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Gluten-free Lemon Cupcake Recipe

Gluten free lemon cupcake recipe - filled with fresh lemon curd and super easy to make! You'd never know they're gf and they can easily be dairy-free too.
Keyword dairy-free, gluten-free lemon cupcakes recipe
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 10 -12
Calories 546kcal
Author Bex


For the cakes

  • 175 g gluten free self raising flour
  • 1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/4 tsp xanthan gum
  • 175 g butter or dairy free hard margarine
  • 175 g caster sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 lemons zested
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

For the lemon curd

  • 2 lemons (zest and juice of both)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 110 g butter or dairy free hard margarine
  • 160 g caster sugar

For the lemon buttercream

  • 200 g butter room temperature (or dairy free hard margarine - add a little extra icing sugar if using)
  • 455 g icing sugar sieved
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2-4 lemon zest optional, but I love zest in my buttercream


For the lemon curd

  • Firstly (if making yourself) make your lemon curd (you might want to do this ahead of time so it has plenty of time to cool down). Add your eggs to a saucepan and whisk (hand whisk, not electric!) to combine.
  • Add the rest of your ingredients and pop it on a medium heat. Whisk your mixture, allowing the butter to melt and then continue to mix for a further 10 minutes (approx) until the lemon curd starts to thicken slightly. (Don't let it boil)
  • Leave to cool completely before popping it into a glass jar to thicken further in the fridge. It's then ready to use for the cakes!

For the cupcakes

  • Preheat your oven to 180C (160C Fan) and place cupcake cases into your tin.
  • Add all your ingredients into a large mixing bowl and beat together with an electric hand whisk until smooth and combined.
  • Spoon the mixture evenly between your cupcake cases, about 2/3rds full. Place in the oven for 20-25 minutes until a skewer comes out cleanly and they are golden on top.
  • Allow them to completely cool on a cooling rack.

For the buttercream

  • For the buttercream, ensure your butter is soft and at room temperature. I find it takes a good hour out of the fridge to soften, but never let it go too soft! Place your butter into a stand mixer and mix on a medium speed for about 5 minutes until the butter has gone a lot more pale in colour.
  • Add your icing sugar gradually. I add it in 2-3 stages and beat for about 3 minutes between each addition. Start your mixer slowly to save your kitchen from a real icing sugar mess, but then increase the speed to medium / high for each of your 3 minutes.
  • Add in your lemon zest and lemon juice (add half and then add the second half after its incorporated). Beat for a further 3 minutes and it should then be done. Ensure it's the right thickness - it should be if you've beaten it for long enough. However, if it's too thick you can add a tiny amount of milk or extra lemon juice. And if too thin, sieve in a little extra icing sugar - this might be the case for dairy free buttercream.

For the assembly of the cupcakes

  • Once the cupcakes and lemon curd are cool, you need to make little holes in your cupcakes to fill with the lemon curd. I use one of my piping nozzles to gently push into the centre of the cupcake and remove a bit. You could use a knife and remove a little too. Just make sure you don't go too deep as you need some of the cake beneath to hold the filling!
  • Spoon some lemon curd into the hole you've made in each cupcake.
  • Spoon your buttercream into a piping bag with a large star nozzle. Then pipe your buttercream on top.
  • Finish with a little lemon zest on top. Enjoy!


Serving: 1grams | Calories: 546kcal | Carbohydrates: 68g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 18g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 141mg | Sodium: 399mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 57g