Strawberry cupcakes are famous all year round. Especially during the strawberry season when you can get them fresh from the farmer! But have you ever thought of making strawberry ricotta cupcakes as a dessert for your Christmas menu? That would be a change of pace, wouldn't it?
The recipe I would like to introduce to you today is particularly well suited as a dessert for an opulent Christmas dinner menu since I use ricotta for the sponge cake and strawberry buttercream from fresh strawberries as a topping.
Why you'll love these strawberry ricotta cupcakes
The light, subtle ricotta sponge allows the strawberry flavor to develop and dominate its strawberry taste entirely. Furthermore, will the ricotta give the dough a light and fluffy texture that is not so sweet, and the fresh strawberry flavor will make your heart sing!
For the Fresh Strawberry Buttercream
- 7.05 oz (200 g) Strawberries
- 8.82 oz (250 g) soft unsalted Butter
- 8.82 oz (250 g) Powdered Sugar
For the Ricotta Cupcake Sponge
- 8.82 oz (250 g) Ricotta Cheese
- 8.82 oz (250 g) All-Purpose Flour
- 4.23 oz (120 g) Powdered Sugar
- 2.47 oz (70 g) unsalted butter
- 2.82 oz (80 g) Milk
- 1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
- 2 Eggs
- 3.53 oz (100 g) White Chocolate
- Food processor or Electric Mixer
- Immersion Blender
- 12-Cup Muffin Tin or Cupcake molds
- Piping (Pastry) Bag with Star tip (I used the Wilton star tip to decorate the cupcakes that are photographed)
- Three medium mixing bowls
- Two cooking pots for melting the couverture
- Cooling rack
Make sure, that all of your dairy ingredients are at room temperature! Let's start with the cupcake batter. First, preheat the oven to 356 °F / 180 °C and grease the muffin tins with butter. Now mix the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, and sugar) in a bowl.
In a separate bowl, mix two eggs, butter, and milk. Add these wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix them with the food processor (medium speed) to a smooth dough.
In the meantime, you can melt the chocolate couverture, or if you prefer small chocolate chips in your muffin batter, you can use them in minced form. It's up to you.
As a variation, you can use dark chocolate if you fancy a dark cupcake sponge. Both white and dark chocolate pairs very well with the strawberry buttercream frosting.
Now stir the melted (or chopped couverture) and the ricotta into the mixture.
Fill the muffin cups halfway with the ricotta mixture. Since you've already greased the muffin tins with butter in advance, there is no need for cupcake liners here. Bake the cupcakes for 15-20 minutes (depending on your oven). Since my oven is getting a little old, my sponges took 20 minutes to turn out perfect.
Now take the cupcake sponges out of the oven and let them cool completely on a cooling rack.
How to Make Strawberry Buttercream Frosting
While your cupcakes are cooling, it's time to make the Strawberry Buttercream Frosting.
First, wash, clean and chop the fresh strawberries and then mix them with a blender. If the puree is not fine enough, you can sieve it through a hair sieve. The fineness depends on the blender you use. I used the Nutri Bullet Pro and did not have to strain the strawberry puree.
Now beat the butter for about five minutes until light. After that, sieve the powdered sugar through a sieve and mix it into the butter spoonful by spoonful.
For the next step, mix the strawberry puree into the buttercream, also by the spoonful.
Ensure that you only add the strawberry puree again when the buttercream and the puree have formed a homogeneous mass!
Assemble the Cupcakes
Once the frosting is ready, fill it into a piping bag with an open star tip. Place the cooled muffins on the working surface. Now pipe the strawberry buttercream from the inside to the outside of the cooled muffins.
If you wish, you can decorate the muffins with (Christmassy) sugar sprinkles or edible glitter.
Serve these homemade strawberry cupcakes either on a large dessert plate, an etagère, or individually on a dessert plate.
Fancy more Christmas Dessert inspirations? Check out the Waffle Blossoms with Chestnut puree recipe or my Egg Liqueur Parfait recipe! Even more dessert recipes you are going to find in the Christmas Dinner Cookbook!
Fresh, Frozen, or Freeze-Dried Strawberries?
When it comes to making strawberry cupcakes there are a number of ways to get that delightfully sweet strawberry flavor into your cupcakes. Each different option provides a delightfully sweet addition, if you are thinking about adding strawberry into your baking here are a few things to keep in mind with each one.
Fresh strawberries: I deeply believe when a recipe calls for fresh, fresh is best. It adds a better texture and appearance to the finished product.
Frozen strawberries: These work best when a dessert is going to be baked. You may need to adjust the baking time by increasing a few minutes since they will add additional moisture.
Freeze-dried strawberries: These are most often used to add a pink color and a strawberry flavor without adding additional moisture to a recipe. More often than not, when you are adding freeze-dried strawberries you will need to pulse them into a fine powder.
How to Store Cupcakes?
Store the cupcakes in an airtight container once cooled down. Take care of the frosting so it won't get squished when you put the lid on!
Can You Freeze Cupcakes?
Yes, but only the Sponge. The finished, frosted, cupcakes, should not be frozen.
Strawberry Cupcakes with Ricotta
For the Buttercream
- 200 g Fresh Strawberries
- 250 g Soft unsalted Butter
- 250 g Powdered Sugar
For the Ricotta Cupcake Sponge
- 250 g Ricotta cheese
- 250 g All-Purpose Flour
- 120 g Powdered Sugar
- 70 g Unsalted butter
- 80 g Milk
- 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
- 2 Eggs
- 100 g White chocolate couverture
- First, preheat the oven to 356 °F / 180 °C and grease the muffin tins with butter.
- Now mix the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, and sugar) in a bowl.
- In a second bowl, mix two eggs, butter, and milk.
- Add these wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix them with the kitchen machine to a smooth dough.
- Melt the chocolate couverture (or if you prefer small chocolate chips in your muffin batter, you can use them in minced form).
- Stir the melted (or chopped couverture) and the ricotta into the mixture.
- Fill the muffin cups halfway and bake for 15-20 minutes (depending on your oven).
- Take the muffins out of the oven and let them cool down on a cake rack.
Strawberry Buttercream Frosting
- Wash, clean and chop the fresh strawberries and then mix them with a blender. (If necessary, sieve it throug a hair sieve).
- Beat the butter for about five minutes until light. After that, sieve the powdered sugar through a sieve and mix it into the butter spoonful by spoonful.
- For the next step, mix the strawberry puree into the buttercream, also by the spoonful.
- Ensure that you only add the strawberry puree again when the buttercream and the puree have formed a homogeneous mass!
Assemble the Cupcakes
- Once the frosting is ready, fill it into a piping bag with an open star tip.
- Pipe the strawberry buttercream from the inside to the outside of the cooled muffins.
- OPTIONAL: Decorate the cupcakes with sugar sprinkles or edible glitter.
- Serve either on a large dessert plate, an etagère, or individually on a dessert plate.
Nutrition values are estimates only, using online calculators. Please verify using your own data.
⛑ Food Safety
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food, that previously touched raw meat
- Wash hands after touching raw meat
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove