Sprinkles' Key Lime Cupcakes

This Tangy, Tart Cupcake Will Be a Hit

Founder of Sprinkles bakery shares great ways to decorate your cupcakes.
Servings:Over 8
Difficulty: Easy
Cook Time: min

Looking for something sweet that's also tangy? This Key Lime cupcake recipe from Sprinkles Cupcakes is made with tangy fresh key limes and hits sweet and tart notes simultaneously.

Candace Nelson, the executive pastry chef and founder of Sprinkles Cupcakes and Ice Cream, shared her secret to making cupcakes that make Hollywood stars swoon on "Good Morning America," Wednesday Aug. 22.


  • For the cupcakes:
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. coarse salt
  • 1/2 cup whole milk, room temperature
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp key lime juice
  • 1 tbsp key lime zest
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 2 large egg whites, room temperature
  • toothpick or skewer
  • For the frosting (frosts 1 dozen +):
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter , firm but not cold
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 3 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. key lime juice
  • 1 tbsp key lime zest
  • 1/2 tsp. milk (only if necessary)
  • Cooking Directions

    For the cupcakes:

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners; set aside.

    In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside. In a small bowl, mix together milk, vanilla, key lime zest and 1 tbsp of lime juice; set aside.

    In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter on medium-high speed, until light and fluffy. Gradually add sugar and continue to beat until well combined and fluffy. Reduce the mixer speed to medium and slowly add egg and egg whites until just blended.

    With the mixer on low, slowly add half the flour mixture; mix until just blended. Add the milk mixture; mix until just blended. Slowly add remaining flour mixture, scraping down sides of the bowl with a spatula, as necessary, until just blended.

    Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups. Transfer muffin tin to oven and bake until tops are just dry to the touch, 22 to 25 minutes. Transfer muffin tin to a wire rack and let cupcakes cool completely.

    Use a toothpick or skewer to poke the tops of the cupcakes with holes. Use pastry brush to brush remaining lime juice over the top of the cupcake.

    Let cupcakes dry slightly before topping with key lime frosting.

    For the frosting:

    Beat together butter and salt on medium speed until light and fluffy. Reduce mixer speed and slowly add confectioners' sugar; beat until well combined. Add vanilla, key lime juice and zest; mix until just blended. Do not overmix or frosting will incorporate too much air. Frosting consistency should be dense and creamy, like ice cream. Frosts over one dozen.

    Recipe courtesy of Sprinkles Cupcakes.

    Recipe Summary

    Main Ingredients: eggs, butter, sugar, flour, whole milk, key lime juice

    Course: Dessert

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