1 Tequila,
2 Tequila,
3 Tequila,

Prep Time: 1 hour

Bake Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 12 standard size cupcakes


For the cupcakes:

1 1/2 C all-purpose flour

2 t baking powder

1/2 t Kosher salt

1/2 C unsalted butter, room temperature

1 C sugar

2 large eggs, room temperature

1/2 C buttermilk

1 T lime zest

3 T tequila, 2 for the cupcake mixture and 1 for brushing on top of the cupcakes after cooking

3 limes, juiced - *Only add if not filling the cupcakes with the Lime Curd

For the Lime Curd filling (optional, see notes above if not using):

1 C fresh lime juice

3 t lime zest

1 C sugar

10 T unsalted butter

3 T cornstarch

1/2 t Kosher salt

5 large egg yolks

For the Tequila Buttercream Frosting:

1 C unsalted butter, room temperature

4 C powdered sugar

1 t vanilla extract

4 T tequila

1/2 t lime zest

Pinch of Sea Salt


For the cupcakes:

  • Preheat the oven to 350° and prepare a 12-cup muffin pan with cupcake liners.
  • Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a large bowl. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, beat the butter with a hand held or stand mixer on high speed until smooth and creamy, about 1 minute.
  • Add sugar to creamy mixture and continue beating on high speed for 2 minutes.
  • Turn the mixer to low speed, add the eggs one at a time, then add the vanilla extract and beat on medium-high speed until combined. 
  • With the mixer running on low speed, slowly add some of the dry ingredients alternating with some of the buttermilk until mixed.
  • Beat in the lime zest (and lime juice if not filling cupcakes with lime curd) until incorporated. 
  • Spoon the batter into the liners - filling about 1/2 - 2/3 full.
  • Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • While still warm, brush baked cupcakes with tequila. 
  • Allow the cupcakes to cool completely before filling and/or frosting.

For the Lime Curd:

  • Bring juice, zest, sugar, butter, cornstarch, and salt to a simmer in a saucepan over medium-high heat, whisking constantly.
  • Beat the yolks lightly in a small bowl, then add a third of the hot lemon mixture, whisking as you go.
  • Add the yolk mixture back into the remaining lime mixture, lower heat as far as you can and cook, whisking until the curd is thick and smooth. This should happen in just a few minutes.
  • Scrape the curd into a bowl and set into an ice bath.
  • Stir slightly and cover surface with plastic wrap and let cool.
  • Transfer curd to piping bag and fill cooled cupcakes.

For the Tequila Buttercream Frosting:

  • Beat the butter with a hand held or stand mixer on high speed until completely smooth and creamy.
  • Add the powdered sugar 1 cup at a time, beating on low at first then increasing to high speed. Once incorporated, add the next cup and continue beating until creamy and combined.
  • Beat in the tequila, vanilla extract, lime zest, and pinch of salt. 
  • Frost cooled cupcakes.
  • Garnish with slice of lime and/or colored sprinkles (I used India Street Sparkling Sugar)