Friday, November 30, 2012

Cubicle kitchen: Cranberry Lemon Cupcakes

To my mind, leftovers are just the start of a whole world of possibilities.  Yes, you can just reheat stuffing and eat it.  Or, you can reheat it and top it with a fried egg, using the herby, bready goodness to sop up the yolk.  Mmm...

Mom and I love cranberries so much we could have just eaten this leftover relish on its own, but I had to use some of it as a cupcake filling.  I call this a relish rather than a sauce because it was a chopped mix of cranberries, apples, and other fruits.  I wish I could be more specific, but this was someone else's contribution to our potluck Thanksgiving dinner, so all I can be sure of is that it was delicious.

People loved the tartness of the lemon, I think it pairs nicely with the cranberry, and has a good balance of sweetness.  This recipe would work with pretty much any cranberry sauce, though I think it's best with something with texture, chunks of actual cranberry rather than rings from where it was sitting in a can.

Cranberry Lemon Cupcakes
made a dozen regular-sized cupcakes and 45 minis


  • 1 box lemon cake mix
  • 1 can Sprite Zero
  • a few drops lemon extract
  • sprinkle of dried lemon zest
  • leftover cranberry relish (or sauce)
  • about 1 cup powdered sugar
  • less than a tablespoon lemon juice
  • dried cranberries for garnish


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix cake mix and can of soda together, adding additional extract and zest just to boost the lemon flavor.  Note: you can of course use your own preferred lemon cake recipe.
  2. Fill lined mini-cupcake tins about half full of batter.  Add about a teaspoon of cranberry relish, pushing it into the batter until it's mostly covered.  For the full-sized cupcakes, scoop in batter about 2/3 full, add a little more relish, and then top with a little more batter rather than pushing in the relish.
  3. Place in the oven and bake, about 10 minutes for minis, 15 for the full-size.  When fully baked, remove and allow to cool.
  4. In a mug or small bowl, mix powdered sugar, lemon juice, and water until a glaze forms.  The consistency should be relatively thick to avoid the glaze running down the cupcake liner.
  5. Using a spoon, apply a circle of glaze on each cupcake, and top with a dried cranberry.

No comments:

Post a Comment