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Orange Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting and Candied Kumquats

Hello everyone! We hope you all had a great Christmas and/or holidays! We did, and of course, we baked something (ok, lots of things).   Recently, my husband and I bought a box of kumquats and a ton of clementines. I knew I wanted to bake something with them and for some reason, candied kumquats seemed like the place to start. Building off of that, I decided to make orange cupcakes, cream cheese frosting, and top it with the candied kumquats. Obviously, the kumquats are optional, but they are super cute!  

Orange Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting and Candied Kumquats




Orange Cupcakes

(Adapted from La Mia Vita Dolce)


  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla (I used vanilla paste, but any type will do)
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon kumquat and vanilla simple syrup (if you made the candied kumquats, if not, you can omit this)
  • Juice from half an orange
  • Zest from one orange (or two clementines)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  • Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees
  • In a stand mixer, beat together sugar, butter, vanilla, molasses, honey, and (if using) simple syrup (make sure this mixture is fluffy and well incorporated before moving on)
  • Add the eggs, make sure they're completely incorporated
  • Add in the flour, milk, orange zest, orange juice, baking soda and salt, mix until incorporated
  • Fill prepared cupcake tins about 1/2 - 2/3 full
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes
  • Frost when cool

Cream Cheese Frosting

(Adapted from Simply Recipes)



  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 stick butter, softened
  • 2-4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon kumquat vanilla simple syrup, optional


  • Beat cream cheese and butter in stand mixer (make sure they're well mixed before moving on)
  • Add vanilla and simple syrup and mix until incorporated
  • Add in 2 cups of powdered sugar and mix well. Add in additional powdered sugar as needed, to get the right consistency

Candied Kumquats





  • 10 kumquats, sliced
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla or vanilla paste


  • Slice kumquats
  • Bring 1 cup water to boil and add kumquats, boil for about 3-5 minutes
  • Drain kumquats and run under cold water
  • Place 1 cup cold water, 1 cup sugar, kumquats, and vanilla in pot, bring to boil
  • Once boiling, turn down temperature so that the sugar mixture is simmering. Simmer until the kumquats appear translucent, about 15 minutes
  • Scoop out kumquats and dry on cookie rack, save syrup
  • Once the kumquats are slightly less sticky and slightly more dry, roll in sugar (optional)


2 Responses to “Orange Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting and Candied Kumquats”

  1. Grace says:

    Oh my these look so good!

  2. […] Cool and frost with frosting of your choice. For garnish, I used candied orange slices. You can find the recipe for candied citrus here. […]

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