Mint julep cupcakes are the perfect dessert for the Kentucky Derby. Make the recipe using Kentucky Bourbon and crème de menthe liquor for a kick of flavor. The cupcakes taste just like the cocktail! 

 
Kentucky Derby Mint Julep Cupcakes with bite, open cupcake liner and mint leaves garnish


Place your bets on the best dessert for the Kentucky Derby! I have my money on mint julep cupcakes. They’re spiked with bourbon and crème de menthe for a boozy treat.

It’s been quite some time since I’ve baked a boozy cupcake. Alcohol adds a shot of flavor into every bite, not to mention puts you in the mood for a cocktail.

With the Kentucky Derby this weekend, it only made sense to bake mint julep cupcakes!

Kentucky Derby Mint Julep Cupcakes bite taken out of cupcakes with mint green frosting and striped straws

The Derby’s specialty cocktail, the mint julep, consists of bourbon, simple syrup, ice, and fresh mint. I took those flavors and put them into a cupcake.

Both the cake batter and the buttercream frosting are spiked with Kentucky bourbon and crème de menthe. Yes, I know crème de menthe isn’t in the original cocktail, but it adds more flavor and booze to the cupcake!

Kentucky Derby Mint Julep Cupcakes with gold cupcake liner and mint green frosting

The cupcakes are light and fluffy, but still packed with mint and bourbon flavor. And that flavor travels right into the buttercream frosting. These cupcakes are seriously good.

So good, I might actually place some bets at the Kentucky Derby!

But in all seriousness, as much as you can taste the booze in the cupcake, there isn’t enough to actually get tipsy off of. You’ll just have to make a round of mint juleps to help wash down the cupcakes.

Kentucky Derby Mint Julep Cupcakes overhead shot with green frosting, mint leaves and striped straws

If you’re hoping to make these cupcakes look professional, I suggest buying some mint leaves for garnish. They add some color and dimension to each cupcake.

I also suggest using a piping bag fitted with a large star tip (I used Wilton #1M) to frost the cupcakes. It’s my favorite tip and never lets me down!

Kentucky Derby Mint Julep Cupcakes with bite taken out of it and mint leaves

If you’re throwing a derby party, or simply in the mood for a boozy dessert, bake some mint julep cupcakes. I can bet you’ll love this recipe!

Kentucky Derby Mint Julep Cupcakes with gold cupcake liner and mint green frosting

Mint Julep Cupcakes

Mint julep cupcakes are the perfect dessert for the Kentucky Derby. Make the recipe using Kentucky Bourbon and crème de menthe liquor for a kick of flavor. The cupcakes taste just like the cocktail! 
5 (6 ratings)

Ingredients

Cupcakes:

  • ½ cup (113 g or 1 stick) unsalted butter,, room temperature
  • 1 cup (200 g) sugar
  • ¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon mint extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 ⅓ cups (170 g) all-purpose flour,, separated
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (120 mL) milk
  • cup (80 mL) Kentucky bourbon, (I used Bulleit)
  • 2 tablespoons (45 mL) clear crème de menthe

Bourbon and Mint Frosting:

  • ½ cup (113 g or 1 stick) unsalted butter,, room temperature
  • 2 cups (350 g) powdered sugar,, sifted
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) bourbon, or whiskey
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) crème de menthe
  • dash of salt
  • Green food coloring, (optional)

Instructions 

Cupcakes

  • Preheat oven to 350° F. Place 12 liners in a cupcake pan.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk flour, salt and baking powder. Set aside.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. With the mixer running, add eggs one at a time, then add extracts. Beat until creamy, about 2 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl when necessary.
  • Turn mixer speed to low and gradually beat in half the flour mixture. Add the milk and liquors to the batter, then add the rest of the flour. Mix just until combined, until the batter comes together.
  • Fill each cupcake liner with batter, about two-thirds full.¹ Bake at 350° F for 18 to 20 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans. Place on wire rack and cool completely before frosting.

Bourbon and Mint Frosting

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream butter on medium speed butter until smooth, about 1 minute.
  • Turn mixer speed to low and add the salt and half the powdered sugar (about 1 cup). Beat in until smooth.
  • Add bourbon and crème de menthe, then add remaining powdered sugar (1 cup).² Add one drop of green food dye and mix until you reach a light green hue.
  • Transfer frosting to a piping bag fitted with desired frosting tip. Frost cupcakes and garnish with a mint leaf.

Notes

  1. I like to use an ice cream scoop when filling the cupcake tin with batter. It makes the perfect amount for each cupcake!
  2. Feel free to adjust the amount of powdered sugar for desired piping consistency.
  • Store cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature.

Inspired by Bake Space on Cupcake Wars.

If you like mint julep cupcakes, try these recipes…

Mint julep cupcakes are the perfect dessert for the Kentucky Derby. Make the recipe using Kentucky Bourbon and crème de menthe liquor for a kick of flavor. The cupcakes taste just like the cocktail! | www.ifyougiveablondeakitchen.com

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