Flour and Flowers | A Kitchen and Garden Blog

Cupcake Friday: Halloweeny Pumpkin Cupcakes with Pumpkin-Cinnamon Icing

Happy Friday everybody. :)  Turns out I never posted my Halloween cupcakes post, and how better to celebrate the coming weekend?  So here they are!  Halloweeny pumpkin cupcakes with pumpkin-cinnamon cream cheese icing!

Inspired by Katie, created by Miz Purple, iced and eaten by Helper Hubby.

icing cupcakes

It’s never the wrong time to make cupcakes, but cupcakes in the fall get high marks, especially if they’re pumpkin.  

My coworker Katie shared a pumpkin cupcake with me one day.  It was the beginning of the end.  Katie’s roommate made the cupcake; I demanded the recipe immediately, and was provided with it hours later.  I failed to make them quite as immediately as I’d planned (same day), but I did manage to get to them the very next night.  Thankfully, due to some responsible fall planning, I already had pumpkin on hand – the only thing I needed was more cream cheese for the icing.

bulk ingredients
measured ingredients

I love to whisk.  I’d whisk everything if I could get away with it.  But I hate whisking the wrong things and getting stuff stuck inside the whisk.  So I restrain myself.

whisking dry ingredients

The mixer, on the other hand, I don’t even try to restrain.  It just goes and goes, and I keep putting things in, and it turns them into delicious.

butter and sugar
mixing butter and sugar

Oh god. How can you resist the butter sugar??  Even after it has eggs in it, when you *know* you should resist, but you also know it looks creamier and more edible than ever.

wet ingredients

Mixing batter is seriously the best part.  I added the pumpkin to the bowl, and gave it one last whirl.

adding pumpkin

Delicious, pumpkiny cupcake batter.

pumpkin cupcake batter

Here’s my little helper helping me clean the beater…

cleaning the beater

Despite Calin’s best efforts, he was not allowed to eat all the batter.  Most of it did make it into cupcake pans, ultimately making 36 cupcakes + dregs that we ate as batter.  30 cupcakes was already a lot – 36 was overkill.  Next time I will cut the recipe in half, unless I’m hosting a party. Hmm, maybe I should host a party…

cupcakes ready to bake

And here they are, baked and beautiful.  The fuller ones did crack a little, which if I were a professional would probably bother me. But I’m not, so it doesn’t.  It’s probably something to do with the pumpkin.  Or not.

cupcakes fresh from the oven
cupcakes cooling

While those are cooling, let’s move on to the icing!  (Or frosting.  I know some people have weirdly strong feelings about these things.)  Anyway, butter and cream cheese!

butter and cream cheese

I used to think that cream cheese icing was just cream cheese.  Much later, I learned that it’s still butter cream, but with cream cheese thrown in.  I was really disappointed for a while, but I got over it.

mixing cream cheese icing

I added some extra spices to the mix, because it’s pumpkin and I couldn’t resist.  Cinnamon all alone is awesome, but cinnamon with nutmeg and pumpkin spice… priceless.  I think it turned out pretty well.

icing with spices
pumpkin cream cheese icing

And here’s my little helper icing himself the first cupcake.

icing the first cupcake

Helper stopped being so interested once we were icing other people’s cupcakes, so I did these myself.  I probably should have sucked it up and iced them with an icing bag, because after all I was icing quite a few, and I do have an icing bag, and it’s not *that* much more work to load an icing bag and then clean an icing bag.  But I didn’t do it, I chickened out and just used a knife.  I’m sure you can tell.  But I’m also sure that once you ate them, you didn’t care.

pumpkin cupcakes with cream cheese icing


Pumpkin Cupcakes with Pumpkin-Cinnamon Cream Cheese Icing
Adapted from The Cake Blog, original recipe credited to Lauren Kapeluck

Makes 30-36 cupcakes



  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp pumpkin spice
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 sticks butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line muffin pans with cupcake liners.
  2. In large bowl combine dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg.
  3. In bowl of stand mixer cream butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar until creamy.
  4. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  5. Add dry ingredients and milk, alternating until well combined. Scrape down sides of bowl as necessary.
  6. Mix in pumpkin puree.
  7. Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full with batter.
  8. Bake for 18 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  9. Let cupcakes cool in pans for 5 minutes, then remove to wire racks to finish cooling.
  10. Do not frost cupcakes until they are completely cool.

Pumpkin-Cinnamon Cream Cheese Icing


  • 1 1/2 sticks butter, softened
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 4 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp pumpkin spice


  1. In bowl of stand mixer beat butter and cream cheese on medium speed until well combined.
  2. Gradually add in confectioner’s sugar one cup at a time, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary.
  3. Add vanilla and cinnamon and mix until combined.
  4. Place icing in piping bag fitted with a large round tip and frost cupcakes.

4 responses

  1. Oo, pumpkin-cinnamon icing is such a great idea! Can’t wait to try that…

    November 9, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    • Doesn’t it make you want to just start putting random spices in icing all the time?!

      November 9, 2012 at 3:43 pm

      • Yes! But possibly none would work quite as well as cinnamon… (we are a little obsessed with cinnamon in my household).

        November 9, 2012 at 3:45 pm

  2. Pingback: Better-Than-Box-Mix Cupcakes « LivingWithPurple

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