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Pink Lemonade Cupcakes

I’ve got sweet and tangy, farm-stand fresh Pink Lemonade Cupcakes for you today. So pull up a front porch rocker and get ready to enjoy the appeal of this summertime sensation.



Summertime encompasses so many wonderful things…

Warm lazy evenings on the deck. Swimming pools. Spaghetti straps and tanned legs. Casual parties. Beach trips. Backyard grilling. Fresh seasonal produce. Iced tea and lemonade. Lots of laughter.



We’ve got some exciting travel plans this summer, but we also intend to do a lot of lounging at home, enjoying the sun and the season’s bounty.



One of my favorite summertime treats is fresh pink lemonade. Regular lemonade is wonderful, too, but something about the pale blushing color of pink lemonade makes it seem like a little celebration in a glass.



And since pink lemonade makes me feel like I’m celebrating, I thought it appropriate to turn this sweet seasonal beverage into pink lemonade cupcakes, perfect for summertime parties.



These tangy pink lemonade cupcakes are made with creamy Land O Lakes® Butter in Half Sticks and fresh aromatic lemons. Using the zest and the juice of the lemons (in both the cake and frosting) creates an intense fresh lemon essence that is hard to beat.

I love using Land O Lakes® Butter in Half Sticks for cupcakes and frosting recipes, because they are perfectly portioned so I don’t have extra nubs of butter tucked away in the fridge.



The buttery base makes these pink lemonade cakes tender and light, and the frosting adds a creamy decadent layer of zingy goodness to round out each cupcake’s lemony appeal.



With a vibrant flavor reminiscent of summertime, Pink Lemonade Cupcakes taste like little bites of sunshine… with sprinkles!





Pink Lemonade Cupcakes

Yield: 24 cupcakes
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes 


Ingredients

For the Pink Lemonade Cupcakes
· 3 Half Sticks (3/4 cup) Land O Lakes® Salted Butter, softened
· 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
· 2 large eggs
· 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
· 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
· 4 Meyer lemons, 2 heaping tablespoons zest + 1/2 cup juice
· 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
· 3/4 cup whole milk
· 3 to 5 drops red food coloring


For the Pink Lemonade Frosting
· 6 Half Sticks (1 ½ cups) Land O Lakes® Salted Butter, softened
· 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
· 1 lemon, zest + 3 tablespoons juice
· 6 to 8 cups powdered sugar
· 2 to 3 drops red food coloring
· Pink sprinkles
· 24 lemon jelly candy wedges



Directions

Preheat the oven to 350oF. Line two large muffin pans with 24 paper liners. Place 3 softened
Half Sticks in the bowl of an electric mixer. Add the sugar and beat until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes. Scrape the bowl and add the eggs, vanilla extract, and baking powder. Beat to combine.

Add the lemon zest and juice to the bowl. Turn the mixer on low and slowly add the flour and milk until just combined. Scrape the bowl again and turn on low while adding 3 to 5 drops of red food coloring, creating a pale pink color.

Divide the batter evenly between 24 cupcake liners. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Cool in the muffin pans for 10 minutes before moving to a cooling rack.

Once the cupcakes are completely cool, make the frosting. Place the softened butter and cream cheese in a clean bowl. Cream with the mixer on high until very smooth with no clumps. Scrape the bowl, then add the lemon zest and juice. Turn the mixer on low and slowly add the powdered sugar until your desired consistency is reached. Add 2 to 3 drops of red food coloring to create a pale pink color.

Place the frosting in a large piping bag with wide piping tip. Pipe large mounds of frosting on top of each cupcake. Then cover with pink sprinkles and top with a lemon jelly candy.


Disclosure: A Spicy Perspective has partnered with Land O'Lakes for an exclusive endorsement of Land O Lakes® Butter for the Kitchen Conversations blogger program. This blog post is sponsored by Land O'Lakes.

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