Ever since developing my brown butter chocolate chip cookies, I’ve been obsessed with this overlooked ingredient. Simple butter that is melted to the point of browning (caramelizing those milk solids), brown butter elevates any recipe it’s added to with it’s rich, nutty flavor. These Brown Butter Cupcakes with Maple Frosting are no exception and fall is the perfect excuse to make these sophisticated cupcakes.
Brown butter cupcakes recipe
These cupcakes are what vanilla cupcakes want to be when they grow up. A light, melt-in-your-mouth cake topped with buttercream that is that perfect balance of sweet with depths of flavor. Maple, nutty brown sugar (from the browned butter) and just a hint of cinnamon gives these cupcakes a warm flavor profile that is perfect for fall.
Brown butter is super easy to make – you simply heat butter past the point of just melted until it achieves a bit of a caramel hue and the milk solids in the butter start to brown. Take it off the heat immediately and allow it to cool before adding it with other ingredients.
Once you’ve experimented with brown butter you’ll be a convert! I love it with pasta, in my best chocolate chip cookie recipe – and perhaps most decadently, with any form of seafood (especially seared scallops). And that maple frosting… it is that perfect level of sweetness and I could just eat it with a spoon. It would also be wonderful on sugar cookies and you could actually drizzle it with just a touch of maple syrup for a sticky yet gorgeous presentation.
Ingredients for Brown butter cupcakes with maple frosting
First, gather your ingredients:
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter (will result in 3/4 cup browned butter)
- 2 1/4 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 Tablespoon cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup milk of choice
For the maple frosting:
- ¼ Cup butter
- 1 Cup powdered sugar
- ⅛ Cup maple syrup
Tip: your milk and eggs should be room temperature.
How to Make Brown butter cupcakes with maple frosting
Preheat oven to 350F.
Take the butter to a saucepan over medium-low heat, stir occasionally until it reaches a golden, caramel color and transfer to a bowl. Allow to cool for a couple minutes. Measure out 3/4 cup of the melted browned butter.
Combine the the flour, cinnamon, and baking powder in a small bowl and set aside
Add the milk, vanilla extract, eggs, and sugars to the brown butter, and mix for 2 minutes.
Add the flour mixture and whisk until well combined and no lumps remain.
Fill a muffin pan with liners and fill each liner 2/3 full with the batter.
Bake for 20 – 25 minutes, or until done.
Remove from the oven and let cool in the pan for 2 minutes before transferring to a cooling sheet.
For the frosting, use an electric mixer to mix the butter, maple syrup, and sugar until fluffy.
Transfer to a piping bag fitting with a large star tip (I used a Wilton #1M.)
Have you ever baked with brown butter? What recipes are you looking forward to making for fall?