These delicious Earl Grey cupcakes are totally irresistible. They're infused with Earl Grey tea and topped with Earl Grey buttercream.
Although I'm not much of a tea drinker (apart from iced tea), I LOVE desserts made with Earl Grey tea. There's something amazing about the citrus notes in Earl Grey that are fantastic in desserts.
I was inspired to make this recipe after I got rave reviews from my coworkers for my Earl Grey Lavender Cake.
These tea cupcakes (also known as London fog cupcakes) are very moist and aromatic, thanks to the the earl grey tea leaves.
I think you will love this earl grey cupcake recipe as much as I do!
- Why you’ll love these cupcakes
- What does Earl Grey tea taste like?
- What do these Earl Grey cupcakes taste like?
- WHAT YOU NEED TO MAKE THIS RECIPE
- Ingredients for earl grey cupcakes
- Equipment you’ll need
- HOW TO MAKE EARL GREY CUPCAKES
- Step-by-step Instructions
- Recipe Notes
- TIPS FOR SUCCESS
- MORE CUPCAKE RECIPES:
Why you’ll love these cupcakes
- They're easy and relatively quick to make. These cupcakes are quick to whip up and not complicated at all.
- They make nice food gifts. These cupcakes are wonderful for entertaining or special occasions. They're also very presentable, too.
- They're delicious. These cupcakes have a unique flavor.
What does Earl Grey tea taste like?
Earl Grey tea is one of the most popular black teas in the world. It's a well-known British tea with a classic citrus flavor. It's slightly floral, thanks to bergamot essential oil. Bergamot is a sweet, fragrant citrus fruit.
What do these Earl Grey cupcakes taste like?
These cupcakes are citrusy and very aromatic because of the bergamot in the tea. The bergamot tea definitely brings a unique flavor to these cupcakes. The cupcakes are topped with a luscious earl grey buttercream frosting. Both the cupcakes and the frosting are made with earl grey infused milk.
WHAT YOU NEED TO MAKE THIS RECIPE
Ingredients for earl grey cupcakes
- Earl Grey tea: I use tea bags, but you could also use loose earl grey, if you prefer.
- Butter: I use unsalted butter room temperature.
- Sugar: I use regular granulated sugar for the cupcakes and powdered sugar (or confectioner's sugar) for the buttercream frosting.
- Egg: I use 1 medium organic egg.
- Flour & leaveners: I use all purpose flour and baking powder.
- Milk: I use 2% milk, but you could use whatever milk you have on hand.
- Oil: I use light vegetable oil because it makes the cupcakes moist.
- Vanilla: I use pure vanilla extract.
- Salt: A little bit of salt enhances all the flavors.
See the recipe card at the end of the post for quantities.
Equipment you’ll need
- large mixing bowls
- a small sieve or fine mesh strainer
- hand mixer or stand mixer
- a 12-cavity cupcake pan
- cupcake liners
HOW TO MAKE EARL GREY CUPCAKES
First, place the cupcake liners in the pan. Set aside.
Now it's time to make the Earl Grey milk.
Pour the milk into a small saucepan. Then tear open the tea bags and reserve ½ a teaspoon tea for the cupcake batter. Then pour the rest of the contents into the milk and stir. Heat the milk over medium heat until it simmers. Then turn down the heat and let it simmer on low heat for 5 minutes.
Then put it through a sieve or fine mesh strainer and let the milk cool. Reserve about 3 tablespoons of the infused milk for the buttercream.
Now, it's time to make the cupcakes. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and the salt. Set it aside.
In another large bowl, beat the butter and sugar together for about 5 minutes, until everything is thoroughly combined. I use a hand mixer, but you could use a stand mixer, too.
Add the egg and vanilla to the butter mixture and mix until it's creamy.
Then add the cooled earl grey milk, oil and the reserved dry tea, and mix until everything is fully incorporated.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until JUST combined. Don't overmix.
Fill the cupcake liners, about ¾ full. Using a cookie scoop makes this easier and less messy.
When the cupcakes have cooled completely, make the Earl Grey buttercream frosting.
In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter on high speed for about 5 minutes, until it's creamy.
Stop mixing and add the salt, vanilla, and half of the powdered sugar. Start beating again on low speed. Gradually increase to high speed until it's smooth.
Add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until everything is well incorporated.
Then add the reserved earl grey milk, a tablespoon at a time, and beat until it's thick and smooth, about 5 minutes. Stir the buttercream with a spatula to remove any air bubbles.
You can add a little extra dry Earl Grey tea to the buttercream for a more prominent flavor.
You can store these cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature for about 2 days or in the refrigerator for up to about 5 days.
You can freeze these cupcakes with or without the frosting for up to about 2 months. I usually individually wrap unfrosted cupcakes with plastic wrap and then place them in freezer bags. To thaw, let them sit in the refrigerator overnight.
- Why not make earl grey cupcakes with lavender frosting? You can use my frosting from my Earl Grey cake with lavender.
- Instead of earl grey buttercream frosting, make earl grey cupcakes with lemon buttercream by adding some lemon juice and lemon zest.
- Make earl grey lavender cupcakes by adding some dried culinary lavender to the batter or the frosting. I think lavender cupcakes would be awesome with lavender buttercream or lavender icing!
- These cupcakes are delicious with vanilla bean buttercream, too. I like using ground vanilla bean powder, like in my Vanilla Ice Cream. It gives the buttercream an incredible aroma and flavor! Use my buttercream recipe from my Classic Vanilla Cupcakes and substitute the vanilla extract with a teaspoon of ground vanilla bean powder. It's divine!
TIPS FOR SUCCESS
- Use a digital scale. Weighing all the ingredients with a digital scale will give you accurate, consistent results.
- Using mixers. I use a hand mixer, but you could use a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.
- Don't overmix the batter. When mixing the dry ingredients with the wet ones, you'll want to mix them until everything is just combined, otherwise, the cupcakes might become dense and tough.
- Every oven is different, so baking times may vary. Check on the cupcakes and use a toothpick inserted in the middle to see if they're done. If the toothpick comes out clean, the cupcakes are ready.
I think using the right amount of light vegetable oil instead of butter really helps to make cupcakes moist.
There are so many delicious ways to top a cupcake! It's all a matter of preference, really. I love these particular cupcakes with earl grey buttercream frosting, but they're also delicious with just some powdered sugar on top. You can also add a bit of lemon zest, too.
Yes! For me, it's easier to just use the contents of an earl grey tea bag because it's already finely ground. You could definitely grind loose leaf tea, too.
MORE CUPCAKE RECIPES:
Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:
Let me know how these Earl Grey Cupcakes turn out for you in the comments below! I’d love to hear from you!
Earl Grey Cupcakes
- mixing bowls
- small sieve or fine mesh strainer
- hand mixer (or stand mixer)
- a 12-cavity cupcake pan
- cupcake liners
For the cupcakes
- ½ cup (125 ml) milk
- 2 Earl Grey tea bags
- 1 ¼ cup (190 g / 6.7 oz) all purpose flour
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup (57 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- ¾ cup (150 g / 5.3 oz) sugar
- 1 medium egg, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 tablespoons (30ml) light vegetable oil
For the Earl Grey buttercream
- ¾ cup ( 170g / 6oz) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3½ - 4 cups (325 - 400 g / 11-14 oz) SIFTED powdered sugar, plus more as needed
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2-3 tablespoons Earl Grey milk
- Preheat oven to 350°F / 180°C.
- Line the cupcake pan with the liners. Set aside.
Make the Earl Grey milk
- Pour the milk into a small saucepan. Tear open the tea bags and reserve ½ teaspoon dry tea for the cupcake batter. Pour the remaining contents of the tea bags into the milk and stir. Heat the milk over medium heat until it simmers. Then turn down the heat and let it simmer on low heat for 5 minutes.
- Put it through a sieve or fine mesh strainer and let the milk cool. Reserve about 3 tablespoons for the buttercream.
Make the cupcakes
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and the salt. Set it aside.
- In another large bowl, beat the butter and sugar together with a hand mixer for about 5 minutes, until everything is thoroughly combined.
- Add the egg and vanilla and mix until it's creamy.
- Add the cooled Earl Grey milk, oil and the reserved dry tea, and mix until everything is fully incorporated.
- Add the flour mixture and mix until just combined. Don't overmix.
- Fill the cupcake liners, about ¾ full.
- Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
- Remove the cupcakes from the oven and let them cool in the pan for about 5 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool.
- Let the cupcakes cool completely before frosting them.
Make the Earl Grey buttercream
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter on high speed for about 5 minutes, until it's creamy.
- Stop mixing and add the salt, vanilla, and half of the powdered sugar. Start beating again on low speed. Gradually increase to high speed until it's smooth.
- Add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until everything is well combined.
- Then add the reserved Earl Grey milk, a tablespoon at a time, and beat until it's thick and smooth, about 5 minutes.
- If the buttercream is a bit thick, add a little milk, if it's too runny, add more powdered sugar.
- Frost the cupcakes using a pastry bag or an offset spatula.