What to get for the father with everything?
Moreover, what to get for the father who seems to want nothing? Preferring little fan fare and perhaps his favorite meal of hot dogs, my dad remains as difficult as ever to spoil. Always shy to ask for anything and frequently claiming to not want anything at all, he never gives away any clues as to what might strike his fancy, making Father’s day a real challenge to celebrate.
No way would I ever take his assertions to heart though; It would be a crime to give up and do nothing for such a caring and dedicated dad! Deserving of recognition much more than just one day out of the year, it’s near impossible to make this one date count in a truly meaningful way, so the least I could do was maybe treat him to something special.
Grasping for Straws
During one late night brainstorming session, thinking of all present and past favorite foods, I somehow became fixated on his love for iced tea. Years ago, all he would drink was from a powdered mix, dumping a few heaping tablespoons into a tall glass and topping it off with ice water. As a result, I had thought for the longest time that iced tea was something completely separate from those little bags of dried leaves. He’s now graduated to actual tea, sweetened to such an intense level that my mom has taken to calling it “sugar water,” but the memory of that instant tea mix stuck with me.
After picking up a package of that powder for nostalgia’s sake, it took a long time and many dubious concepts before I finally struck upon the perfect use for it:
Cake! Or more specifically, cupcakes!
Mixed into both the cake and the frosting, the instant tea powder brought me right back to my childhood, thinking how grown up it was to be drinking this fancy iced tea concoction. These cupcakes are decided less “grown up,” but way too much fun to pass up.
Piled high with mounds of fluffy frosting, I made sure to be generous with the piping bag to satisfy his well-established sweet tooth. As if that weren’t enough, a light sprinkling of coarse white sugar adds a slight crunch, and is a nod to that sugar-saturated brew my dad is so fond of. Finally, that touch of lemon is a nod to the lemon flavored tea that was a common choice back in the days of buying a mix. Although my dad isn’t exactly the biggest fan of cakes in general, this is one that I hope will strike a chord.
Iced Tea Cupcakes:
- 1 Cup Plain Non-Dairy Milk
- 1 Tablespoon Fresh Lemon Juice
- 1/3 Cup Olive Oil
- 1 1/4 Cups All-Purpose Flour
- 1/2 Cup Instant Unsweetened Iced Tea Mix
- 2/3 Cup Granulated Sugar
- 1 1/2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
- 1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
Lemon-Iced Tea Frosting:
- 1/2 Cup Vegan Butter, at Room Temperature
- 3 Cups Confectioner’s Sugar
- 1/2 Cup Instant Unsweetened Iced Tea Mix
- 1/2 Teaspoon Lemon Zest
- 2 – 4 Tablespoons Fresh Lemon Juice
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and line 12 muffin tins with cupcake papers.
Whisk together the milk, lemon juice, and oil in a large bowl, and let sit for about 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, combine the flour, iced tea mix, sugar, baking powder and soda, and salt so that all of the dry ingredients are well distributed.
- Add the dry goods into the wet, and stir just enough to incorporate everything and get out most of the lumps. Distribute the batter equally between your prepared tins, and bake for 18 – 22 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of each cupcake comes out clean. Let cool completely before frosting.
- To make the frosting, simply place the vegan butter, confectioner’s sugar, tea mix, and lemon zest in the bowl of your stand mixer, and start it on low speed. Slowly add in the lemon juice one tablespoon at a time, increasing the speed once the sugar is mostly incorporated. Whip on high for about 4 minutes, until light and fluffy.
- Apply to cooled cupcakes and top with coarse sugar or pearl sugar if desired.
Please note that some of the links above are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase after clicking through the link. I have experience with all of these companies and I recommend them because they are helpful and useful, not because of the small commissions I make if you decide to buy something through my links.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 330Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 2mgSodium: 213mgCarbohydrates: 50gFiber: 0gSugar: 39gProtein: 2g
All nutritional information presented within this site are intended for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and any nutritional information on BitterSweetBlog.com should only be used as a general guideline. This information is provided as a courtesy and there is no guarantee that the information will be completely accurate. Even though I try to provide accurate nutritional information to the best of my ability, these figures should still be considered estimations.