Strawberry buttermilk cupcakes

These buttermilk cupcakes are topped with strawberry icing and sliced strawberries and are perfect as a teatime treat or served as a dessert.


  • 250g strawberries, hulled, plus 12 extra, sliced, to decorate
  • 75g low-fat spread
  • 75g caster sugar
  • 1tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 300g plain flour
  • 3tsp baking powder
  • 100g buttermilk
  • 75g reduced-fat cream cheese
  • 1tbsp icing sugar


  1. Heat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/gas 4 and line a 12-hole muffin tin with cupcake cases. Whiz the hulled strawberries in a food processor until smooth.
  2. Put the spread, caster sugar and vanilla extract in a mixing bowl. Beat with an electric mixer until pale and creamy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well.
  3. Sift the flour and baking powder into a medium bowl. Add spoonfuls of the strawberry purée and the flour mixture, alternately, to the egg mixture (reserve 1tbsp of the purée to decorate). Stir in the buttermilk until you have a smooth, combined batter.
  4. Divide the batter among the cases. Bake for 15–18 min until just firm to the touch and light golden. Remove and leave to cool slightly in the tin, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. If freezing, put in a sealed container at this point and freeze. Thaw before completing the recipe.
  5. Mix the reserved purée, cream cheese and icing sugar in a bowl until creamy, then spread over the cupcakes. Top with the sliced strawberries.

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