There are so many great cupcake recipes out there, but this one is my FAVORITE because it’s the easiest and tastiest recipe I have used when making my own cupcakes.  It’s so easy it’s almost creepy, if baking can be creepy. It’s a cheater recipe because you start with a cake mix.  I got this recipe from my dear friend Teresa and about DIED when I found out that it was only a few ingredients.

no-fail cupcakes


  • 1 cake mix (I use yellow cake mix or white cake mix)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted (DON’T substitute margarine)
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 tsp almond flavoring
All you do is mix the ingredients together and fill cupcake liners halfway.  Bake in a 350 degree oven for 14 minutes, remove and let cool. Voila! Now onto the frosting…

I modified this buttercream recipe from the America’s Test Kitchen Cookbook.  I love this recipe because it’s buttery, and have a very well-rounded taste.  Here it is:


  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon almond flavoring
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 1/2 sticks salted butter, softened
  • 2 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar

Beat this mixture for 5-7 minutes until light and fluffy.  ENJOY and try not to eat the whole bowl.


When you are done with the light and fluffy buttercream mixture, add the frosting to a piping bag.  My favorite one is from Orson Gygi and it’s the 14″ bag.  With that I use one of two tips.  My very favorite tips for this are the ATECO brand #808 the simple circle one or #826 which is the star looking tip.  Depending on my mood, I use either of these.

I have mentioned on Instagram where I’m @craftykirsten, that I don’t like cupcakes.  I really just like to decorate them and give them away so next time I make some, I will bring them to you if you live nearby!  Thanks for stopping by!

Happy Baking!!




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  1. Arlene Kalmbach Says: November 7, 2012 at 9:15 am

    Thanks! Great post. Thought you’d want to know that you have a few typos though.

  2. Wow, this is awesome. Definitely going to try out this recipe!

  3. So are you saying you leave out the water & oil called for by the cake mix & mix with eggs & flavoring only?

  4. How interesting…I’m intrigued! I want to try this to see how it turns out.

  5. I am curious to try this, I love easy, however, I think how this recipe turns out would depend on what brand of cake mix you use. Can you specify a brand?

    Also can you please convert ‘sticks’ of butter into cups? We don’t have sticks!
    Anxiously waiting your response!

  6. Amazing, easy and so yummy! Thank you for this awesome recipe.

  7. If you want to spruce up a box of cake mix (and I mean, really how much easier does it need to be than a box of cake mix) try just adding one additional egg than the box calls for, use milk instead of water, and melted butter instead of oil. It’s decadent and I have fooled many a “from scratch only” snob with this method lol!

  8. I’m about to use your frosting recipe after already baking the cupcakes…how many cupcakes will this recipe cover?

  9. Sharon basford Says: June 1, 2015 at 7:45 pm

    i want to use your recipe for the buttercream frosting. I have a bridal shower to get ready for how far in advance can u make the icing if the shower is on a Saturday? Will the frosting go hard if made in advance?

  10. Kara Caldwell Says: July 19, 2015 at 8:13 pm

    How many cupcakes does this yield? And how many cupcakes does the frosting cover piped?


  11. Great cupcake recipe. I’m ready for the frosting but due to nut allergies and lack of almond flavoring, can I substitute for vanilla?

  12. […] Recipe adapted from: The Crafting Chicks […]

  13. LETA DEMAYO Says: September 26, 2015 at 7:16 pm

    I have not tried the cupcakes yet but this frosting is the BEST EVER! I LITERALLY want to SWIM IN IT!

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