Red, White and Blueberry Lemon Cupcakes

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I can’t remember the last time I made cupcakes. It’s just not really my thing. It’s not that I dislike them. I mean, what’s not to like? They’re cute, they’re easy, they’re made of cake and they’re covered in frosting! No wonder so many people decided in the last few years that cupcakes should no longer be strictly relegated to school birthday parties. The cupcake craze has been sweeping the nation for quite some time now and the fact that I haven’t dedicated at least one blog post to this trendy treat shows how decidedly unhip I am (like I really had to point that out). But, whatever. My friends Jon and Julie just had the cutest baby on the planet and when Julie, sleep-deprived and recovering from an emergency C-section, repeatedly mentioned that she would love to taste the Lemon-Scented Blueberry Cupcakes that she saw in her Cooking Light magazine, I decided that maybe it was time for me to finally join the cool kids and bake some cupcakes.

The recipe was the grand prize winner in the second annual Cooking Light Ultimate Reader Recipe Contest. Cooking Light has some great recipes but I usually don’t make ‘light’ desserts. I don’t substitute splenda for sugar and I never use any of the strange reduced-calorie butter substitutes, fat-free sour creams or cream cheeses. I like to create healthy recipes but I always use real ingredients and I’ve always felt that at my house, dessert needs to be a real dessert. To me, dessert is a special treat and since it’s not something I eat all the time, I don’t feel the need to try to lighten up my favorite desserts. If I feel that I need to cut back, I’d rather go without dessert than eat something that tastes like diet food. But this cupcake recipe uses real butter and sugar, just not in excessive amounts. I can deal with that :-)

lemon-blueberry-cupcakes-portrait-for-web.jpgI would call these little treats cupcakes only because of the frosting. If the frosting was left off, they would easily pass as muffins. In fact, I think I’ll try these sometime with whole wheat flour, leave the frosting off, and eat them as breakfast muffins. That being said, the frosting is what makes these one of the best desserts I’ve had in a while! I love any kind of cream cheese frosting but this tart and tangy lemon frosting was one of the best I’ve tasted. It was a little on the runny side but it worked fine. As I was eating it (with a spoon), I had visions of all the other cakes and cookies I could frost with this stuff!

The only problem I had with this recipe is that my cupcakes were flat. Well, maybe concave is a better description ;-) They didn’t look like the cute rounded cupcakes that I saw in the magazine photo! But they looked fine with a dollop of frosting on top and, with my limited cupcake-making experience, I don’t really know if the cupcakes are even supposed to be rounded on top.

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All in all, this was an easy dessert recipe that tasted great. The blueberry and lemon flavors go together perfectly, the cake is moist with just the right amount of sweetness, and the tart-sweet frosting is to die for! If you’re a cake snob, you might be offended by the muffin-like texture of these cupcakes. But if that’s the case, maybe you need to lighten up! :-) You can find the recipe for Lemon-Scented Blueberry Cupcakes here.

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Now, I’d like to share a photo of Cayla Madison, the cutest newborn I’ve ever seen, who inspired me to bake the cupcakes in the first place!

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Happy Fourth of July everyone, enjoy the fireworks!

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19 Comments
  1. Kalyn

    What a beautiful baby. Usually at that age they aren’t quite coming into their looks yet, but she’s stunning. What a nice friend you are to make cupcakes. Happy Fourth of July!

    2:58 pm  Jul 4th, 2007
  2. Ruby Berry

    Sweet baby! Cupcakes look sooo good and I’m totally into the cupcake craze! They are perfect for children’s parties because kids LOVE them. :)

    5:58 pm  Jul 4th, 2007
  3. Fran

    She is a beauty! What a great occasion to make these wonderful cupcakes. I have quite a collection of blueberry muffin/cupcake recipes. Will do this soon. Thanks.

    7:33 pm  Jul 4th, 2007
  4. Abby

    She’s beautiful! Great hair, already.

    And ‘If I feel that I need to cut back, I’d rather go without dessert than eat something that tastes like diet food.”

    Aaaaaamen.

    8:43 pm  Jul 4th, 2007
  5. Misslionheart

    She’s beautiful. Not sure which I prefer the most, the smell of a newborn baby or a cupcake, straight out of the oven!

    10:15 pm  Jul 4th, 2007
  6. Cynthia

    Cayla is not going to like this sort of world wide exposure in such a vulnerable state :) You wait until she hits 12 :)

    Patriotic cupcakes for a beautiful girl.

    11:05 pm  Jul 4th, 2007
  7. Caty

    Wow, I have to agree, she is just adorable. The cupcakes look gorgeous too, I love blueberries with lemon, and I think the little concave tops are cute.

    11:20 pm  Jul 4th, 2007
  8. leslie

    She’s beautiful, congrats to your friend! I am going to have to try out this recipe – blueberries and lemon sounds wonderful

    4:45 pm  Jul 5th, 2007
  9. Shea

    Cayla is a beautiful baby! Rosy cheeks and the reddest lips I’ve ever seen on a baby…her mom and dad must be over the moon! You know, I’ve noticed that Cooking Light has some good recipes and most of them aren’t as “light” as they’d like you to believe…and I’m the same way…if I make one of their recipes it’s full fat all the way!

    5:03 pm  Jul 5th, 2007
  10. Kristen

    She is beautiful. Look at that gorgeous head of hair! Wow. Breathtaking.

    I have those cupcakes bookmarked to try from CL magazine. Yummy!

    6:20 pm  Jul 5th, 2007
  11. Nicole

    Kalyn: Hope you had a great 4th!

    Ruby: Not only kids :-)

    Fran: I’m dying to make some more blueberry muffins soon!

    Abby: :-)

    Misslionheart: I think I’d have to go with the smell of fresh cupcakes!

    Cynthia: Hehehe…yes, you’re right about that!

    Caty: Thanks :-) I still don’t know if I did something wrong or if they were supposed to be concave like that!

    Leslie: I love the combination of lemon and blueberries! And I like them separately, too :-) There are tons of great blueberry recipes out right now!

    Shea: Yes, Cooking Light really does have some good recipes and a lot of them really aren’t that light.

    Kristen: I know, she has so much hair!

    7:42 pm  Jul 5th, 2007
  12. Misslionheart

    Oh, I didn’t mean the baby straight out of the oven!

    8:53 am  Jul 6th, 2007
  13. Nicole

    Misslionheart: haha…I know!

    2:24 pm  Jul 6th, 2007
  14. Orchidea

    She is really beautiful!!! And your cupcakes look so good… I am sure they are.
    Ciao.

    3:15 pm  Jul 7th, 2007
  15. Anali

    What a cutie pie she is!! And all that gorgeous hair! The cupcakes look good too! ; )

    6:40 am  Jul 8th, 2007
  16. Mae

    Nicole, i’m going crazy about your cupcakes! I too haven’t made any cupcakes lately and this has just pushed me over the edge… i’m going to make some soooooon!

    1:14 am  Jul 10th, 2007
  17. mara

    Both the cupcakes and the baby look great!

    10:52 pm  Jul 24th, 2007
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  19. Tara

    Wow the cupcakes look amazing! Can’t wait to try them :)

    (The baby is adorable!!)

    1:27 pm  Jun 30th, 2009
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