Perfect White Cupcakes with Lemon Frosting

These are the most amazing and moist cupcakes.

I was still searching for a really good recipe and this may be it. Now I’m not saying I won’t continue to try other recipes, variations and options. But this one is absolutely 100% a keeper. It’s delicious. Perfect consistency, delicious moistness. Not a touch of dryness but remember that sometimes isn’t just an issue with the recipe itself but also how long you cook your cake or cupcakes.

I topped this batch of cupcakes off with lemon frosting. While being quite tasty it’s also fairly strong in large quantities. If you know me and how I frost cupcakes know that this frosting shouldn’t be frosted in that way. Oops. It was still really good but we agree that a light coating would be best due to it’s strong lemony flavor. Also, a problem I’m finding with homemade frosting is that it hardens in the fridge. Not to the point of gross and totally not edible but it’s not fluffy and soft. So if you like chilled cupcakes as I do and you’re having a party or sharing cupcakes or cake with other people then you may want to either chill your cupcakes and frost prior to eating or leave cupcakes out after frosting.  It’s still really quite good and does warm up quickly after being removed from the fridge.

Perfect White Cupcakes with Lemon Frosting

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Dessert
Servings: 12



  • 1/2 C milk
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 C and 1 Tb all purpose flour
  • 3/4 C and 2Tb granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 6 Tb unsalted butter softened


  • 2 C powdered sugar
  • 1/4 C unsalted butter softened
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice


  • Preheat oven to 350F°. Bring milk and butter to room temp. Prepare one cupcake pan with liners. Combine milk and egg whites in a bowl or large glass measuring cup. A measuring cup will be easier to pour from later but a bowl will work too. Add in vanilla and mix well. Egg whites are hard to mix so your end result here won't be perfect but blend as best as you can. Set aside.
  • In a bowl of a stand mixer, mix flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add butter, mixing on low until the entire mixture looks like small moist crumb balls.
  • Add in half of the milk mixture to the crumbs. Mix on low until combined. Scrape the sides of your bowl well. Add in remaining milk mixture. Continue to mix on low until just blended. Do not over mix.
  • Using a large cookie scoop, divide batter evenly between cupcake liners. Roughly fill each liner 3/4 full, at the absolute most. Over filling liners will give you less than desirable results. Bake for 15 minutes or until a toothpick or cake tester comes out clean or only has a few moist crumbs clinging on. I wasn't execting my cupcakes to be ready at 15 minutes but that was the perfect time. Any longer and they'd have surely begun to dry out and left me unhappy. So start checking at 15 minutes. If you need to cook longer, check every 2 minutes until you are satisfied.
  • Remove pan from oven and let cupcakes rest in pan for 5 minutes or so. Carefully trasnfer cupcakes to a wire rack to continue cooling. After 20-30 minutes you can do one of several things. Cupcakes can be popped in the fridge or freezer until ready to frost. You can frost and then pop in the fridge or you can frost and leave out at room temp. I love chilled cupcakes. If you are going to frost and leave your cupcakes out at room temp, make sure the cupcakes have cooled completely.
  • Frosting: In a medium bowl or stand mixer, cream sugar and butter. Scrape the sides of your bowl and add lemon juice. Mix well, stop to scrap and add just a touch of color if you wish. Wilton icing color is best to use. Do not use liquid food coloring as this will alter the final product. Also, remember that a small amount of color goes a long way. I like to use a toothpick for my coloring purposes. Dip the toothpick just slightly in your icing color then smear it into your icing. Mix well. Transfer to a piping bag or frost as you wish.


An original recipe from Baked by Rachel
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19 Responses to “Perfect White Cupcakes with Lemon Frosting”

  1. #
    julia — April 26, 2010 at 11:31 am

    I am so glad you posted this. I need to make a layer cake this weekened and I have lemon and raspberry on the brain since we tweeted about those flavors. The cupcakes look PERFECT!

  2. #
    Lala — April 20, 2011 at 11:46 pm

    I’ve been looking for a good white cupcakes, your cupcakes look delicious. Can I double this recipe? Thanks.

    • #
      Rachel — April 21, 2011 at 11:02 am

      Yes easily doubled. I’ve done it plenty of times for parties. Just be sure to not overfill the cups – slightly less than a large scoop. Definitely no more than 3/4 full. :)

  3. #
    Shauna — July 23, 2011 at 11:20 am

    I’ve been looking EVERYWHERE for a perfectly dolloped icing like that. How do you do it? I know it’s really simple, but I can never get it right. I don’t have a huge tip, is that necessary?

    • #
      Rachel — July 23, 2011 at 1:29 pm

      Yes a large round tip is necessary for that kind of dollop. I think for those ones I used a wilton 1A tip but there are larger out there.

  4. #
    Isabelle — December 8, 2012 at 1:51 pm

    Does the icing taste much like butter?

    • #
      Rachel — December 8, 2012 at 4:46 pm

      It’s been a while since I’ve made this so I don’t believe so. It does have a strong lemon flavor which may mask any other flavors.

  5. #
    Liz Analla — May 14, 2013 at 9:54 pm

    Have you tried to make these as mini cupcakes? Was curious about the cook time, thinking maybe 10 minutes, if 15 minutes was enough for regular sized cupcakes.

    • #
      Rachel — May 15, 2013 at 7:43 am

      I have not, but typically you would want to reduce the time in half and then watch from there. I’d suggest start checking and monitoring them from 8 minutes on, just in case they’re done earlier than expected.

  6. #
    Pradnya — August 12, 2013 at 5:19 pm

    Hi, thanks for this recipe, exactly what I need! I am planning to make these a day before my son’s birthday. The party would be at noon time, so if I make these and frost previous day, would it stay good on the counter, like keep in an airtight rubbermaid container, till next day noon, almost 24 hrs later. Please let me know. Thanks!

    • #
      Rachel — August 12, 2013 at 9:13 pm

      They should be okay. Just be sure to cool completely before frosting and store them in an airtight container. Depending on the frosting used, it’s possible it may form a slight crust but otherwise should be okay.

  7. #
    Mari — September 21, 2013 at 11:51 am

    I just made the cake recipe last night. And it came out so moist and delicious. I used it for my rainbow cupcakes, I needed a white cake and this was perfect for it. Thanks for sharing!

    • #
      Rachel — September 21, 2013 at 2:51 pm

      Thanks for sharing your success with the recipe! :) I’m glad you enjoyed it.

  8. #
    kyla — March 26, 2018 at 3:59 pm

    Delicious. Thanks for the recipe. I found that adding a couple spoonfuls of lemon juice to the batter really helped improve the texture of the baked cake.

    • #
      Rachel — April 2, 2018 at 6:58 am

      So glad you enjoyed them, Kyla!

  9. #
    Dawn — March 18, 2021 at 10:19 am

    Can I use Quick Eggs Egg whites?

    • #
      Rachel — March 20, 2021 at 8:32 am

      I haven’t personally done this but it should work fine. Be sure to measure exactly 2 tablespoons of liquid egg whites per egg white called for in the recipe.


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