How many times have you tried to bake perfect cupcakes? The ones with fluffy inside, a bit crispy top. Maybe some chocolate? The ones that are not greasy and you don’t need to run wash your hands because of the oily cupcake paper. How many times have you tried to make cupcakes that compliment your coffee break so perfectly? It’s time to show you a quick & easy orange butter cupcakes recipe with white chocolate chunks that will never fail you.
Easy orange butter cupcakes with white chocolate chunks
- 200 g butter
- 170 g caster sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 4 eggs
- 2 oranges
- 300-360 g all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 100 g white chocolate
- food color of your choice
- 360 g cream cheese
- 220 g icing sugar
- 500 g whipping cream
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- to taste lemon juice
- food color of your choice
- Bring all ingredients for cupcakes to almost (15-17°C) room temperature. Preheat oven to 175°C.
- In a large bowl, beat butter with sugar & vanilla extract. Put some work into it. Quick advice, use a wooden spoon.
- Add eggs one at a time, gently incorporate to get an even mixture.
- Grate the orange zest and squeeze the juice into a separate bowl. Add flour (with baking powder) in 3 parts & orange juice in 2 parts. Flour-Juice-Flour-Juice-Flour. Be careful. Believe me, you don't wanna overmix...
- If you bought a 100g block of white chocolate, chop it with a knife in a size you prefer. Fold it into the mixture. If desired, add food coloring, but read & follow the manufacturer's instructions first.
- Pour batter into cupcake baking liners and bake for 15-20 minutes. Check if they’re done with a toothpick.
- Let them cool down, and let's go to the frosting.
Frosting (you can do it while cupcakes are baking)
- Mix room temperature cream cheese with powdered sugar & vanilla extract.
- Whip the cream.
- Gently fold whipped cream into cream cheese mixture, pour a little lemon juice & food coloring (read manufacturer's instructions first) if wanted.
- Decorate cupcakes with this delicious frosting using piping bags & nozzles.
Now, you may think that you have everything it takes to achieve the perfection of an easy cupcake, BUT... LISTEN CAREFULLY:
- Working with 15°C and 22°C butter;
- Using room temperature eggs or eggs straight from the fridge;
- Beating butter alone or with sugar;
- Working with all-purpose, bread, rye, wheat flour, or etc.;
- Using whipping, double, or single cream;
Therefore, let’s get to the details.
Easy orange butter cupcakes
1. Bring all cupcakes’ ingredients to almost room temperature. Preheat oven to 175°C.
Haha, basically, all you have to bring to room temperature are butter and eggs. I guess you’re not keeping oranges in the fridge.
It is a mixture of liquid & fat. For example, emulsions are vinaigrette, or chocolate ganache, Bechamel sauce, etc. Some emulsions are so stable that you couldn’t tell whether there’s one ingredient or more with a naked eye. Unstable emulsions separate quickly. For instance, try to make an emulsion of oil and water…
Several keys to emulsions’ stability are temperature & low speed. In this case, eggs and butter will come together perfectly if you chose the right quantities, the same 22°C temperature of ingredients, and incorporate eggs gradually. Be patient, gentle, and put in some work.
Why do we want to succeed in making emulsion?
If eggs are too cold or we speed up adding them, the emulsion will BREAK DOWN. Consequently, we’ll have a curdled mixture, the volume might be lost, and the texture will suffer. Easy orange butter cupcakes won’t look so easy anymore.
Wanna learn more about emulsions? Check out these two articles:
2 . In a large bowl, beat butter with sugar & vanilla extract.
That’s a tricky one.
Actually, this step and the one above are the main factors to make all the world’s cupcakes perfect.
How to know when the mixture is perfect?
The mixture will be light & fluffy, but not too much. It will look like a good cream that is still a bit cold, but you can easily work with it.
At which temperature should the butter actually be?
15-17°C. As you beat the butter with a wooden spoon, the temperature will rise, and you will end up with 22°C, which would be excellent. By the way, I don’t recommend silicone spatula; I’ve broken too many of them. But if you start at 22°C and end up 25-27°C, you will see that the butter texture is too liquidy and shiny; it looks fat instead of rich and creamy, which leads to greasy and heavy cupcakes. Therefore, it’s better to put some real work into it, use biceps instead of being upset later.
You know those times when you wrap the cupcake out from the paper, and the fat is dripping everywhere? That’s not cupcakes’ problem. It’s your problem that you didn’t know how to handle them.
Why do we always beat butter with sugar?
Sugar crystals cut holes in the butter. For this reason, these air bubbles expand when baking, with gases, and we see those gorgeous cakes and cupcakes rising.
It is crucial to use granulated sugar. Otherwise, there will be no holes.
3 . Add eggs one at a time, gently incorporate, so you get an even mixture for easy butter cupcakes.
Look about the emulsion above.
- Did you know that banana bread cockaigne is one of the simplest recipes in the world? Click here to find out more.
4 . Orange and Flour
Grate only the orange part. Everything white is bitter.
Squeeze all the juices, don’t measure in cups or grams. The more juices, the more flavorful cupcakes. If there are too many juices, add more flour (that’s why I wrote 300-360g). No big deal.
DON’T POUR ALL JUICES AT ONCE! YOU WILL BREAK THE EMULSION.
ADD DRY INGREDIENTS IN 3 PARTS & WET INGREDIENTS IN TWO PARTS.
Which flour should we use?
I know that many of you use not only all-purpose but bread flour as well. I assume these two are most commonly used for baking.
The difference between them is the quantity of protein. The more protein, the more gluten formation (essential in bread making, but not here, because gluten will toughen cakes and cupcakes.) Of course, you can use bread flour but remember one more thing. The more protein flour has, the more liquid you have to use to achieve the wanted texture.
Why must you not overmix the flour in the batter for cupcakes?
To prevent gluten formation, which can cause tough cupcakes. Use the folding technique and silicon spatula, be careful and attentive.
Lovely cupcake frosting
I recon the frosting recipe is simple, so there are only two things that I wanna explain.
Why should you bring cream cheese to room temperature?
You know those times when you eat cake or cupcake and feel something like chunks, but not those ones that complement the desert and feel satisfying. No… I’m talking about when you think something like ‘Wtf’s that… Should this be there?’
It doesn’t matter whether you make butter or creme cheese based frosting; you have to bring it to room temperature. Those strange and absolutely not mouth-watering pieces in frostings & icings are because of inappropriate temperature.
How to make the best whipping cream to perfect easy orange butter cupcakes?
First, let’s answer the fundamental question of what is happening when we whip the cream.
The fat globules in the cream are coagulating around air bubbles.
When this part is clarified, you have to know that too little fat percentage causes failure because of too much skimmed milk and protein. It’s like butter and eggs (I don’t mean the emulsion). If conditions aren’t right, they won’t be together. Just too stubborn, that’s it.
So whipping cream is called whipping cream for a reason. I have books with different opinions, but whipping cream has at least 35% fat. This percentage is the smallest quantity of fat to make whipped cream.
Tips for perfectly whipped double cream
- Use >35% fat cream.
- Refrigerate the cream for 12h before whipping.
- Use a hand balloon whisk to work in more air. Don’t be lazy.
- Do not stop whisking until you reach the wanted consistency.
- If you see grains or lumps, start over with new double cream. This means that it is too warm and you are making butter. In a nutshell, you failed.
- If you’re not using it right away, refrigerate whipped cream.
AND THAT’S IT ABOUT CUPCAKES & FROSTING.
Now that you have the fluffiest easy orange butter cupcakes with white chocolate in the world, take the piping bags, choose the most beautiful nozzle shape, fill with delicious (not too sweet, not too sour, not too fat, just perfect!) cream, and decorate! Make them look fabulous as if you bought them from a fancy bakery and enjoy!