Lemon Meringue Cupcakes

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Even though I make cupcakes at home and rarely eat the ones I make, I still can't help but buy cupcakes if Tim and I stumble upon a cute cupcake shop. I love seeing the decor and how they frost and decorate. I also like to compare my cupcakes to what people are making on a larger scale and selling for $2-4 a pop. In most cases, I always get some kind of lemon cupcakes because I couldn't quite figure it out at home. With a little guidance from many many lemon cake recipes, here's what I came up with and are pretty darn tasty!

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Lemon Cupcakes

Yields 24 cupcakes

  • 14tbsp butter, softened
  • 1 3/4c castor sugar (I took regular sugar and pulsed it in my food processor for a few minutes)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1tsp vanilla
  • zest of one lemon
  • juice of one lemon
  • 1 1/4c milk
  • 1/2tsp salt
  • 1 1/2tsp baking powder
  • 1tsp baking soda
  • 3 1/2c flour
  • Lemon curd

Preheat oven to 300 degrees and line a cupcake pan with paper liners.

Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add each egg one at a time. Once combined and fluffy, add lemon zest and juice, vanilla, salt, baking powder, and baking soda until combined.

Add flour to the butter mixture, alternating between flour and milk. Only mix until combined so you don't overmix. Overmixing=dry cupcakes.

Fill each cupcake liner maximum 3/4 full. You want them to stay light yellow, so be sure to not overfill as the batter will touch the sides of the pan and darken. Maybe you don't care about that, that's fine too.  Bake for 15-20 minutes. After 15 minutes, keep a very close eye on them as you want them to almost be uncooked, but still set inside. You want them to stay pale on top. Let cool completely, then top with lemon curd.

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Gooey Marshmallow Meringue Frosting

Yields enough for 48 cupcakes

  • 4 egg whites, room temperature
  • 1c sugar
  • 1/2tsp cream of tartar
  • 1tsp vanilla

You'll remember this recipe from the S'mores Cupcakes from two weeks ago.

Whisk egg whites, sugar, and cream and tartar in a double boiler over medium-high heat. Whisk frequently until mixture reaches 160 degrees (I used a candy thermometer). Transfer mixture into bowl of electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Beginning at low speed, gradually increase speed to medium-high until stiff peaks form, about 5-7 minutes. Mix in vanilla.

I piped my frosting on with a 1M Wilton tip and then used a creme brulee torch to toast the marshmallow topping. Please excuse that in these photos, I made the mistake of not whisking the meringue enough and the peaks weren't stiff enough. But hey, you win some, you loose some. They are still quite delicious!

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Adding the lemon curd is optional of course, but it definitely adds a little bite to the sweet cakes and sugary meringue. Tim actually said to me after eating one, "You know I'm a chocolate person and I think they're really good!"  So that must mean something!

Happy Baking!

Soft, Funfetti Sugar Cookies

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Sometimes, I think up recipes because I'm hungry and can't stop thinking about what I would love at that moment. This was one of those recipes. I was just sitting at work on a slow day thinking about sweets and this idea came over me and I went home and made them. These are a cookie game-changer.

Now, I should say that I'm not usually a huge sugar cookie kind of gal. I'll take a snickerdoodle or maybe even chocolate chip over a standard sugar cookie any day. But these aren't your standard, run-of-the-mill, cookie cutter sugar cookies. They are soft and creamy and even border on doughy, in the best way possible. After searching around online and in some baking books, this recipe is a pretty standard one for soft sugar cookies. And since sprinkles make everything better, I decided to spice of the standard to make funfetti cookies!

Here we go...

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Soft, Funfetti Sugar Cookies

Yields about 40+ cookies, depending on size

  • 10 tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2/3c vegetable shortening
  • 1 1/2c sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1tsp salt
  • 3 1/3 flour
  • 3 tbsp rainbow sprinkles or nonpareils

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cream butter and shortening with an electric mixer. Add sugar and mix until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time and vanilla.

In a separate bowl, sift flour, salt, and baking powder. With your mixer on low, add dry ingredients to the butter/egg mixer. Using a spatula, fold in sprinkles.

Drop rounded tbsps of dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Bake 8-10 minutes or until bottoms just begin to brown. 

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The trick is to not over bake them, or you won't get that super soft texture. I baked mine 9 minutes and they were just slightly brown on the bottom.

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Thinkg about the possibilities! You could use a basic buttercream to make these little guys into cookie sammies, or maybe even dip half of them in chocolate for the chocolate lover in your life. It's a challenge to not eat all of them. After eating half the batch, I then took mine to a party only to get them out of our house. 

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Need more funfetti options? Try these homemade Funfetti Cupcakes too!


Chocolate Banana Cupcakes

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For as many recipes for sweets that I put together, I rarely eat any of them. I'm not a huge sweets kind-of girl, but like anyone I do have my vices. Cinnamon, pie, cookies, but not really cakes. I have to admit that I make these Chocolate Banana cupcakes all the time, I get a lot of requests for them, but I don't think I've eaten one since I came up with the recipe a few years ago. But my taste-tester boyfriend has never turned down a chocolate cupcake, so he makes sure to make sure they are up to par. And we're off....

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Chocolate Banana Cupcakes

Yields 48 cupcakes

  • 1 1/2 granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 sticks of unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 2c flour
  • 3/4c cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1c buttermilk
  • 2 bananas, mashed with a fork

Preheat over to 350 and place liners in a cupcake pan.

Cream butter and sugar with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, Combine. Add vanilla.

In a separate bowl, sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add dry mixture to the butter mixture, alternating between dry and buttermilk. Only mix until combined so you don't overmix. Overmixing= dry cupcakes.

With a spatula, fold in bananas.

Fill each cupcake liner 3/4 full. Bake for 15 minutes until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool completely before frosting.

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Chocolate Buttercream

Yields enough for 24 cupcakes

  • 1 stick of butter, room temperature
  • 2 1/4c powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cocoa powder
  • a few tbsp of milk

Cream butter and vanilla with an electric mixer.

Slowly add powdered sugar and cocoa powder. Add milk until buttercream is desired texture, several tbsps

Using a soup spoon or offset icing spatula, spread the buttercream on each cupcake. Place a dollop buttercream in the center of each cupcakes, then spread to the outside in a circular motion. Top with banana chips or chocolate chips.

Impress all your friends!

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Recipe Card: Apple Cranberry Pie

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I love baking and I really love pie, which is why it's surprising that I've never made an apple pie before. Apple is T's favorite kind of pie and it's probably my second favorite (behind pumpkin). I found a really basic recipe, and then decided to spice it up with some dried cranberries, spices and a lot of crust.

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This recipe is based off of the recipe found here, with my a few changes I made.

Apple Cranberry Pie

Yields 1 pie

3 refrigerated pie crusts
1/2 c unsalted butter
3 tbsp all-purpose flour
1/2 c white sugar
1/2 c packed brown sugar
1/4 c water
4 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and sliced
2 sweeter apples like Pink Ladies, peeled, cored, and sliced
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 dried cranberries

1. In a large bowl, mix apples with spices and dried cranberries to combine. Unroll pie crust and cover 9inch pie pan. Transfer apple into pan.

2. Melt butter in a sauce pan. Stir in flour. Add sugars, and water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Be careful not to burn it! I might have to done this the first time I made it....oops.

3. Roll out the other crust, cut into strips and lay out a lattice work on top of the apples. Cut off any extra and seal around the outside.

4. Place pie on a baking sheet. Carefully pour sugar mixture over the top of the lattice crust. Pour slowly so it doesn't run all over.

5. Bake 15 minutes at 425 degrees, then reduce heat to 350 for 35-40 minutes. Serve warm. Yum.

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For me, this was one of those things that you make and then are surprised by how delicious it is! First apple pie I've ever made and will definitely be making this again. All it needed was some homemade whipped cream plopped on top. Enjoy! :)