I’m going to make a bold claim: there is no frosting quite as delicious as buttercream frosting. The texture is so light! It tastes so sweet and so rich!
Until recently, I revered buttercream frosting as something for special occasions (in fact, we served a buttercream frosted cake at our wedding almost seven years ago). I had never really considered making my own buttercream, because I assumed it came exclusively from bakeries. I figured it must be very difficult to make, and probably involved a little confectionery magic, right? Otherwise why wouldn’t every form of cake be frosted in buttercream?! Well, I'm here to set the record straight: I can now confidently tell you that not only can you make your own buttercream frosting, but it’s easy and it tastes just like it came from the bakery! Prepare to frost every dessert you make from here on out with buttercream.
Now imagine putting those buttercream-making skills to work with bright lemon flavor and fresh thyme. I know! It would be out of this world, right? It is. I actually turned down brownies to eat these cupcakes. My husband had to ask if I was feeling well. That is because these cupcakes are that good. Buttercream Lemon Thyme Cupcakes need to be at the top of your spring baking list – for baby and bridal showers, brunches, Mother’s Day, Saturday treats – any excuse you can find to celebrate.
To make Buttercream Lemon Thyme Cupcakes, preheat your oven to 350°F. While the oven is warming up, line 24 muffin tin cups with paper baking cups.
In a medium-sized bowl, combine the lemon cake mix, buttermilk, eggs, oil and 1/2 cup lemon curd.
Beat at medium speed until the batter is nice and creamy. Fold in the fresh chopped thyme.
Divide the batter evenly into the 24 muffin cups and then place the tins in the preheated oven.
Bake the cupcakes for 18-22 minutes – until the toothpick test (a toothpick inserted in the center) comes out clean. Remove the cupcakes from the pan so they can cool completely.
While the cupcakes are cooling, you can get the buttercream frosting started. Begin by combining the half & half and flour in a small saucepan over medium heat.
Stir the mixture together with a whisk until it is smooth. Continue cooking over medium heat, whisking constantly for 3-4 minutes or until the mixture thickens and just begins to boil. Remove the saucepan from the heat and allow the mixture to cool for 15 minutes.
In a separate bowl, beat together the softened butter and sugar until it is creamy.
Add the flour mixture. Beat for about 5 minutes – until the mixture is light and creamy and the sugar has dissolved.
Add the last 1/2 cup lemon curd to the frosting mixture and beat until well combined.
By now, the cupcakes may be cool enough to frost – check to make sure they are completely room temperature, so you don’t have problems with the frosting melting and sliding. If they are cool, spoon the buttercream frosting into a resealable plastic bag and snip a generous corner to make a piping bag. Experiment with different styles of frosting – tall peaks or smooth, even layers.
Garnish your lovely cupcakes with edible glitters, flowers or a sprig of remaining fresh thyme. Refrigerate the cupcakes until serving time. I found that it’s ideal to set the cupcakes out at room temperature for a few minutes prior to serving so the frosting softens a bit.
I shared my Buttercream Lemon Thyme Cupcakes with my parents when they came over for dinner that evening. And our grandparents the next day at lunch. And my… self… the next night for dessert again. The awesome thing is that, when these cupcakes are refrigerated, they are just as good two days after making them as they were the first night! So, you can prepare your cupcakes in advance of an event or you can enjoy a couple at a time for several days in a row like my family did. Make Buttercream Lemon Thyme Cupcakes for your next spring celebration, then rate and review the recipe.
Amanda is paid to write for the Recipe Buzz® Blog.