Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Caramel Cream Cheese Frosting
I know I know it is only September but I couldn’t wait any longer to indulge in some pumpkin baked goods. I blame it on Starbucks for getting me in the mood so early. They rolled out their pumpkin spice lattes last week and I’ve been all over it. It’s my favorite fall drink and I think I’ve had at least 6 in the past week. Sheer indulgence! Plus it’s been in the 60’s here for weeks now so technically it’s fall. But who am I kidding, regardless of Starbucks, I love fall and I can’t wait. So I am celebrating the arrival of fall with these pumpkin spice cupcakes with caramel cream cheese frosting.
Usually I am all about produce you can harvest right now, which are apples at their beginning stages. I’ve bought two batches of apples in the hopes of making something but that has not happened yet. I keep eating all the apples before I can bake with them. Ridiculous. The apples from orchards here in Upstate NY are just so juicy and irresistible. But until I can get myself to bake with apples, let’s talk about these pumpkin spice cupcakes!
These pumpkin cupcakes are plenty moist, flavorful and loaded with warm spices of the fall. They can definitely be enjoyed on their own (as I did a few) but why stop there? Topped with caramel cream cheese frosting just takes an incredible cupcake to the next level. The original recipe uses brown butter in the cupcakes which I skipped but feel free to do so. You know I love me some brown butter but I was in a rush when I made these and didn’t want to wait for the butter to cool down.
- 1⅔ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
- ¾ cup (1 ½ sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 (8 ounces) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup homemade caramel sauce
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cupcake tins with liners and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugars until light and fluffy on medium speed, about 3 minutes. Add the pumpkin puree and mix until combined. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well before each addition. Scrape bowl as needed.
- Reduce the speed to low and slowly add the dry ingredients. Mix until just combined.
- Divide batter into prepared baking liners. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and cream cheese on medium high until completely smooth about 2-3 minutes.
- Reduce speed to low and add sugar, one cup at a time. Beat until combined. Add vanilla and caramel sauce and beat to combine. Increase speed to medium and beat frosting until smooth and fluffy.
- If buttercream is not thick enough, place in fridge for 20 minutes to an hour until firm enough to pipe.
So if you are in the mood to enjoy fall like I am, you need to whip up these cupcakes soon! Grab a cup of pumpkin spice latte while you are at it too 🙂
Next on my list are some pumpkin spice latte cupcakes!! Coffee and pumpkin are the next best thing. Do you have any recipes for those??