Make Red White and Blue Cupcakes for a fun and festive treat. These patriotic cupcakes are perfect for 4th of July and more.

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Plate of red white and blue cupcakes.

Red White and Blue Cupcakes

This is one of our favorite cupcake recipes. The kids have a blast helping and they look so festive for fourth of July and Memorial Day.

The recipe starts with a cake mix so it is really easy to make. Each cupcake is topped with luscious homemade icing. Not only does it taste great but it looks gorgeous.

If you are looking for an easy but patriotic dessert, these 4th of July cupcakes will be a showstopper.

Once you bite into the cupcake, the stunning red, white and blue layers are visible. Friends and family will love these fun cupcakes.

They are bakery quality without the work or expense. Everyone will be super impressed that you made these!

Ingredients for Plate of red white and blue cupcakes

Ingredients:

FOR THE CUPCAKES: 

  • White Cake Mix. Plus, ingredients to prepare cupcakes based on the box mix.
  • Red and Blue Gel Food Coloring 

FOR THE ICING: 

  • Butter, softened at room temperature
  • Clear Vanilla Extract
  • Confectioners Sugar, sifted
  • Milk
  • Red and Blue Gel Food Coloring 
  • Red, White and Blue Sprinkles 
Close up photo of red white and blue cupcakes.

How to make red white and blue cupcakes:

  • Preheat the oven and prepare the pan. Set the oven to to 350 degrees. Line the muffin tin with 12 paper cupcake liners.
  • Mix the cake batter. Follow the instructions on the box to make the cupcake batter. Do not overmix the cake batter and mix until just combined.

    This will make the cupcakes soft and light. Overmixing will cause them to be heavy and dense.
  • Divide the batter. You will need 3 small bowls to evenly distribute the batter. Use the gel food coloring to dye one bowl red and one bowl blue.  Finally, leave one bowl plain so that the batter will be white.  
Process of making batter and filling liners.
  • Place the batter into the muffin cups. Start by spooning the batter into the muffin cups layering each color as you go. Start with the red batter, then the white and the blue.  
  • Bake the cupcakes. The cupcakes need to bake for 15 -18 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. 
  • Allow the cupcakes cool. They need to cool completely before icing.
Close up photo of red white and blue cupcakes.

How to make vanilla frosting:

  • Cream the butter. Use an electric mixer to cream the butter until smooth.
  • Add the confectioners sugar gradually. This should be added one cup at a time on low speed until well combined.
  • Next, add the vanilla and milk.  Combine this until thoroughly mixed and fluffy on a medium speed.
  • Divide the frosting. Use 3 bowls to evenly distribute the frosting.  Use the gel food coloring to dye one bowl red and one bowl with blue food color.  Leave the other bowl plain so that the batter will be white. 
  • Get out a piping bag. Use the same decorating bag and put each color of the icing into the same with a Wilton 1M tip. Pipe the icing onto the top of the cupcakes giving each one  a swirl effect with the red, white and blue colors.  
  • Top with the sprinkles. Add the sprinkles to the cupcakes and enjoy. They look great and taste yummy.
Close up photo of red white and blue cupcakes.

Tips for cupcakes for the 4th of July:

  • Make sure to use a clear vanilla extract so that it does not change the color of the icing. It will not be pure white if you don’t use clear extract.
  • You will need to use gel food coloring to get the vibrant red and blue colors on these cupcakes.  The color is so rich and vibrant with gel food coloring. You really can’t achieve this color without the gel type of food coloring.
  • I like to use a cookie scoop to fill the muffin tins with batter. It makes it so easy and mess free.
  • It is optional but I think American Flag picks would be pretty as toppers in the cupcakes.
  • Don’t overfill the cupcake liners. You do not want them to overflow and turn into a mess.
  • If you don’t have a piping bag, you can use a ziploc bag. Just put the icing inside, seal and cut off the corner. You can gradually enlarge the size of the hole if needed.
  • Use a cupcake holder to transport these. We often take these to cookouts and such. You will love having a cupcake holder to make this easier and prevent spills.
Plate of red white and blue cupcakes.

How to store Patriotic Cupcakes

  • Frosted cupcakes need to be stored inside an airtight container. They can be left at room temperature up to one week.
  • I do not suggest storing them in the fridge as this dries the cupcakes out quicker. However, if you live in a warmer climate or it is hot in your house, I suggest storing them in the refrigerator.
Close up photo of red white and blue cupcakes.

Can you freeze?

You can freeze these. I recommend freezing the cupcakes unfrosted.

Simply wrap them individually with plastic wrap and then place in a freezer bag.

This is so convenient if you need to make them ahead of time for a party. You can just make the icing that day and have one less thing to do.

How to thaw:

Unwrap each cupcake and let them sit on the counter to thaw. Make sure to unwrap them so it prevents condensation from forming and making them soggy.

Close up photo of red white and blue cupcake in half.

Red white and blue cupcakes look so festive.

Everyone will really love these patriotic cupcakes. Make them for your next cookout on Memorial Day or July 4th. They will be so pretty next to your décor and American flags.

You can serve with ice cream for an extra treat. I hope you enjoy these as much as we do.

They are so much fun to make and really delicious. The display of cupcakes look so pretty and will be stunning on the dessert table.

Make these today and start a yearly traditional. They are amazing.

Print the recipe for 4th of July Cupcakes:

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Red, White and Blue Cupcakes

5 from 3 votes
Make Red White and Blue Cupcakes for a fun and festive treat. These patriotic cupcakes are perfect for 4th of July and more.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings 12
Cuisine American
Course Dessert
Calories 396
Author Desserts on a Dime

Ingredients

  • FOR THE CUPCAKES:
  • 1 box White Cake Mix
  • *Ingredients to prepare cupcakes based on the box mix
  • Red and Blue Gel Food Coloring
  • FOR THE ICING:
  • 1 cup Butter softened at room temperature
  • 1 tsp Clear Vanilla Extract
  • 4 cups sifted Confectioners Sugar
  • 2 Tbsp Milk
  • Red and Blue Gel Food Coloring
  • Red, White and Blue Sprinkles

Instructions

  • FOR THE CUPCAKES:
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line a muffin tin with 12 paper cupcake liners.
  • Make the cupcake batter based on the instructions on the back of the cake mix.
  • Then divide the batter evenly into 3 small bowls.  Use the gel food coloring to dye one bowl red and one bowl blue.  Then leave the other bowl plain so that the batter will be white.
  • Spoon the batter into the muffin cups layering the batter on top of each other.  Start with the red batter, then the white and the blue.
  • Bake for 15-18 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cupcakes comes out clean.  Then allow the cupcakes to cool completely.
  • FOR THE ICING:
  • In a large bowl cream the butter until smooth.
  • Beat in the confectioners sugar (one cup at a time) on low speed until well combined.
  • Stir in vanilla and milk.  Whip until thoroughly mixed and fluffy on a medium-high setting.
  • Divide the frosting into 3 bowls.   Use the gel food coloring to dye one bowl red and one bowl blue.  Then leave the other bowl plain so that the batter will be white.
  • Then put each color of the icing into the same piping bag with a Wilton 1M tip and pipe the icing onto the top of the cupcakes.  This will give the icing a swirl effect with the red, white and blue colors.
  • Top with the sprinkles and then the cupcakes are ready to enjoy!

Recipe Notes

Make Red White and Blue Cupcakes for a fun and festive treat. These patriotic cupcakes are perfect for 4th of July and more.

Nutrition Facts

Calories 396kcal, Carbohydrates 36g, Protein 7g, Fat 25g, Saturated Fat 13g, Polyunsaturated Fat 4g, Monounsaturated Fat 7g, Trans Fat 1g, Cholesterol 192mg, Sodium 479mg, Potassium 91mg, Fiber 1g, Sugar 18g, Vitamin A 695IU, Calcium 125mg, Iron 2mg

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Make Red White and Blue Cupcakes for a fun and festive treat. These patriotic cupcakes are perfect for 4th of July and more. You will love these simple patriotic cupcakes made with a cake mix and topped with adorable swirled frosting. #dessertsonadime #cupcakerecipes #patrioticdesserts #4thofjulydesserts #redwhiteandbluedesserts
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Hi, I’m Carrie. Welcome to Desserts on a Dime!

I’m on a mission to help you cook delicious meals without busting your budget. Together we are going to cook real food… for real families.

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