Limoncello Cupcakes

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A couple of weeks ago, I was wondering around in Target {yes, quite dangerous} and I came across these absolutely adorable silicone chick cake molds…..and I had to have them! I stood there debating the practicality of them, but in the end, they were just too adorable to pass up. I do not usually make seasonal, full priced purchases, I like things to be on sale! But I had this picture in my head, and well, I just couldn’t pass them up…..

chicks silicone molds

and this is what I was thinking while standing in Target…..

pink and yellow sprinkle covered chicks on an oval platter sitting on a pink, yellow and white striped napkin

They are perfect for Easter and springtime parties! Don’t worry, if you do not want to go buy these molds, you can still make these delicious Limoncello Cupcakes…as cupcakes as well…..

a white frosting topped cupcake with a pink wrapper and yellow striped straw sitting in front of six additional cupcakes on a white background

With a straw because it’s usually a drink 😉 or with yellow sugar crystals because they are lemon…..

Limoncello Cupcakes

They would also be perfect for Mother’s Day!

three white frosting covered cupcakes with pink and yellow wrappers in a row on a white background

You can add pink food coloring, and make them Pink Lemonade Cupcakes! You know me and options. 🙂

How to make Limoncello Cupcakes:

Start by preheating the oven to 350 degrees. Spray your cake molds and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet, or line some muffin tins with pretty wrappers…..

Limoncello Peeps and Cupcakes spray

Mix the flour, salt, baking powder, dry milk powder, and pudding mix together in a bowl and set aside…..

Limoncello Cupcakes flour

In a large bowl, beat together the eggs, sugar, and oil until well blended…..

LImoncello Cupcakes eggs

add the vanilla, lemon zest, water, and Limoncello*…..

Limoncello Cupcakes zest

Gradually add the dry ingredients…..

Limoncello Cupcakes mix

Beat just until well combined. Fill cake molds or wrappers 3/4’s full…..

Limoncello Peeps and Cupcakes fill

Do not bake cupcake wrappers on a flat pan, they will flatten out and look strange. 😉  They need to be in muffins pans. Bake for 18 to 21 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean…..

Limoncello Peeps and Cupcakes baked

Allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes, they do shrink up and level out a bit. Remove from pan and place on a wire cooling rack, allow to cool completely…..

Limoncello Peeps and Cupcakes rack

If you are making the peeps, you will need to make a glaze. Whisk together 2 cups of powdered sugar with 6 Tablespoons of Limoncello…..

Limocello Peeps and Cupcakes glaze

Dip top of the “peeps” into the glaze and allow excess to drip back into the bowl…..

Limoncello Peeps and Cupcakes dip

Place parchment paper under the wire cooling rack, and place chicks back on rack. Shake yellow sugar crystals over the glazed tops to completely cover…..

Limoncello Peeps and Cupcakes shake

The darker yellow sugar looks better than the pale yellow…..

Limoncello Peeps and Cupcakes sugar

Dip a toothpick into black food gel to make the eyes…..

Limoncello Peeps and Cupcakes by

I cheated and sprinkled the pink sugar over the pale yellow glaze. 😉

To make the Limoncello Frosting:

I used my favorite Buttercream Frosting recipe and substituted 2 Tablespoons of Limoncello and 1 teaspoon of lemon extract for the original flavorings. You can use a small zipper top bag or a decorating bag with a #2D decorating tip to decorate the cupcakes…..

white frosting topped cupcakes in pink and yellow spring wrappers sitting on a white background

*To make these cupcakes without alcohol – substitute lemonade for the Limoncello and water in the cake recipe. Taste the batter to see how lemony it is. You may need to add extract as well. Use water and lemon extract for the buttercream. 🙂

The reason that I make all of my cakes with alcohol, is not because I want to keep the liquor companies in business. It’s because the flavors are so much more intense than with extracts! 🙂


a white frosting topped cupcake with a pink wrapper and yellow striped straw sitting in front of six additional cupcakes on a white background

Limoncello Cupcakes

Light and fluffy Limoncello Cupcakes with a tangy lemon kick, are topped with Limoncello frosting for the perfect summertime party treat.
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: lemon, recipe, cupcakes, frosting, limoncello
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 24 Servings
Calories: 233kcal
Author: Lisa Johnson


  • 1 ¼ cups super fine sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • ½ cup safflower or canola oil
  • 2 Teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 Tablespoons freshly grated lemon zest
  • ½ cup Limoncello* I used Caravello
  • ½ cup water*
  • 2 ½ cups cake flour I used Swan's Down
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup non-fat dry milk powder
  • 3.4 ounce package instant lemon pudding mix

For the Glaze

  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 6 Tablespoons Limoncello


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin tin with wrappers, or spray with baking spray. Set aside.
  • In a medium sized bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, salt, dry milk powder, and pudding mix together. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, beat together sugar, oil, and eggs until smooth and fluffy, two to three minutes.
  • Beat in the vanilla, lemon zest, water, and limoncello.
  • Gradually add the dry ingredients and beat just until well combined.
  • Fill wrappers or muffin tins to 3/4 full.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 18 to 21 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center of cupcake.
  • Allow to cool in muffin tins for 5 to 10 minutes. Place on a wire cooling rack and allow to cool completely.
  • Frost with Limoncello spiked, or vanilla buttercream. Decorate as desired.
  • To make the "peeps" with glaze: Whisk together powdered sugar and Limoncello in a small bowl.
  • Place parchment paper under a wire cooling rack. Dip the tops of each chick into the glaze. Allow excess to drip back into the bowl.
  • Place on the wire rack, and immediately sprinkle with colored sugar crystals.
  • Allow to cool completely. Dip toothpick into black gel coloring to make the eyes.


  • Substitute 1 cup of lemonade to make a non-alcohol version.
  • This is my favorite Buttercream Frosting recipe. I used 2 Tablespoons of Limoncello and 1 teaspoon of organic Lemon Extract for my frosting in place of the other flavorings. You can also substitute water and lemon extract, and skip the Limoncello if desired.


Calories: 233kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 35mg | Sodium: 138mg | Potassium: 83mg | Sugar: 24g | Vitamin A: 80IU | Vitamin C: 0.7mg | Calcium: 39mg | Iron: 0.3mg

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  1. I’ve looked high and low for these molds. I so wish I could find them. If anyone has the order information, please let me know. Target on-line doesn’t have them, and I’m nowhere near one.
    This is just an adorable idea…they turned out perfect!!

    1. I am so sorry Lori, I had no idea that they would be so hard to find. They are made by Chicago Metallic – Item# CMB121TGT Chick Silicone Mold, but they are not on their website? I am wondering if they made them specifically for Target, or they are sold out. 🙁

      1. My friend went to two Targets in Buffalo, NY today and they said they never heard of them. haha Man, the best laid plans of mice & men!!!

        1. I know you will be as happy about this as I am, I can finally stop whining!!! lol My friend went to another Target store, & low and behold, found these molds in with kitchenware. I’m tickled pink (or yellow, hehe). I think I’ll make both pink & yellow. Thanks so much for this recipe. I’m sure they’re as delicious as they are cute!! Happy Easter!

  2. I love Target especially since it gave you the inspiration to make these cupcakes!!! I love these Lisa. Anything lemon is a winner in my opinion.

  3. The Peep cupcakes are SO STINKING CUTE (not to mention they sound delicious!!). I might just be slightly obsessed with Peeps. 🙂 I am definitely going to look for the cake mold next time I’m at Target. Either way, this recipe is definitely on my list of ones to try! Pinned!

  4. I’m drooling!! Seriously your peeps cupcakes and the frosted cupcakes looks deeeeelish!! Lemon…yum!

    I love them so much I included the peeps cupcakes in my spring/Easter roundup tonight at Project Inspire{d}!

    Thanks for sharing with us there!

  5. Hello,

    I wanted to know in regard to the frosting, would I add the butter extract along with the lemoncello and lemon extract?

    Thank you for your time! 🙂

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