raspberry lemon cupcakes

i am so happy that it is finally starting to warm up in the dc area.  for a while it a really really cold for spring time.   but this past weekend was actually nice and (relatively) sunny.  yippee!!!  so when trying to figure out what kind of cupcake to make for april birthdays, i wanted to make something with bright, spring time flavors.

i decided on raspberry and lemon because citrus and berries just scream spring or summer time.  but i already made a lemon raspberry cupcake before.  remember that one?  it was lemon cupcake with raspberry filling topped with lemon buttercream.  i didn’t want to make the same one as before because that’s, well, boring.

after much thought, you know because this is a serious situation, i came up with this raspberry lemon cupcake.  it’s a simple white cupcake (from a good ol’ box of cake mix), filled with lemon curd, and topped with raspberry swiss meringue buttercream.  oh and i garnished it with a lovely little slice of lemon.

not to toot my own horn, but i loved this cupcake.  i do tend to like fruity cupcakes, over chocolate ones (crazy, i know), so it wasn’t really a surprise that i like it but it was bright and fruity and perfect for spring time and our april birthdays celebration.

happy birthday to our april birthdays!!!

start by making the lemon curd.  i actually used my lime curd recipe just with lemons instead and it ended up working out great and was the perfect amount to fill 24 cupcakes.  store the lemon curd in the refrigerator while you work on the rest of the cupcake components.  then i moved on to the raspberry puree for the raspberry swiss meringue buttercream.  start off with some frozen (or fresh) raspberries and a bit of water in a small saucepan.

cook over medium heat – the raspberries will start to break down.

then allow the raspberries to cook for about 15 more minutes to start reducing the puree/juice.

strain the raspberries with a fine mesh strainer to take out all of the seeds.  this is what you’re left with – about 1/2 cup of raspberry puree.  allow the puree to cool completely (i just put mine in the fridge).

it’s cupcake time.  bake up a batch of white or vanilla cupcakes.  you could make some homemade ones or be lazy like me and use a box cake mix.  don’t hate.

then fill each cupcake with a bit of lemon curd.

ready to frost…

to make the raspberry swiss meringue buttercream, start with the same base as any other swiss meringue buttercream.  for step by step instructions and pictures please visit this post.

then add the raspberry puree that you made earlier.

mix and mix until all of the puree is incorporated – be sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl.  the result is this beautiful pink buttercream.

now that the raspberry buttercream is done, you can frost your cupcakes.  i used a large closed star tip to frost my cupcakes.

then decorate each cupcake with a slice of lemon and they are ready to serve!

Raspberry Lemon Cupcakes

adapted from Confessions of a Foodie Bride and Annie’s Eats


Lemon Curd

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons grated lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, diced


  • 1 box white cake mix plus ingredients called for on the box

Raspberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream

  • 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen raspberries
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar
  • 4 egg whites, room temperature
  • 3 sticks of butter, room temp


  1. To make the lemon curd, bring a pot of water to a boil and then reduce to a simmer.  In a mixing bowl that fits on top of the pot (without falling in or touching the water), combine sugar, eggs, lemon zest and juice.
  2. Cook mixture over medium-low heat, whisking constantly. Cook until mixture begins to thicken and hold the mark of a whisk ran through it; about 10-15 minutes.
  3. Remove pan from heat. Whisk in diced butter a few pieces at a time. Mix until well combined.
  4. Strain mixture through a fine sieve or cheese cloth.
  5. Cover mixture tightly with plastic by laying plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd. This prevents a film from forming.
  6. Chill for 3 hours or overnight to set the curd.
  7. Prepare and bake cupcakes as directed on the box.
  8. Allow cupcakes to cool completely.
  9. To make the raspberry buttercream,  start by making the puree – place raspberries and water in a small sauce pan over medium-high heat.
  10. Cook for about 5 minutes, and then break the berries apart with a spoon.
  11. Reduce heat to medium and cook uncovered for 15 minutes to reduce the liquids in the saucepan.
  12. Pour into a fine strainer set over a bowl, and using the back of a spoon, press and scrape the pulp and juices through the strainer for several minutes until you have just a clump of seeds left in the strainer. You should have about 1/2 cup of puree.
  13. Cool to room temperature.
  14. Then to make the swiss meringue buttercream, combine the egg whites and sugar in a heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water.  Heat, whisking frequently, until the mixture reaches 160° F and the sugar has dissolved.
  15. Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.  Beat on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form and the mixture has cooled to room temperature, about 8 minutes.
  16. Reduce the speed to medium and add the butter, 2 tablespoons at a time, adding more once each addition has been incorporated.  If the frosting looks soupy or curdled, continue to beat on medium-high speed until thick and smooth again, about 3-5 minutes more (or longer – don’t worry, it will come together!)
  17. Blend in the raspberry puree until smooth and completely incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  18. To assemble the cupcakes, using the cone method,  use a small paring knife to cut a cone out of the center of each cupcake.
  19. Add some lemon curd to the cupcake and replace the top portion of the cone, slicing off the tip to leave room for the filling.
  20. Pipe frosting on to cupcakes as desired and garnish with a lemon slice and/or fresh raspberries.

Printer Friendly Recipe: Raspberry Lemon Cupcakes

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  1. Ben

     /  April 29, 2013

    MIKI! These look amazing!

  2. Hello from a fellow DC transplant and baking enthusiast!! These cupcakes look delicious!! Great work!! 🙂

  3. Amazing! Beautiful and delish!

  4. These cupcakes look delicious!

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