Perfect Pumpkin Cupcakes

Moist, tender and full of fall spices, these classic pumpkin cupcakes are great all fall long! They’re also topped with a delicious cream cheese frosting that is thick.

If you love all the best fall treats like pumpkin pie, pumpkin cookies and pumpkin cake, then you’ll love our delicious pumpkin cupcakes that are simple and so delicious!

Pumpkin Cupcakes with cream cheese frosting on plate

Back to the Basics

My ultimate weakness during fall has to be pumpkin goodies! I can’t seem to get enough of them! If you’ve followed along you probably know that in the past I’ve gone a little crazy… ok like really crazy. I’ve baked all sorts of delicious pumpkin treats, but in the end I think it’s time to get back to the basics.

Cookies, pie, cake and cupcakes. Yep. Those are the four things you can expect to see over the next few weeks. I’m filling in the “gaps” in my recipe box, I hope you don’t mind!

These are your classic pumpkin cupcakes. They’re one of those recipes that you’ve got to make each year as soon as the leaves turn. Not only are they super moist and tender, but they’re full of fall spices and of course topped with a thick cream cheese frosting. They’re perfect!

homemade pumpkin puree

How to Make Pumpkin Cupcakes

To start, beat together the butter, oil, and sugars for 2-3 minutes or until light and creamy. I like to use a combination of butter and oil just based off of flavor preferences. I think it gives them a much better taste!

Next, add a cup of pumpkin puree and the vanilla extract, mix on low while adding each egg one at a time. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, pumpkin pie spice, and cinnamon.

With mixing speed on low, gradually add dry ingredients, and mix just until combined. Fill each liner ¾ of the way full and place into the oven to bake for 18-22 minutes or until the tops are lightly browned and spring back when touched. They will look really moist, but that’s exactly what you want!

TO MAKE A CAKE: Use a 9×13 or 11×14 pan for a cake version and start monitoring it around the 27 minute mark. Insert a toothpick to make sure it’s done, but it should bake for about 28-32 minutes depending on the cake pan size. You can also check out our pumpkin cake recipe

cream cheese frosting in bowl

Yummy Cream Cheese Frosting

While the cupcakes are cooling you’ll want to whip up the cream cheese frosting. I love my recipe because it’s thick, delicious and best of all, pipe-able!

CREAM. Using the paddle attachment cream the butter, vanilla and salt for 2 minutes or until light and fluffy. With the mixing speed on low gradually add the powdered sugar, continue beating until a thick paste forms. Add the cream cheese and mix on the lowest speed possible for 1½ minutes, then STOP!

CHILL. Place it in your refrigerator to chill for at least 15 minutes before piping it on the cupcakes.

Voila! You’ve got cream cheese frosting that actually holds its shape! Top these beauties with sprinkles, cute little candies or eat just as they are! Enjoy & happy baking 🙂

NOTE: You can make the cream cheese frosting a day IN ADVANCE if looking to do that. 😉

Homemade pumpkin cupcakes recipe

Tips + Notes

If you don’t have pumpkin pie spice on hand, you can also check out this homemade version. It’s pretty much a combination of cinnamon, ground ginger, ground cloves and nutmeg. 

Other cupcake topping options, include:

  • Fall sprinkles
  • dusting of cinnamon
  • Other fall candy (candy corns, fall chocolates)

STORING + FREEZING: The cupcakes can be made a day ahead if covered and stored on the counter properly. To freeze, cover and place in freezer-safe bags WITHOUT the frosting for up to 2 months. Defrost in the fridge overnight.

For more pumpkin recipes:

Perfect Pumpkin Cupcakes
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
These pumpkin cupcakes are incredibly moist, tender and full of fall spices... they're perfect!!
Author:
Yield: 12 cupcakes
Ingredients
  • 1 c. all-purpose flour
  • ¾ c. sugar
  • ¼ c. brown sugar
  • ¼ c. vegetable oil
  • ¼ c. (½ stick) butter, room temperature
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 c. solid-pack pumpkin puree
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1¼ tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • ¾ tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. vanilla

  • Cream cheese frosting:
  • 3 c. powdered sugar
  • ½ c. (1 stick) butter, room temperature
  • 8 oz. (1 block) original cream cheese, room temperature for 30 minutes
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1½ tsp. vanilla extract
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line one regular size muffin tin with liners, set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together butter, oil, and sugars for 2-3 minutes or until light and creamy. Add pumpkin puree and vanilla, then with mixing speed on low, add one egg at a time, mixing until incorporated.
  3. In a medium size mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, pumpkin pie spice, and cinnamon. With mixing speed on low, gradually add dry ingredients, mixing until just combined.
  4. Remove bowl from stand and fill each liner ¾ of the way full. Place in oven and bake for 18-22 minutes or until the tops are lightly browned and spring back when touched. Remove from oven and allow to cool in pan for 3-4 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely (about 30 minutes).
  5. Meanwhile to prepare the cream cheese frosting, using the paddle attachment cream the butter, vanilla and salt for 2 minutes or until light and fluffy. With mixing speed on low gradually add the powdered sugar, beat until it forms a thick paste. Add cream cheese and mix on the lowest speed possible for 1½ minutes, then STOP! Place in refrigerator to chill for at least 15 minutes or until cupcakes have completely cooled. Allow to stand at room temperature for 5 minutes before placing in a bag to pipe on cupcakes.
Notes
-Cupcakes should be kept in the refrigerator for 3-4 days and served at room temperature.


Recipe source: Life Made Simple