Lemon Angel Food Cupcakes


Have you made angel food cupcakes yet? If not, then put these on the top of your to make list. They’ll definitely brighten up these cold and cloudy winter days, not to mention they taste Heavenly!

Lemon Angel Food Cupcakes | Cooking Classy

These lemon cupcakes probably seem totally out of place right now as we are all so focused on the holidays and seasonal baking, but I thought a break from the holiday baking would be nice. Don’t get me wrong, I love all the fall flavors but I wanted to switch to something more bright and summery. It might have something to do with this never ending cold I have (and how I keep craving citrus).

The texture of these cupcakes is delicately airy and light which pairs so well with the fresh and tart lemon flavor. And don’t even get me started on the topping for these cupcakes. Let’s just say it takes a lot of strength not to just sit there and eat the whole bowl of it by the heaping spoonful before you even begin to top any of the cupcakes. Thanks to the addition of the cream cheese and lemon in the whipped cream it’s almost like a lemon cheesecake (and we all know how much I love cheesecake).

Homemade angel food cupcakes are much better than those angel food cakes that you’d buy at the grocery store, so I’d highly recommend trying these at least once (then of course you’ll be hooked for life, which is always my goal. To get you hooked :). Enjoy!

Lemon Angel Food Cupcakes | Cooking Classy

Lemon Angel Food Cupcakes | Cooking Classy

Lemon Angel Food Cupcakes | Cooking Classy


Lemon Angel Food Cupcakes

Yield: 14 - 16 cupcakes

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 18 minutes


  • 3/4 cup + 2 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup cake flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 6 egg whites , at room temperature*
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp warm water
  • 1/2 tsp lemon extract
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 3/4 tsp cream of tartar
  • Cream Cheese Whipped Cream Topping
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 6 oz cream cheese , softened
  • 1/2 - 1 tsp lemon extract , to taste
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • Lemon slices and pomegranate arils , for decorating (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a food processor, pulse sugar until super fine, about 2 minutes (if you don't have a food processor caster sugar should also work). In a mixing bowl, sift together half of the sugar, the cake flour and the salt.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together egg whites, water, lemon extract, lemon zest and cream of tartar until well combined, about 2 minutes. Switch to a hand mixer and whip mixture on medium speed while slowly adding remaining sugar to mixture, until medium peaks form (scrape off zest from blenders if it stuck. Mine did so I scrapped it off and rubbed it along the sides of a bowl with a rubber spatula to separate the pieces then folded it in with along with the next step). Sift just enough of the flour mixture in to evenly dust the top of the egg white mixture and using a spatula gently fold flour layer into egg white mixture and continue this process until all of the flour mixture has been incorporated (I did this in probably 12 batches).
  3. Divide batter among paper lined muffin cups, filling each cup nearly full. Bake in preheated oven 18 - 20 minutes until golden and toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Cool completely then spread Cream Cheese Whipped Cream over cupcakes just before serving and garnish with lemon slices and pomegranate seeds if desired.
  4. For the Cream Cheese Whipped Cream Topping:
  5. In a mixing bowl whip heavy cream until soft peaks form. In a separate mixing bowl, whip cream cheese along with lemon extract and lemon zest until light and fluffy. Add cream cheese to whipped cream along with powdered sugar and whip until stiff peaks form (scrape off zest from blenders if it stuck and add to mixture). Store in refrigerator.
  6. *I'd recommend working with one egg in a bowl at a time to separate the yolk and white, then pour that separated white into the mixing bowl and continue that process with remaining eggs. I do this simply in case one of the yolks breaks and gets into the whites then you'll only have to toss out 1 egg and not all of them if you can't get the yolk out. You don't want even 1 drop of egg yolk in the cake mixture or it can prevent the whites from whipping to stiff peaks.

Lemon Angel Food Cupcakes | Cooking Classy


  • Averie @ Averie Cooks: Jaclyn these are so light, fluffy, soft and with the pom arils, so striking and eye-catching! November 14, 2013 at 8:23pm Reply

  • Elizabeth @ Confessions of a Baking Queen: I have been up to my ears in holiday baking and was just thinkin about lemon the other day! The cupcakes sound so light and fluffy!! I think I could take a few down ;) November 15, 2013 at 12:39am Reply

  • Elisa @ Insalata di Sillabe: I’m a huge lemon-lover and, like you, I think a little break from holiday baking would be fun. I’ve already had the chance to try angel food cake (it’s definitely one of my favorites!) but I had never thought of making it into cupcakes form! Can’t wait to try these out!

    xo, Elisa November 15, 2013 at 4:00am Reply

  • Katrina @ WVS: Mmm these cupcakes look perfect!! November 15, 2013 at 8:26am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks Katrina :)! November 15, 2013 at 10:32am Reply

  • Jessica @ A Kitchen Addiction: Love how light and cheery these look! A nice change of pace from all of the comfort food that’s floating around! November 15, 2013 at 9:20am Reply

  • Natalie @ Tastes Lovely: Well now I have to make angel food cake cupcakes. These look so light and yummy. I love the picture with the pomegranate seeds, it looks a little halo. So angelic : ) November 15, 2013 at 10:33am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks Natalie! I got a little lazy with covering the rest just because I haven’t been feeling well but the Pomegranate on top was amazing! November 15, 2013 at 7:22pm Reply

  • Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious: These look absolutely perfect! I love the one with the pomegranate seeds! November 15, 2013 at 1:13pm Reply

  • Rachel: I’ve tried icings like this before and had some issues… after you beat the cream cheese and whipped cream separately, if you add then together is it possible that overheating at that stage could just make it soupy? I know if you overbeat cream it just gets really stiff, but if you overbeat the cream into the cream cheese mixture what will happen? Haha, thanks…trying to troubleshoot. :) November 15, 2013 at 1:30pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: I’ve had things turn soupy before from over-beating but I don’t know about cream cheese? I’d say just whip the cream cheese like 1 minute (until it’s smooth and fluffs up a bit) and whip the cream until it starts to get little hills that don’t hold really well, then add the cream cheese and whip until it holds a peak. I wish I could just show you, I need to start doing videos sometime :). Also be careful not to melt the cream cheese when softening, you could even let it rest at room temp instead of softening in the microwave. November 16, 2013 at 9:36pm Reply

      • Rachel: Hmmmm…Okay, I’ll have to try that. I’ve tried whipping the cream cheese for a while and then adding the cream to it before and basically what happened was it got a little bit stiff (not enough to do anything with) and then just turned to soup. XD I’m determined though! Thanks so much! November 17, 2013 at 6:52am Reply

  • char Riippi: I LOVE anything lemon AND Angel food cake; these look amazing!! Can’t wait to try them! November 15, 2013 at 2:30pm Reply

  • Elizabeth: These look so great! I am not a fan at all of pumpkin and absolutely love lemon so this is such a welcome recipe. Thanks so much Jaclyn! November 15, 2013 at 3:21pm Reply

  • Laura @ Lauras Baking Talent: I bet these are light and fluffy and taste amazing :) November 15, 2013 at 6:43pm Reply

  • Abbie @ Needs Salt: I so want to make angel food cupcakes! They look so pretty and light.
    I love the touch of pomegranate, too! Pinned. :) November 15, 2013 at 7:07pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks Abbie! November 15, 2013 at 7:19pm Reply

  • Nieves Figueroa: Gracias por la receta me parece muy buena y saludable, cuando la prepare le diré como me quedó November 16, 2013 at 5:49pm Reply

  • Gabby: Wow! Stunning and I’m sure they’re to die for! Love me some lemon November 16, 2013 at 6:36pm Reply

  • IFeelCook: These cupcakes look so yummy and perfect! I’ll try to make them :) Thanks for sharing! November 17, 2013 at 5:57am Reply

  • Rachel @ Bakerita: How gorgeous are these!! They look absolutely delicious. I love the lemon addition…so light and airy, perfect for angel food cake :) November 18, 2013 at 12:39pm Reply

  • Madonna/aka/Ms. Lemon: I pinned these. They have been on my bucket list for the longest time. Looks like now is the time. November 18, 2013 at 2:58pm Reply

  • Lynn: Light, lemon, light!
    Lemon, light, lemon!
    Oh yeah!!
    L E M O N !!!!!
    Thank you!!! November 20, 2013 at 11:37pm Reply

  • Wedding Handkerchiefs Personalized: These look delicious! I love almost anything lemon. I’ll have to give these a try. December 6, 2013 at 3:45pm Reply

  • Mary: If you mix the lemon zest with a portion of the sugar, it will stay separate rather than clumping together. In fact, you can buzz the lemon zest and sugar together in the food processor and the sugar will get all the lemon oil distributed throughout, and the zest will be ground up smaller so you don’t get bits in your teeth (or am I the only one who gets that?)

    Perfect recipe to use up some of the leftover egg whites from all the yummy eggnog I made for the holidays – I must have 2 dozen! December 25, 2013 at 1:34am Reply

  • Rachel: Wondered if it would be okay to make the batter ahead? Or how fresh would they be if baked and left unfrosted a day? Making these for a big birthday party but wanted not to be baking and cooking ALL day… Thanks for this recipe! Perfect combo anytime of year! February 13, 2014 at 6:38pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: I think they are fine the next day – I wouldn’t make the batter ahead as the egg whites would likely deflate. Hope you love them Rachel! February 25, 2014 at 11:02pm Reply

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