Whoever came up with the idea to put alcohol in baked goods gets a great big (virtual) pat on the back from me. I had my first adventure in boozy baking last night and ohmygod the results were amazing! Now I just need to find an excuse to make these on a regular basis…
Margarita Cupcakes (recipe originally from PattiCakes)
makes about 40 mini cupcakes
For the cupcakes:
1 1/2 c flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter (room temp)
1 c sugar
2 large eggs (room temp)
zest & juice of 2 limes
2 tbsp tequila *whatever brand you prefer, I used Jose Cuervo
1/2 c buttermilk *I used skim milk because I didn’t feel like making buttermilk
1 tbsp tequila (for brushing on tops of cupcakes)
For the frosting:
1 c unsalted butter (room temp)
2 1/2 c confectioners sugar, sifted
1 1/2 tbsp lime juice
3 tbsp tequila
1. Preheat oven to 325°. Line cupcake tin with liners and set aside. I made mini cupcakes and sprayed my tin with Pam Baking Spray. I used (standalone) mini foil liners on a cookie sheet for the second batch.
2. In a bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside. You can always omit salt from recipes. I usually omit the salt and use salted butter instead (because salted butter is what I have on hand; you can definitely omit the salt and still use unsalted butter).
3. In an electric mixer, combine the butter and sugar (medium high speed, using the paddle attachment if you have a fancy Kitchenaid). Mix until the butter/sugar mix is light & fluffy and well combined. I used a handheld electric mixer, which basically has one speed: fast-ish.
4. Add one egg at a time, making sure each one is incorporated before you add the next.
5. Scrape down the bowl. Add the lime juice, lime zest and tequila. Don’t worry if it starts to look like its curdling or separating, it will all come together when you add the flour.
6. Scrape down the bowl again and reduce the speed to low. Add the dry ingredients and buttermilk in 3 parts, alternating between additions. Do not over-mix!
7. Divide the batter into prepared cupcake tins. Fill about 2/3 full to avoid overflowing.
8. Bake for about 12 minutes for mini cupcakes and 23-25 for standard sized. Cupcakes should pass the “toothpick test” when they’re done… aka a toothpick should come out clean after being inserted into the center of a cupcake.
9. Allow cupcakes to cool completely before brushing the tops of them with the extra 1 tbsp of tequila. The cupcakes will soak up the tequila while you make the frosting.
To make the frosting:
1. Whisk butter for 4 to 5 minutes, or until fluffy. I used a handheld electric mixer. You can use a whisk attachment if you have it, but the regular beaters will work just as well.
2. Lower the speed of the mixer to medium-low and add the sifted confectioners sugar in small batches, scraping down the sides of the bowl between additions. Whip until all sugar is incorporated with butter.
3. Add lime juice and tequila and mix until frosting is thick, but fluffy.
4. Frost cupcakes and decorate, if you so desire. I decorated with green sugar crystals. I think lime wedge candies would be cute, too!
One note: I was worried that brushing the tops with tequila would make these too strong, especially since I made minis. As a little experiment, I only brushed half of them with the extra tequila and left the other half alone. My roommate and I taste-tested them and it turned out that the ones brushed with the tequila had a stronger lime flavor than the ones that were left alone. They were both delicious, but I would definitely recommend adding that extra little bit of tequila!
Do yourself a favor and make these this weekend!