A festive occasion calls for festive cupcakes – and it doesn’t get much more festive than these Prosecco Cupcakes! The tender cupcakes have a hint of vanilla and are made with a generous splash of prosecco, perfect for getting the party started. In fact, you can use the remaining prosecco to treat yourself to a glass while you bake!
Prosecco has a lighter and often slightly fruitier flavor than champagne, even when it is dry (meaning that the prosecco itself is not sweet). Champagne will often have notes of toast, bread dough and yeast, since part of the “methode champenoise” of creating bubbles is by adding yeast and a small amount of sugar to feed it. Prosecco, by contrast, typically undergoes secondary fermentation in pressurized tanks, which tends to result in sparkling wine without those yeasty flavors (or with much less of them). All this is just a bit of background to help distinguish the two wines – and it is a long way of saying that the fruit lightness of prosecco is a nice addition to these cupcakes.
The prosecco is added directly to the batter and it will fizz a bit as you mix it in. While I often recommend using room temperature ingredients (or close to it), I have used prosecco that is cold to make this recipe without a problem – so don’t worry if your sparkling wine is already chilled. The prosecco adds a subtle fruity flavor to the batter that works well with the hint of vanilla also in the mix. It isn’t overpowering, but you’ll be able to tell the difference between these cupcakes and plain vanilla when they’re side by side.
I finished the fluffy, tender cupcakes off with a buttercream that is also made with a splash of prosecco, which highlights the flavor of the prosecco in the batter. Of course, the cupcakes should be finished off with some fancy sprinkles to dress them up!
If you want to make a version of these cupcakes that doesn’t have any alcohol in them, you can substitute sparkling cider (e.g. Martinelli’s) for the prosecco. While it is slightly sweeter, cider works surprisingly well in this recipe and gives the cupcakes a hint of apple flavor that is delicious – although I still usually opt for the prosecco version myself. Either way, they’re perfect for a party.
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 egg yolk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup prosecco
Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners.
In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and egg yolk, followed by vanilla extract. Stir in one third of the flour mixture, followed by half of the prosecco. Stir in another third of the flour mixture, followed by the remaining prosecco. Stir in the remaining flour mixture and mix just until no streaks of dry ingredients remain visible.
Divide batter evenly into prepared muffin cups
Bake for 16-18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cupcakes comes out with only a few moist crumbs attached. Transfer cupcakes to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
Vanilla Prosecco Frosting
3/4 cup butter, room temperature
3 tbsp prosecco
1 tsp vanilla extract
3-4 cups confectioners’ sugar
In a large bowl, beat butter until smooth. Blend in prosecco, vanilla, salt and 2 cups confectioners’ sugar. Gradually blend in remaining confectioners’ sugar until a thick, smooth frosting forms. Pipe onto cooled cupcakes