- 2 sticks (16 tablespoons) softened butter, divided
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon finely grated lime zest, divided, and 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 3 large eggs
- 1½ cups self-rising flour *
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- ½ cup condensed milk
- 1/ 2 cup confectioner’s sugar
- Adjust oven rack to middle position; heat oven to 400 degrees. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake papers. Beat 12 tablespoons of butter, sugar, and 1½ teaspoons lime zest until light and fluffy. Starting and ending with an egg, alternate beating in eggs and flour until each is thoroughly incorporated. Beat in lime juice and vanilla until just incorporated. Divide batter evenly among prepared pans. Bake until golden brown, 15 to 17 minutes. Remove from oven, let cupcakes stand a couple of minutes; turn onto a wire rack to cool.
- Meanwhile, beat remaining 4 tablespoons butter, 1½ teaspoons zest, and the cream cheese until smooth; beat in condensed milk and sugar. Frost and serve.
Vicki Miner says
How much condensed milk? They sound delicious.
Good spot, Vicki! We’ve amended the recipe – it’s a 1/2 cup condensed milk.
What is that crumb stuff on top of the cupcake in the picture? I don’t know if it speaks about it in the recipe or in the last set of directions. Looks delicious and would love to make!
Wow, I was really out to lunch when I wrote that recipe. Guess this is living proof that drink from the fountain of youth didn’t work! Anyway, those are graham cracker crumbs on top of the cupcakes to mimic the graham cracker crust in key lime pie.
sink girl says
these sound amazing. love cupcakes and key lime pie might just be my favorite dessert of all time. but i live in park city utah and all of my cupcakes fail miserably. do you have any experience or tips on high altitude baking?
I can’t wait to make these — they look delicious. One question, the first step is to beat 12 T. of the butter, right? Just checking. Thanks for all the great recipes!
Yes! 12T of butter is right. This is my grandmother’s recipe (well, my husband’s grandmother’s recipe) and it is perfection 🙂
Cookin' Canuck says
The graham cracker crumbs on top are a great idea. It’s like a key lime pie in a cupcake.
silly question: is it sweetened condensed milk, or evaporated canned milk? If it’s the former, what to do w/ the leftover sweetened condensed milk? You’ll need a post using the remainder of a 12-14 oz. can!
Meredith, it’s sweetened condensed milk. And I have the perfect recipe for you, my coconut macaroons, which I’ll post in a few weeks!
Thanks Pam for your response! I will be crafting these for a friend at work who just had a baby. So appropriate 😀
Jen @ How To: Simplify says
These cupcakes are perfect for the summer. They look like they have quite a refreshing flavor!
These cupcakes are in the oven right now, a pick-me-up for a friend, the batter tasted fabulous. Thanks for the recipe!
My cupcakes just came out of the oven and they smell delicious! I am confused by the BUTTER though. You use 2 sticks for the cake itself but later in the recipe for the frosting you say “beat remaining 4 Tablespoons of butter”. What remaining butter? Please clarify…..
I’m hoping to make these for a wedding rehearsal dinner next week. They should be a huge hit! WooHoo!
I am making these tomorrow along with some pina colada cupcakes and a banana split cake and cannot wait!!! Thanks so much for the recipe!!
@ Susie, if you read Annie and Maggy’s comments above, you are supposed to beat 12T of butter into batter leaving you with the 4T for the frosting.
I made these Saturday night. They were very good; however I think I have more of a liking for boxed cake mixes because homemade cakes are not soft and moist like the boxed mixes so next time I plan on using a white cake mix with the frosting. The frosting was out of this world creamy and delicious. I could have eaten with a spoon. Thanks so much for this recipe!
butter: salted or unsalted?
There’s a little salt in the self-rising flour, but if you used salted butter, I don’t think the cupcakes would be too salty. Generally I use unsalted butter.
This receipe makes more than 12 (unless you are using the big cup cake pans with 6). I needed these for my mom’s birthday and needed more than 12. The first batch tastes good but looks ugly because I used a 12 cup cake pan and they overflowed and stuck together–UGH! The second batch made 18 regular size cupcakes. One batch of icing did all 30 cupcakes so don’t double it. I did not use 1/2 c condensed milk only about 1/4+. I cut up strawberries (into 4ths) and put these on top of the graham cracker crumbs rather than a slice of lime. I hope everyone enjoys them I tasted one and it was delish!
I found the frosting to be really thin…I couldn’t get it to come together. It was more of a glaze. Any suggestions?
Pam Anderson says
While our frosting was fine with the 1/2 cup condensed milk, it looks like some people had better results with only 1/4 cup. BTW, you did use condensed milk, not evaporated, right? Keep in touch if you need more help.