Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Strawberry-Lime Margarita Cupcakes (Non-Alcoholic)

If I've ever doubted a Betty Crocker recipe, I take it all back!  Betty's Strawberry Margarita Cake recipe made for perfect cupcakes... and the awesome recipe for buttercream frosting I found (I made the limey version) took these babies from good to great in no time!  I made these for our Cinco de Mayo party, and can't wait to find a reason to make them again :)

1 white cake mix
oil and egg whites (as called for in cake mix instructions)
3/4 c strawberry margarita drink mix (syrup, non-alcoholic)
1/2 c water

1 c (2 sticks) butter (salted or unsalted)
1/4 tsp salt (if using unsalted butter)
4 c powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp lime juice
2-3 TBSP milk

1 TBSP lime zest
sliced strawberries, rinsed and dried


Preheat oven to 350°.  Line cupcake pans with paper liners.

Add 1/2 c water to 3/4 c margarita mix (to create 1 1/4 c of liquid).  

In large bowl, combine cake mix, strawberry liquid mixture, oil, and egg whites.  Beat for 2 minutes on medium speed.

Bake for 16-20 minutes.  Set aside and allow to cool.


Using the whisk attachment of an electric mixer, beat butter on medium speed until completely smooth (about 1 minute).

Add salt (if using unsalted butter).

One cup at a time, add 2 cups of powdered sugar, beating after each addition.

Add vanilla and lime juice and beat to combine.

Add 1 TBSP milk and continue beating.

Add 2 remaining cups of powdered sugar, one cup at a time.

Add remaining 1 TBSP milk until consistency is reached (1 more TBSP if you prefer thinner frosting).  Add a bit of lime zest, if you'd like.

Pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes after they have cooled completely.


Top with a strawberry slice and a sprinkling of lime zest.

(If you chill these, make sure to take them out of the fridge a few minutes before serving...to allow the frosting to soften back up.  It hardens in the fridge!)

Comments from the cook:  I originally used a strawberry cake mix and added the strawberry syrup (by accident, actually).  The taste was phenomenal, though maybe a little on the overpowering side.  Fortunately (or unfortunately?), I baked them for a minute or two too long and they were too sponge-like for me.  I tried again (this time with a white cake), and had perfect success baking the cupcakes for about 17 minutes.

I will probably add 1/4 cup more powdered sugar to my frosting next time.  It was REALLY hot outside (about 90°) the day I took these to a party, and they might've held up just a little better with a bit more p. sugar.  And, though I tried to fight it, my strawberries still put off a bit of syrup that ran down the sides and into the frosting.  A small sacrifice for the taste we achieved...but enough to drive me a little crazy too!  Perhaps next time I'll throw the berries and lime zest on RIGHT before serving.  Or perhaps next time I'll just look the other way :)

Cake originally found here (thank you, thank you, Betty) and super-fantastic frosting recipe found here (can't wait to use this as my new go-to recipe!).

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