Moscow Mule Cupcakes

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These Moscow Mule Cupcakes are so fun – just like the cocktail! A moist ginger cupcake is topped with a ginger-lime frosting and I love them so much!

Moscow Mule Cupcakes

Best Moscow Mule Cupcakes recipe

So lately I have become obsessed with Moscow Mules. I never ever thought I’d be into them because of the ginger beer. First of all, I don’t like beer. Like, at all. Unless it’s in cheese (like this Bacon Cheddar Beer Cheese Dip). In a drink? Not so much. Also – ginger. I mean I like it, but it seemed like a lot to drink it.

I was SO WRONG! “Beer” is kind of a horrible name for ginger beer. It’s totally not beer. It’s not even alcoholic. And it’s SO GOOD! Sorry for all the caps, but I’m seriously in love. I have tasted both brands of ginger beer that are easily available at our store and I’m all about the most ginger-y ginger beer I can find. The one with the biggest ginger bite is my jam – Fever Tree.

I’m also more of a rum or tequila girl than vodka, but it doesn’t bother me at all in the Moscow Mules. They are seriously my new go-to drink. The hubs is shocked that I’m so into them and that I’ve changed my drink of choice – and it’s not super sweet. Normally I order just about the sweetest drink I can find. 🙂 No more! So naturally I had to turn it into a sweet treat. 🙂

Moscow Mule cocktail CupcakesEasy Moscow Mule Cupcakes recipe

I went through so many versions of these cupcakes. I don’t even remember how many, but it was a lot. Then I was totally sure I had it and was done and then frosting ended up being too lime-y and I had to go another round. Now these babies are just right!

A big challenge was getting enough ginger flavor in the cupcake. As I said, I dig the ginger flavor of a moscow mule so it needed to not get lost. Ginger beer alone seemed to do a decent job at first, but once I added frosting I decided to up the ante and add some more ginger to the cupcake. I didn’t want it to get lost and it was a good call.

I tested several ginger beers with the cupcakes and they all baked fine. As I said, I think the most ginger-y beer is the best, but if you have a fave, you can go with it. I even tried diet and it was fine.

I added a touch of vodka to the cupcake because that felt authentic to a cocktail cupcake. 🙂 However if you wanted to have a non-alcoholic cupcake, you can totally swap it out for water. You don’t really taste the vodka, so it’s cool either way.

The frosting is also focused on the ginger. It may seem like ginger overload but it really isn’t. Moscow mules are all about the ginger. In an earlier version, I added lime juice and lime zest to the frosting. The lime ended up taking over the entire cupcake and the ginger got lost. The final version of the frosting has a bit more ginger and only uses lime zest. It give just enough lime flavor without being overpowering.

If you couldn’t already tell, I love these cupcakes! The are super moist, so tasty and SO fun! If you’re looking for a fun way to incorporate a great cocktail into a cupcake, this is it!

Moscow Mule Cupcakes on copper mugsdecorated Moscow Mule Cupcakes
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Moscow Mule Cupcake close up image

Moscow Mule Cupcakes

  • Author: Life, Love and Sugar
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 17 minutes
  • Total Time: 47 minutes
  • Yield: 12-15 Cupcakes
  • Category: Cupcakes
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American


These Moscow Mule Cupcakes are so fun – just like the cocktail! A moist ginger cupcake is topped with a ginger-lime frosting and I love them so much!



  • 6 tbsp (84g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cups (155g) sugar
  • 6 tbsp (86g) sour cream
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 egg whites, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups (163g) all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/4 tsp ground ginger (1 1/4 tsp)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 6 tbsp (90ml) ginger beer
  • 2 tbsp (30ml) vodka


  • 3/4 cup (168g) butter
  • 3/4 cup (142g) shortening
  • 6 cups (690g) powdered sugar
  • 4 tsp ground ginger
  • 34 tbsp (45-60ml) ginger beer
  • 1 tsp lime zest


1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (176°C) and prepare a cupcake pan with cupcake liners.
2. In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light in color and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Do not skimp on the amount of creaming time.
3. Add sour cream and vanilla extract and mix until well combined.
4. Add egg whites in two batches, mixing until well combined after each. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to be sure all ingredients are well incorporated.
5. Combine dry ingredients in a separate bowl, then combine the ginger beer and vodka in a small measuring cup.
6. Add half of the dry ingredients to the batter and mix until well combined. Add the ginger beer mixture and mix until well combined. Add remaining dry ingredients and mix until well combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to be sure all ingredients are well incorporated.
7. Fill the cupcake liners about halfway. Bake for 15-17 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out with a few crumbs.
8. Remove cupcakes from oven and allow to cool for 2-3 minutes, then remove to cooling rack to finish cooling.
9. To make the frosting, combine the butter and shortening with a mixer until smooth.
10. Add about half of the powdered sugar and mix until smooth and well combined.
11. Add the ginger and mix until combined.
12. Add 3 tablespoons of ginger beer to the frosting and mix until well combined.
13. Add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
14. Add the lime zest and mix until smooth. Add additional ginger beer as needed to get the right consistency.
15. Pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes. I used Ateco tip 808.


I use more frosting with the round tip swirl than you may need if you use a different frosting tip. You could cut down on the amount of frosting if you are piping the frosting differently.

The vodka can be substituted with water if you’d like a non-alcoholic cupcake.


  • Serving Size: 1 Cupcake
  • Calories: 424
  • Sugar: 50.1 g
  • Sodium: 145.3 mg
  • Fat: 20 g
  • Carbohydrates: 59.7 g
  • Protein: 2.1 g
  • Cholesterol: 13.9 mg

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Favorite cocktail dessert - Moscow Mule Cupcakes

Moscow Mule Cupcakes! With ginger and lime flavor! Such a fun cocktail cupcake!

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  1. Alyssa

    I followed your recipe to a T and they turned out almost more like bread than cake 🙁 and the frosting wasn’t light and fluffy like yours… what did I do wrong?!

    1. Lindsay

      It’s hard to say for sure from a distance. I’d make sure your ingredients were all still good, like the baking powder. Also be sure you fully creamed the butter and sugar for about 2 minutes and that you didn’t over mix after adding the flour, which can over develop the gluten and make the cupcakes dense and tough. If you still feel like they aren’t as light as you’d like, you can actually whip the egg whites separately and fold them in at the end. The cupcakes turn out great that way too and are a touch lighter.

  2. Sheryll

    These were absolutely delicious. Due to the ginger, these cupcakes were not sweet but very balanced and so yummy!! The cake itself was moist but I did not taste the vodka. Make sure to eat the cupcake with the lime and mint garnish…enhances the flavor as if you are drinking a Moscow mule. I will be making it again!

      1. Sheryll

        I made this recipe again this week and realized the weight measurement of the Ginger Beer and Vodka in the cupcake is off. I measured 6tbsp of ginger beer and it came out to 60ml and 2tbsp of vodka and it came out to 20 ml.

      2. Lindsay

        So liquid is measured in volume, not weight. The standard measurement is 1 tbsp = 15 ml. They are listed correctly, but feel free to measure in whatever way works best for you. If the tablespoon method doesn’t seem right, feel free to measure by milliliters.

  3. Petra

    Hi Lindsay
    The recipe sounds good. What could one use to substitute the shortening?

    Thanks for letting me know.


  4. Jessica

    About to make these cupcakes. They look and sounds delicious! Just wondering why you use egg whites but don’t beat them first?

    1. Lindsay

      The whites and the yolks of an egg both contribute different things to a cupcake and in this cupcake the whites add structure. It actually doesn’t work as well with whole eggs. And as for not whipping them or something first, again that adds different things to the recipe that I chose not to include and would likely change the result.

  5. Annie

    GREAT Idea and I’m totally going to try this! On a side note – make a Mexican Mule as a cocktail and substitute the vodka for tequila or mezcal – it is AMAZING!

    1. Lindsay

      I would suggest doubling everything. As a cake I normally bake it in three 8 inch layers for about 18 to 20 minutes. Depending on how much frosting you like I might make a little bit more than double, but I also tend to use a fair amount of frosting.

  6. Valentina

    Hi Lindsay, I immediately fell in love with your recipe!
    But when I add ground ginger to my frosting it become lightly beige.. While your is so white!
    What I have done wrong?

    1. Lindsay

      Hmm, I’m not sure that you necessarily did anything wrong if you added the correct amount of ginger. Are you sure you did 4 teaspoons, or maybe tablespoons?

  7. Katie

    Hi! Love the recipe, just a quick question. If I wanted to make it boozy and add some vodka to the frosting (it’s for a friend’s birthday) how do you think that would work? And suggestions? 

    1. Lindsay

      That would be fine. You wouldn’t be able to add too much though (maybe a tablespoon or so) or the frosting will get quite thin.

  8. Elizabeth K

    Hey, Did you have problems with the cupcakes not getting a proper rise and then falling and becoming dense? I’ve tried this recipe twice, and it came back with the same sinking results. I figured it might have something to do with the liquid content, but I’m not sure. I tried to reduce the amount of mixing to avoid over-mixing which often causes falling.

    1. Lindsay

      That often happens when the butter and sugar aren’t fully creamed. Have you been creaming them together for a solid 3-4 minutes?

  9. Barbara Siegel

    I use Jack Daniels instead of vodka in my drinks so I will try that in my cupcakes. I call it a Tennessee Mule. My question is about the ginger. Do you use ground ginger from the jar or freshly ground ginger?

  10. Noelle

    I cannot WAIT to try making these, my friends and I love moscow mules. Do you think the ginger beer and lime would work in a cream cheese based frosting? Thanks so much for coming up with the recipe!

  11. Virginia

    Hi, again … What could I use to substitute for the vodka? We live in a dry county (glad I don’t drink anymore) way out in the country and i would have to go about 2 hours before I would find a liquor store. Thanks for your help!! I enjoy your site and have made some of the recipes I have found on your site and have gotten many compliments.

  12. Virginia


    What can I use to substitute the ginger beer? I have no idea where I would find it. Thanks for your help.

    1. Lindsay

      I find it at the liquor store. If you aren’t using it in the cupcake, it’s really just a lime cupcake, right? Would you be looking for another flavor cupcake?

  13. Zooze Marie

    Hello Lindsay,
    Hugs from Australia!
    I’m a subscriber of your gorgeous blog, I just gotta tell you I LOVE it! I often make things from here, and your recipes are perfect!
    Totally understand your mistake about ginger beer…but so glad you realised. 😛 I’m a huge fan of it myself!! You had me hooked when I saw these included two of my utter favourites, lime and ginger. 🙂
    Gotta run off and try these beauties now….I’m so excited!
    ps your photography is brilliant too…I thing you deserve a national award of some kind… 😉

  14. Karen

    I made these cupcakes and they turned out AWESOME!! The only thing I would note is that I only needed to use half the frosting. So, if it turns out that you only have 3 cups of powdered sugar in your cupboard instead of 6 like you had thought, you’ll get by on only making half the batch of frosting. : )

  15. Linda

    These look fabulous. I will definitely have to try them. Mules are a great drink. If you want to try a variation of mule, sub Irish whiskey for vodka. It’s my “winter drink” until it warms up and I can order Mojitos!

  16. muriel

    Hello Lyndsey. Must correct you about Beer. Ginger Beer and Beer are 2 different products. Beer is NOT a subsitute for each other, they are 2 different and separate products Each has their own distinct flavours. IBeer is also called Ale. Likewise – Guiness (an Irish form of Stout) ans Stout are also 2 different types. Hopes this clarifies your understanding of Beer.

    1. Lindsay

      Hi Muriel, thanks for that information, but I’m actually aware that they are different. I know in the first full paragraph I make it seem as though I don’t know the different and that’s because I had an initial misconception about ginger beer. In the second paragraph I say this – “I was SO WRONG! “Beer” is kind of a horrible name for ginger beer. It’s totally not beer. It’s not even alcoholic.” I’m sure plenty of people have a similar misconception as I did, which is why I wrote about mine. I hope that helps clarify. Thanks! 🙂

    1. Lindsay

      How interesting! It’s funny how things are done so differently in different places. There are 4 or 5 different ginger beer brands here (that are easily available at my store – I’m sure there are others) and none of them are actually beer. 🙂

    2. Sarah

      I made these today with Crabbies “alcoholic” Ginger Beer and they came out great ! I cut up slivers of candied ginger instead of the lime and used lime zest in the frosting . Great recipie thanks !

About Lindsay

I'm a wife and a mom to twin boys and a baby girl! And I've got a serious sweets addiction! Bring on the treats!

Scripture I’m Loving

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” Matthew 11:28-29