Yield: 6 white forest cupcakes // Total Time: 1 hr. // Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links. //
Light and fluffy vanilla cupcakes stuffed with a cherry liqueur jam and topped with a white chocolate buttercream.
white forest cupcakes
Black forest cake is delicious of course, but what if we made it with vanilla cake and put it into cupcake form. These white forest cupcakes are extremely light and fluffy, are stuffed with a cherry liqueur jam, and are topped with a white chocolate buttercream.
weigh your ingredients
Weighing your ingredients is important for getting the recipe perfect and getting consistent results. Not weighing your ingredients can lead to adding too much or too little of an ingredient. In a small batch recipe it is especially important to get those correct measurements because there is less room for error. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend purchasing a kitchen scale. This one is super cheap and worked well for me when I was starting out!
mix the batter carefully
It is super important to not overmix the cupcake batter. Overmixing the batter leads to more gluten development which will make the cupcakes super tough and chewy. Only mix just until the last bit of flour is incorporated.
room temperature ingredients
It is important for the ingredients to be at room temperature so that they properly incorporate with each other. Take out the egg and butter at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hr 30 min. before starting the recipe. To bring an egg to room temperature quickly, you can place it under hot water for 1 minute. To bring butter to room temperature quickly, slice it, place it on a plate, and microwave it in 5-second intervals. For buttermilk, you can also microwave it in 5-second intervals until it’s no longer cold (but not hot!)
keep an eye on those cupcakes!
Cupcakes like to go from under-baked to over-baked super quickly so it is important to keep a close eye on them. Start checking at 15 minutes with a toothpick. If the toothpick comes out wet, check them again in 2 minutes and so on until only a few moist crumbs stick to the toothpick.
make the cherries “stand up” in the cupcakes
The cherries tend to want to fall over after a minute in the cupcakes. My solution is to stick a toothpick into the cupcake and lean the cherries on to the toothpick. Works like a charm (just be sure to warn any unsuspecting cupcake eaters!)
ingredients and substitutions
For the vanilla cupcakes:
All purpose flour: gives the cupcakes their structure.
Baking powder: for helping the cupcakes rise.
Salt: for balancing and bringing out the sweetness of the batter.
Unsalted butter: for tenderizing the cupcakes and adding that nice buttery flavor to them. You can substitute salted butter, just be sure to omit the extra salt in the batter.
Vegetable oil: for tenderizing the cupcakes. If you don’t have vegetable oil on hand, you can use another neutral oil such as canola.
Granulated sugar: for adding sweetness and for locking in moisture.
Egg: for binding the batter together and adding moisture.
Vanilla: for flavor. I use and love this vanilla extract!
Buttermilk: for tenderizing the cupcakes and adding moisture. I recommend using full fat buttermilk for the best texture. I highly recommend using buttermilk but I know it can be hard or annoying to purchase, especially if you don’t plan on using it for anything else. It won’t be completely the same, but you can make a homemade buttermilk substitute. For this recipe, simply combine 35g sour cream with 50g whole milk.
For the cherry jam:
Cherries: the star of the show! I recommend using fresh, but in a pinch you can use frozen as well.
Granulated sugar: we’ll use a little bit of sugar to sweeten up the jam.
Corn starch & water: to thicken up the jam.
Cherry liqueur: traditional black forest cake uses Kirsch, but it can be kind of difficult to find in stores. Cherry liqueur will work great in it’s place! You can also easily omit this from the recipe if you want it alcohol-free.
For the white chocolate buttercream:
White chocolate: I highly recommend using a white chocolate baking bar for the best flavor, but chocolate chips will work too.
Unsalted butter: the base of the buttercream. Feel free to use salted butter here, just be sure to omit the extra salt if using!
Salt: helps balance and bring out the sweetness of the buttercream
Powdered sugar: sweetens and thickens up the buttercream. If you are looking for more of a melt-in-your-mouth texture, use organic powdered sugar!
how to make white forest cupcakes
white forest cupcakes q&a
can I double this recipe?
Of course! Obviously they will not be small batch anymore but small batch isn’t always what we need! Simply double all of the ingredients in the recipe to make 12 delicious cupcakes. I even more strongly recommend measuring by weight if you are going to double the recipe for the best results.
can I make these cupcakes ahead of time?
Definitely! I would recommend making the cupcakes no more than two days ahead of time. Store the unfrosted cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature. I’d recommend waiting to make the buttercream until the day you want to serve them.
how to store small batch white forest cupcakes
Like most baked goods, these cupcakes will definitely taste the best on the day that they are baked. You can store the frosted cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days, or in the fridge for up to a week.
why do you measure in grams?
My recipes are all written in grams because it is the most accurate way to bake. When you use a kitchen scale, you ensure that your baked goods turn out as close to the written recipe as possible. Plus, the cleanup is way easier when using a scale! I will provide standard cup measurements but please note that I have not tested the recipe using cup measurements and therefore can not guarantee your recipe will come out how mine did. Here is my favorite kitchen scale.
a note on oven temperature
Ovens vary and fluctuate in temperature. For example, I always have to set my oven to 330°F if I want it to bake at 350°F. If you love to bake like I do, I highly recommend getting an oven thermometer. They are super helpful for letting you know when your oven might be lying to you! I use this one.
tools and ingredients
You can find all my favorite tools and ingredients that I use on my Amazon Storefront page, here!
did you make these white forest cupcakes?
If you made these white forest cupcakes I would love to see them and know your thoughts! Please leave a comment and review down below, and tag me on Instagram @freshbeanbakery. If you have any questions about the recipe I will gladly do my best to answer them in the comments below!
White Forest Cupcakes
- 100 g all purpose flour (¾ c. + 1 tbsp.)
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 90 g granulated sugar (scant ½ c.)
- 41 g unsalted butter cubed, room temperature (3 tbsp.)
- 32 g vegetable oil (2 ½ tbsp.)
- 1 egg white room temperature
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 85 g buttermilk room temperature (3 oz.)
- 160 g dark sweet cherries washed and pitted (1 c.)
- 2 tbsp. granulated sugar
- 1 tbsp. cherry liqueur*
- 1 ½ tsp. corn starch
- 1 tbsp. water
White Chocolate Buttercream
- 113 g white chocolate (⅔ c.)
- 140 g unsalted butter room temperature (½ c. + 2 tbsp.)
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 160 g powdered sugar (1 ⅓ c.)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F / 175°C. Line a muffin tin with 6 parchment liners.
- To a medium sized mixing bowl, add the flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, butter, and oil. Use a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment to beat the mixture together until the butter has completely combined with the dry ingredients and no lumps remain.
- Add in the egg white, vanilla, and buttermilk. Whisk the ingredients together just until a cohesive batter has formed.
- Distribute the batter evenly between the six liners. Bake for 15-20 min., or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cupcakes comes out clean.
- Rinse the cherries and pit them.
- Add the cherries, sugar, and liqueur to a small saucepan set over medium heat. Stir and mash down the cherries ocasionally, until the mixture comes to a simmer.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and water.
- While constantly whisking the cherries, pour the cornstarch slurry into the saucepan. Continue to constantly whisk until the mixture thickens (~1 minute.)
- Remove the cherry jam from the heat and place it in the fridge to cool down before filling the cupcakes.
White Chocolate Buttercream
- In a small mixing bowl, melt the white chocolate and set aside.
- In a medium sized mixing bowl, beat together the butter and salt for one minute.
- Add in half of the powdered sugar and beat until combined, then add in the rest of the powdered sugar. Beat in the melted white chocolate.
- Push down in the center of the cupcakes to make a divot for the cherry jam.
- Fill the inside of each cupcake with some of the cherry jam.
- Transfer the white chocolate buttercream to a piping bag fitted with your tip of choice, and generously frost each cupcake.
- Top each cupcake with cherries and extra juice from the cherry jam. Serve and enjoy!