes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes

These fluffy and moist homemade funfetti cupcakes are the perfect birthday cupcake! Confetti cupcakes are full of sprinkles and can be topped with any frosting. Learn how to make birthday funfetti cupcakes from scratch with our tips.


Ingredients

Funfetti Cupcakes

  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup & 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 2 egg whites
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup milk (I used skim)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup & 2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup jimmies sprinkles

Vanilla Frosting

  • 3 sticks (1 & 1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3-4 cups powdered sugar
  • more sprinkles, to top the cupcakes

Instructions

Cupcakes

  1. Preheat the oven to 400º F. Line a muffin pan with muffin liners.
  2. In a mixing bowl combine the butter and sugar, beat using an electric mixer, 1-2 minutes until fluffy.
  3. Add in the egg whites, one at a time, lightly mixing with a spatula after each one.
  4. Add in the sour cream, milk, and vanilla extract. Beat lightly with the electric mixer.
  5. In a separate mixing bowl combine the flour, baking soda, salt and sprinkles.
  6. Gradually add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients a few spoonfuls at a time. Mix until just incorporated.
  7. Fill the muffin liners 1/2-3/4 full. Bake for 5 minutes at 400º F. Keeping the cupcakes in the oven, turn the heat down to 350ºF and bake for 8-9 minutes, or until a few moist crumbs remain on a toothpick when inserted into the center.
  8. Allow the cupcakes to cool completely before adding the frosting.

Frosting

  1. In a mixing bowl beat the butter with an electric mixer until smooth, about 2 minutes.
  2. Add in the vanilla extract and 2 cups of powdered sugar, mix by hand with a spatula.
  3. Add in more powdered sugar as you see fit, then mix one last time with the electric mixer.
  4. Add the frosting to the cooled cupcakes by spreading the frosting on with a knife, piping it on or using a large cookie dough scoop.
  5. Decorate with additional sprinkles.