Experiment in Cupcakes – Box Cake from Scratch and Boiled Frosting

Recipes in this Post

Boiled icing cupcake

Spane holding a finished cupcake

I had a dream, yes I had a dream. I dreamed of cupcakes with blue butter cream frosting.

I’m not much of a cupcake person, but they are nice if you’ve got a lot of kids. They are easy because you don’t really need a plate, and you don’t need a knife, and you don’t have to worry about someone saying their piece of cake is too small or too big. All the cupcakes are the same size.

Usually, I make a butter cake, similar to a 1234 cake, but it makes a three layer cake, and that was just too much for cupcakes. I know that a regular box of cake mix makes enough for cupcakes, but I don’t like things that come in a box. So I made my own box cake with fresh ingredients.

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I asked Spane last night if he wanted to help make cupcakes, and he said “Yes!”, so we got everything together, and he took pictures as I made the cupcakes.

A few days ago, I bought a thermometer for Bertha. She’s a hard girl to regulate, and she was up to 600 degrees last night when I put the first batch of cupcakes in – they baked in 12 minutes! The second, I left Bertha’s door open a little and she cooled down so the second batch did better.

This morning, when I went to get the powdered sugar out, I realized I was completely out, and it was too early in the morning to go to the store. What to do? What to do? Well, boiled icing, of course. I had always heard it was difficult, but truth be told, it might be even easier than butter cream, and certainly doesn’t seem to be bothered by temperature as much as butter cream.

Recipe: White Cake or Cupcake Mix from Scratch


  • 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract


  1. Have ready 18 lined cupcake tins. Preheat the oven to 350.

    Ready containers

  2. Sift the dry ingredients together into a bowl.
    Spane sifted the flour

    Spane sifted the flour

  3. I have found the best way to separate eggs is with your hand. Have to small bowls ready. Using one hand, break the egg into the other that is held over one of the bowls. When the egg has drained all the white, put the yolk in the other bowl. Of course, your hands have to be really clean.

    Separating an egg into a just washed hand

  4. Put into the work bowl of a standing mixer the sugar, oil, egg whites, milk and extracts.

    Adding oil

    Adding milk

    Almond and vanilla extracts

  5. Mix together on low-speed.
  6. Carefully add the dry ingredients while the mixer is going.
  7. Beat the mixture on medium speed for 5 minutes.

    Batter beaten til it is silky

  8. Using a small ladle, ladle the batter evenly into the cupcake liners, filling them about 3/4 full to give them room to expand during baking.

    Filling using a small ladle

  9. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out from the center clean.
  10. Remove from the oven. Place on cake racks to completely cool.

    Batch out of the oven


If you want a yellow cake, use 2 whole eggs instead of egg whites. You can add flavorings or color as desired.

Preparation time: 5 minute(s)

Cooking time: 15 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 12

Culinary tradition: USA (General)

My rating 5 stars:  ★★★★★ 1 review(s)

Copyright © The Good Plate.
Recipe by Adrienne Boswell.
Microformatting by hRecipe.

Recipe: Boiled Icing

Summary: This is so simple to make, you will be amazed


    Spane getting ready to lick the frosting

  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/3 cup boiling water
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 3 egg whites


  1. This is best done in a standing mixer, with a candy thermometer. The standing mixer must be very clean and dry. If it has any butter or oil, the eggs will never beat correctly.
  2. Put the sugar and cream of tartar into a heavy sauce pan.
  3. Add the boiling water, and turn the flame to medium high. Place the thermometer so it is in the syrup, but not touching the bottom of the pan.
  4. While the syrup is coming to a boil, beat the egg whites in the standing mixer. Using the whisk attachment, beat the eggs on high until they have formed very stiff peaks and are glossy in appearance.
  5. Check the syrup. Add the extract, It will come to a rolling boil, and then simmer down all on its own. When it has stopped bubbling, check the thermometer. it should have reached 240 degrees, or the softball stage. Immediately remove from the heat, and take it over to the stand mixer with the eggs in it.
  6. With the mixer beating on high, slowly, and carefully pour the syrup into the eggs, beating constantly. Continue beating for about 3 minutes, or until the frosting has cooled down a bit.
  7. Decorate your cake or cupcakes as desired.
  8. This recipe will make enough for eighteen cupcakes or a three layer cake.

Quick notes

Use gel colors for superior color.

Preparation time: 1 minute(s)

Cooking time: 5 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 12

Culinary tradition: USA (Traditional)

My rating 5 stars:  ★★★★★ 1 review(s)

Copyright © The Good Plate.
Recipe by Adrienne Boswell.
Microformatting by hRecipe.

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7 Responses to Experiment in Cupcakes – Box Cake from Scratch and Boiled Frosting

  1. Madeleine Almstead says:

    I truly desired to do Cinnamon scrolls, but clearly do not have time. Therefore the muffins are great thankyou a lot! I really like the icing superbly rained them over! These look so tasty!

    • Adrienne Boswell says:

      The boiled icing was really great for those cupcakes. But for your cinnamon rolls, I would use a plain icing, powdered sugar mixed with a little milk will do the trick.

  2. Youre Personal Guide to Ancient Egyptian Astrology says:

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  3. cupcake recipe says:

    Hi my family member! I want to say that this post is awesome, great written and include almost all important infos. I’d like to see extra posts like this .

    • Adrienne Boswell says:

      I don’t make cupcakes a lot. The one thing I really don’t like is having to divvy-up batter. But, it’s okay – my son’s 3rd grade classmates are asking for cupcakes for the next field trip. Oh boy.

  4. baking muffins says:

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  5. Lelia Hoffelmeyer says:

    Thanks for posting, looks great!

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