These were a birthday request for a friend at work. I’m not going to lie, if I had my pick of dessert, key lime pie probably isn’t even in my top 5… but, apparently folks love them some key lime pie!
Even though I’m not a huuuuuge fan I really wanted something with a lime zest/graham cracker crust, punchy but not overwhelming cake batter and a light and refreshing cream cheese lime zest frosting. Sort of like summertime in Maryland, close to the water, eating crab with a bib. LOL, if that makes any sense at all… if not, no worries… work with me here!
Key Lime Pie Cupcakes (Recipe slightly adapted from: Bananas for Bourbon)
Graham Cracker Crust:
- 2 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 TB lime zest
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
Key Lime Cupcakes:
- 3 cups cake flour
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 16 tbsp (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 cups sugar
- 5 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 1/4 cups plain yogurt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Juice of 1 small key lime
- 1 tbsp key lime zest
Yield: 24 cupcakes
- Preheat your oven to 350 F. Line 2 muffin tins with cupcake liners.
- In a small bowl, combine crushed graham crackers, melted butter, sugar and lime zest. Add 1 tbsp crust to each liner and press down with a small shot glass.
- Bake the graham cracker crusts for about 5 minutes.
- In a standing bowl mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium-high until light and fluffy, about 2-3 mins. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing until incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl after each egg is combined.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the cake flour, baking powder and salt. In a separate bowl, combine the yogurt, vanilla extract, lime juice, and lime zest in a bowl. With the mixer on low speed, alternate adding the flour mixture and yogurt mixture in 3 batches beginning and ending with flour, beating until each addition is just combined. Mix until combined, but do not overmix.
- Add the batter into the cupcake liners, with a full ice-cream scoop of batter. Bake the cupcakes, rotating pans halfway through, until the tops are firm and a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer the tins to a wire rack and let the cupcakes cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then remove them and let cool completely.
*Tip: Don’t forget that you can make your own cake flour, if you don’t have any on hand & just an FYI, the original recipe calls for buttermilk but if you don’t have that at home, you can substitute an equal amount of plain vanilla yogurt for buttermilk.
Cream Cheese Lime Zest Buttercream
- 8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2-3 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon finely grated lime peel
- Juice of 1 small lime
- Cream butter and cream cheese in a standing bowl mixer with a paddle attachment until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
- Add half of the powdered sugar to the bowl, with the mixer on low.
- Add lime zest and juice and mix until combined.
- Add the rest of the powdered sugar and mix until everything is combined (if your frosting is too runny-bc of the lime juice you can add more powdered sugar, to receive the consistency you desire).
- Frost & enjoy!
Ps. I’m sure you all know that I’m a frosting whore, I’m okay with that… the more the better. Especially because I love making huge mountains of frosting with my Bake it Pretty pastry tips, but, since these were for a friend who doesn’t eat sweets very often I was reserved and respectful of his wishes :) next time, more frosting baby!
Are you baking anything this weekend? Let us know!
Happy Saturday! xo-Jenn