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Soft and delicious gin & tonic soaked sponges, with gin & tonic buttercream frosting, lime, and more… My favourite gin and tonic cupcakes

Gin & Tonic

So I love a good G&T… and my friends have recently discovered the love as well, so we have quite a few Gin bottles now. I have my personal favourites which are flavoured ones like rhubarb & ginger, and elderflower and vanilla… but my friends just love them all.

I always love baking with my favourite drinks, and this is definitely a good excuse to bake something delicious like these gin & tonic cupcakes. Obviously, these should be served with an ice cold G&T, but happily can be done without.


I wasn’t entirely sure where to start with this, so I sorta went with it and baked a batch of normal cupcakes with some gin and some tonic added. I used the normal ratios of 150g sugar/butter/flour and 3 medium eggs with 2 tablespoons of gin, and 2 tablespoons of tonic.

I found that the mixture was quite runny, and therefore baked quite solidly and wasn’t as light? I therefore tried it again with more flour, but a bit more gin and tonic and it got the flavour and the texture bang on.

These cupcakes are light, delicious and I adore them – and the sponges bake perfectly for the theme. The gin syrup drizzled over the baked cupcakes bring an even more delicious flavour. 


When I made my no-bake champagne cheesecake and no-bake limoncello cheesecake for example, I was a little nervous of using alcohol. Luckily, they were no-bake treats so the flavour never really disappeared, but it can easily disappear when actually baking.

I find that the buttercream is a lot more flavoured in comparison to the sponge (if you don’t use the syrup, with, the sponges are great) but I love the combination of the sponge and buttercream together. The lime gives it a flavour that I love, but it is optional.

It is slightly more slack when you flavour the frosting with the syrup, so you must use block unsalted butter. If you use a spread or margarine for the frosting, which you should never do anyway, you will have a soupy frosting that won’t work. 


I used my favourite piping tip as always, and I use large disposable piping bags to make it far easier to achieve the result you can see in the images. You can obviously decorate them how you want though, this is just how I do it. 

The combination of flavours along with these ADORABLE iced jems baking cups with the little (and yes not edible) green stripey straws are so cute, but I also adored the zest and wedge of lime as well – anything to fit a decoration theme and I am there. 

Tips & Tricks

  • You must use block butter for the frosting and you mustn’t use a spread. This is even more important for this recipe as you are adding more liquid than usual.
  • I buy my cupcakes cases from Iced Jems – here! And my little straws to decorate are also from Iced Jems – here!
  • You can use any gin and any tonic – and you can swap the tonic for lemonade if you prefer. 
  • You can use anything to decorate it with, but I love a wedge or two of lime with my G&Ts!
  • These cupcakes will last in an airtight container for 3 days at room temperature!
  • You can easily leave out the gin and the tonic and use G&T Flavouring instead!

Gin and Tonic Cupcakes!

Soft and delicious gin & tonic soaked sponges, with gin & tonic buttercream frosting, lime, and more... My favourite gin and tonic cupcakes
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Category: Cupcakes
Type: Cupcakes
Keyword: Gin
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Cooling & Decorating: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Servings: 12 Cupcakes
Author: Jane's Patisserie


The Cupcakes

  • 150 g unsalted butter/baking spread
  • 150 g caster sugar
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 200 g self raising flour
  • 3 tbsps gin
  • 3 tbsps tonic

Gin Syrup

  • 50 g caster sugar
  • 3 tbsps gin
  • 3 tbsps tonic water

The Buttercream

  • 150 g unsalted butter (room temp)
  • 375 g icing sugar
  • 3 tbsps gin
  • 2-3 tbsps tonic


  • lime zest
  • lime slices
  • straws



  • Heat your oven to 180ºc/160ºc fan and prep 12 cases
  • Beat the butter with the caster sugar until light and fluffy
  • Add the eggs and flour and mix again
  • Add in the gin, and the tonic, and then beat again.
  • Spoon the mix into the cupcake cases evenly and bake in the oven for 18-20 minutes or until a skewer poked into one of the cakes comes out clean and they are springy to touch – leave them to cool fully on a wire rack. 

Gin Syrup

  • Add the sugar, gin and tonic water to a pan on boil for a minute so the sugar dissolves. Brush/Spoon over the baked cupcakes.


  • Beat the butter with an electric mixer for a couple of minutes to loosen it – gradually beat in the icing sugar until well combined (this can take up to 5 minutes).
  • Add in the gin and tonic one tablespoon of each at a time, and beat fully each time.


  • I used a 2D Closed Star Piping Tip to decorate my cakes but you can do whatever you like! 
  • Once iced, add a lime or lemon slice to the cupcake, and add part of a straw for show. Sprinkle on some lime/lemon zest and enjoy!


  • YOU MUST USE ACTUAL BUTTER FOR BUTTERCREAM – I can’t stress this enough. I get comments often about ‘why is my buttercream so runny’ and 9/10 times its because the incorrect butter was used.
  • You can’t use stork, or a spread, or a substitute for buttercream. This is even more important for this recipe as you are adding more liquid than usual.
  • I buy my Cupcakes Cases/Baking Cups from Iced Jems – here! And my little straws to decorate are also from Iced Jems – here!
  • I used Bombay Sapphire Gin for these cupcakes, and Fever Tree Tonic as it has a strong flavour. You can use any you like, but better quality ones with a better and stronger flavour are important.
  • You can use anything to decorate it with, but I love a wedge or two of lime with my G&Ts!
  • These cupcakes will last in an airtight container for 3 days at room temperature!
  • You can easily leave out the gin and the tonic and use G&T Flavouring instead!



Find my other Cupcake Recipes on my Recipes Page!

You can find me on:

J x

© Jane’s Patisserie. All images & content are copyright protected. Do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words and credit me, or link back to this post for the recipe.




  1. Carmen Keith on November 14, 2023 at 1:51 pm

    wow wow wow these are amazing !!
    I used White Wings Gluten Free SR flour and had extra large eggs so only used 2 and they are amazing 🙂
    I wonder how they will go with the Elderflower Fever Tonic water ?

  2. Debbie O on June 20, 2023 at 8:55 pm

    Hi Jane, I absolutely love your recipes. I’ve made these cakes which were really yummy! But I would have liked a stronger flavour of gin. Could I put double the amount of gin in the cake mix and leave out the Tonic??
    I know you’re very busy but if you could respond I’d appreciate it as I’m hoping to make these again soon but want the all ok from you before I try it x

  3. Bethany on August 25, 2022 at 1:48 pm

    Can you colour this buttercream on top or do you think a simple lemon buttercream with colour would work better and be less runny? Can’t wait to make it for a hen party!!

    • Jane's Patisserie on August 25, 2022 at 2:31 pm

      Hiya! You can do either – both sound great! Hope this helps! x

  4. Marie on May 10, 2022 at 11:34 am

    Was going to make these for a hen party. We are not usually gin drinkers, could you use a pre-mixed gin and tonic instead of buying a large bottle of gin?

  5. Julie on March 26, 2022 at 5:32 pm

    Hi Jane

    Do the cupcakes freeze undecorated..?

    • Jane's Patisserie on March 30, 2022 at 3:02 pm

      Yes absolutely, for up to 3 months! x

  6. Claire Keightley on August 13, 2021 at 8:10 am

    5 stars
    Hi I loved this recipe but I was wondering a couple of thing, my mix did not fill up the cases which were the same as you used to the top on baking I was left with quite a space, what size were the cases you used. Did you use all of the drizzle on the sponges and is there a reason you don’t use the stand mixer for your buttercream.

    Thank you

    • Sam Sheerin on April 1, 2022 at 1:12 pm

      I have made these and they were amazing. Bit wondering how to make these vegan? Could you help please

  7. Claire keightley on August 10, 2021 at 9:22 pm

    4 stars
    I wondered what size were the cases you used as my mixture did not reach the top of the cases I bought which looked like the same ones, is there a reason for that? Also is there a reason that you didn’t do the buttercream in the stand mixer and did you give several coatings of the drizzle to the cup cakes? The flavour was delicious though they went down a treat.

    • Jane's Patisserie on August 18, 2021 at 4:36 pm

      I use the regular size baking cups! I do the buttercream in the stand mixer, I always do! And I split the drizzle equally. x

  8. claire Caldicott on July 28, 2021 at 8:29 am

    Could you replace tonic with lemonade?

    • Nicole on May 9, 2022 at 10:55 am

      I am also wondering this myself for my friends birthday as she isn’t keen on tonic! Did you get a response?

  9. Suzie on July 20, 2021 at 10:54 pm

    Hi, what butter do you suggest using? Something like lurpack?
    I’m planning on making these for my friend’s birthday at the weekend

    Thank you

    • Jane's Patisserie on July 21, 2021 at 8:43 pm

      I use supermarket own block butter for buttercream, and stork for the sponges!

  10. Sophie Allen on June 29, 2021 at 10:46 pm

    Hi Jane, I’m not really a fan of tonic.
    Can I just completely leave this out in the recipe or do I need get a substitute for it? x

    • Sophie Allen on June 29, 2021 at 10:48 pm

      Nevermind found you replied to someone who else with the same comment x

  11. Lizz on April 19, 2021 at 9:52 pm

    Hello Jane how’s much gin and tonic flavouring would you recommend?
    Thank you

    • Jane's Patisserie on April 26, 2021 at 2:25 pm

      Hey, it depends on the brand but a supermarket one maybe 1 teaspoon xx

  12. katie henderson on March 26, 2021 at 9:45 pm

    Would it be possible to follow this recipe with rhubarb and ginger flavoured gin?

    • Jane's Patisserie on March 27, 2021 at 9:47 am

      Hello! Yes sure, let me know how it goes!xx

  13. Sami on August 29, 2020 at 10:20 am

    Would this work with the light Fever Tree tonic? I’ve got pink gin I’m going to use but the only tonic I have in is the light aromatic one, don’t mind getting the full sugar one if that makes it turn out better though! 😊

    • Jane's Patisserie on August 29, 2020 at 10:56 am

      It shouldn’t make too much of a difference to these xx

  14. Rachael vincent on June 25, 2020 at 8:58 pm

    Hi Jane, I’m going to make these tomorrow for my sisters birthday, just wanted to double check is it an option of using gin syrup or butter cream and not to use both? Thanks

    • Jane's Patisserie on June 25, 2020 at 9:29 pm

      Yes you don’t have to use both – I just put as much gin in as I can haha!

    • Rachael Vincent on June 26, 2020 at 6:53 am

      Ok so do you use both though? Do you bake them then cover with syrup then buttercream lol? I’d like to them as you’ve done but it’s not clear to me if you use both or one or the other lol!! Thank you xx

    • Jane's Patisserie on June 26, 2020 at 8:45 am

      Yes I use both! You do the drizzle like you would a lemon drizzle cake, then let the cakes cool and do the buttercream!

  15. Belle on June 13, 2020 at 10:43 pm

    Hi Jane! If I wanted to make a batch of just 6 cupcakes do I just half all the quantities or would this affect the recipe? Thanks!

    • Jane's Patisserie on June 14, 2020 at 5:04 pm

      Hey! because of the eggs I would recommend making 1/3 or 2/3 – so use 1 egg, or two eggs and adjust accordingly! x

  16. Claire Richards on June 11, 2020 at 2:06 pm


    Could I substitute the Tonic for Lemon Juice?
    I love gin but hate tonic.

    Thank You

    • Jane's Patisserie on June 12, 2020 at 10:11 am

      I don’t see why not! However, the lemon may overpower the flavour of the gin so maybe add less!

  17. CLARE on May 13, 2020 at 10:25 am

    Hi Jane, Love the sound of recipe… Making for a friends mother’s funeral wake as in current climate with social distancing they are appropriate & her favourite tipple was a G&T. only problem is I could only get large eggs… Should I only use two or three but increase all other ingredients by 50g? Any suggestions… Many thanks, Clare.

    • Jane's Patisserie on May 13, 2020 at 2:24 pm

      Ohh I’m sorry for your friends loss! I would use the 3 large eggs, and make everything else 175g! xx

  18. Chloe Smith on May 4, 2020 at 9:00 pm

    5 stars
    Amazing recipe!! I absolutely love gin, and I also love cake, but I was very dubious about the two mixed together. However it was delicious!! Thanks, Jane. All of your recipes are brilliant x

  19. Gemma on April 29, 2020 at 5:11 pm

    5 stars
    Hello, I was wondering could I use pink gin for this recipe instead of the sapphire gin? And possibly add a some pink food colouring to frosting?

  20. Donna Hargreaves on March 28, 2020 at 3:35 pm

    I cant bake. And true to form, even following this, clearly foolproof, recipe my cupcakes were flat and honestly – tasteless. In fact concave! And couldnt taste the gin. Disaster!
    How did they go so badly wrong?

    • Jane's Patisserie on March 28, 2020 at 5:48 pm

      I’m afraid I don’t know what went wrong. It could be anything – opening the oven too early, incorrect ingredients, incorrectly measured ingredients, oven temp being wrong, not mixing correctly and so on.

  21. Grace Logan on February 3, 2020 at 7:24 pm

    I see a recipe for Gin Syrup but I don’t see where you use it.
    Did I overlook something? Many thanks. g.

  22. Tansy on December 11, 2019 at 9:53 am

    I wanted to make these for my friend who loves gin and tonic. Unfortunately she has a dairy allergy. So are usually use dairy-free butter substitute. However I read the comment about the consistency being wrong if real butter isn’t used.
    What would you use instead to make a frosting?

    • Jane's Patisserie on December 11, 2019 at 10:40 am

      Hey! Yes, particularly for a bake like this one with a lot of liquid being added, you can’t use a butter alternative for the topping. It would be far too liquid and quite horrid! You could make a simple gin icing sugar mix like old style water icing, or buy a G&T flavouring!

  23. Annette Bottomley on August 18, 2019 at 5:10 pm

    5 stars
    Made the Gin and Tonic cupcakes. They were amazing, will be making again.

  24. Coreen on August 11, 2019 at 5:33 pm

    I always use your site for baking as the recipes always turn out great. Would it be possible to substitute the gin and tonic for the same amount of champagne to make champagne cakes?

    • Jane's Patisserie on August 11, 2019 at 9:11 pm

      I haven’t tried it yet with this recipe I am afraid, so you can have an experiment if you fancy!

  25. Wendy on May 11, 2019 at 12:08 pm

    5 stars
    This was great! I know you said not to use stork, but I can’t eat dairy, it’s a fun family condition!
    It worked really well with Storks “For pastry” blocks, and I added zest to the mix to make it pop a little more. I was also using gluten free SR flour for other family dietary requirements. That does tend to be a thirsty flour, so maybe that’s why it worked for me.
    Either way, thank you for the recipe!

  26. Angela Barnett on May 2, 2019 at 4:18 pm

    I want to make these gin cupcakes again -but I only want to do the tiny mini cupcakes – a tray of 24. How would I work out the quantities. many thanks

    • Jane's Patisserie on May 2, 2019 at 6:18 pm

      Hiya! It depends entirely on the size of your ‘mini’ ones. Best thing to do is make the batch as it is, and then bake the mini ones and either have extra mini, or bake a couple of the larger ones!

  27. Brinda on March 27, 2019 at 1:53 pm

    5 stars
    These are literally the best cupcakes I’ve ever made! You wouldn’t believe how popular they are – I’ve made them and taken them to work a few times, and they’ve made me mighty popular I tell you!! The buttercream in particular is amazing! Thank you for sharing the recipe!

    • Claire on April 24, 2020 at 5:37 pm

      Loved this recipe but I had a problem with the frosting. The mixture looks like it split. It’s not smooth? Any idea what I did wrong? Thanks

    • Jane's Patisserie on April 24, 2020 at 8:38 pm

      When making the frosting you need to make sure you use actual butter, rather than a spread – that’s often where people go wrong. Other than that, if you add the liquid in too quick it can also split!

  28. Laura on October 1, 2018 at 2:44 pm

    These sound great! If using gin and tonic flavouring, how much should you use? 6tbsps?

    • Jane's Patisserie on October 1, 2018 at 2:54 pm

      For this recipe if use flavouring, I would add between 1-2 tsps. Flavouring is very strong, 6tbsps might kill you!

  29. Emily Williams on June 28, 2018 at 10:47 am

    If I wanted to add Elderflower, what would I need to tweak and how much should I use?

    • Jane's Patisserie on June 28, 2018 at 7:33 pm

      Adding any more liquid would be a bit risky. And I’m not sure how it would stand up to the flavour of the Gin or Tonic. It’s worth maybe soaking the cupcakes with elderflower cordial, and leaving the buttercream as is?

  30. Terrie Grayson on May 16, 2018 at 9:31 am

    Can I freeze the cupcakes (without the buttercream)

  31. Jules on March 13, 2018 at 3:22 pm

    Could I make this into a cake ? Was thinking a bundt cake….. would I use the same ratios ?

    • Jane's Patisserie on March 14, 2018 at 9:39 am

      Hiya! I do have a Gin & Tonic Drizzle cake recipe on my blog which you could also base it off which might be easier, but yes you could!

    • Jules on March 14, 2018 at 11:23 am

      Awesome ! thanks i’ll check it out !!!

  32. Angela on January 3, 2018 at 10:34 pm

    These cupcakes were divine! Do you think strawberry daiquiri cupcakes would work on the same measurements e.g. Substituting the gin for rum and perhaps a squeeze of lime?

  33. Kiranjeet Kaur on September 16, 2017 at 6:02 pm

    Hi Jane

    If I wanted to use their recipe to make a gin & tonic cake – what would the measurement be?

    Thank you


    • Kiranjeet Kaur on September 16, 2017 at 6:02 pm

      I meant this recipe

    • Jane's Patisserie on September 17, 2017 at 4:36 pm

      I would double it for an 8″ cake – buttercream, and cake recipe.

    • Kiranjeet Kaur on September 18, 2017 at 10:09 pm

      thank you Jane. Would that double mixture be divided between 2 x 8″ trays? and would you use the same temperature and cooking time?

    • Lesley Anne on May 10, 2020 at 8:36 pm

      Hi Jane,

      Is it possible to do this recipe without the tonic? I’m not a huge fan of it or is the Tonic very subtle and not a noticeable taste?

    • Jane's Patisserie on May 11, 2020 at 9:06 am

      Yes you can do it without the tonic!!

  34. HollyB on August 5, 2017 at 11:10 am

    hey jane
    how about making a pimms cupcake???!1 :P:P:P

    • Kiranjeet Kaur on September 18, 2017 at 10:10 am

      thank you so much =) x

  35. Jodi McKinney on June 26, 2017 at 2:24 pm

    Gin and Tonic is my FAVORITE cocktail! Have you tried Hendricks Gin with fresh cucumber slices and tonic? One of my faves. Can’t wait to give these a try!

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