Crazy for Crust

Perfect Triple Lemon Cupcakes

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These lemon cupcakes are not for the lemon faint of heart. They’re the perfect lemon cupcake with triple the lemon flavor.

It’s like lemon smacks you in the face in every single bite!

These are the Perfect Triple Lemon Cupcakes; lemon flavor in every single bite!


It’s no secret that I love lemon. Sometimes I crave it so fiercely I find myself in the kitchen baking up a storm. This recipe? Is a product of that.

I think you’ll be glad for my fierce craving.

These lemon cupcakes are the best lemon dessert I’ve made. Ever.

They’re also the best lemon cupcakes I’ve ever had.

These are the Perfect Triple Lemon Cupcakes; lemon flavor in every single bite!

I’m still working myself through those bags of lemons my MIL gave me and after I made Glory’s lemon curd for my No-Bake Lemon Dessert last week, I made more.

Because you can never have enough lemon curd.

{Pssst. Buy Glory’s book. It’s amazing. Review and giveaway next week!}

So I had a jar of lemon curd in my refrigerator and was trying to decide how not to eat it with a spoon when I got an email from a reader. She’s local and used to be a neighbor of mine. Her elementary school was doing a fundraiser dinner and instead of buying dessert they were auctioning off table desserts. She asked if I’d donate two and of course, I said yes.

Hey, it’s an excuse to bake more. And, besides being a good cause, it gets the dessert out of my house.

Anyway, the lemon curd was calling my name and all of a sudden I needed a lemon cupcake.

So I made some.

These are the Perfect Triple Lemon Cupcakes; lemon flavor in every single bite!

Now, pretty much everyone I know has a lemon cupcake. Averie, Sally, Aimee, Christi, and Stephanie all have amazing recipes.

But I wanted to make my own. Because, well, I’m me.

I wanted the lemon in these cupcakes to punch you in the face with flavor. Every. Single. Bite. needed lemon.

So I made these triple lemon cupcakes. With three times the lemon!

These are the Perfect Triple Lemon Cupcakes; lemon flavor in every single bite!

The cake is based on my Perfect Vanilla Cupcake recipe (which later turned into my Perfect Funfetti Cupcake recipe). I substituted whole milk for the buttermilk and added fresh lemon juice and zest to the batter. You need about 1 large lemon (mine were pretty big and juicy, so depending on the haul at your grocery store, you might need two).

The cupcakes make the oven smell amazing, which is how you know you added enough lemon.

Once the cupcakes are cooled, you fill the center with lemon curd. I simply cut out a small section of the cupcake (a circle about the size of a dime) and spoon some curd in the hole. I used a from scratch lemon curd, but you can use jarred. They sell it near the jams and jellies at the grocery store.

Then you frost the cupcakes with lemon buttercream. Instead of vanilla, you add fresh lemon juice and lots of zest to the butter and powdered sugar. This lemon frosting is super lemony – perfect for an in-your-face lemon cupcake.

Note: you can make the frosting up to two days ahead of time and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Just let it come to room temperature before frosting the cupcakes.

There you have them: triple lemon cupcakes.

These are the Perfect Triple Lemon Cupcakes; lemon flavor in every single bite!

They’re perfect. And they scream lemon…in every bite!

4.89 from 9 votes
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Servings: 15

Perfect Triple Lemon Cupcakes

These Lemon Cupcakes are perfect! They have triple the lemon flavor with lemon in the cupcake and the frosting, and they're filled with lemon curd. The perfect cupcake to bring sunshine to any day!



  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter — melted
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice — from about 1/2 a large lemon
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest — from about 1 large lemon
  • 1/2 cup whole milk

Filling & Frosting:

  • 1/2 cup lemon curd — jarred or from scratch for the filling
  • 1 cup unsalted butter — softened
  • 5 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest — 1 large lemon
  • 4 tablespoons lemon juice — 1 large lemon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1-2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream — for desired consistency


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake tins with liners (makes 15-16).
  2. Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.
  3. Add melted butter to a large bowl and mix in sugar with a hand mixer for 30 seconds, until thick and yellow. Add eggs one at at time, beating after each addition. Beat in vanilla extract, lemon juice, and zest.
  4. Add the flour mixture and milk alternately, starting and ending with the flour. Don’t over mix! Divide batter among liners, filling 2/3 full (about 1/4 cup of batter per cupcake). Bake for 13-18 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. (Mine took about 14 minutes.) Cool completely before frosting.
  5. To fill: cut out a small bit of the top/center of the cupcake. (Cut a hole that’s about the size of a dime and the amount of cupcake you take out is a little larger than a marble.) Fill each hole with about 1/2 - 1 tablespoon of lemon curd.
  6. To make the frosting: Beat butter until creamy. Beat in salt and 1 cup of powdered sugar at a time until it’s all added.
  7. Beat in lemon juice and zest. Add 1 tablespoon of heavy whipping cream and mix until smooth. Add more cream as needed for desired consistency. Frosting can be made up to 2 days ahead and stored in the refrigerator. Make sure to let it come to room temperature before using.
  8. Frost cupcakes by placing frosting in a pastry bag. I like the 1M tip, it gives pretty swirls. Add extra lemon zest for decoration, if desired.

Click here to see the complete list of Lemon Recipes!

Perfect Funfetti Cupcakes

Perfect Funfetti Cupcakes (7 of 10)w

Lemon Gooey Bars

Lemon Gooey Bars (3 of 3)w

White Chocolate Lemon Bars

White Chocolate Lemon Bars (11 of 11)w

Easy Lemon Donut Holes

Easy Lemon Donut Holes (2 of 4)w

Check out my collection of over 140 lemon recipes for more lemon ideas!

Or visit my Crazy for Lemon pinboard!

Sweets from friends:
Lemon Meringue Pudding Krispie Treats by Cookies and Cups
Lemon Raspberry Angel Food Cake by Lauren’s Latest
Lemon Poppyseed Banana Bread by Something Swanky

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  1. The recipe calls for 1/4 cup lemon juice but also says it is the same as the juice from about half a large lemon. What should it be?

  2. Hi, May I know how many calories is it per serving?

  3. Made these for my mom for Mother’s Day as she’s a huge lemon fanatic. She LOVED them as did everyone else there. The cake and icing were so light,fluffy and had a ton of lemon flavour without being overbearing.

  4. How do you make the frosting??

  5. Pingback: 20 Amazing Lemon Desserts Are Perfect For Spring - My Home and Travels

  6. I am excited to make! I have not made yet and plan to for Easter cookout. Do these need to be refridgerated when not being served? For example, can I make at home (and refrigerate if needed) then take to cookout where they can be on table for a couple of hours (more) before serving. Or can they simply be in the air conditioned house for serving. My host will have no room in the fridge. Thanks for any response.

  7. Made this for the first time in 2016 for a Celebration of Life Gathering. My mother had died and she was known for her love of all things dessert, so I wanted to honor her by making something really special. I hate cooking, but the challenge of making something in honor of her was important, so I made these cupcakes. They were a huge hit! I am now relied upon to provide these cupcakes for our annual real estate Baked Goods Auction- I make 3 dozen and last year my cupcakes fetched over $500.00.
    Important things to know if you don’t have the good luck to get it perfect the first time (I wasn’t as meticulous in subsequent batches but I now know why- consistency in carefully following these guidelines will help!): First, follow the directions EXACTLY. When it says “begin with the flour and end with the flour” when combining the flour and whole milk to the batter, do it this way! Use the REAL lemons. Also, bring eggs to room temperature. Make sure oven temperature is accurate- use a thermometer if your oven isn’t reliable. Pre-heat the oven completely. You can use an electric mixer, but never mix on high- use the wisking attachments and go “easy.” When mixing batter, only mix until it’s “just mixed.” Over-mixing will ruin the cupcakes. You can’t go off and do something else while running the mixer (like you can when making Tollhouse chocolate chip cookies.) Trust me. Also, do not walk off and keep the cupcakes in the oven too long- and once the buzzer goes off and the tooth-pick test comes out clean, get the cakes out of their pans or they’ll continue to cook and will be dry. Use the freshest eggs & other ingredients. Items on sale are usually WAY past their ideal use date. I’ve read up on cupcakes because they really aren’t a “piece of cake” to get right. Other good tips include: 1- if you can’t measure accurately with your eyes, use a scoop to fill each of the cupcake liners so they’re equally filled, and only fill them about 2/3 to 3/4 of the way up. 2- put icing completely over the top, to the edges of the cupcake- it’ll keep the cake fresher longer. 3- the icing gets warm quickly when you use a plastic cone for decorating. Ice the cupcakes quickly or the icing gets disgusting and you can’t get it to look nice. Refrigerate it for a few minutes if you have to. If you have no artistic ablities, don’t bother with filling a cone and screwing around with the tips… just spread the icing on neatly… 4. Store in air-tight containers like Tupperware. Storing on the counter or in the fridge with only a wrap over them won’t keep them from getting stale and/or hard. I still hate cooking but these things ROCK.

  8. I made these twice already.  These are so delicious.  Easy to make with the recipe.  I never eat my cupcakes and I ate 6 of them.  Wow.  Thank you for sharing this recipe.   I have a beautiful picture but don’t know where to post it.  Again, thank you!    P.S. Baked for 18 minutes and baked perfectly, no burns.  

  9. I’m making these cupcakes on Saturday. I wanted to know if the lemon frosting is a yellow color or is it more white?

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