Lemon and Blackberry Cupcakes


The Contented Baker turns ‘1’ today and to celebrate I thought cupcakes might be in order.

So what have I made of my first year of blogging? Well, it has been an incredible learning journey. To put it in perspective probably until 18 months ago I had no knowledge of blogs, had minimal contact with social media and my IT skills were stuck in the early ‘noughties’. Then, through my passion for home baking I stumbled across beautiful food and baking blogs. What better way to document your bakes, learn from others and share inspiration with like-minded folk? I wanted to try it! The Contented Baker came into being.

Blogging is a lot of work and a lot of fun! It can be unpredictable but fundamentally it is a wonderful way of connecting with fellow foodies from around the world. Thank you to anyone that has ever read, or commented on my posts, or ‘liked’ me on Facebook. I really appreciate all your comments and you taking a few minutes out of your very busy days to do so!

Let’s talk cupcakes…


I used to make cupcakes often – a vanilla cake with frosting, something quick and easy for the kids to eat. Nowadays though, I feel cupcakes should be a little bit more special, like an individual dessert or a special treat. These have my ‘go-to’ Hummingbird Bakery Lemon sponge recipe with an adapted Blackberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream and Blackberry Coulis. Trust me, these are very good.

Often I feel that cupcakes can to be too heavy on the frosting and are too sweet and as a result need more cake to combat the sweetness (these are not because of the beautiful Swiss meringue buttercream). Nevertheless, I like more sponge so I fill the cases more heavily making 8/9 cakes but otherwise this recipe makes 12 regular cupcakes.lemon&blackberrycupcakes-2This lemon and blackberry favour combination is one of my all time favourites and works really well in these cupcakes. They are very delicious. Worthy of any celebration!

Thank you for all your support. x

Lemon and Blackberry Cupcakes

Makes 8 to 12 Cupcakes


  • 120g plain flour
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 11/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • Zest of two lemons, grated
  • 40g unsalted butter, softened
  • 120ml milk
  • 1 egg, beaten.
  • For the Buttercream & Finishing
  • 3 egg whites
  • 100g caster sugar, plus 2 tablespoons
  • pinch salt
  • 250g unsalted butter, softened
  • 300g fresh blackberries
  • Juice from 1 lemon


  1. Preheat the oven to 170 degrees, or Gas Mark 3. Place cupcake cases in a twelve hole muffin/cake pan.
  2. Put the flour, sugar, baking powder, butter and lemon zest into the bowl of a freestanding mixer and mix on a slow speed until everything is combined. Still on a slow speed, add the milk until it is incorporated. Add the beaten egg until just combined and a smooth batter has formed.
  3. Spoon the mixture into the prepared cases and bake for 20 minutes, turning the tray half way through the bake. One baked, remove from the oven and leave to cool a little in the pan before turning out and cooling fully on a wire rack before frosting.
  4. For the Buttercream & Finishing
  5. Prepare the blackberry coulis/sauce first. Rinse all the blackberries and then set aside a third/approximately 100g of the berries. Put the remaining 200g of blackberries into a medium pan on a low heat. Add the juice of a lemon and 2 tablespoons of caster sugar. Stir whilst over the heat and squash the berries with the back of a spoon. Once the sugar has dissolved, tip the mixture into a bowl and then place a sieve over the pan (in which the berries were heated) and tip the blackberries into the sieve and push the juice and pulp through, leaving the seeds in the sieve. Heat a little further to allow the sauce to reduce a little. Set aside and leave to cool.
  6. In a glass bowl, place the egg whites, 100g caster sugar and salt. Place the bowl over a pan of simmering water and with a whisk, constantly whisk the mixture until it is hot to the touch. When it is hot, pour into a freestanding mixer fitted with a whisk attachment and whisk for about 10 minutes, or until the side of the mixer bowl is no longer warm. With the mixer on a slow speed, gradually add the butter in small increments until all incorporated. Change from the whisk to a paddle attachment on the mixer and mix further until light and fluffy. Add approximately 2/3 of the coulis/sauce to the buttercream and mix until thoroughly incorporated.
  7. Spoon or pipe the buttercream onto the cupcakes. Drizzle with the coulis and finish by placing a fresh blackberry on the top.

Source: Cupcake Sponge from ‘The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook’ by Tarek Malouf and buttercream adapted from Marthastewart.com


  1. Happy Blogversary Joanne! It is a real milestone! I love your blog and your baking since the first day we interacted on Facebook over carrot cake, remember?? Wow! It seems so long ago. I am truly happy to have found you. These cupcakes are out of this world. The cake looks spongy, the frosting so smooth and rich and tempting with that gorgeous berry on top. Happy celebration my friend! For many more bakes to come! 🙂

    • thecontentedbaker says:

      Thank you my friend! Yes, time flies. It was a very interesting discussion over carrot cake!! Too bad we are not neighbours just think how we could chat about baking. I am so grateful for all your support and frequent shares. Thank you x

  2. Happy 1st blog anniversary! I can’t believe you’ve only been blogging for one year! Cupcakes are the perfect way to celebrate and these look so pretty and sound delicious. Funny enough, I have a box of note cards with Hummingbird Bakery’s treats in front and a recipe in back. I’ve tried the vanilla cupcakes and loved them so I bet these are wonderful. Keep up the lovely work!

    • thecontentedbaker says:

      Thank you so much Monica! Have a good weekend 🙂

      • thecontentedbaker says:

        PS Meant to say thank you so much for all your regular comments and support Monica, I so appreciate it! x

        • Jo, it’s always a pleasure to come by here and see what you’re cooking up or sharing. I hope you’re taking a little break to enjoy time with your kids. Hope to “see” you soon! Take care. : )

          • thecontentedbaker says:

            Hi Monica! Good to hear from you! Yes, this blogging ‘gap’ was unintentional. My kids are having a big school fair this weekend and I am having a stall. I have been so busy in the kitchen making jams, chutneys, sauces and this week, confections and fresh bakes so I haven’t had to much chance to get to the computer. I am half way through a post and ‘normal’ service will be resumed after the weekend!! Hope you are well and thank you for thinking of me! 😉

  3. Happy 1st anniversary!!! And wow, these are one amazing way to celebrate. With that blackberry buttercream and the coulis …. just stunning! I love that overhead shot!

    • thecontentedbaker says:

      Thank you Ashley! I really appreciate all your comments and support. Have a great weekend!:-)

  4. Jo!!!!!!!!!!! Happy 1st Birthday to your beautiful blog!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! <3 🙂 I've always enjoyed reading your posts and your photos are always STUNNING!!!!!!!!! 🙂 I loveeeeeeee these cupcakes!!!!!! I love how cute they look and the coulis dripping over the frosting! I'm a big fan of 'more-cake-than-frosting' too!!! 🙂 Can't wait to try these! *-*

  5. Congrats and happy 1st birthday to your blog! I love reading all your recipes, always so inspiring and delicious! These cupcakes look amazing- loving all that drizzle of blackberry sauce! Have a great weekend, Jo! 🙂

  6. Hi!
    I love the photos! Is there no salt in this recipe? It seems to be missing from the ingredients and instructions if there is…


    • thecontentedbaker says:

      Thank you for your comment! Actually there is no salt in this recipe. So glad you like the photos, thanks! 🙂

  7. Happy blog birthday!! These cupcakes look beautiful! What a great combination of flavors!

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