Key Lime Cupcakes

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I decided to be rebellious this week. I made cupcakes…in January. Not just cupcakes in January, but cupcakes at the beginning of January- a mere 10 days from then date when most of us made resolutions to be healthy and eat more veggies. Why you ask? Why is she posting this delicious looking cupcake recipe when all I’ve had to eat for the last week is salad? The answer- because I am a firm believer that we all need a little sweet in our lives now and then…even on the 10th of January. Oh, and I also really like cupcakes. TAW73979
I tried to be nice about it though. This recipe has been given a complete health make over, and while not comparable to say a handful of carrot sticks or a bowl of kale soup, it’s far better for you than a twinkie or a bag of cheese puffs. Okay…so those were weird comparisons. What I am trying to say is that eating one of these cupcakes will not undo all the good you’ve done in the last 10 days of salad eating. TAW73877
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Here’s what I did so these cupcakes could pass the January health test. First, I replaced all the white flour with whole wheat pastry flour. Have you ever used this stuff? It’s amazing. All the benefits of whole wheat with out the heavy, chewy texture. I also cut the sugar from 1 1/2 cups to 2/3 of a cup. It seems like a large amount to cut out and I was a bit skeptical, especially since the recipe includes both lime juice and lime zest. I was pleasantly surprised though. When I first bit into one I was greeted by a mild sweetness that was balanced perfectly by a tangy burst of lime. Now that’s my kind of healthy! The final modification in this cupcake makeover was to replace one egg with ground flax meal. TAW73903
I am a HUGE fan of ground flax meal. I love to sprinkle it on and in everything. It’s a really easy way to get in those omega 3 that everyone is always talking about, and it has a mild enough flavor that you can add it to most anything without even noticing. Normally I just add a couple tablespoons to whatever I am making but with something light and delicate like cupcakes I was afraid it might mess with the balance and make them too dry. So when I came across this bit of advice for using it as an egg substitute I knew I had the answer. It’s really simple. For each egg you are replacing mix one tablespoon ground flax seed with 3 tablespoons of water. I only replaced one of the eggs that the recipe called for but it worked so well that next time I will try replacing both. There you have it- a healthier cupcake that you can eat even in January. TAW73923
But wait! I almost forgot about the frosting. What can you do to make cream cheese frosting more healthy? Hmmm…ditch it for something that isn’t comprised solely of cream cheese, butter and sugar. Yeah, that’s probably the right answer but I couldn’t bear to give it up. So what did I do? I cut the amount in half. Half the amount of frosting for the same amount of cupcakes. A perfect solution if you ask me. It was still enough frosting to give each cupcake a nice coating but not so much that it was piled up and spilling over the edges.

My final bit of advice for making guilt-free cupcakes- share them. I love to share my baked goods not only because it makes people happy when you show up at their house with cookies and cupcakes, but because it also means less for me to eat! TAW84007-2

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7 Comments

  • These look fantastic! And I agree, a bit of sweet is just whats needed :)

  • I like how you went about giving this cupcake a health makeover! I have been doing that so much with things I’ve been making recently. I love using oil partly in place of butter and buttermilk.

    • ^^ I meant also using buttermilk in place of butter!

      • That’s a great idea. I am going to give it a try!

  • My mouth waters terribly….the icing sounds so good.

  • I love this recipe! I’ve made it several times with white flour but also with whole spelt and less sugar. It’s the best! I add more zest though. More zest never hurt anyone. Yours look really good. :)

  • I love how summery lime cupcakes are and so unexpected! I always make mine with rum:

    http://trialbyfirewin.blogspot.com/2012/02/lime-ricotta-rum-cupcakes.html

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