Easy Pumpkin Cupcakes

Soft & fluffy, these easy pumpkin cupcakes are sweetened with a melt-in-your-mouth cream cheese frosting. This homemade cupcake recipe is easy for all to make.

One combination I love is pumpkin and cream cheese. The first time I had this amazing flavor combination was in a pumpkin roll. Have you tried our cinnamon sugar pumpkin roll yet? It’s a must make for fall.

handing holding a frosted Pumpkin Cupcakes

Although my mind often turns to pumpkin rolls with cream cheese filling or pumpkin bars with cream cheese frosting, there’s just something about a homemade pumpkin cupcake with a dollop of creamy, lightly sweetened frosting that makes cool fall days just a little bit warmer.

Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes

When you tire of Starbucks lackluster, artificial PSL flavor , it’s time to get authentic with real pumpkin and a blend of spices in a homemade pumpkin spice cupcake.

This recipe calls for 4 spices that give it pumpkin pie flavor:

  • cinnamon
  • nutmeg
  • cloves
  • ginger

These all make up the wonderful aroma that is a pumpkin pie. If you’d like, you can sub out some of these spices for what is called “pumpkin pie spice”. You’ll find it in your baking aisle. It’s a delicious spice blend and easy to use.

If you want a little more control over the exact flavor you give your cupcakes, add the spices separately.

How to Make Pumpkin Cupcakes From Scratch

You might need to dirty two bowls to whip up these pumpkin cupcakes, but don’t let that deter you. These are easy. They are forgiving. I find pumpkin VERY easy to bake with. You’ll end up with beautiful cupcakes that people will think you spent hours on.

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Prepare a muffin tin with paper cupcake liners; set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and nutmeg.
dry ingredients in mixing bowl with a whisk
  • In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree, brown sugar, eggs, vegetable oil, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract.
unmixed pumpkin batter in bowl with a whisk
  • Pour this dry mixture into the wet mixture and stir until combined.
cupcake batter in a mixing bowl
  • Scoop the batter into 12 cupcake liners for regular sized cupcakes, or 10 liners for slightly larger cupcakes, depending on the size of your muffin pan. Fill only to about 2/3 of the way full.
unbaked pumpkin cupcake batter in a bowl and muffin cups
  • Bake the cupcakes at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center of a cupcake.
    Cool the cupcakes completely to room temperature.
pumpkin cupcakes in muffin tin

What frosting goes with pumpkin cupcakes?

The best cream cheese frosting always goes with pumpkin. The lightly sweet frosting pairs well with the plain, lightly spiced cupcakes.

You can always choose vanilla frosting or even chocolate frosting (because yes…chocolate and pumpkin DO go together). They are classics and go with just about anything.

Here’s how we make a delicious cream cheese frosting:

  • While the cupcakes are cooling, use an electric mixer to beat the butter and cream cheese for the frosting. Beat on medium-high speed for at least 1 minute, until well combined and fluffy.
butter and powdered sugar in a bowl
  • Add the powdered sugar and vanilla extract to the cream cheese mixture. Mix with the electric mixer on low speed until the powdered sugar is incorporated, then beat on medium-high speed until the frosting is light and fluffy.
frosting Pumpkin Cupcakes
  • Frost the cupcakes by spreading or piping the frosting generously onto each cupcake.
  • Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate until serving.

Frosting Tip:

**Pro Tip: The amount of sugar used in the frosting depends on the taste of the person making the recipe.

  • If you like a less sweet frosting, use only 2 cups of sugar.
  • If you like a sweeter frosting, use 3 cups of sugar.

Feel free to experiment. The cupcakes are not extremely sweet on their own, so the frosting is a perfect compliment.

How to Decorate Pumpkin Cupcakes

Candy corn pumpkins….people either love them or hate them. But there is no denying they look ADORABLE sitting on top of a cupcake.

If you’d like, you can decorate the top with a cinnamon stick, dusting of pumpkin pie spice, or freshly ground nutmeg. Chopped pecans would be an amazing choice too.

Pumpkin Cupcakes with candy on top

How many cupcakes does this recipe make?

The number of cupcakes this recipe makes depends on how full the cupcake liners are filled.

I like my cupcakes to be big and fluffy, so I filled them just a bit over the ¾ mark and ended up with 10 cupcakes. But the batter is enough for 12 cupcakes that will just rise to the top of the cupcake liner.

Can I double the recipe?

Yes! This recipe will double easily and can be mixed in the same bowl.

Can I make the batter the day before I bake the cupcakes?

No. When you mix up cake and cupcake batters, the leavening activates. It is what gives your cupcakes a beautiful rise. If you allow the batter to sit, that leavening will deactivate.

6 Pumpkin Cupcakes on a wooden plate

Can you freeze pumpkin cupcakes?

Yes! Pumpkin cupcakes freeze well. We recommend sealing them in an airtight container and storing for up to 3 months in a freezer. When you are ready to defrost them, allow them to come to room temperature before opening the sealed container. This helps keep the moisture in the cupcake.

Love pumpkin recipes? Try our pumpkin torte, pumpkin sourdough cake or pumpkin butter cake.

Pumpkin Cupcakes with cream cheese frosting
Pumpkin Cupcakes with cream cheese frosting

Easy Pumpkin Cupcakes

2.5 from 2 votes
Soft & fluffy, these easy pumpkin cupcakes are sweetened with a melt-in-your-mouth cream cheese frosting. This homemade cupcake recipe is easy for all to make.
Servings 12
Prep Time 12 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes

Ingredients
 

  • 1 cup flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup pure pumpkin puree
  • ¾ cup brown sugar (packed)
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Optional garnish: candy corn or pumpkins ground cinnamon, freshly ground nutmeg

Frosting:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 1/2 cup butter (softened)
  • 2 ½ cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Prepare a muffin tin with paper cupcake liners; set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and nutmeg.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree, brown sugar, eggs, vegetable oil, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Pour this wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir until combined.
  • Scoop the batter into 12 cupcake liners for regular sized cupcakes, or 10 liners for slightly larger cupcakes, depending on the size of your muffin pan. Fill only to about 2/3 of the way full.
  • Bake the cupcakes at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center of a cupcake.
  • Cool the cupcakes completely to room temperature.
  • While the cupcakes are cooling, use an electric mixer to beat the butter and cream cheese for the frosting. Beat on medium-high speed for at least 1 minute, until well combined and fluffy.
  • Add the powdered sugar and vanilla extract to the cream cheese mixture. Mix with the electric mixer on low speed until the powdered sugar is incorporated, then beat on medium-high speed until the frosting is light and fluffy.
  • Frost the cupcakes by spreading or piping the frosting generously onto each cupcake.
  • Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate until serving.

Notes

The calories shown are based on the recipe making 12 frosted cupcakes, with 1 serving being 1 frosted cupcake. Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the calories shown are just an estimate. **We are not dietitians and recommend you seek a nutritionist for exact nutritional information.**

Nutrition

Calories: 422kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 16g | Cholesterol: 76mg | Sodium: 290mg | Potassium: 144mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 39g | Vitamin A: 3719IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 62mg | Iron: 1mg
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Calories 422
Keyword easy cupcake recipe, pumpkin dessert, pumpkin spice
Pumpkin Cupcakes title image

About Julie Clark

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