Pomegranate Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting

February 6, 2011 at 5:38 am (Uncategorized)

It’s still pomegranate season and I’m definitely enjoying it, and so  I wanted to do a pomegranate cupcake.  I didn’t find one that I liked around, so I just adapted the apple cider cupcake from a while ago.

Pomegranate Cupcake

I had to replace the cinnamon dry ingredient in the apple cider cupcake with something non-fall flavored so I went with vanilla powder in order to reinforce the flavor of the frosting.  I also decided to add a hint of white chocolate since a lot of the recipes were pairing pomegranate and white chocolate and I wasn’t sure how well the pomegranate flavor would come out in the final product.


  • 1/2 c butter, at room temperature
  • 2/3 c sugar
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature (I didn’t bother and it was fine)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 oz melted white chocolate
  • 1 2/3 c flour
  • 1 c pomegranate juice
  • (optional) 2 tsp red food coloring


  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar.
  3. Add eggs, beat well after each addition.
  4. Add the baking powder, vanilla powder and salt. Stir.
  5. Melt the white chocolate and add.  Stir to combine.
  6. Add the flour, alternating with the pomegranate juice until thoroughly combined.
  7. Add food coloring if you want the cake to have a nicer red velvet-esque coloring.
  8. Pour into prepared cupcake pan, filling each cup 3/4 way full.
  9. Bake 10 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the center cupcake comes out clean.

Notes: final product didn’t have quite enough of a pomegranate taste for me – or a white chocolate one for that matter.  Next time I might try reducing the pomegranate juice to concentrate the flavor, or finding some extract in addition to the juice.

Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting

Grabbed the recipe from Chaos in the Kitchen.  I didn’t have any vanilla bean, so I substituted vanilla powder.  It didn’t come out quite as vanilla-y as I would have liked, but it was nice. 


  • 8 oz cream cheese, room temp
  • 8 tbsp unsalted butter, room temp
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp vanilla powder
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar


  1. Whip cream cheese in a mixing bowl until smooth.
  2. Add butter and beat to combine.
  3. Add vanilla and vanilla powder.
  4. Beat in powdered sugar a little at a time until frosting is as thick and sweet as you’d like.  I stopped at 1 1/2 cups –  most people advise 2-4 c.


They were good cupcakes – but no one could really taste the pomegranate in the cake.  Once I told them it was there they could find a hint of it if they ate the cake alone, but the frosting overpowered all pomegranate taste.  Next time I might try reducing the juice to a syrup even further – starting with twice as much and going down to the same liquid volume possibly. 


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