Strawberry season! Big, fat, juicy and dirt, dirt cheap. I intended to bring strawberry cupcakes to a get-together but then I walked passed big, fat, juicy lemons. Not for sale, but still big. Fat. Juicy! I needed lemonade! And lemony cupcakes!
I switched from strawberry cupcakes with cream cheese frosting to lemon cupcakes with strawberry frosting. I also ended up needing 10 other things that weren’t on my list. And this, my friends, is why we usually don’t let me walk into the grocery store hungry.
The lemon cake was moist with a nice and light lemony goodness. If you’re like me and are a big fan of kick-you-in-the-face lemon, you might want to sub some (heck, maybe even all) of the lemon juice for thawed lemonade concentrate. And the frosting? Oh, the frosting. I love Swiss Meringue Buttercream. It’s killer smooth. With the addition of strawberry puree, it was also very strawberry-y, and fluffy – the kind of frosting you could eat straight from the bowl with a big spoon. And then lick from the rubber spatula and paddle attachment… not that I did that or anything.
Having problems with your swiss meringue buttercream? Read how to fix it here.
Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes
Tart lemon cupcakes topped with strawberry swiss meringue buttercream frosting.
- For the lemon cupcakes:
- 3 cups flour
- 1 Tbsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temp
- 2 cups sugar
- 4 eggs, at room temp
- 3 Tbsp lemon zest (from 2 lemons)
- 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon)
- 1 cup buttermilk
- For the strawberry swiss meringue buttercream frosting:
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 4 egg whites
- 3 sticks butter, cubed and at room temperature
- 2 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1/2 cup strawberry puree (from about 6 medium, hulled strawberries)
- Preheat oven to 325. Prepare muffin tins with paper liners or baking spray.
- Whisk flour, baking powder and salt together and set aside. Cream butter and sugar on a high until pale, light, and fluffy (about 5 minutes). Add eggs one at at time, mixing thoroughly before adding the next one. Add lemon zest and lemon juice. Turn mixer to the low. Add the dry ingredients in three batches, alternating with the buttermilk in two batches. Mix only until just incorporated.
- Fill each muffin cup ~3/4 full. Bake for 25 minutes or until a skewer shows only moist crumbs attached, rotating the pans at the halfway point. Allow cupcakes to cool completely in the pans before removing.
- Place the stand mixer bowl over a simmering pot of water (the bottom of the bowl should not touch the water). Whisk the sugar and egg whites until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture registers 160 degrees with a candy thermometer.
- Place bowl on the stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and whisk on high speed until the mixture is cool and holds stiff, glossy peaks (approximately 10 minutes). Change to the paddle attachment and beat in one tablespoon of butter at a time on medium. The mixture might appear curdled but keep beating, it will pull back togethe. Add lemon juice, and strawberry puree. Increase speed to high and beat until the frosting reincorporates and is smooth and fluffy.
Yields: 24 cupcakes
Estimated time: 1 hour