Vanilla Cupcakes & Marzipan Bees

It's a special week on Bake Off this week, because for the very first time, it's Botanical Week! The bakers must complete three challenges inspired by nature and are allowed to use any ingredients that grows to use in their bakes. Keeping with this theme, we thought we'd share a flowery based recipe that you can bake at home.

This week, why not have a go at making these spectacular Vanilla Cupcakes? Created by the extremely talented Jamie from Jamie's Cookery, each of these fantastic cupcakes has been topped with a beautiful buttercream rose and features a marzipan bee. They're a great way to celebrate the last few days of summer. 

Not only do these cupcakes look great but they're also extremely easy to make! For more tasty recipes that are really easy to follow, we highly recommend that you head over to Jamie's blog; it's brimming with spectacular recipes!


Makes 12 cupcakes

For the Cupcakes

  • 175g of Butter
  • 175g of Caster Sugar
  • 175g of Self-Raising Flour 
  • 3 Eggs
  • 1tsp Vanilla Extract

For the Buttercream

  • 180g Butter
  • 450g Icing Sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 2 tbsp Milk, if needed

For the Marzipan Bees

  • 1 Egg Yolk
  • 1 tsp Honey
  • 1tsp Fresh Orange Juice (or apple juice)
  • 100g Ground Almonds
  • 50g Chocolate, melted
  • Some Flaked Almonds


Step 1 - Pre-heat the oven to 175°C and place 12 cupcake cases into a cupcake or muffin tray, and set aside.

Step 2 - Then, add the butter and caster sugar in to a bowl and mix well until they have all combined.

Step 3 - Add the vanilla extract and the eggs - one at a time - mixing well after each egg.

Step 4 - Finally, add the flour to the mixture and mix well - ensuring that you get all the flour off the edges of the bowl! This should provide you with a nice smooth batter.

Step 5 - Spoon an equal amount of batter in to each case and pop them into the oven for around 12 - 15 minutes or until they are firm and golden brown. Once baked, put aside to cool.

To make the Buttercream

Step 1 - Put icing sugar, butter and vanilla into a mixing bowl and beat until a smooth thick buttecream is formed. If the buttercream is too stiff, then add a little milk to loosen it. If you want to do different coloured icing, divide your buttercream and use food colouring to reach your desired colour for each batch.

To make the Marzipan Bees

Step 1 - Put all of the marzipan ingredients into a bowl and mix them until a firm ball is made.

Step 2 - Then, roll twelve individual balls from this mixture - this will be your bees.

Step 3 - Stick two flaked almonds into each bee to make the wings.

Step 5 - Put your melted chocolate into a piping bag, snip off the end and use it to create stripes and eyes to complete your bees.

To decorate

Step 1 - Spoon the buttercream into a piping bag fitted with a Wilton 2D nozzle, then use it to pipe buttercream roses. To do this, start from of the cupcake and make a couple of outward circles, stopping when you reach the edge of the cupcake.

Step 2 - Place a marzipan bee on to each cupcake.

Step 3 -Enjoy!

Products You May Find Helpful

Cupcake Tray
£7.76 inc V.A.T.
12 Cup Muffin Tray
£13.86 inc V.A.T.
Individual Muffin Cups
£6.26 inc V.A.T.