This is just the dreamiest cupcake I ever did bake! If you love lemon, you absolutely must try this recipe.
It’s citrus season, darlings, and lemon just so happens to be one of my favorite flavors. I always, always, always have lemons in my house and they’re never tastier than they are in the dead of winter. Isn’t that the best? If you’re unfamiliar with Meyer lemons, you’re in for a treat. When I posted a teaser of this recipe, many of you assumed these were orange cupcakes. The Meyer lemons were in plain sight in the video but Meyer lemons at a glance could easily be mistaken for oranges. They range in color from dark yellow to orange but if you look close at the teaser video, you can see that they do have a lemon shape, not a round orange shape.
Meyer lemons taste sweeter than regular lemons because they have far less acid. Since they’re not as sour, they taste more lemony! They also smell like pure heaven. They smell exactly like lemon tree flowers (which smell like very sweet jasmine), which is hands down one of my favorite scents on the planet. They’re just divine. You can of course substitute regular lemons in this recipe and it’ll work just fine, but the flavor of Meyer lemons truly makes this cupcake special.
Another key component of this recipe is the incredible Meyer lemon cream cheese frosting. You heard me! I’ve never had cream cheese frosting on a lemon cupcake before but it just sounded so good so I decided to roll the dice and try it and wow. This frosting is incredible!
Because of the cream cheese, you will need to refrigerate these cupcakes. They’re at their absolute best right when you frost them before they’re refrigerated. If you want to make them ahead of time, bake the cupcakes and store them at room temperature for a day or two, then frost right before serving. Store leftovers in the fridge and bring to room temperature before serving.
Meyer Lemon Cupcakes
Makes 24 cupcakesFor the cupcakes:
2 cups sugar
3 1/4 cups flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup milk, at room temperature
1/4 cup freshly squeezed Meyer lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp Meyer lemon zest
4 large farm fresh eggs
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two muffins pans with cupcake liners and spray with nonstick spray.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, baking powder, and salt.
- Add butter to the mixer and beat until it looks sandy.
- Combine the milk and vanilla and add to the mixer. Mix on low speed until incorporated. Add Meyer lemon zest and freshly squeezed Meyer lemon juice and mix well.
- Crack eggs into a bowl. This way, you won’t accidentally get egg shells in your cake batter. With the mixer running on low, add eggs one at a time. Make sure each is incorporated before adding the next.
- Divide batter evenly amongst twenty-four cupcake liners. Bake for 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center will come out clean.
- Remove the cupcakes from the oven and cool for five minutes before removing them from the pan. Cool completely, then frosting Meyer Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting.
Meyer Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting
8 oz cream cheese, softened (full fat!)
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
2 Tbsp Meyer lemon juice
- Combine cream cheese and butter until smooth. Slowly sift in powdered sugar and beat one cup at a time. Mix in freshly squeezed Meyer lemon juice.
Note: if substituting regular lemon juice in this recipe, you may want to reduce the amount of lemon juice and add a bit of vanilla extract to mimic the Meyer lemon flavor, which is sweeter than standard lemon juice.
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