Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes
I have no words to describe these strawberry lemonade cupcakes. Not just because they leave you speechless and wanting for more after the first bite (which they totally do!), but because I am brain-dead (and coming from a neuroscientist-in-training this is inaccurate, but I will let it fly today because I am that exhausted).
I had two big presentations earlier this week and I spent the past week and a half just reading and reading and reading and juggling married life, family, friends and blogging with that just left me exhausted. Of course at some points my brain was resisting the urge to work leading to some serious procrastination like giant cookie bake-offs (I’ll share soon), mall excursions in search of cute tea cups that were never procured and baking these perfect summer strawberry lemonade cupcakes (among other stress induced goodies) but with no time to blog about them.
Using up the rest of the strawberries from this cake, I made a light and airy lemon cake filled with fresh strawberry bites and I topped the cupcakes with fluffy whipped strawberry lemon buttercream. It is the perfect balance between sweet and tangy (I believe strawberry and lemons were made just for each other!).
These are now on top of my favorite cupcake list and will be making them again as the months get warmer. I suggest you find a friend with a pool and bring these cupcake as a bribe, along with some fresh strawberry lemonade for the perfect hot summer day pool party (ahemmm, Laura).
I am off to bake about 80 cupcakes, decorate cookies and a cake for my first bridal shower dessert table this Saturday! Because I am a procrastinator genius, I left everything to last minute. Wish me luck! I’ll share the results (hopefully successful) with you next week.
Hope you all have a great weekend!!
- 3 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon plus ¾ teaspoon baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ cups unsalted butter (3 sticks), room temperature
- 2 ½ cups sugar
- 5 large eggs, room temperature
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon lemon extract
- 1 ¼ cups buttermilk, room temperature
- ½ cup fresh strawberry, hulled and diced finely
- 1 ½ cups sugar
- 6 large egg whites, room temperature
- 2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Juice of 1 lemon
- ½ cup fresh strawberry puree
- Preheat oven to 350 degree F. Line muffin tins with cupcake wrappers
- Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl.
- Combine buttermilk, vanilla extract and lemon extract. Set aside
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
- Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down side of bowl as necessary. Mix in zest.
- With mixer on low speed, add flour mixture in 3 batches, alternating with 2 batches of buttermilk mixture and beginning and ending with flour. Mix well to combine after each addition and scrape sides of bowl as needed. Fold in the strawberries by hand using a rubber spatula.
- Divide batter among cupcake liners, filling ⅔ to the top.
- Bake until golden brown and a cake tester comes out clean. About 20-25 minutes
- Transfer pans to wire racks and let cool in pans for 2 minutes. Remove cupcakes from pans and cool completely on wire racks.
- Whisk together sugar and egg whites in a heatproof mixing bowl set over (not in] a pan of simmering water. Whisk until warm and sugar is dissolved (mixture should feel completely smooth when rubbed between your fingers), 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat.
- With an electric mixer on medium speed, whisk egg white mixture 5 minutes. Increase speed to medium-high, and whisk until stiff, glossy peaks form and meringue has cooled (test by feeling bottom of bowl), about 6 minutes.
- Reduce speed to medium. Add butter, one piece at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla and lemon juice. Mix the strawberry puree into the buttercream until combined.
- Best if used immediately or store airtight in refrigerator for up to a week.