An Easy Artichoke Recipe: Lemon-Laced Artichoke Cupcakes


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An Easy Artichoke Recipe: Lemon-Laced Artichoke Cupcakes

September 13, 2022
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An Easy Artichoke Recipe: Lemon-Laced Artichoke Cupcakes

I bet you weren’t necessarily thinking about dessert when you searched for artichoke recipes in the past. But jarred artichoke hearts packed in water, or frozen artichokes, are the perfect, unexpected ingredient in our Artichoke Cupcakes recipe. Be prepared to be wowed again by California artichokes!

Lemon-Laced Artichoke Cupcakes next to a bowl of artichoke hearts.

Why not artichokes?

Think about it, lots of unexpected vegetables have had their time in the dessert spotlight. The internet is packed with recipes for Zucchini Bread and Carrot Cake. Why not artichokes?

Where did artichoke cupcakes originate?

Believe it or not, artichoke cupcakes are an iconic California recipe that was first popularized by the roadside farm stand at Pezzini Farms in Castroville, California just off of Highway 1. You can learn all about Pezzini’s by reading our article below.

Celebrate The Best Of Artichoke Season At Pezzini Farms!

Celebrate The Best Of Artichoke Season At Pezzini Farms!

Recently, we had the pleasure of meeting Sean Pezzini, 4th generation artichoke farmer at Pezzini Farms in Castroville, California.

He shared with us the story of how their family’s heirloom artichokes were brought here from Italy by his great-grandfather.

Will the tradition continue with his 1 1/2 -year-old son Luca? Only time will tell, but our bets are that all signs point to yes!

Click here to visit the Pezzini Farms website!

After visiting Pezzini’s and scoring a few artichoke cupcakes for ourselves we were hooked! I shared one of their artichoke cupcakes with our friend Becky Sue of Baking the Goods, and she, too, was in awe of how delicious they were. They were moist and delicate with a subtle spice – darn near cupcake perfection!

Those cupcakes were so perfect, in fact, that Becky was inspired to make her own version of this dessert, which you can see below! We LOVE how she designed the pattern in the icing to look like an artichoke flower. But what we love most about this recipe is Becky’s process of preparing fresh artichokes for the cake. If you prefer, you can use her method to prepare fresh artichokes for this recipe as well.

Fresh Artichoke Olive Oil Cake with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting

This cake from Baking the Goods is a trifecta of California-grown flavors that work so well together.

Becky’s cake has a hint of warm ginger, a bit of sweetness, and the creamiest, dreamiest lemon cream cheese frosting adorning the top in a beautiful blooming artichoke design.

Click here for this artichoke cake recipe.

How do you eat jarred or frozen artichokes?

There are lots of ways to eat jarred or frozen artichokes from California! You can chop them up and add them to salads, toss them with pasta, or bake them in cupcakes, all with great success.

A quick Google search will reveal that there are far more savory artichoke recipes than sweet ones. Here are a few we think you should try.

Savory recipes with artichoke hearts.

What ingredients are needed to make this artichoke recipe?

This California artichoke recipe may be unexpected, but man, are they addictive once you take that first bite! Our artichoke cupcakes are easy to make and taste light, lemony, & delicious.

Since jarred and frozen artichokes from California are available year-round, you can make these cupcakes any time your heart desires, no matter the season.

The ingredient list for Lemon-Laced Artichoke Cupcakes

  • Jarred artichoke hearts packed in water or thawed frozen artichoke hearts
  • eggs
  • vanilla
  • oil
  • lemon zest & juice
  • granulated & brown sugar
  • baking powder
  • baking soda
  • salt
  • cinnamon
  • cardamom

Hungry for more iconic California recipes? Download our FREE e-book!

We teamed up with California Wines and Visit California to celebrate California Wine Month. We created a free e-book titled Iconic California Dishes to Celebrate California Wine Month, and we can’t wait for you to download your copy!

Get your FREE copy now!

This e-book features recipes for dishes that evoke the state’s sunny and relaxed vibe—all paired with California wine and creative, wine-based cocktails.

Bring harvest home with recipes like Avocado Salad with Hidden Valley Ranch-Style Dressing; Wine Country Chicken Salad; and the California 75, our classic wine-based lemon cocktail with a literal and figurative twist.

Click here to score your free e-book!

Check out some of the delicious iconic California dishes featured in our e-book below!


Craving more CA Grown goodness? Follow us on Pinterest for fresh and fabulous recipe inspiration!

Lemon-Laced Artichoke Cupcakes next to a bowl of artichoke hearts.

Lemon-Laced Artichoke Cupcakes

Meg van der Kruik
Our artichoke cupcakes are quick and easy to make with no special equipment needed! Jarred artichokes packed in water or thawed frozen artichoke hearts really shine in these subtly spiced cupcakes with cream cheese frosting. If you prefer more of a muffin-style treat, simply omit the cream cheese icing. The spiced artichoke cupcake is equally as delicious on its own as breakfast as it is iced as dessert.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 10 large cupcakes
Calories 543 kcal


For the Lemon-Laced Artichoke Cupcake Batter

  • 1 cup California artichokes jarred artichokes packed in water or thawed frozen artichoke hearts, or use Becky's process of preparing fresh artichokes for cake
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 lemon, zested, and juiced
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 1/3 cup all-purpose flour, sifted or gluten free all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom

For the optional Cream Cheese Icing

  • 1/2 cup salted butter, softened
  • 8 ounces cream cheese brick-style, not spreadable, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
  • 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • lemon zest for garnish


To make the Lemon-Laced Artichoke Cupcake

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a muffin with liners.
    This recipe will make 1 dozen standard cupcakes or 10 large cupcakes
  • Finely mince the artichoke hearts into very small uniform pieces. Set aside.
    If desired, you can do this in a food processor fitted with the 'S' blade.
  • In a large bowl whisk together the eggs, vanilla extract, lemon zest, lemon juice, water, and oil.
  • In another bowl whisk together the flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and cardamom.
  • Mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, whisking to combine. Then gently fold in the minced artichokes with a spatula until they are completely incorporated into the batter.
  • Fill the prepared muffin tins with the batter then transfer to the preheated oven to bake for 20-25 minutes.
  • Once the muffins are baked through, transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the optional Cream Cheese Icing

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle combine the softened butter and cream cheese. Beat until creamy, well-combined, and lump-free.
  • Add vanilla extract and salt, mix to combine.
  • With the mixer on low, gradually add the powdered sugar until completely combined.
  • Frost cupcakes as desired.


Adapted from Savory Spin


Calories: 543kcalCarbohydrates: 79gProtein: 5gFat: 24gSaturated Fat: 11gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0.4gCholesterol: 80mgSodium: 665mgPotassium: 84mgFiber: 1gSugar: 63gVitamin A: 637IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 56mgIron: 1mg
Keyword artichoke cupcake, canned artichoke, canned artichoke recipe, cupcake, dessert
Tried this recipe?Mention @cagrownofficial or tag #CAGROWN!

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