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Very Veggie Recipe Submission: Tea Cupcakes

January 14, 2021
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Learn about the Very Veggie Movement

Recipe by Selina Juang

With so many of us baking at home during quarantine, recipe creator Selina Juang came up with a creative way to incorporate the flavors of Jing Si black tea into a baking favorite: cupcakes!

Not only are they a great treat for families, kids, get-togethers, and tea time, cupcakes are an easy entry into baking for the novice baker. To get them nice and fluffy, be sure not to overmix your batter; this helps keep some air bubbles intact before you put your cupcakes in the oven. Secondly, get both your eggs and butter to room temperature; they’ll incorporate better when they’re at similar temperatures. Time to get cracking!


For batter

4 tbsp Jing Si Black Tea-Machine Picked

¾ c milk (or your favorite plant-based milk)

1 c unsalted butter, softened

1½ c sugar

3 eggs

2 c flour

2 tbsp cornstarch

1½ tsp baking powder

pinch of salt

For frosting

2 tbsp milk (or your favorite plant-based milk)

1 tsp Jing Si Black Tea-Machine Picked

2 tsp flour

2 tbsp unsalted butter, softened

2 tbsp sugar

special tools: hand or standing mixer, sieve or sifter, cupcake or muffin tins


  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. Heat milk in microwave or on stovetop. Remove from heat when it begins to boil. Stir in Jing Si tea leaves and let brew for 5 minutes.
  3. In a large bowl, add softened butter and sugar. Using a hand mixer, cream together until light and fluffy. Cracks eggs in, one at a time, beating in between.
  4. In a separate bowl, sift flour, corn starch, baking powder, and salt. Mix well.
  5. Add half of the dry mixture to wet mixture, and beat until well combined. Pour in the milk tea and mix. Add remaining dry ingredients and mix. Batter should not be super smooth.
  6. Line cupcake or muffin tins with parchment paper. Scoop batter into them.
  7. For garnish, sprinkle crumbled tea leaves onto the batter.
  8. Place into oven and bake for 25 minutes.
  9. In the meantime, in a small saucepan, whisk milk, tea leaves, and flour until smooth. Heat on medium/medium-low and stir until it boils and thickens. Let cool.
  10. In a bowl, cream butter and sugar with hand mixer until light and fluffy. Add thickened milk mixture and beat until it resembles whipped cream.
  11. When removing cupcakes from oven, let cool completely. Now, you are ready to frost your cupcakes with a piping bag, spoon, or spatula. Enjoy!

A Message From the Chef:

I joined the Very Veggie Movement because I would like to advocate vegetarianism while exploring the art of filmmaking. Through video making, I was able to contribute to the movement by using my own voice and creativity. The whole process I went through to create this final product was priceless, ultimately guiding me to discover my own unique video style. I hope these videos will inspire people from a variety of backgrounds to consume more vegetarian meals, further improving the health of our planet Earth one step at a time.

Selina Juang, Senior at Cupertino High School in Cupertino, CA

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