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Marzipan Cupcakes

Updated: Nov 22, 2021

These cupcakes are based on a classic Easter dish - Simnel Cake. They're a combination of almond-y from the marzipan, rich and sweet from the raisins, and lemony from the lemon rind.

Baking a traditional Simnel cake is a tradition in the Caking It kitchen, and I love it so much that I thought I would create a cupcake inspired by it. Its a traditional Easter cake consisting of a fruit cake, with a marzipan layer baked in the centre, a marzipan topping and 11 marzipan balls to represent the 11 Apostles.

I'm so pleased with the result! I could eat these one, after the other, after the other.

The sponge is super light and just the right amount of sweetness. It consists of a light lemony sponge marbled with juicy raisins, and includes a marzipan ball in each, as well as grated marzipan throughout the mix. The combination of these flavours is delicious! There's just enough fruit to give a nod to fruit cake, without being heavy or too rich.

The trick with the marzipan is to place the sponge batter into the cupcake cases, then place the marzipan on top. Gently cover with the batter to ensure none is poking out, but be careful not to push it down too far to the bottom. It will sink anyway, but you should still end up with a layer of batter underneath it. If you like a little bit of marzipan but aren't a huge fan, then you can make these without the marzipan ball.

So, let's get right to the recipe because I can't wait any longer!

Let me know what you think in the comments. I hope you love these as much as I do!

Let's Get Caking It!



180C (170C fan)

Yield: 12 cupcakes

Prep: 20 mins

Bake: 20 mins

Assemble: 5 mins



125g gluten free self-raising flour

1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

1/2 tsp xanthan gum

80g raisins

80g marzipan, grated

1 lemon, rind

125g unsalted butter

125g caster sugar

4 medium eggs

1 tsp lemon juice

1/4 tsp almond extract

2 tbsp sour cream

60g marzipan


150g icing sugar

2 tbsp lemon juice


Method: Sponge

Don't forget to wait until all the ingredients are at room temperature before starting.

  1. Preheat oven to 180C. Fill 12 muffin holes with cases.

  2. Start with the dry ingredients. Add the flour, baking soda, xanthan gum, raisins, marzipan and lemon rind to a bowl and mix with a fork to fully incorporate.

  3. In a separate bowl, beat the butter until pale and fluffy, then add the sugar and beat. Add the eggs one at a time, whisking with an electric whisk between each addition. Add the lemon juice and almond extract and mix to fully incorporate.

  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix with a fork to incorporate.

  5. Add the sour cream to the cake batter and give it a final quick mix to incorporate.

  6. Spoon the batter into the cupcake cases, adding 2 tbsp to each case. Split the 60g of marzipan into 12 and roll into balls. Place one in each cupcake case and gently bring the batter up to cover it fully.

  7. Let sit for 10 minutes, then bake for 20 minutes.

Method: Fondant Icing

This is a super simple and quick icing that goes perfectly with the sponge.

  1. When the sponges are cool, make to the icing.

  2. Sieve 150g icing sugar into a bowl. Gradually add lemon juice and mix, about a teaspoon at a time. You should need about 2 tbsp in total. When it is a dropping consistency but not too wet, its ready.


  1. Add a dollop of icing to the centre of each cupcake. About 1 tsp will be enough.

  2. Finish your cupcakes with marzipan animal shapes, Cadbury Mini Eggs, or other Easter treat.

  3. Enjoy!

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