Fresh orange juice is what helps make these aromatically uplifting Orange Cupcakes perfectly delicious. These sweet treats will have you reminiscing of childhood summers at the soda shop with each and every bite.
Simple Orange Cupcake Recipe
These dreamy orange cupcakes are truly sublime and the perfect sweet-ending to a standout bash. It’s cake that tastes like happiness, bursting with orange flavor from the tender crumb to the frosting.
Take these cupcakes to every gathering this spring and summer, I promise there will not be any leftovers.
Orange Cupcake and Orange Frosting Ingredients
Lots of ingredients go into these cupcakes and frosting to make them the most deliciously, citrus-scented bites. I know you’re going to love them.
Yellow Cake Mix – if you’ve never up-leveled a box of cake mix, you’re going to be quite surprised how amazing it tastes. It’s definitely a short cut for those who don’t love the process of creating a cake from scratch.
Fresh Orange Juice – it’s really worth the time to squeeze your own oranges. If you’re not feeling it, you can absolutely use store-bought, just make sure it’s pulp free.
Orange Zest – adds so much brightness to the frosting.
Butter – using butter (instead of oil), especially good tasting European style butter, really adds to the flavor of the cake.
Eggs – size large.
Orange Extract – found in the baking aisle and is a total flavor booster for the cake and the frosting.
Heavy Whipping Cream – You can’t make whipped cream frosting without it.
Orange Jell-O Powder – frosting flavor booster.
Confectioners’ Sugar – this is one of the hardest ingredients to measure in a when just scooping it into a cup. If you’ve had trouble with frosting recipes in the past, it’s most likely this ingredient was under or over measured. I highly suggest using a scale to measure out a cup (in grams).
Food Coloring – not a requirement, but the only way to get that bright orange color if it’s important to you, otherwise you can leave it out.
Instant Vanilla Pudding – nice little trick to help stabilize your whipped cream frosting at the end.
GET THE FULL (PRINTABLE) DREAMY ORANGE CUPCAKES with WHIPPED ORANGE FROSTING RECIPE BELOW. ENJOY!
Cupcake Decorating Ideas
There are so many ways to decorate these cupcakes and you can be as creative or elaborate as you like. You’re the boss!
- You can easily change the look of these cupcakes by switching out the piping tip for a variation in the frosting.
- Use sprinkles. White pearl sprinkles or confetti look great.
- Place a candy flower on the top or the side.
- Instead of piping the frosting, use a small spatula (or knife) to make a thick frosting base and pop a little umbrella on top. Add blue sprinkles to look like water for a pool party.
- Pop a single candied orange on top of the frosting.
- Add a colorful straw to mimic an orange cream soda.
- Grate orange zest over the top of the frosting.
- Make a curly orange peel to set on top.
- Use fresh, segmented oranges as I did here. Your choice to leave the skin on or not.
Have fun! Let me know if you have any other cute ideas.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do I Know When My Cupcakes Are Done Baking?
There are a couple of ways to know if your cupcakes are done baking. One, is to insert a toothpick into the center of the cupcake. If it comes out clean, it’s done. If batter remains on the toothpick, you’ll need to continue baking for a little while longer. Keep checking in one minute increments to make sure you do not overbake. it needs to bake a little longer.
If you don’t have toothpicks, gently press your finger on the top of the cupcake. If the top of the cupcake springs back, it’s done. If an indent remains bake a little longer.
I will usually do both, I’ll press with my finger and then check with a toothpick.
Why Use Melted Butter Instead of Oil?
I prefer using butter (especially Kerrygold) instead of oil, for the flavor! Adding butter takes the basic flavor of a yellow cake mix up a notch. However, make sure the melted butter has cooled before you using it in the batter so it doesn’t melt
the sugar or cook the eggs.
How Do I Store These Cupcakes?
I like to serve cupcakes the day I make them, however, if you need to make them ahead, make the cupcakes and store in the refrigerator for up to two days. Make the frosting right before serving, but if they are going to sit for a couple of hours, keep them in the refrigerator.
The cupcakes, without the frosting, can be stored in a tightly fitted container in the freezer for up to two months.
Do I Have to Use Food Coloring in the Frosting?
No you don’t.
In order to get a brighter orange color, as you see here, three drops of food coloring are required. Food coloring does not change the taste or the texture of the frosting so leave it out if you choose.
More Cupcake Recipes to Enjoy
I love cupcakes because “single serve” means you don’t have to share. I know “sharing is caring,” but when it comes to dessert, I say rules don’t apply.
- Key Lime Cupcakes
- Overload Cupcakes
- Coconut Pineapple Cupcakes
- Caramel Apple Cupcakes
- Firecracker Cupcakes
- Zucchini Pistachio Cupcakes
IF YOU DO MAKE SOMETHING FROM NOBLEPIG, IT WOULD BE GREAT TO SEE HOW YOURS TURNED OUT! TAG @NOBLEPIG ON INSTAGRAM WITH YOUR CREATION. DON’T FORGET TO RATE THIS RECIPE AND LEAVE A COMMENT BELOW. ALSO FOLLOW ALONG ON INSTAGRAM, PINTEREST, FACEBOOK AND TWITTER FOR LOTS OF FOOD INSPIRATION AND A PEEK INTO EVERYDAY LIFE.
ALSO, PLEASE CONSIDER LEAVING A COMMENT WITH A RATING, IT’S HELPS OTHERS SO MUCH!
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Dreamy Orange Cupcakes with Whipped Orange Frosting
- 1 boxed yellow cake mix
- 1 cup fresh orange juice, strained
- 1/2 cup melted butter, cooled
- 3 large eggs
- 1-1/2 tsps orange extract
Whipped Orange Frosting
- 2 cups cold heavy whipping cream
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar
- 3 tbsps cold fresh orange juice
- 2 tbsps orange flavored jello powder
- 1 tbsp orange zest
- 1/2 tsp orange extract
- 2 drops yellow food coloring (optional)
- 1 drop red food coloring (optional)
- 2 tbsps vanilla instant pudding powder
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare cupcake pans by placing cupcake liners in the tins.
- In a large bowl mix together, cake mix, orange juice, eggs, cooled melted butter and orange extract. Mix well, but don’t over mix. (Do not follow instructions on the back of the cake mix box.)
- Fill the cupcake tins 2/3 full and bake for 12-17 minutes, or until tooth pic comes out clean. (Baking times are going to vary oven to oven.)
- Remove from oven and let cupcakes rest for 2-3 minutes in the cupcake tin, then gently place cupcakes on a cooling rack. Let cool completely before frosting.
- For the frosting, start with a cold bowl (I like to chill mine in the freezer), mix together heavy whipping cream, sugar, orange juice, orange jello powder, orange zest, orange extract, food coloring until soft peaks form.
- After soft peaks form, add instant vanilla pudding powder and beat for about 20 seconds more or until stiff peaks form. Do not over mix or it will separate, and the frosting will not set properly. Frost cupcakes just before serving by using your favorite piping tip and pipe away! (Using a spatula is fine too, just not as fancy.) I used a Wilton 1M tip. This recipe makes enough to frost 18 cupcakes.
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