These perfect lemon cupcakes are pure sunshine on a plate. They are soft and tender and full of lemon goodness. The lemon buttercream on top is out of this world.
I am helping a friend with her son’s wedding reception next week and they wanted to have a cupcake bar. She has put me in charge of selecting and planning the cupcake menu. Here is what we have planned.
Cupcake Bar Menu
Best Lemon Cupcakes
These easy lemon cupcakes were indeed perfect – lemon through and through. Lemon cake, lemon frosting – it doesn’t get any better! The cupcake starts with a boxed lemon cake mix but then is enhanced with some sour cream and pudding which makes for a very moist cupcake. The frosting, and it is all about the frosting, was super lemony too with fresh lemon juice and lemon zest.
I originally found the recipe over at my friend Mel’s amazing blog.
How to Make Lemon Cupcakes
The base of this cupcake is a cake mix but then we doctor it up a bit with some sour cream and lemon pudding to make them tender and soft.
- Mix together the cake mix, the ingredients listed on the back along with the sour cream and dry lemon pudding mix.
- Fill each cupcake lined muffin tin 2/3 of the way full. I use this scoop for evenly sized cupcakes
- Bake at 350 degrees F for 25-30 mins.
Don’t be surprised when you open the oven and the cupcakes have sunk in the middle, they just do that. I don’t see this as a problem, I see this as a place for more frosting!
I like to use a piping bag and a large round tip to frost my cupcakes with. If you prefer less frosting, just use a knife.
The recipe makes a lot of frosting so if you are not going to pipe on your frosting you could half the frosting recipe.
After they are frosted and right before serving, add half of a sliced strawberry so the juices don’t bleed into the frosting.
Topped off with half a strawberry these lemon cupcakes were indeed perfect. They were the perfect addition to our wedding cupcake bar.
How to Store Cupcakes
These cupcakes do not need to be refrigerated. Keep them stored in an airtight container on the counter until ready to serve. They will last for 2-3 days. Garnish before serving.
Perfect Lemon Cupcakes
- 1 15.25 oz lemon cake mix I prefer Duncan Hines
- 1 cup sour cream
- 3/4 cup water
- 3/4 cup oil
- 4 eggs
- 1 3.4 oz lemon instant pudding small box
Lemon Buttercream Frosting:
- 1 cup butter very soft
- 8 cup powdered sugar
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
- Mix dry ingredients
- Add wet ingredients
- Mix with electric mixer on medium speed for about two minutes. Batter will be thick
- For cupcakes, bake them at 350 degrees for 20 minutes (I was able to get 24 very full cupcakes from the recipe).
- For regular cake, pour into a greased 9×11 pan or two round pans
- Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes
- Don’t over bake or the cake will be too dry!
- The toothpick test works to check to see if they’re done
- The original recipe said that the cupcakes will fall after they come out of the oven, but this is normal and to just fill up the indentation with more frosting
Lemon Buttercream Frosting:
- Place the butter in a large mixing bowl
- Add 4 cups of sugar, then the juice and the zest
- Beat until smooth and creamy
- Gradually add the remaining sugar, 1 cup at a time, until icing is thick enough to be of good spreading consistency (I added 6 cups total).
- Use and store at room temperature. (Don’t refrigerate and it will last in a covered container for about three days.)
- Garnish with berries, if desired right before serving