Rainbow Cupcakes | The Foodies' Kitchen
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Rainbow Cupcakes

Yes, I cheated.  I usted a cake mix to make these cupcakes…and, I used ready made frosting to ice them.  Gasp! These cupcakes are more about the colors, so using a cake mix is perfectly fine.  You can’t go wrong with cake mix, they are delicious anyway!

You will need a white batter for this recipe, so use white cake mix, or vanilla cake mix. Don’t use yellow cake mix, because you will be using food coloring for specific colors. Otherwise, you will want to get blue and will end up with a deep shade of green.

I went ahead and used 7 colors for my first attempt at making rainbow cupcakes. My daughter (Kristen) was in a cupcake mood so I made these for Mardi Gras.  I went overboard, they didn’t turn out the way I wanted them to, so I wasn’t even going to post this recipe. You are supposed to fill the cupcake molds up to 2/3 full, but that didn’t happen with this many colors.  I over filled them, because I used only one 12 cupcake tin. Next time I will use a second tin, to get maybe a total of 16 cupcakes, and will probably use only 5 colors. I suggest you do the same if you want to try to make them for the first time.

These are part of our St. Patrick’s day recipes, but they are also great for kid parties.  Your children will love them!  Mine did.


Rainbow Cupcakes

Yields 24 cupcakes (according to box’s instructions)

1 white cake mix box (yields 24 cupcakes when mold is filled up to ⅔ of its capacity)
red food coloring
yellow food coloring
blue food coloring
24 cupcake liners
2 tubs vanilla frosting
rainbow sprinkles
A glass of water
Clean hands!


  1. Prepare cake mix as directed on the box.
  2. Divide batter equally into 5 plastic cups.
  3. Color each cup with food coloring to get: red, yellow, green, blue and purple
  4. Prepare your cupcake molds by placing a cupcake liner in each cavity.
  5. With a tablespoon, spoon ONE tablespoon of  purple batter equally into your molds. Then follow with blue, green, yellow and ending with red, trying to make layers without mixing one with the other.  This is where the glass of water comes in.  After you put in the tablespoon of colored batter, dip your clean finger in the glass of water and then use it to gently spread the batter evenly.
  6. Bake as directed on your cake mix instructions. It should be 20 min
  7. Once cooled down, use white vanilla frosting to decorate using a piping bag
  8. Decorate with rainbow sprinkles.


  • I recommend you use Reynolds Baking Cups, these have foil and will prevent the cupcake to brown.

Rainbow Cupcakes

Rainbow Cupcakes

Rainbow Cupcakes

Rainbow Cupcakes

Rainbow Cupcakes

Rainbow Cupcakes

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  • Reply
    Susan K
    Friday May 10th, 2013 at 11:46 AM

    I found it easier to mix the colors into the batter using ziplock bags, one for each color. Just gently knead the food coloring into the batter then snip the corner of the bag & pipe the layer into the cupcake wrappers. It made for more uniformed layers & much easier to keep the layers nice & smooth! I also add a box of vanilla pudding mix to the cake batter for a more moist cake.

    • Reply
      Friday May 10th, 2013 at 02:41 PM

      Oh, that definitely makes things so much easier… plus clean up is a breeze :)
      ~ Kitty

  • Reply
    Jamie McMillan
    Tuesday August 26th, 2014 at 03:02 AM

    Thanks for the great tutorial. I made these tonight and they turned out wonderfully :)

    • Reply
      Tuesday August 26th, 2014 at 08:02 AM

      We are glad Jamie! Thanks for the kind words! :)

  • Reply
    Saturday September 6th, 2014 at 06:55 AM

    im trying this tonight as want to make these cupcakes for my sons christening so trying to do them hehe will let know how goes.

    • Reply
      Saturday September 6th, 2014 at 02:04 PM

      We hope they come out great Rebecca! And our best wishes for you and your family, specially the lil’ one! :)

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