These lemon cupcakes are filled with luscious lemon curd and topped with a lemon raspberry buttercream packed with real raspberry flavor.Have you ever had something that just made it feel like spring? Here in Minnesota, I would say that spring is one of the best times of the year.
The Lemon Curd
Lemon curd is so good! And in these lemon raspberry cupcakes, it is one of the best parts. Many people have trouble making good lemon curd. It will curdle, burn, not thicken or be too thick. One of the trick to making perfect lemon curd is heat control. Do not, please do not make your lemon curd on anything more than medium heat. Also, it is important to make sure that your lemon juice, egg yolks, and sugar are incredibly well combined before you place your lemon curd on the stove.
When you make lemon curd, sometimes chunks of egg do occur. This is okay! Just make sure to run the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve before adding the butter.
Another important aspect of making lemon curd is to secure that the lemon curd mixture is cooled slightly before adding the butter. This allows the butter to emulsify into the lemon curd creating a richer flavor and texture. Don’t get me wrong the curd should still be pretty hot, about 140 degrees Fahrenheit. But allowing the lemon curd to cool for 3-5 minutes before adding the butter makes sure that the butter melts less as it is whisked in.
The Raspberry Reduction
This raspberry frosting is amazing because it is flavored with real raspberries. No dyes or artificial flavors period. One of the most important parts of making this frosting is making sure the raspberries do not burn while they are reducing. An easy way to avoid this is by stirring it frequently.
Another important aspect of making the perfect lemon raspberry frosting is removing the seeds. It is important to pass the raspberry reduction through a sieve while it is still warm. The raspberry coulis thickens while it cools making it harder to get through the sieve.
The disposal of the seeds from the raspberry reduction ensures that the frosting remains smooth. When the raspberry reduction still has the seeds the frosting can become almost gritty. Personally, I enjoy a frosting without seeds much more because then there is not any crunchy elements in what you would expect to be a smooth, creamy frosting.
Salted Butter in the Buttercream??? WHAT????
Some may disagree with me on this one but this frosting is super sweet so using salted butter in this frosting completely okay. Florian Belanger is probably shaking his head in disgust. For all of you who do not know, he’s the French judge on cupcake wars.
The salt and the salted butter in the frosting play an important role in controlling the sweetness of the frosting. For clarification, the salt and the butter do not make the frosting salty- they simply keep the sweetness in check. The centerpiece of this cupcake is the frosting so it’s important that it is not too sweet.
These lemon raspberry cupcakes are incredibly perfect and balanced in flavor.
Lemon Raspberry Cupcakes
- 1 1/4 cup All Purpose Flour
- 1 cup Sugar
- 2 tsp Baking Powder
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 3 tbsp Lemon Zest (about three lemons)
- 1/2 cup Milk
- 1/4 cup Vegetable Oil
- 1 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
- 1 Egg
- 2 tbsp Lemon Juice
- 6 tbsp Water (room temperature)
- 4 Egg Yolks
- 1/2 cup Lemon Juice
- 2/3 cup Sugar
- 1/2 cup Butter (cool to touch)
- 1 1/4 cup Frozen Raspberries (fresh will work just as well)
- 3-4 tbsp Lemon Juice
- 1/2 cup Salted Butter
- 4 cups Powdered Sugar
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- Preheat the oven to 325 Fahrenheit. Line a muffin tin with 12 liners.
- Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and lemon zest in a bowl. Stir to combine.
- In another bowl combine the milk, oil, egg, and vanilla. Incorporate the mixture into the dry ingredients.
- Slowly add the lemon juice and the water into the batter.
- Scoop the batter into the muffin tins and bake 23-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cupcake comes out clean. Allow the cupcakes to cool.
- In a saucepan, combine the egg yolks, lemon juice, and sugar. Mix until completely combined.
- Place the mixture on medium heat, stirring constantly until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. If there are any particles of cooked egg in the curd, strain it through a sieve.
- Remove the lemon curd from the heat and allow to cool for about 5 minutes. Slowly add the butter tablespoon by tablespoon. Mixing well after each addition with a balloon whisk.
- Allow the lemon curd to cool in the refrigerator for 30-45 minutes.
- While the lemon curd is cooling, place the raspberries and 3 tbsp of the lemon juice in a saucepan. Reduce the raspberries on medium heat until the mixture is between 1/3 and 1/2 cup.
- Strain the raspberries through a fine-mesh sieve, discard the seeds. Allow the raspberry mixture to cool.
- Beat the butter on medium-high speed until smooth. Add the raspberry reduction and mix on low speed until combined.
- Add all of the powdered sugar and the salt. Mix slowly at first and work your way up to medium-high speed. Beat at a high speed for 3-7 minutes or until the mixture is light and fluffy.
- Core out the middles of the cooled cupcakes and fill with the lemon curd. Pipe the raspberry frosting on top.
- The cupcakes will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.