Christmas Cupcakes

5 from 4 votes

These Christmas cupcakes are dye-free, topped with snowflakes, and feature a vanilla cake with a wintery peppermint vanilla buttercream frosting!

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These Christmas cupcakes may look like plain vanilla, but they’re hiding a secret—those fluffy swirls of frosting on top are vanilla peppermint buttercream! In this easy Christmas cupcake recipe, we skip the food coloring and sprinkles and instead focus on festive flavors and snowy winter vibes. They’re sure to be a hit at your next holiday party!

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Instead of the usual red and green, the theme of this recipe is: white snowflake inspired Christmas cupcakes. Like the song, in cupcake form!

These peppermint vanilla Christmas cupcakes capture the magic of that first big snowfall of the year—the fluffy snow that glistens in the sun and gives you a warm fuzzy feeling inside. (It’s funny how the last snowfall of the year never seems to inspire those kinds of feelings, right?!)

Without all the decorations and colors and elaborate piping, this is one of the easiest Christmas cupcake recipes you’ll ever make. It’s also one of the most delicious!

Recipe At a Glance

Cuisine Inspiration: American
Primary Cooking Method: Oven
Dietary Info: Vegetarian
Key Flavor: Peppermint and Vanilla
Skill Level: Easy


  • Winter Wonderland Vibes: The fluffy, snow-like vanilla peppermint frosting and sparkling sugar give these cupcakes an elegant wintery look, which is perfect not only for Christmas, but any holiday get-together.
  • Peppermint Vanilla Flavor: While I love peppermint on its own, the combination of peppermint and vanilla together is especially delicious. The vanilla mellows the menthol in the mint, which makes it a little less powerful.
  • Easy Christmas Cupcakes: You don’t need to be a professional baker to nail these snowflake cupcakes! A simple swirl of frosting, some sparkling sugar, and a store-bought snowflake decoration and your work is done.
  • Perfect for a Party: When you’re entertaining a crowd, it can be a chore to cut pieces of cake or pie for everyone. Cupcakes are a cinch—everyone can grab their own!

Ingredients You’ll Need to Make Christmas Cupcakes

Vanilla Cupcakes

  • All-purpose flour: Be sure to lightly spoon this into the measuring cup; scooping it will compact the flour, and you’ll end up using more than you need.
  • Baking powder and baking soda: For rise.
  • Salt: Salt balances and enhances the flavor.
  • Unsalted butter: Using unsalted butter gives you more control over the flavor of these Christmas cupcakes.
  • Granulated sugar: Always essential in a cake recipe! 
  • Eggs: Be sure to use large eggs, not extra large.
  • Whole milk Greek yogurt: Yogurt helps create a moist, tender crumb.
  • Vegetable oil: Canola oil will also work.
  • Whole milk: While you can use lower fat milk, the extra fat in whole milk makes these vanilla Christmas cupcakes more tender.
  • Vanilla extract: I recommend pure vanilla extract, not imitation.

Vanilla Peppermint Buttercream

  • Unsalted butter: The base of our peppermint frosting!
  • Powdered sugar: Also known as confectioners’ sugar.
  • Heavy cream: To help you get the right consistency for piping.
  • Vanilla extract: You can use clear vanilla extract for a pristine white frosting, but I find the flavor of pure vanilla extract to be superior.
  • Peppermint extract: Just a bit, because a little goes a long way!
  • Salt: Adding a pinch is optional.
  • Add some color. While I love the simplicity of these white Christmas cupcakes, you can add food coloring to the frosting or batter if you’d like. I recommend gel food coloring, which allows you to get bold colors without adding extra liquid.
  • Use sprinkles. Festive sprinkles, colored sanding sugar, or even crushed candy cane pieces would also look pretty on these.
  • Swap the sparkling sugar for edible glitter. For extra sparkle, try using edible glitter or stars instead of the sugar, or use a combination of both.
  • Make a chocolate base. A chocolate cupcake would also be delicious with the vanilla peppermint frosting.

How to Make Christmas Cupcakes

If you don’t have a big block of time to make the entire recipe all at once, you can make the cupcakes one day, then make the frosting and pipe it the next.

Make the vanilla cupcake batter

  1. Cream the butter and sugar in a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.
  2. Add the eggs, Greek yogurt, oil, milk, and vanilla and mix until smooth.
  3. Add the dry ingredients.
  4. Beat on medium speed to combine.

Bake the cupcakes

  1. Divide the cupcake batter into a lined muffin pan.
  2. Bake the Christmas cupcakes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Make the peppermint buttercream frosting

  1. Beat the butter in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until it’s fluffy and light.
  2. Scrape down the sides, then beat in the powdered sugar.
  3. Add the vanilla, cream, and salt.
  4. Beat until the frosting is smooth and creamy.

Tips for Making the Best Vanilla Christmas Cupcakes

  1. Use room-temperature butter and eggs. Room-temperature butter and eggs will hold more air when beaten, which means you’ll get a lighter, fluffier texture in your cupcakes because they’ll be able to rise more in the oven.
  2. Don’t over-mix. Once there are no more steaks of flour in the batter, stop mixing. Over-mixing can result in dense cupcakes.
  3. Don’t buy mint extract. It’s an easy mistake to make, but mint extract tastes like spearmint, while peppermint extract has that candy cane flavor you want in these Christmas cupcakes.
  4. Improvise if you don’t have a piping bag. You can snip the corner from a zip-top bag and use that to pipe the frosting, either with or without a piping tip. Another option is to simply use an offset spatula to spread the frosting on top the old-fashioned way!

How to Store Christmas Cupcakes

Store these cupcakes in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Because the frosting is made with butter, they need to be refrigerated for food safety.

How Long Will Christmas Cupcakes Last in the Fridge?

These snowflake cupcakes are best enjoyed within a day or two, as they’ll begin to get dry in the refrigerator beyond that.

Can I Freeze White Christmas Cupcakes?

Yes, you can freeze your vanilla Christmas cupcakes for up to 2 months frosted, or up to 3 months unfrosted.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best tip for for icing cupcakes?

Dense cupcakes can result from overmixing the batter. Mix just until the dry and wet ingredients are combined. Also, ensure all ingredients, especially butter and eggs, are at room temperature to incorporate more air into the batter.

How can I make sure my buttercream is smooth and not grainy?

To achieve smooth buttercream, ensure your butter is at room temperature and beat it well before adding the powdered sugar. Sift your powdered sugar if it’s lumpy, and mix the buttercream long enough to incorporate air and dissolve the sugar.

Why did my cupcakes come out dense or heavy?

You can freeze the cupcakes after adding the frosting, although it isn’t ideal. To do this, place all of the cupcakes on a sheet pan and set it in the freezer. Once the frosting is frozen solid, you can place the cupcakes in an airtight container. Thaw in the refrigerator before serving.

If you’re looking for a cupcake idea for Christmas that’s simple and elegant, you can’t do better than these pretty snowflake cupcakes. Everyone will love the icy, snowy look and the festive peppermint vanilla flavor, and you’ll love that they’re so easy to make!

More Christmas Dessert Recipes:

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Christmas Cupcakes

These Christmas cupcakes are dye-free, topped with snowflakes, and feature a vanilla cake with a wintery peppermint vanilla buttercream frosting!
5 from 4 votes
Servings 12 cupcakes
Course Dessert
Calories 458
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
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Vanilla Cupcakes

Vanilla Peppermint Buttercream

  • ¾ cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon peppermint extract
  • Pinch of salt optional


Make the Cupcakes

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 12 cup muffin pan cupcake liners.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • To the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, add the butter and sugar and cream together on medium speed for about 3 minutes or until the butter is pale yellow, scraping down the sides, as needed.
  • Add the eggs, greek yogurt, oil, milk, and vanilla, and continue mixing until smooth.
  • Add the flour mixture and beat on medium speed until no more flour streaks remain.
  • Scoop batter into the prepared muffin pan, filling each cup ¾ full. Bake for 15 to 17 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool in the pan for a few minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Make the Buttercream

  • Add butter to a clean bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed until light in color and increased in volume.
  • Scrape down the sides and add the powdered sugar. Mix for about 2 minutes until combined, and then add the vanilla, cream, and salt. Continue to mix until smooth and creamy, about another 2-3 minutes.
  • Transfer the frosting to a piping bag fitted with your desired tip and frost cupcakes. Top with white sparkling sugar and a snowflake for decoration.


Serving: 1cupcake, Calories: 458kcal, Carbohydrates: 59g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 24g, Saturated Fat: 12g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g, Monounsaturated Fat: 6g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 79mg, Sodium: 136mg, Potassium: 58mg, Fiber: 0.4g, Sugar: 47g, Vitamin A: 610IU, Vitamin C: 0.01mg, Calcium: 55mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

Cuisine American
Course: Dessert

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  1. Trista Seyler says:

    I can’t wait to make these! I really appreciate and enjoy so many of your recipes . I love trying them out and so does my husband 😃

    1. Yumna says:

      Ahh thank you!

  2. Bailey says:

    Beautiful Christmas 🎄 cupcakes recipe 🎅🏻 love ❤️ the recipe easy to make cupcakes

    1. Yumna says:

      So happy you enjoyed them!