Discover: The Secret to Perfect Flat-Top Cupcakes

Cupcakes are pretty simple to make. But the perfect flat-top cupcakes with frostings  that you see in cake shops and bakeries? Well, that’s a different story entirely. As a boutique cake shop in Singapore, Zee & Elle has researched, tried, tasted and baked numerous times to get these perfect cupcakes to where it is today! If you’re always getting volcano-like cupcakes or sunken cupcakes, fret not, as we will be sharing a few tips and tricks to getting your very own cupcakes perfect for frosting!

frosted cupcakes

Zee & Elle Rustic Brown Cupcakes

There a number of factors that contribute to a perfect little cupcake: 

  1. Oven temperature 

Temperature is so important when baking! An overheated oven would cause peaked cupcakes, as the top of the batter cooks faster than the entire batter. Meanwhile, a temperature that is too cool, will result in a dense overflowed cupcake that looks very pale. Hence, it is important to know your oven. The 2 common types of oven are: Conventional vs Convection

A conventional oven heats up from 1-2 sources, usually from the bottom, while a convection oven(aka fan oven) has an additional fan system to help circulate the heat around. If your oven is a convection oven, it would be good to reduce the temperature as it tends to be hotter. More often than not, our oven temperatures are lying to us. Hence, we would really recommend using an oven thermometer! 

P.S Cupcakes are usually baked in an oven preheated to 170°C.

  1. Butter texture 

In Singapore, with a weather 30°C daily, leaving your butter out at room temperature for 20-30minutes is enough to get it soft. However, it is important to make sure your butter is not too soft as well! A good rule of thumb is to touch your butter! It should still feel cool and leave an indent, but give a little resistance when pressing against. Butters that are too soft are usually oily and sloppy which will cause air bubbles to collapse in the mixture. This results in cupcakes to be sunken when cooled, which is definitely not what we want. Cold butter would also result in uneven mixture, causing your cupcakes to peak like a volcano and form a crust. 

2. Mixing

“Mixed till well combined” says every recipe. However, for many of us amateur bakers, we don’t exactly know when the batter has been well incorporated! Hence, a very common mistake in baking cupcakes is overmixing or undermixing the batter. An overmixed batter looks very pale and fluffy(which is good for certain cakes but not cupcakes!). When you take them out of the oven, they might look really fluffy and souffle-like, however once it cools, the cupcakes start to sink in the middle as there are way too many air bubbles in an overmixed batter, causing the cupcakes to collapse. 


On the other hand, an undermixed batter will result in greasy cupcakes with peaks. More often than not, mixing your wet and dry ingredients in a cupcake recipe should take no more than a minute with a standing electric mixer (medium) speed. 

Batter mixture

Source: Unsplash

3. Filling of cups

This is a pretty simple tip but never overfill your cupcakes. It would be best to have an exact measurement of the amount of batter going into your cupcake moulds for an even bake throughout. Filling the cups ⅔ full should be enough!

cupcakes on paper towel

Source: Unsplash


We hope these tips and tricks will help you create a perfect looking cupcake! Especially since it's the circuit breaker period, do try these hacks out! Share with us your creations on instagram by tagging us @zeeandellesg. Do let us know more baking tips or hacks you wish to see in our comments below or through our instagram!

Till next time~  

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