Triple Lemon Cupcakes (fluffy and moist)
Lemon Cupcakes! Need I say more? These lemon cupcakes are tangy, and sweet, and have the perfect fluffy moist crumb.
Why You’ll Love These
Lemon cupcakes are the perfect spring treat, right?
These homemade lemon cupcakes are bursting with fresh lemon flavor!
They are simple and easy to make.
This recipe makes 24 luscious cupcakes. Perfect to share with friends and neighbors.
Do you love lemon desserts as much as we do? Try our lemon sandwich cookies, lemon orange pound cake, Meyer lemon bundt cake, and lemon cheesecake bars with shortbread crust.
- Cake flour, baking powder, and salt – Cake flour produces a lighter cake texture than all-purpose flour.
- Buttermilk – Adds moisture and flavor.
- Unsalted butter – Unsalted butter lets you control the salt. The sodium level differs in each brand of butter.
- 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 fresh lemon flavor.
- Vanilla extract and lemon extract – To boost the flavor.
Lemon Buttercream Frosting Ingredients
- Unsalted butter – Softened.
- Cream cheese – Lends a tangy flavor to the icing.
- Fresh lemon juice, lemon zest, and salt – These add additional fresh citrus flavor to the cupcakes.
- Powdered sugar – For volume and sweetness.
How to Make Lemon Cupcakes
Prepare cupcake tins (muffin tins) by using cupcake liners or spray with non-stick cooking spray.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Sift or whisk 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 the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or a large mixing bowl to use a hand mixer) and rub them together with your fingers until the sugar is moist and fragrant.
Add the butter and, 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.
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.
Beat the batter for about 2 minutes to ensure that it is thoroughly mixed and well aerated. Don’t worry they won’t be tough and dense.
Divide the batter equally into the muffin pans.
Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. The cupcakes should be well-risen and springy to the touch.
Cool completely on a wire rack.
To make the lemon buttercream 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. You can put the frosting on with an offset spatula or place it in a piping bag.
- 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.
The frosted cupcakes will last in the refrigerator for up to 4 days in an airtight container. Bring to room temperature before serving.
Yes, you can freeze the cupcakes unfrosted. The cream cheese frosting does not freeze well. Wrap unfrosted cupcakes tightly in plastic wrap, then place them in a freezer safe bag, and freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator. Then proceed with the frosting as instructed.
Yes! They are even better the next day, so if you have the time make them ahead.
More Delicious Cupcake Recipes
Lemon Cupcakes Recipe
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
- 1/2 cup 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
- 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.2 1/4 cups cake flour, 1 tablespoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Whisk together the milk and egg whites in a medium bowl.1 1/4 cups buttermilk, 4 large egg whites
- 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.1 1/2 cups sugar, lemon zest of two lemons, 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 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.1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract, 1/4 teaspoon pure lemon extract, 1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 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.
- 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.4 tablespoons unsalted butter, 4 oz cream cheese, Juice and zest from 2 lemons, Generous pinch of salt, 4 cups sifted confectioner’s sugar
Adapted from trialsinfood
These look so yummy! Perfect for a spring party. I love a combination of sweet and tart.
We love the flavor of lemon and also love cupcakes at our house so this is a win/win. Thanks for sharing.
Thank you for stopping by Rebecca!
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
These look SO light and fresh! Perfect for a dessert at a brunch! Pinning and sharing!
Thank you so much, Tara!
These look simply amazing!
Thank you, Sarah!
Yum thanks for sharing. I posted a lemon bread recipie for one of my posts today. I love the flavor of lemon its really good. Have a great day.
Thanks for stopping by, Stacey!
I’ve made Pink Lemonade Cupcakes before and they were delicious! I bet these are too 🙂 I hope you can stop by:
Colletta, thank you! I will definitely drop by.
I love lemon anything! These sound so good!
Thank you, Heather!
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.
The frosting on the cake just looks so yummy! Thanks for sharing the recipe!
Thank you for stopping by, Crystal!
Yum! These look really good!! Pinning for later…:) #SmallVictories
Thank you, Danita!
These look so lovely! (And are making me crave cake, which can only be a good thing! 🙂 #sharewithme
Lemon is my favorite! Looks yummy. Thank you for sharing at Merry Monday!
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 🙂 #Sharewithme
What is better than cake and cake with a Citroen flavour is amazing! Can’t wait to try these.
Thank you, Catie!
Oh wow these looks PERFECT and delicious
Yum! Lemon cupcakes sound so good right now!
Thanks you for coming by!
these look absolutely amazing, found your recipe through the link party and decided to shared and pinned, keep making great food!
Thank you, Cassandra!
Thank you for sharing your lemon cupcake recipe with us at Brag About It! Pinned and tweeted 🙂
Lemon in cupcakes, brilliant.
Thank you for coming by, Anna!
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.
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.
Your pictures are beautiful! I love lemon and these sound yummy. Pinned it!
Thank you so much, Jennifer! Still working on it but I’m learning more and more every day.
These look fabulous. Have not had a cupcake in ages.
Thank you, Suzi!
I love Lemon anything so this look like just my thing
Thank you for sharing your yummy cup cakes on SYC. Jo
Thank you, Joanne!
Oh these look delicious! Like you said, so refreshing for Spring. Thanks for sharing with SYC.
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!
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
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.
They look delicious. I love lemon flavored desserts. Thank you for sharing with Delicious Dishes Recipe Party! Hope to see you again this week!
These look amazing – almost too pretty to eat! Thanks for sharing!
Thank you, Emily!
I love lemon flavored desserts! I’m totally making these this weekend! Pinning! #ShareWithMe
Thanks, Erin! I hope you enjoy the cupcakes!
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. #sharewithme
Thank you, Jenny! I will keeping coming and give it a share!
Oh I love all things lemon! These look great. Featured at Be Inspired this morning. Thanks so much for sharing!
Thank you so much, Sharon!
Your Lemon Cupcakes look amazing! Hope you are having a great day and thanks so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
Come Back Soon!
Thank you, Miz Helen!
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 @ Domesblissity
Thank you so much, Anne!