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Valentine Cupcakes

These moist and delicious lemon Valentine cupcakes are topped with a silky Swiss meringue buttercream flavored with a zingy raspberry reduction pipes into delicate roses.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 35 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 18 cupcakes
Calories 293kcal


For the raspberry reduction

  • 6 oz raspberries 170g
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar 12g
  • 1/2 lemon juiced

For the cupcakes

  • 1 2/3 cups all purpose flour 213g
  • 1/4 tsp salt 1g heaping
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda 1g, heaping
  • 1 tsp baking powder 4g
  • 1 cup granulated sugar 200g
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter 170g, melted
  • 1/2 cup sour cream 115g
  • 1/2 cup whole milk 118mL
  • 3 egg whites room temperature
  • 1/2 tbsp vanilla extract 7mL
  • zest of a lemon
  • 1/2 lemon juiced
  • pink food coloring

For the Swiss buttercream

  • 5 eggs room temp
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar 300g
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 cups unsalted butter 454g
  • 1 tsp orange blossom water 5mL Optional


For the raspberry reduction

  • Put raspberries, lemon juice and sugar into a small pot and place over medium heat.
  • Break up the raspberries with the back of a spoon and simmer until reduced by a third or so. 
  • Use a spatula to help strain into a bowl. Place in fridge to chill.

For the cupcakes

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prep your cupcake pan by lining it with cupcake papers.
  • Sift the dry ingredients including the sugar into a medium sized bowl. Give it a whisk. Set aside.
  • Add all of the wet ingredients into a separate bowl and whisk to combine.
  • Add the soft pink food coloring to the wet mixture a drop at a time. whisk and add more if the color isn't saturated enough.
  • Combine the wet to the dry ingredients. Whisk to combine.
  • Pour batter into prepped pan. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until the centers are springy to the touch.
  • Remove from oven and set aside to cool.

For the Swiss buttercream

  • Place egg whites, sugar and salt into a glass bowl.
  • Transfer the bowl over a pot of simmering water. Make sure the bowl does not touch the water.
  • Whisk continuously until the mixture reaches an internal temperature of 160 degrees or until the sugar has dissolved.
  • Transfer to a stand mixer and mix on low to high to get soft peeks. Mix until the mixture reaches room temperature.
  • Add butter 1 tablespoon at a time. Wait until each piece incorporates before adding the next.
  • Add orange blossom water or vanilla extract.
  • Whisk in a tablespoon of the raspberry reduction at a time until desired flavor and color are reached.

For the assembly

  • Spread out a dollop of buttercream as the base of your cupcake.
  • Place the soft pink buttercream into a piping bag fitted with a 125 tip or a medium petal tip.
  • Pipe a spiral in the center of the cupcake. Begin piping small petals. Make them larger as you go.



  • I made a batch of the cupcakes flavored with the 3 tablespoons of the raspberry reduction but they turn lilac after baking. Not the end of the world but wasn't the look I was going for.
  • You can substitute whole milk yogurt for the sour cream if desired, I do it all the time and can’t really tell the difference.
  • Making the raspberry reductions takes a minute or two so if you're in a hurry try adding in some strained preserved or a bit or the juice from frozen raspberries instead.


Serving: 75g | Calories: 293kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 2.2g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 2.2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4.8g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5.7g | Cholesterol: 56mg | Sodium: 202mg | Potassium: 40mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 31g | Vitamin A: 100IU | Calcium: 36mg | Iron: 0.8mg