Neapolitan Cupcakes

Light and fluffy chocolate vanilla marble cupcake with a sweet strawberry buttercream.  Inspired by the popular Neapolitan ice cream flavor.

NEAPOLITAN CUPCAKES. Moist chocolate and vanilla marble cupcake with a strawberry buttercream. Easy to make and simple ingredients.

Neapolitan ice cream reminds me of when I was a kid.  My family lived in a small apartment in the Jane and Finch area of Toronto, and my mom would buy the Chapman’s Original Neapolitan ice cream for my brothers and I.  I remember the rectangular box with the fold open lid and being excited to see the 3 different flavors all in one ice cream box.  The chocolate flavor always disappeared first in our house, then the strawberry, then lastly, vanilla (sorry vanilla, its nothing personal).

NEAPOLITAN CUPCAKES. Moist chocolate and vanilla marble cupcake with a strawberry buttercream. Easy to make and simple ingredients.

These cupcakes are light, fluffy and moist.  You get the wonderful combination of all 3 flavors when biting into this delicious dessert.  Now, this recipe took me 3 attempts to get perfect.  I wanted to make sure I achieved amazing texture and taste, while keeping the recipe as simple as possible.  My first batch was dense and dry, my second batch was still too dense, but, I finally got it right with the 3rd attempt.  I took the concept of a wacky vanilla cake and changed it to a marble cupcake.  Since there are no eggs or butter in this recipe, I was a little nervous watching them bake in the oven, but they turned out wonderfully.  The ingredients in this recipe are simple, every day staples, therefore you can quickly whip up a batch of these cupcakes whenever you feel like it.

NEAPOLITAN CUPCAKES. Moist chocolate and vanilla marble cupcake with a strawberry buttercream. Easy to make and simple ingredients.

Now let me tell you about the buttercream.  Butter plus jam plus icing sugar equals creamy, smooth, and sweet heaven.  So whether you’re a fan of chocolate, strawberry, vanilla, or cupcakes in general, you’re going to love this recipe.

Neapolitan Cupcakes

  • Servings: makes 15 cupcakes
  • Print


1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup sugar

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1 cup whole milk

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 tbsp vanilla

1 tbsp white vinegar

3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process)

1 tbsp whole milk


1) Preheat oven to 350°F and line 2 muffin pans with 15 cupcake liners.

2) In a large bowl, whisk all the dry ingredients together.

3) Add the 1 cup of milk, oil, and vanilla to the flour mixture. Stir until just combined.

4) Add vinegar, stir and scrap around the sides and bottom of bowl to incorporate all the flour. Whisk until just blended.

5) Spoon 1 full tbsp of the vanilla batter into each cupcake liner. Then add the cocoa powder and 1 tbsp of milk to the remaining batter and mix until just blended. Divide the rest of the chocolate batter into the 15 cupcake liners.

6) Using a butter knife, gently swirl the batter from the bottom up to bring some of the vanilla batter to the top.

7) Bake for about 15-18 minutes or just until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (my batch took 16 minutes) Let cupcakes completely cool before frosting.

Buttercream Ingredients

1 cup unsalted butter softened

1/2 cup seedless strawberry jam

3 cups icing sugar


1) Using a stand mixer with paddle attachment or handheld mixer, whip butter. Then add jam and cream together.

2) Add 1 cup of icing sugar at a time, blending well after each addition.

3) Frost cupcakes as desired. I used a Wilton 1M tip, piping in a circular motion from the center of the cupcake outwards and back to the center. I also added some sprinkles for fun.

Cupcakes will keep for up to 4 days stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Cupcake recipe adapted from Camilla V. Saulsbury, Piece of Cake cookbook, Golden Vanilla Wacky Cake.

Buttercream recipe by Little Sweet Baker

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Tropical Mango Vanilla Cupcakes

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Pink Velvet Cupcakes

Pink Velvet Cupcakes with Strawberry Buttercream. Moist, fluffy and buttery vanilla cupcake with a strawberry reduction buttercream.


  1. huntfortheverybest says:

    these are so pretty!

  2. Hi Lily
    Made these y/day and they taste wonderful … Emily brought one to school today and bragged to her friends she had a cupcake w/o any eggs! LOL!

  3. In our house, the strawberry ice cream was the last to go! These sound delicious, can’t wait to try them!
    Sent from my BlackBerry device on the Rogers Wireless Network

  4. I think I’m going to try this over spring break and make some for my friends. Sounds so easy!!!! And basic ingredients, too! I’m going to pick up things from the store today! Just one question… Is icing sugar the same as confectioners sugar? Thanks. 🙂

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