Lemon Cupcakes

Lemon Cupcakes! Need I say more?

Lemon cupcakes are the perfect spring treat, right?

These cupcakes are tangy, sweet, and have the perfect moist crumb.

This recipe makes 24 luscious cupcakes. So share with friends and neighbors. I sent them with my husband to share with his co-workers.

Recipe Ingredients

For the Cupcakes

  • Cake flour, baking powder, and salt – Produces a lighter cake texture.
  • Buttermilk – Adds moisture.
  • Unsalted butter – Room temperature.
  • Granulated sugar – For sweetness.
  • Egg whites – This recipe uses 4 large size egg whites at room temperature.
  • Fresh lemon juice and lemon zest – For the best lemon flavor.
  • Vanilla extract and lemon extract – To boost the flavor.

Frosting recipe ingredients

  • Unsalted butter
  • Cream cheese – Lends a tangy flavor to the icing.
  • Fresh lemon juice and zest
  • Salt – Brings out the flavor.
  • Powdered sugar – For volume.

Tips

  • Always use room temperature butter, eggs, and buttermilk. They will incorporate better and lend a lighter more even-textured cake.
  • Use fresh lemon juice and zest. Please don’t use bottled lemon juice.
  • Always measure flour properly. Aerate the flour, spoon it into the measuring cup, then use the back of a knife to level off.
Lemon Cupcakes on a wire rack.

How to Make Lemon Cupcakes

Prepare cupcake tins by using cupcake liners or spray with non-stick cooking spray.

I changed up the recipe just a little to give these cupcakes more fresh lemon flavor. They are even better the next day, so if you have the time make them ahead.

Center a rack in the oven to 350 degrees F.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt.

Whisk together the milk and egg whites in a medium bowl.

Put the sugar and lemon zest in a mixer bowl or another large bowl and rub them together with your fingers until the sugar is moist and fragrant.

Add the butter and, working with the paddle or whisk attachment, or with a hand mixer, beat at medium speed for a full 3 minutes, until the butter and sugar are very light and fluffy.

Beat in the vanilla extract, lemon extract, and lemon juice, then add one-third of the flour mixture, still beating on medium speed.

Beat in half of the milk-egg mixture, then beat in half of the remaining dry ingredients until incorporated.

Frosted Lemon Cupcakes lined up on a wire rack.

Add the rest of the milk and eggs, beating until the batter is homogeneous, then add the last of the dry ingredients. Scrape down the sides as needed.

Give the batter a good 2-minute beating to ensure that it is thoroughly mixed and well aerated. Place the batter into the muffin pan.

Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until the cupcakes are well risen and springy to the touch – a thin knife or wooden stick inserted into the centers should come out clean.

Cool completely on a wire rack.

To make the frosting: In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, thoroughly mix together the room temperature butter and cream cheese.

Add the lemon juice, zest, and salt and mix to combine. On low speed, add the powdered sugar, one cup at a time until you reach the desired spreading consistency.

To finish, frost the cooled cupcakes and serve.

How long will these cupcakes last?

The frosted cupcakes will last in the refrigerator for up to 4 days, covered tightly. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Can I freeze cupcakes?

Yes, you can freeze the cupcakes unfrosted. The cream cheese frosting does not freeze well. Wrap unfrosted cupcakes tightly and freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator. Then proceed with the frosting as instructed.

More Delicious Recipes

Lemon Cupcakes - Perfectly sweet, tangy and moist cupcakes! Spring dessert at it's best!

Lemon Cupcakes Recipe

Perfect Spring dessert. Tangy, sweet, and a tender moist crumb!
5 from 11 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: buttcream, cupcakes, lemon
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 24
Calories: 247kcal
Author: Leigh Harris

Ingredients
 

For the cupcakes:

  • 2 1/4 cups cake flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups buttermilk
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • lemon zest of two lemons
  • 1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice about 2 lemons
  • 1 stick unsalted butter 8 tablespoons, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure lemon extract

For the icing:

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
  • 4 oz cream cheese softened
  • Juice and zest from 2 lemons
  • Generous pinch of salt
  • 4 cups sifted confectioner’s sugar

Instructions

Cupcakes

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare cupcake tins by using liners or spray with non-stick cooking spray
  • Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  • Whisk together the milk and egg whites in a medium bowl.
  • Put the sugar and lemon zest in a mixer bowl or another large bowl and rub them together with your fingers until the sugar is moist and fragrant. Add the butter and, working with the paddle or whisk attachment, or with a hand mixer, beat at medium speed for a full 3 minutes, until the butter and sugar are very light.
  • Beat in the extracts and lemon juice, then add one-third of the flour mixture, still beating on medium speed. Beat in half of the milk-egg mixture, then beat in half of the remaining dry ingredients until incorporated.
  • Add the rest of the milk and eggs, beating until the batter is homogeneous, then add the last of the dry ingredients.
  • Give the batter a good 2-minute beating to ensure that it is thoroughly mixed and well aerated. Place the batter into the cupcake tins.
  • Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until the cupcakes are well risen and springy to the touch – a thin knife inserted into the centers should come out clean. Cool on wire rack.

Icing

  • In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, thoroughly mix together the butter and cream cheese. Add the lemon juice, zest, and salt and mix to combine. On low speed, add the confectioner’s sugar, one cup at a time until you reach the desired spreading consistency. To finish, frost the cooled cupcakes and serve.

Nutrition

Calories: 247kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 22mg | Sodium: 88mg | Potassium: 97mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 33g | Vitamin A: 260IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 44mg | Iron: 1mg

Adapted from trialsinfood

Share With Your Friends And Family!

70 Comments

  1. I absolutely love lemon anything – anytime – hmmm may have to make some of these for our superbowl party! thanks for sharing your post at #TGISaturdays

  2. These look divine. I just want to run my finger in that frosting. Glad you shared on Tuesday Talk today. Adding to my recipe file.

  3. These look so lovely! (And are making me crave cake, which can only be a good thing! 🙂 #sharewithme5 stars

  4. These look delicious – lemon is my favourite flavour for cake, jam, tart – whatever – the tarter the better! But cupcakes and lemon drizzle drizzle are my absolute favourite. Will give this recipe a try 🙂 #Sharewithme5 stars

  5. First of all, I love these sweet little lemony beauties. Second, you’ve helped me solve a major problem! I really want to become a better baker. One thing that’s holding me back is I just can’t have baked goods lying around the house all the time. I would be a house in no time flat as I have zero will power. I never thought to send them off with my husband to bring to work! Genius! Thanks for linking up at Saucy Saturdays.5 stars

    1. I’m glad I could be of service, Christine! hehe I send most of my baked goods to his office or neighbors. They are too tempting to keep around the house.

  6. Oh my!! My 13 year-old would LOVE these!! She loves lemon cake and cookies 🙂 I may have to make these for her.
    Thanks for sharing with us at #MMBH!
    xoxo

  7. I love lemon cupcakes and these look so very good. Cream cheese icing is one of my favorite toppings. It’s hard to imagine that these wouldn’t taste amazing. Yum!

    Sally @ Life Loving
    #LifeLovingLinkie

  8. Your Lemon Cupcakes look beautiful! Love the cream cheese icing and the cake would be so moist with the buttermilk too. Pinned and shared. Thank you for bringing this little taste of spring to the Hearth and Soul Hop.5 stars

  9. I love lemon flavored desserts! I’m totally making these this weekend! Pinning! #ShareWithMe

  10. Oh my goodness these look absolutely amazing I have a soft spot for lemon and cupcakes right up my street. Great food styling too. Thanks for the continual support of my linky and blog as it gets quieter and quieter I am hoping to turn it around and save SWM. #sharewithme5 stars

  11. Oh I love all things lemon! These look great. Featured at Be Inspired this morning. Thanks so much for sharing!

  12. Hi and welcome to Thriving on Thursdays linky party. Thanks so much for linking up last week. Your lemon cupcakes look so gorgeous. I want to eat one right now. I’m featuring your post at tomorrow’s party. Thanks for coming and I hope to see you again.

    Anne @ Domesblissity5 stars

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.