The long awaited Lemon Cupcake recipe is finally here! Yeah!
Funny thing about the original lemon cupcake post. It was our test post before making the site live and replaced something like “Katie is Weird” that my silly hubby posted while we tested things out. My brother and I had just baked the cupcakes for dessert and since I love to take pictures, I snapped a handful of them. The post was relevant and I really did intend to add the recipe, so I left it there. It’s taken me two months to post the recipe, but better late than never! 🙂
I attempted to take pictures of each step of the recipe, but it proved to be impossible for me to do. How does The Pioneer Woman do it? She must have 2 extra hands we don’t know about. And, she must have way more patience than I do – and a better memory. A good handful of the photos I missed were purely because I forgot to stop and take a picture! Whoops! Ok, enough chit-chat. FYI, the full recipe is at the end of the post.
First off, you need to make the lemon curd. If you have a favorite store bought lemon curd, I don’t see why you couldn’t just use that. Being the culinary adventurist that I am (my Mom is laughing right now), I made my own.
The ingredients: egg yolks, sugar, pure lemon extract, freshly squeezed lemon juice, butter, lemon zest, guar gum.
Add the lemon juice, yolks and sugar to a saucepan and whisk them together.
Cook over low-medium heat for 5-7 minutes until mixture has thickened and coats the back of a spoon. Once it has thickened, add in butter once piece at a time. Once the butter is incorporated, add in the zest, extract and guar gum. Mix until smooth. (sorry, this is where I didn’t have enough hands to snap photos)
While the lemon curd is cooling, make the cupcakes (or the recipe can be made into a two layer cake). I didn’t get great pictures while I was mixing together the cupcakes. They are very easy to make. You beat eggs and sugar together for 1 minute. Add in the rest of the ingredients (flour mix, baking powder, xanthan gum, oil, milk, lemon extract) and beat for another minute. Fill your cups and bake! Easy!
The frosting alone is worth making these cupcakes. I don’t know where lemon buttercream has been all my life, but if it wouldn’t cause me to weigh 300 pounds I might keep some on hand at all times. It’s amazing.
You begin by beating softened butter until is smooth and creamy. Then add in 1 cup of powdered sugar, freshly squeezed lemon juice, pure lemon extract and lemon zest. Beat together and gradually add powdered sugar up to another 2 1/2 cups until it’s light and creamy. Then give it a taste and try to control yourself from eating the entire bowl.
Once your cupcakes are completely cooled, you can fill them with the lemon curd. I use a piping bag and a Wilton #230, Bismark tip, to fill mine. You just poke the tip down in the cupcake and squeeze the bag as you slowly pull it back out. I don’t fill all of my cupcakes because my girls don’t love the lemon curd. To be able to tell which ones aren’t filled, when I frost them, I give the non-filled treats a few yellow sprinkles on top.
I think these are my favorite gluten free cake/cupcake to date. They are so fresh and delicious. They are a little labor intensive to make the curd, cake, and frosting, but so worth it. You could easily make the lemon curd the day before and just keep it in the fridge until you need it. I hope you’ll give them a try – and be sure to tell me if you do! 🙂 Here’s the recipe from Gluten-Free Baking Classics by Annalise Roberts. The recipe makes two 8 or 9-inch rounds or 24 cupcakes. Recipe can be cut in half.
Lemon Layer Cake
2 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
2 1/2 cups Brown Rice Flour Mix
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 cup canola oil
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon lemon extract
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
- Preheat oven to 350. Position rack in center of oven. Line two round cake pans with parchment paper and spray lightly with cooking spray or line muffin tins with liners and then spray lightly with cooking spray.
- Beat sugar and eggs in large bowl at medium speed for 1 minute. Mix flour, salt, baking powder and xanthan gum together and then add to sugar egg mixture. Also add in oil, milk, extracts, and lemon zest; beat at medium speed for 1 minute.
- Pour batter into prepared pans. Place in center of oven and bake about 35 minutes for 9 inch, 40 minutes for 8 inch or 18-24 minutes for cupcakes or until center springs back when touched and cake has pulled away from sides of pan.
- Cool cake layers in the pans on a rack for 5 minutes. Use a small knife to cut around pan sides to loosen cake. Invert cake layers onto a rack, peel off paper, and cool completely. Cool cupcakes in pan for about 5 minutes and then move to a cooling rack to cool completely.
- For a layer cake: Carefully slice each layer horizontally to create four layers (easily done if cake layers have been chilled). Spread each of the bottom layers with 1/2 of the lemon curd. Cover each bottom layer with one of the two remaining layers. Place one set of filled layers on a cake plate and spread with about 1/2 cup frosting. Place the other set of filled layers on top and cover top and sides of cake with remaining frosting.
- For cupcakes: Fill cupcakes with lemon curd using a piping bag and Wilton #230 Bismark tip. Frost with lemon buttercream frosting.
Lemon Curd Filling
3 egg yolks
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
1/4 teaspoon guar gum (this will add viscosity and keep the curd from separating into the cake layers)
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon lemon extract
- Combine egg yolks, sugar, and lemon juice in a small saucepan and whisk until well blended.
- Cook over medium-low heat until smooth and so thick that the curd coats the back of a wooden spoon, about 5-7 minutes. Whisk in butter, one piece at a time, until compltely incorporated. Whisk in guar gum, lemon zest, and lemon extract.
- Pour the curd into a small bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Chill until very cold.
Lemon Buttercream Frosting
1 cup unsalted butter
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
Beat butter in large bowl until light and fluffy. Add 1 cup powdered sugar, lemon juice, lemon extract, and lemon zest; beat to blend. Add remaining sugar and beat until creamy.