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March 25, 2011

Lemon Supreme Cupcakes

March24_2011 004Cupcakes! I’ve been a little obsessed with cupcakes lately.  Cooking seems to be more “my thing” than the precise process of baking, but for some reason I’ve been obsessing about baking little cute & tasty things {maybe I’ve just watched too many episodes of Cupcake Wars}.  I’ve thought about cute frosted cookies, but my kitchen’s a little short on rolling & cutting space.  Soooo,  for my husband’s Birthday Dinner I decided to whip up a cupcake inspired by our favorite pie at Village Inn
Yup, that’s the one…Lemon Supreme.  Cream cheese layer topped with a tangy lemon filling on a shortbread crust, ahhhh.   I luh-uh-uhv lemon desserts {as long as there’s enough tartness to the lemon – I’m the girl who adds extra lemon to the lemonade}.  I even converted the hubby years ago, and he was pretty much an order-whatever-has-chocolate-and/or-Oreos-in-it kind of guy!  So, I decided on a lemon cupcake, with a little lemon curd filling {I bought a jar} and vanilla cream cheese frosting on top.  These were a definite HIT…Brad says I nailed the taste of the pie!

Lemon Supreme Cupcakes
(Printable Recipe Here)
Baking Time: 17 minutes          Servings: 24-30

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Lemon  Cupcakes
3 cups all-purpose flour
4 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups sugar
4 eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons lemon zest, freshly grated
1 cup milk
2 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1-10 ounce jar lemon curd {or make your own!}

Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1-16 ounce box confectioner's sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract*
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste*
(*or use 2 tsp of one or the other)
pinch of salt

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (350 if using dark pans).  Line 30** cupcake pan cups with paper liners.
  2. Sift flour, baking powder & salt together in a bowl and set aside. In another bowl (or stand mixer) beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time, beating until fully incorporated after each one. Mix in vanilla extract and lemon zest.
  3. Alternately add flour mixture and liquid ingredients (milk & lemon juice) to butter mixture, beating on low just until combined.
  4. Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full. Bake for 17 minutes, or until a toothpick/cake tester comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes before removing to racks to finish cooling.
  5. Use a paring knife to cut 1-inch "X's" in the middle of each cupcake. Fill each with approximately 1 tablespoon of lemon curd.
  6. To make frosting, beat all ingredients with electric mixer until creamy. Frost filled cupcakes.
**My first batch made 26 cupcakes. This will vary based on how full you fill your liners. Also, I use aluminum-free baking powder, which tends to form bubbles in any batters containing acid (like lemon), which changes the volume of your batter.

Note on filling (I'm no expert): I used a pastry bag fitted with a large round tip to fill the cupcakes. You could also use a plastic squeeze bottle with a nozzle.

Refrigerate leftovers (due to frosting). Enjoy!!

Have a Beautiful Day {especially if it gets a little Crazy}!