Lime Cupcakes

I’ve loved this recipe for many years, but I thought I would never share it.  I’m soooooo not good at frosting cupcakes.  It’s actually been something that makes me a little crazy.  And a pretty cupcake is, lets face it, all about that swirl.  But, I figured that if I keep telling people to learn and grow and challenge themselves in the kitchen, then I should do the same. It’s only fair.

I am not a great baker, I don’t have a lot of patience or an eye for detail.  I do like making cookies, brownies, crumble …. messy stuff.  Cupcakes and cakes don’t bake well in my overly hot and unevenly regulated oven.  I don’t enjoy frosting cakes, and it doesn’t help that it’s so hot here that if I don’t get it frosted during a 15 minute time period, everything starts to melt.

Wow, this is turning into a very negative post.  I’ll turn it around.

I have a lot of friends and family who love their cupcakes and I can’t bear how much they pay for one cupcake.  I have quite a few cupcake recipes that I really like and knew eventually I needed to start sharing.  I also like bringing cupcakes to a party over a cake because it saves the cutting of a cake (which I absolutely hate) and of course the “hey! her piece is bigger than my piece” comments that inevitably come out (only when children are around, of course).  Cupcakes are cute, easy, and also save on plates!  I knew I had to work on my frosting.

I watched a few videos and practiced a few times before I felt comfortable with the perfect buttercream recipe.  It’s not hard to make, I had just never realized the importance of beating the butter for a good five minutes until it was night and light.  The first time I did it, my butter was at Mexican room temperature, which meant it was too soft and didn’t hold up.  What’s room temperature to most people is not even close to my room temperature.  Lesson learned.

With a little practice piping, I figured out how to make it look pretty decent.  I think I need a lot more practice to do anything fancier, and maybe once ‘winter’ hits, I will do that.  But for now, I’m proud of what I accomplished.

In the meantime, I’m sharing this recipe with you.  It’s a great cupcake recipe using limes which are very cheap and prevalent here.  The color is cute too, you can adjust it or not put any coloring in it at all.  I have made these very green but prefer them a pale green myself.  I have made these with a blackberry frosting, but frankly, I prefer the pure taste of limes so for this I left the frosting a pure buttercream with a little lime zest on top.  I have added a little juice to the frosting also if you want to really be limey.

I’ll be eating mine under a palm tree.



  • 1 3/4 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 TAB lime zest
  • 2 1/2 TAB fresh lime juice
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • green food coloring (optional)


  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 cups sifted icing sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1-2 TAB cream or milk


Preheat oven to 350°.  Line muffin tin with paper liners.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.  In a large bowl, beat butter until smooth, about two minutes.  Add sugar, beat another minute.   Beat in eggs one at a time, making sure they are well combined.  Add lime zest and juice and mix to combine.  Beat in flour mixture in three additions alternatively with buttermilk.  Add a touch of food coloring if you so desire and combine well to get the true color.

Spoon a scant 1/3 cup of batter into each liner.  Bake cupcakes until toothpick inserted comes out clean, about 12-15 minutes.  Cool in pan five minutes, then remove and cool on rack.

In the meantime, beat butter for frosting for 5 minutes or until light and fluffy.  Slowly add sifted icing sugar a little at a time, beating each time to ensure icing sugar is incorporated.  Add vanilla and cream or milk.

Transfer mixture to a piping bag.  Frost cupcakes using preferred method.

Makes 12 cupcakes


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