Learn how to make the best Rainbow Cupcakes in no time! Celebrate any occasion with these fun tie dye cupcakes that are delicious & pretty!
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Light, buttery, and moist, these rainbow cupcakes have a delicious vanilla flavor.
Topped with light and fluffy buttercream and rainbow sprinkles, these cupcakes are perfect for birthday parties and any family celebration. This homemade white cake can also lend itself to poping rainbow colors!
These fluffy cupcakes will surely brighten up anyone’s day - especially the kids. Bake the ultimate birthday cupcake and it will surely be amazing at any party!
With layers of rainbow colors, you might think that it’s a complex recipe. However, it’s a super simple vanilla cake recipe to make that you’ll perfect in no time.
Why You'll Love Tie Dye Cupcakes
- Vibrant and fun - The use of food coloring in this recipe makes these cupcakes POP with color!
- Quick & Easy - As complex as this cake batter may seem, creating the rainbow or tie-dye effect is easy.
- Perfect for themed parties - Have a kiddo that loves rainbows? or tie-dye?
Rainbow Cupcakes Recipe Ingredients
- White sugar
- Unsalted butter
- Vanilla extract
- All-purpose white flour
- Baking powder
- Whole milk
- Food coloring
How to Make Rainbow Cupcakes
- Preheat the oven to 350 and line a muffin tin with cupcake liners.
- In a large bowl, cream together the sugar and softened butter until smooth.
- Once combined, mix in the eggs and vanilla and whisk until combined.
- Mix in the flour, baking powder, and salt. Be careful not to over mix.
- Add the milk and slowly stir until the batter becomes smooth.
- Divide your cake mix into separate small bowls for each color you would like to use.
- Add 6 drops of food coloring into each bowl of cake mix and gently fold the batter until the food coloring is fully incorporated.
- Pour the colored batter into your cupcake paper liners, one at a time in whatever order you would like, and bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees. Use a toothpick to test the bake.
- Allow cupcakes to cool before frosting and enjoy!
How do you make colored layered cupcakes?
Thankfully making cakes doesn't have to be done any one way. After you've prepared the colored cupcake batter now it's time to make the layers.
This is completely up to you. If following the colors of the rainbow make the layers in this order.
- Violet (purple)
- Indigo (blue)
How do you make rainbow buttercream?
Making Rainbow Buttercream Frosting is easy!
- To decorate cupcakes with rainbow frosting, make a large batch of your favorite cheesecake frosting or buttercream frosting recipe.
- Next, divide the frosting into equal amounts and mix a few drops of food coloring into each frosting batch. Each in a separate bowl.
- Lay a piece of plastic wrap on your table and spread each frosting color in a long line on the plastic wrap so they are lined up next to each other.
- Gently roll the plastic wrap long ways, twist the ends, cut off one end, and place the roll of frosting into a piping bag. You are good to go!
- The colors will mix beautifully as you are piping!
Note: Gel food coloring may provide a bolder more vibrant color.
Substitutions & Variations for Tie Dye Cupcakes
White sugar: Brown sugar or even Coconut Sugar will both work as a substitute. If not using sugar a monk fruit sweetener blend tastes just like regular white granulated sugar.
Unsalted butter: Coconut Oil, margarine, or lard are good substitutes for unsalted butter in this recipe.
Eggs: For each egg, you can substitute using a variety of different ingredients:
- ¼ cup apple sauce
- ½ a medium banana
- 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed + 3 tablespoons water
Vanilla extract: A great substitute for vanilla extract is pure maple syrup. Other flavor enhancers that would work just as great as vanilla extract in cupcakes are almond extract or lemon extract.
All-purpose white flour: There are many different flours you can substitute for white flour in many recipes. Note that not all of these flours can be substituted 1:1.
Baking powder: Use ¼ teaspoon of baking soda with ½ teaspoon of cream of tartar for each teaspoon of baking powder required.
Whole milk: While whole milk is recommended, any variation of milk will work. Nut, soy, dairy-free, or lactose-free kinds will work well.
Food coloring: Liquid food coloring adds liquid to this recipe. If you have to swap liquid food coloring for gel food coloring it's recommended to add a bit of additional liquid to make up for the difference.
Storing Tie Dye Cupcakes
Storing: You can store rainbow cupcakes for up to 4 days in an airtight container at room temp.
Freezing: You can freeze rainbow cupcakes. To freeze unfrosted cupcakes, simply place them in an airtight container or ziplock bag and freeze them for up to three months.
You can also freeze tie-dye cupcakes topped with frosting as well. Wrap in plastic wrap, place in an airtight container and freeze for up to three months.
When ready to eat, thaw at room temperature for 3 hours.
Rainbow or Tie Dye Cupcakes Recipe FAQ:
Mixing cupcake colors for rainbow cupcakes is easy! First: Choose how many colors you want to have in your cupcakes. Second: Set out that many bowls and divide your cake batter among the bowls. Third: Add your food coloring to each bowl and mix gently until you've reached the desired color shade.
How do you decorate a rainbow cupcake?
After making one of your favorite buttercream frosting recipes, simply frost the top and sprinkle with bright colored rainbow sprinkles!
If you're serving these little rainbow treats for a St. Patricks Day party, try piping a bright white frosting on top to emulate a light and fluffy cloud! Top with gold sprinkles!
Colorful Cupcake Decorations
Try these other colorful cupcake decorations:
Other Cupcake recipes:
- Easy Vanilla Cupcakes
- Oreo Cupcakes
- Red Velvet Cupcakes
- Healthy Cupcakes Recipe
- The Best Yogurt Cupcakes
Rainbow Tie Dye Cupcakes
- ¾ cup white sugar
- ¾ cup unsalted butter softened
- 2 eggs
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cup all purpose white flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ⅔ cup whole milk
- food coloring
- Preheat the oven to 350 and line a muffin tin with cupcake liners. In a large mixing bowl, cream together the sugar and softened butter until smooth and no chunks of butter remain.
- Once combined, add in the eggs and vanilla and whisk until homogenous.
- Slowly add the flour, baking powder and salt. Be careful not to overmix the batter on this step.
- Once the flour mixture is completely incorporated, add the milk and slowly stir until the batter reaches a smooth consistency.
- Separate your cupcake batter into separate bowls for each color you would like to use.
- Add 6 drops of food coloring into each bowl and gently fold the batter until the food coloring is fully incorporated.
- Pour the batter into your cupcake liners in whatever order you would like and cook for 20 minutes at 350 degrees.
- Allow cupcakes to cool before frosting and enjoy!
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