The Best Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

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I can’t believe that Thanksgiving is right around the corner! In honor of the upcoming holiday, my dinner club group is hosting a Friendsgiving Brunch. I have the dessert course this month and decided to make the best pumpkin cupcakes with cream cheese frosting for our brunch menu.

If you are new here, welcome! And if you’ve been around for awhile, I appreciate you following along and am so grateful to your support of my blog.

In case you haven’t heard, I joined a group of 4 other blogger friends in January of 2021 for a virtual dinner club.

Every month we have a theme, and we each create a tablescape to go with the theme. We share those tablescapes on our blog on the last Thursday of every month.

We also create a 5 course menu to go along with our theme, and share our recipe and menu the last Saturday of the month.

This past year, we decided to invite a guest blogger each month to join our group, and it’s been really fun to add more inspiration to the group every month.

This month our guest host is Cindy from Country Road 407. She shared a yummy fall fruit salad for our Friendsgiving Brunch and we are so happy to have her join us this month.

In case you have missed the past couple of tablescapes, you can click on the photos below to go right to the post.

This post contains affiliate links, which means if you purchase something, I will make a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thank you for supporting my blog. You can read my full disclosure here.



There is finally a chill in the air in Texas! It makes me so excited to start hosting outdoor get togethers this time of year.

Since the weather is so nice, I set my Friendsgiving Brunch table on my outdoor patio.

friendsgiving brunch menu

Apple Cider Mimosas
Cranberry Walnut Baked Brie
Bacon and Egg Breakfast Muffins
Creamy Pumpkin Soup
Fall Fruit Salad
Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

a little back story about these moist pumpkin cupcakes

My sister in law’s grandmother gave her a recipe for Apricot Pound Cake many years ago.

overhead view of peach bundt cake on clear platter with lemon glaze on top and white daisy in center of cake dishtowel and fork on top beside cake



She shared it with me, and I’ve been making it ever since. It is SO moist and delicious and always a crowd pleaser.

Even though it was a recipe for apricot cake, I change it up sometimes and make peach cake instead.

I have always made it in a bundt pan, but decided to try to alter the recipe and make it a bit different this time.

In comes, Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes!!

I thought, since this recipe is so easy, so moist and always a favorite at any get together, it would be fun to try the pumpkin flavor instead of apricot or peach.

I also decided to branch out, and try it in a cupcake form instead of the bundt cake.

A layer cake might be my next experiment with the recipe and I have some plans for another flavor I want to try.

ingredients for the best pumpkin cupcakes

ingredients for pumpkin cupcakes in mixing bowl

1 box yellow cake mix
1 small box instant vanilla pudding mix
8 ounces canned pumpkin puree
3 large eggs
1 cup vegetable oil or canola oil
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

directions for pumpkin cupcakes

Put dry ingredients and wet ingredients together in the bowl of a stand mixer.

Mix on low speed just until combined together well.

Put cupcake liners inside muffin tins.

Pour batter into each liner until about 2/3 full. I like to use a large cookie scoop for this.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until lightly browned.

For best results use a skewer or toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake to make sure they are completely done.

Remove from oven, and remove cupcakes from the muffin pan and place on a wire rack to cool.

ingredients for homemade cream cheese frosting with pumpkin pie spice

1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
8 ounces cream cheese (full fat – not low fat or spreadable), cut into chunks (this will help it incorporate easier)
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice ( you can add a bit more, if you prefer more spice)

what is pumpkin pie spice made of

Pumpkin pie spice is a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger and sometimes allspice.

If you want to make your own pumpkin pie spice, you can mix 3/4 teaspoon of cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon of ground ginger, ground allspice, ground cloves or ground nutmeg.

If you have two of the above spices, use 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon of whichever two you have.

directions for pumpkin pie spice cream cheese frosting

Add unsalted butter, and cream cheese chunks to a medium mixing bowl. Using an electric mixer (or stand mixer), beat on high speed until creamy and well combined.

Sift the powdered sugar into the butter/cream cheese mixture and blend until completely incorporated.

Don’t omit sifting the sugar. It will make a big difference in how smooth your frosting is.

Add pumpkin pie spice and blend just until incorporated. Again, you can add more of the pumpkin pie spice if you like. I would recommend a little taste test first.

Using a cake decorator piping bag with a large tip, pipe the frosting onto your cupcakes.

Start on the outside edge and use a circular motion around the cupcake ending up in the center.

If you don’t have a piping bag, you can cut the tip of a sandwich bag and it will work just fine.

finishing touch to the best pumpkin cupcakes

white dessert plate with pumpkin cupcake with cream cheese frosting topped with sugared pecans with white mini pumpkin and scrabble tiles "pumpkin" beside

For a little something extra, I added chopped sugared pecans to the top of the cupcakes.

You can buy these at the grocery store already prepared or make your own.

Another cute idea might be to add a little pumpkin candy or piece of candy corn.

You could also sprinkle a bit of cinnamon sugar on top.

long white tray with 5 pumpkin cupcakes with cream cheese frosting topped with sugared pecans white dessert plate with 1 cupcake scrabble tiles "pumpkin" mini white pumpkin



You can print the recipe card below to save for later.

long white tray with 5 pumpkin cupcakes with cream cheese frosting topped with sugared pecans scrabble tiles "pumpkin" mini white pumpkin

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

These are the moistest pumpkin cupcakes you will ever eat! And SO easy to make.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12 cupcakes

Equipment

  • 1 electric mixer
  • 1 muffin tin
  • 12 cupcake liners

Ingredients
  

  • 1 box yellow cake mix
  • 1 small box instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 8 ounces canned pumpkin puree
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Pumpkin Spice Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, cut into chunks (full fat, not low fat or spreadable )
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice add more if you prefer a little more spice

Instructions
 

  • Add cake mix, pudding mix, pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, and cinnamon to bowl of stand mixer.
  • Mix on low speed just until combined.
  • Put cupcake liners in muffin tin.
  • Pour batter into each liner until about 2/3 full.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  • Remove from oven and remove cupcakes from tin. Place on wire rack to cool.

Pumpkin Pie Spice Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Add unsalted butter, and cream cheese chunks to mixing bowl.
  • Using an electric or stand mixer, beat on high until completely combined.
  • Sift powdered sugar into the butter/cream mixture and blend until completely incorporated.
  • Don't omit sifting the sugar. It will make a big difference in how smooth your frosting is.
  • Add pumpkin pie spice and blend just until incorporated. Again, you can add more of the spice if you prefer. I recommend a taste test first.
  • Using a cake decorator piping bag with a large round tip, pipe the frosting onto your cupcakes. If you don't have a piping bag, you can use a sandwich bag and cut the tip off of a corner.
  • Start on the outside edge and use a circular motion around the cupcake ending up in the center.

Notes

I like to add chopped sugared pecans to the top of my muffins.  
You can buy these premade at the grocery store, or make your own.  
You could also sprinkle a bit of cinnamon sugar on top or add a fall piece of candy like a small pumpkin or a candy corn. 
Keyword bundt cake, cupcake, fall dessert, muffin, pumpkin, pumpkin cupcake, pumpkin muffin, sweet bread, thanksgiving dessert

I hope you enjoyed this post for the best pumpkin muffins with cream cheese frosting.
I would love to hear if you try them.

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Next up on the menu is Jen from Midwest Life and Style. Her Apple Cider Mimosas look so good and I can’t wait to try them!

Click the link at the bottom of each photo to go right to the recipe.

And if you love all things pumpkin, you will love this Pumpkin Cheesecake!!

blessings,

Pin It to Remember It….

long white tray with 5 pumpkin cupcakes with cream cheese frosting topped with sugared pecans scrabble tiles "pumpkin" mini white pumpkin Pinterest Graphic

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16 Comments

  1. Michele these look so good!!! Can’t wait to try them and pinned!

    1. Thank you Stacy! We had such a great menu this month. Have a great weekend!

  2. Michele
    These sound so good. You always have such creative recipes. Can’t wait to try them.

    1. Thank you Rachel! Can’t wait to try all of the recipes this month!

  3. These sound delicious! And they are so pretty! Do you mind if I share them on my Saturday post next week?

    1. Oh, I would love that Renae! Thanks so much!

  4. Apricots, peaches and now pumpkin?! They all sound amazing. Makes me think of my wedding day. We had an apricot layer and filling as one of the layers on our wedding cake. So delicious. Looking forward to trying these. Not many things are better than a moist cake. Thanks for letting me join y’all. I feel so sophisticated. Like a real adult, now that I made something delicious! 🙂

    1. Oh, that wedding cake sounds amazing Cindy! I hope you enjoy trying this recipe and we were so glad you joined us this month!

    1. Thanks Kim! I hope you enjoy them!

  5. Yum! These look so good, Michele. I love anything baked with pumpkin and cheesecake frosting is the BEST! I can’t wait to give these a try. Pinned.

    1. Thank you Jen! I hope you love them!

  6. Lesa Gage says:

    These are delicious cupcakes! So perfect for Fall!! YUMMY

    1. I’m so glad you liked them!!!!

  7. I enjoy following your dinner club group! Love the idea of a Friendsgiving brunch! Every recipe looks amazing! I adore pumpkin and your cupcakes look so yummy! Pinning now!

    1. I’m so glad you enjoy following along and I really appreciate the kind words!

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