Moist, fluffy, and delicious ube-flavored cupcakes! So easy to make and frost than a whole cake. I love these with our ube buttercream frosting because a cupcake isn't a cupcake without a frosting 🙂
Why you'll love these Ube Cupcakes
- The cake batter is easy to make–it's a straightforward cake recipe that is easier to make than a chiffon cake.
- Easier to decorate compared to making a whole cake which needs more planning and decorating techniques.
- Tastes like ube halaya, in cake form. I swear it's so good!
- Moist, tender, and not too sweet. Everything I want in a cupcake.
What you'll need
Here's what you need for these cupcakes. They may look a lot, but trust me, each of these makes the ube flavor stand out!
Ube cupcakes key ingredients
- Butter - use pure unsalted butter, the best quality you can find. I don't recommend substituting with margarine or oil as they lack flavor.
- Oil - helps the cake stay moist. Another secret ingredient 😉
- Milk - 3 types–canned coconut milk, evaporated milk, and condensed milk. Sounds familiar? Yes, these are the key ingredients to making ube halaya and the secret ingredients of these cupcakes.
- Vinegar - to be added to the evaporated milk and coconut milk to make buttermilk. This helps lift the cake as it bakes.
- Ube flavor extract and color - in order to achieve that distinct ube flavor and color. Use purple for a lighter-colored cake or violet if you want it darker. I recommend using gel paste over liquid as they're less watery.
Tips for making these Ube Cupcakes
- Use room temperature ingredients, this includes eggs, butter, and milk. Bring them out of the refrigerator 45mins – to 1 hour before you start baking. Room temperature ingredients make a smooth and uniform batter while cold ingredients do not blend together as easily which results in a flat cupcake.
- Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy–this will make a finer and fluffy crumb.
- Do not overmix the batter – overmixing can result in a denser, gummy cake.
- Add the ube color to the liquid ingredients BEFORE adding in the dry ingredients. You can add more of it, if preferred, towards the end without overmixing the batter.
More Ube recipes you need to try...
Serve with Ube Buttercream Frosting
Once the cupcakes have cooled completely, frost with my super delicious less-sweet ube buttercream frosting. They're so good together. Really, a match made in heaven! Follow this link to get the recipe.
For minimally frosted cupcakes, you can use a simple spatula to spread the buttercream on top (see photo above). Or take it to the next level "bakery-style" by using a piping bag with a pastry tip.
Finally, sprinkle with cake crumbs on top to finish. No need for sprinkles.
After the cupcakes are frosted, refrigerate until ready to serve. I personally love it a little bit chilled. Soooo yummy!
Make-ahead, Storage, and Shelf-life
Once the cupcakes have cooled, place them in an air-tight container without the frosting. These cupcakes should for 3 to 4 days if properly stored in the fridge.
Ube Cupcakes Video Recipe
Love baking? Try these cake recipes!
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Ube Cupcakes–moist, fluffy and easy to make
- ½ cup coconut milk (canned, see note 1)
- ¼ cup evaporated milk
- 2 teaspoons white vinegar or lemon juice
- ½ cup butter (unsalted, softened)
- ½ cup white sugar
- 2 tablespoon vegetable oil (or coconut oil)
- ½ cup condensed milk (see note 2)
- 2 large eggs
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2-3 teaspoon ube extract (add more if preferred, see note 3)
- ¼ teaspoon violet or purple gel color (optional, see note 4)
- 1 ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoon baking powder
- Pre-heat oven to 350f/180c. Place cupcake liners in a cupcake tin.
- Combine coconut milk, evaporated milk, and vinegar in a small bowl. Stir briefly then set aside for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl cream butter and sugar until the mixture becomes pale and fluffy. Add condensed milk and whisk. Add eggs one at a time. Whisk after every addition.
- Add oil, salt, ube extract, food color and milk mixture. Continue whisking until everything is combined. Taste and adjust ube flavor and color as needed.
- Sift flour, and baking powder onto the wet mixture. Stir until just combined. Do not overmix.
- Fill each cupcake liner with the batter. They should just be ⅔ full. Do not overfill.
- Bake for 18 to 20 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Remove cupcakes from the pan and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting. Click here to get the ube buttercream frosting recipe.
Recipe Notes and Tips:
- Canned Coconut milk – avoid using those that contain thickeners like xanthan gum, guar gum, or carrageenan. It should, at the minimum, only have coconut milk and water.
- Condensed Milk - reduced up to ¼ cup for a less sweet cake.
- Ube flavor extract - the intensity of flavor may vary depending on the brand of extract you're using. Start with 2 teaspoon first then whisk the batter. Add more if ube flavor is not enough based on preference.
- Food color - if the ube extract you have colors the batter just enough then you don't have to use this. If using–use purple for a lighter colored cake or violet if you want it darker (which is what I used). I recommend using gel paste over liquid as they’re more concentrated and less watery.
- Nutrition: per cupcake, frosting not included
Lois Cole says
Thank you for this amazing recipe. This was my first experience with Ube. Although I am not exactly sure what Ube is supposed to taste like, I enjoyed the flavor. I frosted mine with stabilized whipped cream.
Ube is one of my favorite food flavors and I'm glad you enjoyed this. Whipped cream is a great great idea!
Joy Panem says
Thank you for sharing your recipe
Maria Fenwick says
Hiya luv this cupcake I’ve made 2day thank u 4 this recipe. Can I share this recipe 2 my video?
Really good, and not too sweet! The cupcake and icing combo was perfect! The cupcake stayed moist and soft, and the icing tasted of melted ube ice cream. Thank you so much for this recipe!
So happy you love this, Mae! Your description of the icing is on point 🙂 Melted ube ice cream sounds really delicious.
The recipe title says it all! Moist, fluffy and really delicious,! Even the frosting was so good!
I will make this for my friends and give it as a Christmas gift.
Debbie P says
I tried this recipe . I tweaked it a bit by using Ube condensed milk. It was so good. The cupcakes stayed soft and moist even it was refrigerated. Really easy to make. The frosting is not so sweet .I brought them to a party and was gone in 2 hours. Thank you for sharing the recipe.
Made these little beauties today and I can confirm - THEY ARE AMAZING! I added some ube jam in the mixture and I think this made the ube flavour more intense. The icing was so so so good too! And yes, these are very easy to make! Love it!!
Hi, did you adjust the recipe when you added the Ube jam?
Hi! No I didn’t adjust it. Followed the recipe as it is and added 1/2 cup of ube jam. 🙂
Thank you! I can’t wait to try this recipe and to add the Ube jam.