Quick & Easy Strawberry Cupcakes for Summer

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Looking for a sweet treat to brighten your day? These Easy Strawberry Cupcakes will do just that! Bursting with flavor thanks to strawberry soda and fresh berries, they taste like Summer in each bite! Make them as a treat or to serve at a summer party!

I’ve got lots of fun and easy Cupcake Recipes for Parties for you to try out – right-click and open these other recipes in a new tab so that you can read them after this one!

Cupcake topped with strawberry frosting, a fresh strawberry and a red and white paper straw. Text overlay says"Easy Strawberry Cupcakes" Photos of the recipe are similar throughout from various angles and with different text overlay unless otherwise described.

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Easy Strawberry Cupcakes

The full ingredients list and instructions are found in the printable recipe card at the end of this post. I highly recommend reading the blog post all the way through so that you don’t miss any tips or substitution suggestions and to ensure that you have all the ingredients and equipment required as well as understand the steps and timings involved.

These cupcakes are sneakily made using a box of cake mix, so they can be rustled up last minute taking minimum effort but packing maximum yumminess!

Each strawberry-flavored cupcake is topped with a swirl of pink frosting and a fresh strawberry. The paper straw decoration makes these cupcakes super cute and fun, so they’re just the ticket for summer events.

Strawberry soda is the magic ingredient added to the cake mix to get the strawberry-ness off to a good start.

More strawberry soda plus strawberry extract goes into the frosting, and each cupcake is topped off with a whole fresh strawberry – that’s lots of berry flavor in every mouthful!

Ingredients Used In This Recipe

You may already have some of the standard ingredients used in this recipe such as eggs, butter, powdered sugar, however, for your convenience, I’ve linked any specialized ingredients needed for this recipe to Amazon below.

  • Box of Yellow or White Cake Mixuse your favorite brand; we will be substituting some of the usual ingredients used to make the mix:
  • Avocado Oilthis oil really helps to enhance other flavors, however, you could use regular oil if you prefer.
  • Strawberry Sodathis replaces some of the water that goes into the cake mix.
  • Strawberry Extractthis goes into the frosting
  • Red Sanding Sugarthis also goes into the frosting to add a speckled effect to it. It is also sprinkled on top of the frosted cupcakes as decoration.

For my UK readers: When I go on vacation to the USA, I like to stock up on my favourite American food products and ingredients, so you’ll find them used in some of the recipes on The Purple Pumpkin Blog. Luckily, we can buy a lot of American ingredients online these days, and in supermarkets (check the World Foods aisle!) which is awesome! (Although sometimes the price can be on the high side…) When I use American ingredients in recipes that I share on my blog, I always aim to suggest British alternatives or include Amazon affiliate links to where you can buy them online.

Strawberry cupcakes ingredients - cake mix, oil, eggs, water, flavorings

Equipment used in this recipe

You are likely to have many standard cooking tools in your kitchen but I’ve added some Amazon links for your convenience should you need to use something specific for this recipe.

Shop My Electric Cake Mixer Picks on Amazon

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More Recipes Using Strawberries

Want more strawberry flavored recipes? Check these ones out next:

Easy Strawberry Cupcake Recipe Tips

  • This recipe uses a box of cake mix – but we are making a few changes to the listed additional ingredients on the box.
  • Whilst avocado oil is the oil used in this recipe, you can use a regular oil such as vegetable or sunflower oil if you like.
  • Strawberry soda goes into both the cupcake batter and the frosting. (B&M in the UK sells Millions Strawberry Flavour Fizzy Drink that you could use)
  • You can mix the cake (and the frosting) by hand or with an electric mixer – whatever you have available to you. By hand may require a bit more elbow grease!
  • Use an ice cream scoop to equally divide the cupcake mixture between the cupcake liners.
  • The cupcakes should be ready in about 20 minutes – test their doneness by inserting a toothpick into the cakes and it should come out clean when the cupcakes are cooked through.
  • The cupcakes should be transferred to a wire rack to cool completely before decorating.

Frosting & Cupcake Decorating Tips

  • The frosting is made with powdered sugar (icing sugar), unsalted butter, and half-and-half – this is a US product and in the UK you can substitute it for single cream.
  • Additionally, strawberry extract, strawberry soda, and red sanding sugar go into the frosting – this will all help give it a soft red color. If you want a brighter red you could always add a tiny bit of Red Gel Food Coloring.
  • Food Coloring Tips: Use good quality food coloring gel or paste as the color will be more vibrant. Do not use liquid color as this will change the consistency of the frosting, and really won’t taste good!
  • Remember that you can always add more color, but not take it away. Add a little to start with and add more to get the shade required.
  • If you are not confident with your piping skills you can practice on some parchment paper first and scoop the frosting back into the bag to frost the cupcakes.
  • Cut the paper straws in half to insert into the cupcake as decoration.
  • Use a fresh whole strawberry – with the leaves intact – to decorate the cupcakes too.
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A single strawberry cupcake

More Fruit Cupcake Recipes

Need some more fruit cupcake ideas? Take a look at these recipes next:

How Do I Make Strawberry Cupcakes?

Just check out the recipe card below with full ingredients, instructions, and demonstration photos. You can print the card out too (don’t worry, the pics don’t print to save your ink!).

Save my Easy Strawberry Cupcakes Recipe tutorial video to your Cupcakes YouTube Playlists so that it’s always there when you need it – don’t forget to subscribe to my YouTube Channel while you are there!

Easy Strawberry Cupcakes

Easy Strawberry Cupcakes

Yield: 12
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

Make these easy strawberry cupcakes for summer parties and celebrations!


For the Cupcakes

  • 1 box yellow or white cake mix
  • ½ cup water
  • 3 eggs
  • ⅓ cup avocado oil
  • ½ cup strawberry soda

For the Frosting

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) room temperature unsalted butter
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup half-and-half (single cream)
  • ¼ cup strawberry soda
  • 1 teaspoon strawberry extract
  • 1 tablespoon red sanding sugar

For Decoration

  • 12 whole, fresh strawberries
  • 6 red and white paper straws, cut in half
  • Red sanding sugar (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4 and line a 12-cup muffin pan with cupcake liners.
  2. To make the cupcakes, place the cake mix in a large mixing bowl and add the water, eggs, oil, and strawberry soda.
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  4. Using a hand or stand mixer, mix on low speed for 1 minute and then on medium for 1 minute until combined.
  5. Cupcake batter being mixed
  6. Use an ice cream scoop to divide the batter between the cupcake liners evenly (about two-thirds full) and bake for 18-20 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool for 5 minutes in the pan before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
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  8. To make the frosting place the butter and powdered sugar into a large mixing bowl and using a hand or stand mixer, mix on low speed for 1 minute or until creamy.
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  10. Add the strawberry soda and strawberry extract and beat until light and fluffy. If the mixture is too thick, add more strawberry soda or a bit more half-and-half, 1 tablespoon at a time. Mix in red sanding sugar.
  11. Place frosting into a piping bag fitted with an open star tip and pipe a swirl of frosting onto each cooled cupcake. You can sprinkle with more red sanding sugar if you like.
  12. Frosting the cupcakes
  13. Place a whole fresh strawberry into the frosting of each cupcake, and push a halved straw into each cupcake at an angle.
  14. Finished Strawberry Cupcakes

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 432Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 51mgSodium: 342mgCarbohydrates: 83gFiber: 1gSugar: 64gProtein: 4g

This site uses Nutritionix to provide estimated nutrition. Nutritional information is always approximate and will depend on the quality of ingredients used and serving sizes. If you need exact calories and macros, please do your own calculations.

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Make It A Summer Meal!

You’ve made the dessert, but what about the rest of the courses?

Here are additional recipes to make a full meal!

There are 500+ Recipes on The Purple Pumpkin Blog for you to enjoy – please feel free to check them out too!

3 photos in a collage - completely decorated cupcake followed by cupcake batter in liners in a pan, and frosted cupcakes on a cooling rack.

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