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Lemon Cookie Cupcakes

Lemon Cookie Cupcakes

It’s been awhile since I made cupcakes!!!!

It was high time.

So I did us all a favor and not only made moist lemon cupcakes, I also smothered them in my favorite vanilla buttercream and then stuffed a lemony sprinkled cookie on top.

Yessss.

I mentioned it briefly on Monday, but we celebrated my mom’s birthday last week. My mom who has made me a birthday cake every year for my whole entire life. Even when I wasn’t here to eat cake with her.

When I was little I distinctly remember my mom totally slaving over a Cookie Monster cake. I don’t know what inspired that — my mom is not really a cake baker. Don’t get me wrong; she can pull a cake off just fine. But she’s not like me– baking is not her happy place. So her effort was just that much more special. Some super mommy need to give me a fancy cake must have struck that year. And I appreciated every inch of that blue frosting.

Lemon Cookie Cupcakes

We have a long standing tradition in our family. A tradition that starts with a box cake mix. Our family birthdays are all basically the same; we all get together, laugh at each other, eat a little, open presents, make the birthday boy or girl pose awkwardly for photos with each new item they open, stick candles in the baked from-a-box cake, sing very loudly, and then we congratulate the box-cake-baker on how amazing the cake is.

Birthdays are awesome.

I wouldn’t have them any other way.

Lemon Cookie Cupcakes

So obviously when I do the birthday cakes they are usually from scratch. Because I can. Because it’s actually easier for me since I always have more flour, oil, and eggs than any normal person needs. But THIS CAKE, an ode to all our fun family birthdays with a box of funfetti and a can of rainbow chip frosting (ya’ll don’t even act like you don’t love some funfetti with rainbow chip), is a box cake mix all dressed up. It’s extra moist and delicious and I love it. And my mom loves lemon so now you understand.

Lemon Cookie Cupcakes

Lemon Cookie Cupcakes
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Moist lemon cupcakes topped with sweet vanilla buttercream and a lemon funfetti cookie. Be sure that you allow yourself time to make the cookies ahead of time (recipes in the links) or purchase a small lemon bakery cookie. Add sprinkles to your heart's content!
Author:
Serves: 18 cupcakes
Ingredients
  • 1 recipe Lemon Funfetti Sugar Cookies (see note)
  • For the Cake:
  • 1 box white cake mix
  • 1 ( 3 ounce) package instant lemon pudding
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup water
  • ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice + the zest of 2 lemons
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup sour cream OR plain Greek yogurt
  • 4 egg whites
  • For the Vanilla Buttercream:
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • a pinch of salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream (as needed)
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350. Line a standard sized muffin pan with paper liners.
  2. In a large bowl whisk together the white cake mix, lemon pudding mix, and salt.
  3. Add the water, lemon juice, lemon zest, oil, vanilla, sour cream and egg whites.
  4. Beat on low for about 30 seconds. Then beat on medium speed, making sure to scrape down the sides, for about 2 minutes.
  5. Divide the batter into the prepared muffin pan-- fill each cup about ¾ of the way full.
  6. Bake for 18-20 minutes. A pick inserted into the center will come out clean. Let the cupcakes cool completely before frosting.
  7. To make the buttercream beat the softened butter with 2 cups of the sifted powdered sugar until smooth. Add the remaining 2 cups of sugar and beat for another minute. Add the salt, vanilla, and 1 tablespoon of cream and beat until smooth. Add more cream if necessary to reach your desired consistency.
  8. Frost each cupcake generously and stick a cookie in the top of each.
Notes
I used my Frosted Funfetti Cookie Bars as the base for the cookies I placed on top of these cupcakes. I added the zest of 2 lemons and rubbed it with the granulated sugar before beating with the butter to give them a fresh lemony flavor. I also omitted the brown sugar. Instead of pressing the cookie batter into a pan I just portioned it out onto an ungreased cookie sheet (or line with parchment paper) using about 1 rounded teaspoon at a time, and then I baked them for 7-8 minutes.

Lemon Cookie Cupcakes

How do you celebrate birthdays?

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Averie @ Averie Cooks

Sunday 4th of August 2013

Happy belated Bday to your mama! And these look so good! The abundance of frosting ( a must!!) and the lemon with the funfetti with the soft cupcakes, mmmm, so good!

Heather

Monday 5th of August 2013

Hey Averie! Oh man. This frosting. You really can't go wrong with vanilla buttercream. I had lots of fun dressing up this cake mix!

HelloMyNameIs

Sunday 4th of August 2013

Aww your Mom that's adorable!!! I love that baking is your happy place too! These cupcakes look awesome but when I got to the bottom and saw that cupcake cut it half I think drool fell from my lip lol I LOVE frosting and that is like the perfect amount of it...I want one Heather!!! DAMN YOU!!! haha jk

Heather

Sunday 4th of August 2013

Hahahhaa. I love frosting, too!! Buttercream. YES. Also-- baking is your happy place too! I know it is! You are talented girl!!!!

thoughtsappear

Thursday 1st of August 2013

Mmmmm...cookies and cupcakes!

Peggy Campbell

Thursday 1st of August 2013

These were so refreshing, lemony good. I loved them. That Cookie Monster Cake was a bear... much like all the cross stitch and crewel I did in year's past. I am not sure what was going on with me then, because I am not crafty. Cookie Monster was a moment I will remember, in all of its glory. These cupcakes rival those chocolate guiness ones....mmmm!

Heather

Thursday 1st of August 2013

I loved my Cookie Monster cake!!! Wish I had that cake pan. Glad you liked the lemon cupcakes-- rivaling the Guinness cupcakes-- you must have thought these were good!

tanya

Thursday 1st of August 2013

My mom always bought me the grocery store cakes, which was fine at the time because I was all about the frosting roses. I love homemade cakes, but I think doctored up cake mixes make some pretty awesome, moist cupcakes! These lemon cupcakes must taste amazing. The lemon cookie is just "icing on the cake" if you will.

Heather

Thursday 1st of August 2013

I remember once my oldest asked me for a store bought Thomas the Tank Engine cake. I was CRUSHED. Doctored up cake mixes are awesome. By the Way-- I made your amazing Lemon Cupcakes (a doctored cake mix recipe) and they were a MAJOR hit. Everyone loved them like crazy. Mine did not get the cute little slivers of lemon on top though-- those were awesome. Thanks, Tanya!!!