As much as I want to say this was my idea, it actually was a suggestion from a co-worker when I was trying to think up a cupcake to bring to a work function. I love citrus, and I especially love citrus in the summertime. Really, what could be better? And there is just something so special about a key lime pie. Maybe it's just that I love them and don't have the chance to eat it very often. Maybe it's the way the whipped cream is always piped onto and decorated with lime zest. Who knows.
Once the idea was mentioned to me, I ran with it. These are a big hit. They feel like a lot of time and effort went into these, but they are actually relatively easy. Here we go...
Key Lime Cupcakes
Yields 48 cupcakes
3c graham crackers, crusted
11tbsp unsalted butter, melted
14 tbsp butter, softened
1 3/4 c sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 c milk
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
3 1/2 c flour
zest of a lime
juice from two limes
Preheat over to 350 degrees
To make the crust, mix melted butter, graham cracker crumbs, salt, and sugar until combined. Place one heaping tablespoon of crust mixture into the bottom of each liner and press down. Bake for 10 minutes.
In an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar until combined and fluffy. Add each egg, one at a time. Add vanilla, lime juice, and lime zest. Combine. In a separate bowl, sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
Add dry ingredients to the butter mixture, alternating between dry and milk. Only mix until combined so you don't overmix. Overmixing=dry cupcakes.
Fill each cupcake liner maximum 3/4 full. Bake for 15-20 minutes. After 15 minutes, keep a very close eye on them as you want them to stay pale on top, but still set inside. Cool completely.
Whipped Cream Frosting (Based on this recipe)
Yields enough for 48 cupcakes
4 tbsp sugar
2 c heavy whipping cream
2 tsp vanilla
Place bowl from electric mixer in freezer for 10 minutes prior to making whipped cream.
Place the sugar into the mixing bowl and add the whipping cream. Whisk just until the cream reaches stiff peaks. Whisk in vanilla to combine.
Fill a pastry bag with whipped cream and pipe frosting onto cooled cupcakes. I piped mine with a 1M Wilton tip, but any larger tip will do. Top with green sprinkles, lime zest, or just leave it simple with the whipped cream.
Because this is a whipped cream frosting, these cupcakes can't sit around too long. You probably want to keep them in a cool environment and eat them within the day. Try not to eat all of them, I dare you!
People get impressed with the graham cracker crust the most, and it wasn't even difficult! Impress your friends and family! Do it!