Lemon cupcakes are an easy summer dessert perfect for potlucks and picnics. I topped the lemon cupcakes with a blackberry frosting that is a cinch to pull together by adding blackberry preserves to a basic butter cream frosting.
One of my favorite flavors for spring and summer is lemon. Maybe it's the yellow for the sun or the tart and sweet flavor all at once, but lemon takes me to a spring day anytime I taste it.
A few years ago I became obsessed with pairing lemon and blackberry flavors together. First I tried lemon and blackberry napoleons, which are quick and easy using pre-made puff pastry. I had the jar of blackberry jam sitting in my fridge and I had to try something else so I decided on cupcakes. Lemon cupcakes are perfect for a baby or bridal shower or a Mother's Day tea.
Instead of using lemon rind to flavor the cupcakes, I used Young Living Lemon Oil. Why use lemon oil instead of just the rind of a lemon and lemon juice?The lemon essential oil is made exclusively from the rinds of the lemon which is the most nutrient dense. The oil is 68% d'limonene which is a powerful antioxidant. Basically the oil supplies more bang for your buck in regards to the nutrients. Plus it's a lot less work to use the oil.
Not all essential oils are edible. Due to lack of purity, 98% of essential oils sold should NOT be ingested. An edible essential oil will be labeled “therapeutic-grade” and have a “Supplement Facts” box on the label showing the nutritional value – do NOT use just any brand of essential oil for cooking/flavoring foods. Be sure to use pure oils from reliable sources, not synthetic scents or flavorings.
This is a basic vanilla cupcake batter that I added lemon oil to. You can really add any flavor oil that you want to this basic cupcake batter. I used it to make some amazing lavender cupcakes with orange frosting!
Someday I will figure out how to properly fill cupcake liners so that all the cupcakes bake up exactly the same. I used some smaller self-contained cupcake liners this time and it was a mess. Thankfully, the blackberry frosting hid the imperfections.
I used a Wilton #1M tip to pipe on the frosting. I bought a cupcake decorating kit a few years ago and I love it! It has all the tips needed to make pretty cupcakes in one place. I just use the disposable bags because it's less clean up.
The frosting is just a basic butter cream with blackberry jam added in. I bought a blackberry “spread” this time and there were seeds in it but I like the the darker flecks they added to the frosting. There are seedless blackberry jams available if you don't want little seeds in your cupcakes, though.
I added the blackberries to the tops so people would have an idea of what flavor the cupcakes were. I used half butter and half palm shortening in the butter cream so it'd stand up to the berry. You can use all butter if you prefer that taste and texture.
I love these lemon cupcakes with blackberry frosting are for bridal or baby showers and Mother's Day teas or brunches. The cupcakes hold up pretty well in an airtight container or you can freeze them. Pipe on the frosting the day before serving for a delicious cupcake treat.
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 cup milk
- 3-4 drops of Young Living Lemon Oil or the zest and juice from 1 lemon
- For the Blackberry Frosting:
- 1 cup butter
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 cup seedless blackberry jam
- To make cupcakes:
- In the bowl of a stand mixer cream butter and sugar together.
- Add 1 egg and beat until incorporated. Add 2nd egg and vanilla and mix to incorporate.
- Add flour and baking powder and mix thoroughly.
- Add milk, lemon juice and lemon zest and mix to combine.
- Fill paper lined muffin tins to 2/3 full with batter.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.
- Cool completely.
- To make the frosting:
- Cream butter in a mixing bowl with salt and vanilla.
- Add powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time, until frosting begins to form.
- Add blackberry jam and mix until thoroughly combined.
- Frost cupcakes.
Recipe adapted from Allrecipes.com
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