Copycat Magnolia Bakery Cupcakes

These Copycat Magnolia Bakery Cupcakes are absolutely delicious. These light, fluffy cupcakes frosted with buttercream frosting taste just as good, or better, than the original, and that’s saying something!

Magnolia bakery cupcakes on table with more cupcakes in tin in background

We are big fans of Magnolia Bakery cupcakes. They’re some of the best we’ve ever found anywhere. These cupcakes are world famous for a reason. They are absolutely delicious! And their texture? Oh, wow. It’s to die for. Of all the copycat recipes we’ve made, this one is by far one of our favorites, so we knew we had to share it with you.

Copycat Magnolia Bakery Cupcakes

These cupcakes are so good, and they’re everything we all love about the original. Tender, moist cupcakes baked to perfection are topped with a rich buttercream frosting, and they’re just waiting to be devoured. These delicious cupcakes are fancy enough for any special occasion but easy enough to have you in and out of the kitchen in a jiffy. Sounds perfect, eh?

Magnolia Cupcakes Special Ingredient

Since these cupcakes have always been a hit from the start everyone raved about how tender they are. What makes them so tender? One of the ingredients in the batter is sour cream. So simple right? Simple but seriously delicious and it provides a little extra fat and yumminess. Hey it’s worked for years.

Sour cream is added to many baked goods. From cakes to cookies and quick breads. You just can’t go wrong with adding a bit of sour cream to some of your sweet treats!

Overheat shot of cupcake ingredients in individual bowls


It only takes a few simple ingredients to make these cupcakes. In fact, you probably have most if not all of the ingredients in your kitchen right this minute.

For the Cupcakes

  • Cake flour
  • Baking powder
  • Baking soda
  • Salt
  • Whole milk
  • Sour cream
  • Granulated sugar
  • Vanilla extract
  • Egg whites

For the Buttercream Frosting

  • Unsalted butter – room temperature
  • Powdered sugar
  • Whole milk

**See the recipe card at the end of the post for quantities.

Overheat shot of frosted copycat magnolia bakery cupcakes


For this recipe, you’ll need just a few simple kitchen items.

  • Stand or hand mixer
  • Whisk
  • Large bowl
  • Medium bowl
  • 12-count cupcake pan
  • Cupcake liners
  • Pink gel food coloring


As fancy as these cupcakes look, they’re actually incredibly simple to make. It only takes a few steps to create them.

Step 1: Prep

Set out your butter to soften. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line your cupcake pan with paper liners. Don’t use aluminum.

Step 2: Combine the Dry Cupcake Ingredients

Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a medium mixing bowl.

Step 3: Combine Milk, Sour Cream, and Vanilla

In a 2-cup liquid measuring cup, whisk the whole milk, sour cream, and vanilla together.

Step 4: Cream Butter and Remaining Wet Ingredients

In a stand mixer using a paddle attachment, cream the butter, sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add the egg whites and mix until incorporated.

Step 5: Combine the Wet and Dry Ingredients

And half the wet and dry ingredients mix until fully incorporated. Then, add the second half of the wet and dry ingredients and mix until incorporated again.

Step 6: Bake

Use a 1/4-cup measuring cup or ice cream scooper to evenly portion the cupcakes in the cupcake pan. Then, bake the cupcakes for 20 – 22 minutes until the tops spring back when touched. Cool the cupcakes completely.

Step 7: Make the Buttercream Frosting

Add butter and powdered sugar to a bowl. Begin to beat together. The mix will become crumbly. Then, add 2 tablespoons of milk. Mix until smooth. Add extra milk if needed. Add the food coloring and mix until combined.

Hint: Never use aluminum cupcake liners. They’ll cause your cupcakes to overcook.

Overheat shot of cupcakes in cupcake tin next to bowl of frosting


These cupcakes will last for a couple of days in a covered container at room temperature. For longer storage, you can store them in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for 4 – 5 days.



These cupcakes are very easy to make, but we still have a few tips that will help ensure you make the best cupcakes possible.

Fully Softened Butter – Always be sure your butter is fully softened for the best texture possible.

Make Your Own Cake Flour – If you don’t have cake flour, remove 2 tablespoons from 1 cup of spooned and leveled all purpose flour and replace it with 2 tablespoons of cornstarch. Sift together twice before using.

Blend Batter in Batches – It’s important to add your wet and dry ingredients in 2 batches to ensure a smooth, even batter. It’s too easy to get clumps otherwise.

Copycat magnolia bakery cupcakes on table

More Cupcake Recipes

If you love cupcakes, we have some other recipes here that we think you’ll enjoy.

Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes

Banana Peanut Butter Cupcakes

Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Copycat Magnolia Bakery Cupcakes FAQ

If you have questions about these copycat Magnolia cupcakes, then read on. The following FAQ answers the most commonly asked questions about cupcakes.

Why do we put the dry ingredients into the batter in batches?
Adding all the dry ingredients at once will cause the batter to be thick, which will most likely lead to overmixing, making a tough cupcake.

Why are my cupcakes tough?
You probably overmixed them. Overmixing the batter leads to more gluten development. That gluten makes the cupcakes tough and chewy rather than light and fluffy.

What is the secret to moist cupcakes?
Fluffy, moist cupcakes come from air bubbles in the batter that expand in the oven. Always mix your batter on low or medium speed and stop when the ingredients are just mixed.

What is just combined or just mixed?
Just combined or just mixed means you should stop mixing as soon as you can’t see the ingredients you just added.

Magnolia bakery cupcakes on table with bite taken out of cupcake closest to camera

Try These Copycat Magnolia Bakery Cupcakes Today

These copycat Magnolia Bakery cupcakes are just as good – if not better – than the original. These light, fluffy, moist, and tender cupcakes topped with buttercream frosting look and taste fancy enough for special occasions, but they’re easy enough for weeknight desserts or afternoon snacks. Give these a try, and we know you’ll love them as much as we do.


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Copycat Magnolia Bakery Cupcakes

These Copycat Magnolia Bakery Cupcakes are absolutely delicious. These light, fluffy cupcakes frosted with buttercream frosting taste just as good, or better, than the original, and that's saying something!
4 from 138 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 19 minutes
Servings: 12 Servings
Author: Rob


  • Stand or hand mixer
  • Whisk
  • large bowl
  • medium bowl
  • 12 count cupcake pan and Cupcake Liners
  • Pink gel or liquid food coloring


For the Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2 cups cake flour*
  • 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda 
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt 
  • 1/2 cup of whole milk
  • 1/4 cup sour cream 
  • 1 sticks of unsalted butter (room temperature) 
  • 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 egg whites

For the Buttercream Frosting:

  • 1 sticks of unsalted butter, room temperature
  •  1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2.5-3 tablespoons whole milk 
  • Gel food coloring (pink)


  • Preheat the oven to 325°F and line a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners then set aside. 
  • Whisk together dry ingredients in a medium sized bowl (flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt).
  • In a 2 cup liquid measurement cup, whisk together your whole milk, sour cream and vanilla.
  • In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream your butter, sugar, and vanilla on medium speed until the mixture is light and fluffy, scrape down the bowl. Add in your egg whites and mix until incorporated, scrape down the bowl 
  • Add half of your wet and dry ingredients and mix until fully incorporated, scrape down the bowl, specifically looking for any unincorporated flour mixture. Add the second half of the wet and dry and mix on low until fully incorporated.
  • Use a ¼ measuring cup or ice cream scooper to evenly portion out your cupcakes.  Bake your cupcakes for 20-22 minutes, until the tops spring back when touched. do not overbake or they will dry out!

The Buttercream:

  • Add butter and powdered sugar to a bowl. Begin to beat together, the mixture will begin to turn crumbly.
  • Start with 2 tablespoons of whole milk and vanilla. Mix until smooth. (add extra milk only if needed) 
  • Add one small drop of gel food coloring and mix throughout.

To Decorate Cupcakes:

  • Place icing in a piping bag squeezing the icing all the way down to the bottom of the bag. Cut a medium size whole at the bottom of the bag. Pipe the icing from the outside in. (start outside, work your way in) In a smooth motion. Or you can just use a knife and freestyle your icing!


How to make cake flour from all purpose flour:
Take one cup of all purpose flour, spooned and leveled. Remove two tablespoons, and then add two tablespoons of cornstarch to the all purpose flour. Sift together twice before using.
4 from 138 votes (135 ratings without comment)

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  1. Hi! Can you make more than 1 batch at a time?

    1. Yes we tripled the recipe for a party last summer. They came out perfect, We did cook them one batch at a time and put the batter in the fridge.

  2. 5 stars
    Made these and they are delicious. Was wondering if I could make them chocolate and how to keep moist. What would I had besides caoco.

    1. If you thought these were moist enough adding the cocoa powder and maybe cutting the baking time down a bit would be fine. We always store these in a covered plastic container
      on our counter. You can store in the fridge but we think they tend to dry out. Hope that helps. So glad you loved them! 🙂

  3. 5 stars
    I tried this recipe and they are delicious. Moist, fluffy, tender…I loved them. I never comment but they were so good I had to.
    Thank you for sharing the recipe.

    1. Thank you I’m so glad you enjoyed them!

  4. Has anyone made this in a cake form?

  5. Sandra Bowers says:

    5 stars
    Easy recipe and so tasty it doesn’t need icing

    1. Thank you! and yes they are great just as is.

  6. Just want to clarify you directed the milk and sour cream to be whisked together with the vanilla in a measuring cup and than you mention creaming the butter and sugar together with the vanilla. Is it both? If so, is it 1tsp each? Equaling 2 tsp total?

    1. Hi Bess one tsp is in the cake mix and 1 tsp in the buttercream frosting.

      1. Thank you for clarifying. I want to make it right lol Ill comment back after I make this. I’m going to try to bake this as a cake instead of cupcakes.

        1. Let us know how it turns out as a cake. We always made it as cupcakes