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Lemon Sparkle Cupcakes

Bursting with lemony zing, these cupcakes don't require frosting. In fact, my family prefers the crunchy sugar-and-spice topping. A dear friend shared the recipe with me, and it has long been in demand at our house. —Janice Porter, Platte, South Dakota
  • Total Time
    Prep: 15 min. Bake: 20 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    about 1-1/4 dozen


  • 2/3 cup shortening
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1-2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup 2% milk
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg


  • Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, cream shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with milk, beating well after each addition. Stir in lemon zest.
  • Fill paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Combine topping ingredients; sprinkle a rounded 1/2 teaspoonful over each cupcake.
  • Bake 20-24 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
Nutrition Facts
1 each: 215 calories, 10g fat (3g saturated fat), 44mg cholesterol, 164mg sodium, 28g carbohydrate (17g sugars, 0 fiber), 3g protein.

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Average Rating:
  • 2124arizona
    Jun 26, 2017

    Loved these cupcakes with the burst of lemon.

  • jenavan
    Jul 5, 2012

    No comment left

  • lillybow
    Jan 15, 2012

    Ooops I meant to say I used 1/4 tsp of topping....

  • lillybow
    Jan 14, 2012

    I would agree the lemon flavor could use a boost, but they were light and fluffy and I got almost 2 doz using a 2 in scoop to fill the muffin tin. I used only about 1/2 tsp of topping for each muffin because it seemed like that was enough. So now I have plenty of topping leftover to try the recipe again with some lemon juice. :)

  • merilie
    Sep 8, 2008

    they are easy to make my dauter helped for home school

  • meongkim
    Aug 28, 2008

    No comment left

  • volunteer1
    Aug 14, 2008

    No comment left

  • RileesMeMa
    Aug 12, 2008

    No comment left

  • S. Sue
    Aug 12, 2008

    No comment left

  • jmdhah
    Aug 12, 2008

    They were easy to prepare, but didn't taste any lemony flavor in them. Were not a hit at my house. I threw most of them away. I would not make them again.Debbie