21 Cupcake Recipes That'll Make Any Day Sweeter

Beet Red Velvet Cupcakes
Photo: Victor Protasio

We like to think of cupcakes as the sweetest little bites that turn our favorite layer cakes into an individualized moment that can be shared, transported, and snacked on little by little without making a mess by cutting slices. You can drop one or two off to neighbors and friends or let your family grab and go as they please—there are a lot of reasons why cupcakes are appealing for any baker, starting with being the cutest tiny treat and ending with offering everyone a bite of personalized joy just for them.

Whether you're sweet on citrus, in love with all things chocolate, or fancy yourself a coconut fanatic, we've collected our most decadent and popular cupcake recipes for you to read through now and enjoy with friends and family later. Go ahead and take a big bite—you deserve it!

01 of 21

Chocolate-Peanut Butter Cupcakes

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes
Victor Protasio, Food Stylist: Emily Nabors Hall, Prop Stylist: Kathleen Varner

Recipe: Chocolate-Peanut Butter Cupcakes

Go ahead and bake a second batch. These cupcakes take our favorite indulgent flavor duo to new heights, and we guarantee they'll be gone in a flash.

02 of 21

Cheerwine Cherry Cupcakes with Cherry-Swirl Frosting

Cheerwine Cherry Cupcakes with Cherry-Swirl Frosting
Antonis Achilleos; Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall; Prop Styling: Kathleen Varner

Recipe: Cheerwine Cherry Cupcakes with Cherry-Swirl Frosting

We're bringing the classic cherry-flavored Southern soda to the baking zone with these Cheerwine-infused cupcakes made with boxed cake mix before being topped with a statement-making swirl frosting.

03 of 21

Strawberry-Lemonade Cupcakes

Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes
Photographer: Jennifer Causey Food Stylist: Melissa Gray Prop Stylist: Heather Chadduck Hillegas

Recipe: Strawberry-Lemonade Cupcakes

It may start with a box of cake mix, but this sunny-day dessert is anything but ordinary.

04 of 21

German Chocolate Cupcakes

German Chocolate Cupcakes Recipe
Photographer: Alison Miksch Food Stylist: Erin Merhar Prop Stylist: Prissy Lee

Recipe: German Chocolate Cupcakes

The most indulgent layer cake got a teeny-tiny makeover that somehow makes each bite taste that much more full of chocolatey, coconut-flavored indulgence.

05 of 21

Key Lime Cupcakes

Key Lime Cupcakes
Photographer and props: Jennifer Causey Food Stylist: Emily Nabors Hall

Recipe: Key Lime Cupcakes

Add a touch of sunshine to your dessert table. This twist on our favorite pie everything we love about the hallmark dessert, but without the extra cooling and chilling time.

06 of 21

Margarita Cupcakes

Margarita Cupcakes
Photographer: Jennifer Causey Food Stylist: Melissa Gray Prop Stylist: Heather Chadduck Hillegas

Recipe: Margarita Cupcakes

Whether you serve it poolside or whip up a batch just because, this summery dessert will put you in a vacation state of mind in just one bite.

07 of 21

Sunflower Cupcakes

Sunflower Cupcakes
Photographer: Alison Miksch Food Stylist: Erin Merhar Prop Stylist: Prissy Lee

Recipe: Sunflower Cupcakes

Nothing could brighten up someone's day like a batch of sunflower-themed cupcakes that start with a box of cake mix.

08 of 21

Mixed Berry Cheesecake Cupcakes

Cheesecake Cupcakes
Photographer: Alison Miksch Food Stylist: Erin Merhar Prop Stylist: Prissy Lee

Recipe: Mixed Berry Cheesecake Cupcakes

Like miniature cheesecakes topped with fluffy whipped cream and mixed berries, these cupcakes make the most adorable centerpiece for a party or shower.

09 of 21

Lemon Cupcakes with Raspberry Buttercream

Lemon Cupcakes with Raspberry Buttercream
Jennifer Causey

Recipe: Lemon Cupcakes with Raspberry Buttercream

Lemon and raspberry are two flavors that make a heavenly match, and this recipe is topped with fresh fruit for a charming finishing touch.

10 of 21

Hummingbird Cupcakes with Candied Pineapple Wedges

Hummingbird Cupcakes with Candied Pineapple Wedges
Photo: Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Kay E. Clarke; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Recipe: Hummingbird Cupcakes with Candied Pineapple Wedges

Turns out, the Southern-favorite cake—typically flavored with pineapple, pecans, banana, and cinnamon—is even more delicious in cupcake form, and the candied pineapple wedges make them occasion-worthy in seconds.

11 of 21

Beet Red Velvet Cupcakes

Beet Red Velvet Cupcakes
Victor Protasio

Recipe: Beet Red Velvet Cupcakes

You can forget all about the food dye with these beet-dyed red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting that don't even taste like there is a vegetable in the room.

12 of 21

Easter Birds' Nest Coconut Cupcakes

Easter Birds' Nest Coconut Cupcakes
Cedric Angeles; Prop Styling: Claire Spollen; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Recipe: Easter Birds' Nest Coconut Cupcakes

Have you seen anything cuter to have at the egg hunt? Classic coconut cupcakes with a coconut-cream cheese frosting make a festive treat as it is, but these are topped with small candy eggs for extra cheer.

13 of 21

Fresh Strawberry Cupcakes

Fresh Strawberry Cupcakes
Micah Leal

Recipe: Fresh Strawberry Cupcakes

Don't expect any artificial flavoring or colors in this recipe, which features a super airy strawberry cupcake topped with frosting made with freeze-dried strawberries and cream cheese.

14 of 21

Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes

Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes
Greg DuPree; Prop Stylist: Mary Clayton Carl; Food Stylist: Margaret Dickey

Recipe: Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes

Say hello to the birthday dessert that everyone will love. A mix between ice cream cones and cupcakes, this recipe starts with boxed cake mix baked into an ice cream cone and is topped with a chocolate-cream cheese frosting and festive rainbow sprinkles.

15 of 21

Dreamsicle Cupcakes with Lighthouse Ice Cream Cones

Dreamsicle Cupcakes with Lighthouse Ice Cream Cones
Emily Mingledorff, Pie Crust & Pixie Dust

Recipe: Dreamsicle Cupcakes with Lighthouse Ice Cream Cones

Who doesn't love creamy, citrusy Dreamsicle? These patriotic cupcakes are packed with Dreamsicle flavor and topped with royal icing-decorated ice cream cone "lighthouses."

16 of 21

Chocolate-Key Lime Cupcake Pies

Icebox Cheesecake

Recipe: Chocolate-Key Lime Cupcake Pies

This cupcake version of a chocolate-key lime pie is an ideal pick-up dessert for entertaining, featuring a crumb crust with chocolate wafers and cream cheese mixture with fresh Key lime juice.

17 of 21

Mini King Cake Cupcakes

Mini King Cake Cupcakes
Jennifer Davick; Prop Styling: Lydia Degaris-Pursell; Food Styling: Marian Cooper Cairns

Recipe: Mini King Cake Cupcakes

Mardi Gras made bite-sized. Spiced batter is baked into a yeasty roll-like cupcake that you finish with the quintessential vanilla glaze and tri-colored sprinkles.

18 of 21

Lane Cupcakes

Lane Cupcakes
Southern Living

Recipe: Lane Cupcakes

Inspired by the iconic Southern layer cake that bears the same name, these Lane Cupcakes will take you on a nostalgic trip to vintage cake heaven.

19 of 21

Lemon Sherbet Cupcakes with Buttercream Frosting

Lemon Sherbet Cupcakes with Buttercream Frosting
Hector Manuel Sanchez

Recipe: Lemon Sherbet Cupcakes with Buttercream Frosting

These citrus treats are too good to keep to yourself. Make an extra batch and bring to a friend for the sweetest surprise.

20 of 21

Pineapple-Coconut Cupcakes with Buttermilk-Cream Cheese Frosting

Pineapple-Coconut Cupcakes with Buttermilk-Cream Cheese Frosting
Photo: Iain Bagwell; Styling: Vanessa McNeil Rocchio

Recipe: Pineapple-Coconut Cupcakes with Buttermilk-Cream Cheese Frosting

Make birds' nests with malted milk balls and a mouthwatering combination of pineapple and coconut flavors.

21 of 21

Fresh Citrus Cupcakes

Cupcake Recipes: Fresh Citrus Cupcakes
Photo: Beth Dreiling Hontzas

Recipe: Fresh Citrus Cupcakes

Sweet citrus flavor is packed into each bite of this orange buttercream-topped cake. These fruity cupcakes are refreshing to serve all spring and summer.

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