Trouble With Toast

Recipe: Key Lime Cupcakes | August 22, 2008

I hemmed and hawed about what to serve our recent dinner guests for dessert.  On the one hand, I wanted to try something new and different.  On the other hand, new and different–especially when baking–can often result in unpleasant “oh, shit” moments.

I thought about my signature dessert, homemade key lime pie.  It’s always a crowd-pleaser, but it doesn’t really present any kind of satisfaction or challenge for me (because it’s an easy recipe to start with, AND because I’ve made it about a billion times).  Then I saw it, on Bon Appetit’s website–a recipe for key lime cupcakes.  We have a winner!

These were surprisingly easy to make (I’ve actually never done both cupcakes and icing from scratch), and they were dubbed by one of our guests as “the best cupcakes I’ve ever had.”  The cake was moist, the frosting was creamy, and the flavors were sweet and tart and buttery all at the same time.  And, the bonus about cupcakes is that they’re easy to send home with your guests (ostensibly for their kids, but my guess is that they got eaten on the car ride home).  Of course, if you’re smart, you’ll save a couple for yourself as well!


  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup self-rising flour
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lime peel
  • 1/4 teaspoon neon-green food coloring
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk


  • 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lime peel
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line standard muffin pan with 12 paper liners. Whisk both flours in medium bowl. Beat butter in large bowl until smooth. Add sugar; beat to blend. Beat in eggs 1 at a time, then next 3 ingredients (batter may look curdled). Beat in flour mixture in 3 additions alternately with buttermilk in 2 additions. Spoon scant 1/3 cup batter into each liner. Bake cupcakes until tester inserted into center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool 10 minutes. Remove from pan; cool.

Beat all frosting ingredients in medium bowl until smooth. Spread over cupcakes.


  1. I am DROOLING. You know how I feel about keylime. These look awesome.

    Comment by Lemmonex — August 22, 2008 @ 12:59 pm

  2. They did turn out well, and they were a nice change from the standard pie. Plus, they had frosting, which is the whole point of any sort of cake!

    Comment by bettyjoan — August 22, 2008 @ 2:40 pm

  3. You had me at Key Lime.

    Comment by restaurantrefugee — August 22, 2008 @ 4:16 pm

  4. Key lime is one of my favorites. And I’ve always been a sucker for cupcakes. Great idea!

    Comment by barbara — August 23, 2008 @ 1:00 am

  5. Oh, YUM!

    I’ve been ordering key lime martinis the last few times I’ve gone out. I’m on a key lime bender.

    Comment by freckledk — August 26, 2008 @ 8:21 pm

  6. Looks like EVERYONE is a sucker for key lime goodness! I’ll have to ship some up to DC. 🙂

    Comment by bettyjoan — August 27, 2008 @ 3:19 am

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