Lemon Cupcakes

Another prize worthy cupcake discovery by my sister, Elina! We made these gorgeous cupcakes for our sister, Milana’s, bridal shower. They were a big hit and I knew I had to share the recipe with all of you.

Cupcakes are wonderful in so many ways. These little morsels are dainty and pretty but are packed with so much flavor. I prefer making the mini cupcakes, since they are small enough to eat in just one or two bites.

Elina, found the recipe for these cupcakes on Foodgawker, made by Georgia, on her blog, The Comfort of Cooking. She, in turn had gotten the recipe from The Brown Eyed Baker. You know that a recipe will turn out great when they were already enjoyed by so many! The cupcakes are tender and moist, with a bright note of lemon. The frosting is a velvety cream cheese creation, also flavored with lemon.

Limoncello, an Italian lemon liquer, heightens the flavor of these lemon wonders. Yes, you can make these cupcakes without limoncello, but IT WILL NOT TASTE THE SAME. When I first opened the bottle, I was blown away by the amazing fragrance. I am very tempted to pour some on myself and wear it as perfume. It smells SO good and tastes even better.

Yields: 24-26 regular sized cupcakes or 48-52 mini cupcakes

Lemon Cupcakes: 

3 cups flour

2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 stick of butter, softened

1/2 package (4 oz total) cream cheese, softened

1 cup sugar

6 eggs

3-4 Tablespoons limoncello

1 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup lemon juice

lemon zest from one small lemon

Cream Cheese Limoncello Frosting:

2 (16 0z total) packages cream cheese, softened

1 stick of butter, softened

3-4 cups powdered sugar

2-3 Tablespoons limoncello

Raspberries, optional, for garnishing

Preheat the oven to 350. Line a muffin pan (regular sized or mini, your choice with baking cup liners.

In a small bowl, whisk the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder and salt). Using a standing mixer and a paddle attachment, (or large bowl and hand mixer) cream the butter, cream cheese and sugar until they are an even consistency. Add the eggs, one at a time. Add 1/3 of the dry ingredients to the batter. Mix. Add half of the buttermilk. Mix, then add half of the remaining dry ingredients, followed by the remaining buttermilk and lastly the rest of the dry ingredients.  WARNING: Do not skip this seemingly finicky and annoying step. It really makes a difference in the texture of the cupcakes. Unless you like your cupcakes to be hard little cookies:).

Add the lemon juice, lemon zest and limoncello to the batter.

Fill the lined muffin cups 2/3 -3/4 full. Bake for about 10 minutes for the mini cupcakes and about 20 minutes for the regular sized cupcakes. Cool.

If you are making the large cupcakes, I would recommend filling them with lemon curd. You can use store-bought, or make your own. The small cupcakes are bite sized and I don’t think they need any filling.

While the cupcakes bake, make the frosting. In a standing mixer with the paddle attachment, (or a large bowl and a hand mixer), cream the softened cream cheese and butter. Add the powdered sugar. If you like your frosting very sweet, use 4 cups. I usually use less sugar, since I am not a fan of overly sweet desserts. Add the limoncello. You can also add some lemon zest if you like. Fill a pastry bag with the frosting and pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes. Keep it simple, or add a pop of color and a burst of freshness by garnishing the cupcakes with a raspberry. These lovely pictures were taken by Elina herself:).

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Lemon Cupcakes

IMG_9731 (550x367)

By olgak7 Published: October 5, 2012

  • Yield: 24-26 regular or 48-52 mini cupcakes
  • Prep: 20-30 mins
  • Cook: 10-20 mins
  • Ready In: 30 mins

Another prize worthy cupcake discovery by my sister, Elina! We made these gorgeous cupcakes for our sister, Milana's, bridal shower. …

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Line a muffin pan (regular sized or mini, your choice with baking cup liners.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder and salt).
  3. Using a standing mixer and a paddle attachment, (or large bowl and hand mixer) cream the butter, cream cheese and sugar until they are an even consistency.
  4. Add the eggs, one at a time.
  5. Add 1/3 of the dry ingredients to the batter. Mix. Add half of the buttermilk.
  6. Mix, then add half of the remaining dry ingredients, followed by the remaining buttermilk and lastly the rest of the dry ingredients.
  7. Add the lemon juice, lemon zest and limoncello to the batter.
  8. Fill the lined muffin cups 2/3 -3/4 full. Bake for about 10 minutes for the mini cupcakes and about 20 minutes for the regular sized cupcakes. Cool.
  9. While the cupcakes bake, make the frosting. In a standing mixer with the paddle attachment, (or a large bowl and a hand mixer), cream the softened cream cheese and butter.
  10. Add the powdered sugar. If you like your frosting very sweet, use 4 cups.
  11. Add the limoncello. You can also add some lemon zest if you like.
  12. Fill a pastry bag with the frosting and pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes. Keep it simple, or add a pop of color and a burst of flavor by garnishing the cupcakes with a raspberry.

Comments

  1. Alla says

    They looks amazing! Yum! I also cant wait to make Dorie Greenspan’s lemon/poppyseed muffins. Thank you Olga for another great post. The pics are beautiful!

  2. Dina says

    Olga,

    Is this frosting runny or is it pretty stable? I know that some frostings use heavy cream instead of butter. Do you know which one is more stable? Thanks!

    • says

      This frosting is pretty stable, since it’s based on cream cheese and butter. Frosting with whipped cream is more tender and does tend to be more runny. I like adding a bit of whipped cream to lighten the frosting a bit, but you would need to refrigerate it to keep it firm.

  3. Tatyana says

    I tried making these and I don’t know what went wrong, I followed the recipe exactly but they turned out hard on the outside and underdone on the inside. Also, what brand of Limoncello did you use? mines did not smell aromatic.

    • says

      I’m sorry to hear that, Tatyana. I don’t know why I came out that way, since I wasn’t in your kitchen. I’ve never had a problem with these cupcakes. I’ve used several brands of limoncello. Last time it was Il Tramonto.

      • Tatyana says

        I tried them a second time. Not sure why but they turn out really hard :/ I was really hoping they would turn out nice and fluffy. Maybe there is just one small step that I’m missing.

        • says

          I re-read the recipe and the instructions again. I don’t see anything missing.
          If they turned out hard, my guess is that maybe you didn’t mix the batter correctly, adding the flour and buttermilk mixture to the batter alternatively, or you over mixed the batter. However, that wouldn’t explain why they were hard on the outside and underdone on the inside. That shouldn’t have happened, no matter how you mixed the batter.
          I’m sorry you’ve had so much trouble with these cupcakes. As I mentioned earlier, I’ve never had any issues and they were always a big hit whenever we served them at parties, so it’s not only my opinion.
          If you go on the websites that I link to where I got the recipe from in the first place, you’ll see that they were quite popular there too, and I didn’t see anyone mentioning in the comments that the cupcakes were under done in the center when baked and hard on the outside.

  4. Oksana says

    I just made those today. I used the mini cupcakes, but I had to bake mine about 13-15 mins, because after 10 minutes, when I did the toothpick test, it still seemed a bit gooey on the inside. The cupcakes didn’t turn out fluffy like out of the box recipes, those are more like a ‘cake’ texture I guess, but they still taste pretty good. I’ll be taking some to work and to a family gathering tomorrow to share.
    I did only use 1.5 packages of cream cheese, and 2 cups of powdered sugar, and that was more than enough for the frosting for me. Thank you for posting. I go on your website alot, and before I used to just look at recipes and drool on the keyboard, now, I go gather ingredients and prepare the goodies. My husband is surprised how fast we go through sugar and flour in our house now.

  5. Alena says

    So I bought the limoncello from Bevmo
    Very expensive came out to be $17 a bottle .
    I made the cupcake recipe based on Comfort cooking but cup cakes were not as fluffy as I was hoped. The frosting and the crud was perfect for this cupcake . Love the flavor the
    Limoncello gives. I’m making this for christmas
    And going to use the box cake mix for the cupcakes. Going to add lemon zest and limoncello to give the same great taste but for a more fluffy cupcake. Don’t know what I did wrong .

    • oksana says

      That is what happened to me too, they weren’t fLuffy, but yummy. And since I still have my limoncello left, it’s a good idea to add it to the cake batter cupcakes, I haven’t thought of that before, awesome idea.

      • says

        Not all cupcakes are the same texture. They are tender, but not fluffy. I personally, really enjoyed the texture, but food is a very personal thing.

    • says

      Hi Alena,
      Not all cupcakes are the same texture. These cupcakes are tender but they are not supposed to be fluffy. I really enjoyed the texture, but taste is personal, so make it the way you prefer.

  6. Galina says

    Hi Olga want to make this cup cakes for my daughter bday… do you think its gonna be ok to make those with out lemon juice and with out limoncello????

  7. Galina says

    Thank you Olga… do you have any cupcakes that kids would really like it???? but not chocolate one my kids likes olny white or yellowe

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