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Valentine's Day Lemon Cupcakes
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5 from 6 votes

Valentine's Day Lemon Cupcakes 

These Valentine's Day Lemon Cupcakes are melt in your mouth cupcakes that will be the perfect surprise sweet treat for your loved one. Soft, fluffy, + extra moist, these cupcakes are bursting with bold lemon flavor in every bite. Topped with a creamy pink lemon buttercream and lightly covered in festive Sprinkle Pop Sprinkles.
Course Dessert
Keyword baked, classic, cupcakes, dessert, easy, fluffy, healthy, holidays, homemade, lemon, plant-based, recipe, sprinkles, sweet, traditional, valentines day, vegetarian
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 12 Cupcakes

Ingredients

Lemon Cupcakes:

  • 1 cup Organic All-purpose flour (I use Bob's Red Mill)
  • 3/4 cup Organic Cake Flour (I use Bob's Red Mill; See Notes!)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt (I use McCormick Spices)
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 4 Tbsps unsalted butter, softened at room temp. (I use Land O'Lakes)
  • 3/4 cup organic pure cane sugar (I use Wholesome Sweets)
  • 2 large organic eggs, room temp. (I use Organic Valley)
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil  (See Notes!)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp juice of a lemon
  • 1/2 cup Almond milk + 1 tsp lemon juice (See Notes!)

Lemon Buttercream:

  • 4 cups organic powdered sugar, sifted
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened at room temp. (I use Land O'Lakes)
  • 1 tsp juice of a lemon
  • 1-2 Tbsps Almond milk, if needed! (I use Califia Farms; You can use your fave plant-based milk!)
  • pinch of sea salt (I use McCormick Spices)
  • 5 drops red food coloring, optional (I use McCormick Spices)

Topping:

  • 2 cups Sprinkle Pop Sprinkles  (See Notes!)

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and prep your cupcake pan with liners + spray.
  • In a bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, cake flour, baking powder, lemon zest, and sea salt.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer (using a paddle handle attachment), beat together the butter and sugar on medium-high speed for about 1-2 minutes, until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides as needed using a rubber spatula.
  • Add the eggs (one at a time), vegetable oil, and vanilla, reducing the speed a little at this point. Add in the lemon juice.
  • Now, reduce the speed to low and slowly add in the dry ingredients and buttermilk, alternating between the two, until well combined. NO OVER-MIXING!
  • Scoop the batter into each cupcake liner (3/4 full) and bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for the FIRST 5 minutes. Then reduce temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and continue baking for another 14-17 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean in the center.
  • Once done, turn off oven and keep cupcakes inside with the oven door slightly open for about 2 minutes before taking them out.
  • Let them cool COMPLETELY before frosting.

For Lemon Buttercream:

  • In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter on medium-high speed until fluffy and pale.
  • Reduce the speed to low and add half the amount of powered sugar and mix until incorporated. Add the lemon juice, and sea salt. Then 2 Tbsps of milk, if needed. **NOTE: If adding coloring for pink or red color, add 5-6 drops of food coloring to achieve the look.**
  • Now, add in the remaining half of the powdered sugar and mix until fully incorporated and frosting is smooth. **NOTE: Add more powered sugar or milk until desired consistency is met if needed, 1 Tbsp at a time.**
  • Add buttercream frosting to fully cooled cupcakes, using a piping bag and sprinkle festive Valentine's Day sprinkles atop cupcakes.
  • Bon Appetit!

Notes

BUTTERMILK (DAIRY-FREE): Add Almond milk and lemon juice together in a measuring cup, stirring until combined. Let sit for 10 minutes or so.
 
STORAGE: Best kept if stored in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days (unfrosted) and 3-4 days when frosted. Also, can be frozen for up to 6 months when unfrosted and thawed.
OIL: Instead of vegetable oil, you can also use Coconut oil, if preferred.
FLOUR: If you don’t have cake flour, you can always just use all-purpose flour entirely instead. 
SPRINKLES: You can purchase Sprinkle Pop Sprinkles on their site in a wide variety of colors and mixes.