No Butter Fluffy Spring Vanilla Cupcakes

March 27, 2012

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I wasn’t looking to reinvent the cupcake – after all, it is perfect the way it is. But being cupcake-obsessed and someone who watches her calories, I had to bake something to satisfy both. I had a couple of things in mind when setting out to bake a healthier version of a cupcake today – first off, I wanted to incorporate plain Greek yogurt, because every time I substitute yogurt in my baking, it comes out spectacular. Secondly, it’s almost Easter so I wanted them festive, colorful and full of pastels. Most importantly, I didn’t want any of them to look the same – individualist cupcakes, if you will. So I ended up 2 dozen fluffy, light-as-air vanilla cupcakes with Vanilla Meringue icing – each beautiful in their own way. It’s hard to believe, but there is no butter or oil in either the cupcake OR the frosting! This recipe is low in fat without sacrificing an ounce of flavor. The batch boasts a traditional bake-shop vanilla cupcake taste, but without the guilt. Check out the steps below and the full recipe on the bottom… Enjoy!

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No Butter Fluffy Spring Vanilla Cupcakes

Ingredients

Cupcakes
1 box Duncan Hines Golden Vanilla Cake Mix
1 cup of 0% plain Greek yogurt
1 cup of water
3 eggs

Frosting
1 cup granulated white sugar
1/4 teaspoon cream of tarter
1 teaspoon real vanilla extract
1/3 cup of water
2 egg whites

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Combine cake mix, eggs, water, and yogurt

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Once beaten, the batter will be thick, smooth and creamy - the yogurt adds lots of volume

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Out of the oven, with that beautiful golden yellow color!

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I had to take advantage of some festive Easter liners...

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To make the frosting, start out by heating the sugar, water and cream of tarter over medium high-heat...

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Once bubbly, remove from heat. Meanwhile, whip egg whites until soft peaks form in separate bowl. Gradually add hot sugar mixture to egg whites while whipping constantly.

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Whip the egg whites and hot sugar mixture about 7-10 minutes on medium high speed until stiff peaks form.

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Colored, frosted, and decorated...!

No Butter Fluffy Spring Vanilla Cupcakes

Ingredients

Cupcakes
1 box Duncan Hines Golden Vanilla Cake Mix
1 cup of 0% plain Greek yogurt
1 cup of water
3 eggs

Frosting
1 cup granulated white sugar
1/4 teaspoon cream of tarter
1 teaspoon real vanilla extract
1/3 cup of water
2 egg whites

Colored sugars to decorate

 

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Line 24 cupcake/muffin cups with paper liners and set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine cake mix, eggs, water and yogurt. Beat 2 -4 minutes on medium high speed until completley blended and smooth.

Fill cupcake liners with batter and bake for 15-16 or until cake tester comes out clean. (Note they take a few minutes less than cupcakes regularly prepared)

Let cool completely on wire racks.

Meanwhile, prepare the frosting. In a small saucepan, combine sugar, water and cream of tarter over medium high heat. Stir constantly until smooth and bubbling.

Separately, in the bowl of an electric mixer, beat egg whites and vanilla extract until soft peaks form. Gradually add warm liquid sugar mixture to whipped egg whites while whipping constantly. Continue whipping for about 7-10 minutes until stiff peaks form.

Separate frosting into small separate bowls to create different colors. I did a light blue, pink and yellow, and also kept some white. To color, simply add 1 drop of food coloring to each bowl of frosting and stir to combine.

Decorate with colored sugars as you wish!

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  • morgan

    Just started to make your icing, and realized that you say to add the egg whites to the mixture to be heated. Later you state that the hot sugar mixture is added to the egg whites. Just a heads up…. We had to restart the process : )

    • Janelle

      Oh my goodness, you are absolutely right – I am so sorry! You do in fact heat up only the water, sugar and cream of tarter to start and then separately whip up the egg whites in an electric mixer. Then, add the liquid mixture to the egg whites. So sorry again – I hope you enjoy them :)

  • Becky

    I started to read this and actually had to laugh. This is the frosting recipe I have used since I was a little girl cooking and baking for farmhands. I believe I was about 6 when my mom told me how to make it, but we always boiled until there was a “fine thread” and made sure those egg whites were peaked before slowly adding the hot syrup. I have always guessed at measurements…..this might be easier…thank you for bringing this recipe back..:)

    • Janelle

      Haha yes, you are absolutely right! It has been around for a long time, but you don’t see if very often in new recipes anymore. I love it though – so glad you enjoyed! :)

  • morgan

    Once we fixed the mix, it was delicious!

  • Phillip

    just a onte for people like me who have no idea what they are doing. you cannot beat egg whites with a submersable blender…

  • Wendy k

    Was this supposed to taste like a marshmallow?

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