Lemon Blueberry Cupcakes

It’s weird to think that a cupcake could feel light and refreshing, but these totally do! I don’t know if that is a good thing or a bad thing. The tartness of the lemon balances out the sweetness of the cake making it a perfect treat. The inspiration for these cupcakes came from a blueberry scone drizzled with lemon icing that I had in northern Minnesota. I didn’t know scones could taste so good, I’ve been dreaming about it ever since, and can’t wait to go back for another one!

These cupcakes are so easy! You just need to add a couple ingredients into a boxed cake mix, and a few minutes later you have cupcakes that are nothing like what the box shows! The blueberries actually burst while they are baking turning some of the white cake beautiful shades of purple and blue, they’re gorgeous! Now let’s talk frosting…I know a lot of people LOVE frosting even more than the cake itself. I have never been one of those people, I’m more cake, less frosting…until now. This is a whipped cream frosting that is light but sturdy. It actually has cream cheese in it, but is not overly sweet so it feels light and refreshing. SO GOOD! These will brighten up any brunch or party and are perfect for a summer treat; make them for your next barbecue!

5 from 1 vote
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Lemon Blueberry Cupcakes

Servings 24 cupcakes
Author Laura Doerr

Ingredients

  • 1 box white cake mix (plus ingredients needed for box mix)
  • zest of 2-3 lemons
  • juice of 2 lemons
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries
  • 24 white cupcake liners

For the lemon whipped cream frosting

  • 8 oz cream cheese (not fat free) softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp lemon extract
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • piping bag or gallon zip bag for decorating

Garish topping

  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 72 blueberries (3 per cupcake)

Instructions

  1. Add white cupcake liners to cupcake baking pans. Preheat oven as directed on boxed cake mix.

  2. Zest the lemons, and set aside. 

  3. Prepare the white boxed cake mix as directed on the box. After the cake mix ingredients are combined, add in the lemon zest. Cut the lemons in half, and add the juice of 2 lemons. Beat together until combined.

  4. Divide cake batter evenly into lined cupcake baking pans.

  5. Rinse 1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries and pat dry with paper towel. Drop 3-4 blueberries into the batter of each cupcake. Gently press into the batter slightly.

  6. Bake according to boxed mix instructions for cupcakes. Cool completely before frosting, and store in refrigerator. 

For the frosting

  1. In a large bowl or stand mixer, beat the cream cheese, sugar, vanilla and lemon extracts until smooth. Slowly pour in the heavy whipping cream and beat on medium-high until stiff peaks form. This will take a few minutes. 

  2. Add frosting into piping bag or plastic zip bag, or just use knife and frost cooled cupcakes as desired.

  3. Top with 3 blueberries and a sprinkle of lemon zest. Store in refrigerator. 

Recipe Notes

Make sure to use white cupcake liners so that you can see the beautiful blue and purple colors of the berries.

Use your best judgement on the number of lemons for the batter. I had 2 pretty large lemons that were super juicy and that worked great, but some lemons are small and not very juicy. If you're OK with tasting raw batter, test it for how strong the lemon flavor is. Most of the flavor comes from the zest. Adjust according to taste. 

The whipped frosting is my new favorite go-to. You can change the flavor and use for other desserts just by swapping extracts. Omit the lemon for just vanilla, or add almond extract for a different recipe!

These are best once they have chilled in the fridge. The blueberries tend to burst and moisten the bottom of the cupcake, but chilling them helps bring everything back together. If you are not planning to serve/eat all of the cupcakes, refrain from adding fresh zest to all of them. The zest will dry up and wilt the longer it sits.

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