A sweet frosting with a hint of lemon complements these little spice cakes, each with a maraschino cherry in the center. They're one of my dad's favorite desserts and a sure way of getting him to come over for a cup of coffee. —Laura McAllister, Morganton, North Carolina
- 1/2 cup shortening
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup molasses
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
- 24 maraschino cherries, well drained
- LEMON CREAM CHEESE FROSTING:
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1/4 cup butter, softened
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
- 1-3/4 to 2 cups confectioners' sugar
- In a large bowl, cream shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in molasses. Combine the flour, baking soda, ginger and cinnamon; gradually add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk, beating well after each addition. Stir in walnuts.
- Fill paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full; place a cherry in the center of each. Bake at 375° for 20-24 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
- For frosting, in a small bowl, beat cream cheese and butter until fluffy; add vanilla and lemon peel. Gradually beat in confectioners' sugar until smooth. Frost cupcakes. Yield: 2 dozen.
Originally published as Cherry Gingerbread Cupcakes in Taste of Home April/May 2007, p29
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