Light cupcakes packed with the flavor of fresh pink grapefruit.


Happy New Year everyone!

Here’s a simple recipe to start off your baking in 2012. I know this time of year everyone is looking to cut down on the sweets and get back to healthy eating, and maybe this isn’t the best recipe for me to lead off with. But I will continue to be an advocate for dessert and if you ask me, no one should go without it completely.

So go ahead and eat a big healthy salad for dinner, and consider these cupcakes for dessert. I’m not going to tell you they’re good for you, but the portion control is built right in. And thanks to the pink grapefruit, they’re light in flavor and very refreshing.



I am a huge pink grapefruit fan, always have been. I prefer them halved, with each segment cut around so that I could easily scoop them out with a spoon. I love the little bursts of tart brightness.

I realize not everyone likes grapefruit as much as me, my husband included, but even he liked these cupcakes. Of course there is always the option of swapping the grapefruit in this recipe for any other citrus you like, whether it’s tangerines, lemons, and even limes.


Originally these were going to be muffins, a refreshing way to start your morning. But after licking the beater I realized that label would have been misleading,  even if I did have one this morning for breakfast. This is cake, no doubt about it.

I kept the icing simple as I wanted a very simple cupcake that wasn’t overly sweet. The icing of powdered sugar, grapefruit juice and zest is merely an echo of the citrus flavor of the cake.

These pink grapefruit cupcakes may not look like anything you’d find in the display case of a fancy cupcake boutique. But they’re lovely in their own humble way, and delicious to boot.


You might enjoy these other citrus recipes:

Clementine Buttermilk Scones by Completely Delicious
Flaky Blood Orange Tart by Smitten Kitchen
Grapefruit Honey Yogurt Scones
by Joy the Baker
Lemon Olive Oil Cake by Completely Delicious

Pink Grapefruit Cupcakes

Servings: 8 cupcakes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 27 minutes
Light cupcakes packed with the flavor of fresh pink grapefruit.


For the cupcakes:

  • ½ cup unsalted butter , at room temperature (113 grams)
  • ½ cup granulated sugar (115 grams)
  • 1 large egg
  • ¼ cup whole milk (2 fl oz)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour (124 grams)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder (4 grams)
  • ½ teaspoon salt (2 grams)
  • 1 tablespoon grapefruit zest

For the icing:

  • ½ cup powdered sugar , sifted (50 grams)
  • 1 tablespoon grapefruit zest
  • 2 tablespoons fresh grapefruit juice


  • Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a muffin pan with paper liners or grease with non-stick cooking spray.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar until light and creamy, about 3-4 minutes. Add the egg and mix until incorporated. Add the milk and vanilla extract and mix until combined.
  • In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, and grapefruit zest. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined. Batter will be thick.
  • Spoon into the prepared muffin pan, filling each cup about ⅔ full. Bake until golden and a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean, about 12-14 minutes. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  • To make the icing, combine the powdered sugar, grapefruit zest, and grapefruit juice until smooth and there are no lumps. Add more juice if necessary to achieve desired consistency. Spoon onto the cooled cupcakes and let sit for a few minutes to firm up before serving.
  • Store cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
Calories: 253kcal, Carbohydrates: 33g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 12g, Saturated Fat: 8g, Cholesterol: 52mg, Sodium: 159mg, Potassium: 116mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 21g, Vitamin A: 397IU, Vitamin C: 3mg, Calcium: 50mg, Iron: 1mg
Cuisine: American
Course: Dessert
Author: Annalise Sandberg
Have you tried this recipe?I’d love to hear about it! Leave a rating and review below, or take a photo and tag it on Instagram @completelydelicious with #completelydelicious.