For the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a cupcake pan with 12 liners.
Heat the milk in the microwave for 1 minute, stir and then add 30 more seconds. Place the tea bags in the milk and allow steeping for 5 minutes.
Sift together the flour, baking soda and salt. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix the granulated sugar, oil, vanilla and the eggs, 1 at a time. Alternate adding the flour and only 1/2 cup of the tea until incorporated. Reserve 1/2 cup of the tea for the frosting.
Fill the cupcake liners and bake for 15 minutes. Rotate the pan and continue until the cupcake tops spring back and a tester comes out clean, about 5 more minutes. Allow to cool completely before frosting.
For the frosting: Cream the butter in the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Add the lemon zest. Slowly alternate adding the confectioners' sugar and 1/2 cup reserved tea until you reach the desired frosting consistency.
Frost the cooled cupcakes and serve.
This recipe was created by a contestant during a cooking competition. The Food Network Kitchens have not tested it for home use, therefore, we cannot make any representation as to the results.
Recipe courtesy of Heather McDonnell, Cupcake Wars, 2011