Every year in the fall it’s become a tradition for me to bake and cook as many pumpkin recipes as I can imagine! We call it Pumpkinpalooza. I realize it’s still summer but “autumn is coming…”. I made these wonderful cupcakes during last year’s Pumpkinpalooza. TIP: Grind fresh cinnamon from cinnamon sticks in a coffee grinder for the icing. Your icing will actually tingle on the tongue with a cinnamon flavor that store-bought cinnamon powder will NEVER deliver. Trust me. It’s worth the effort.
Yields about 16 cupcakes
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 t ground cinnamon
1/2 t ground nutmeg, ground ginger, ground cloves, ground allspice
1/2 t salt
1 T baking powder
1/2 t baking soda
1/2 C butter
1 C white sugar
1/3 C brown sugar
2 eggs, room temperature
3/4 C milk
1 C pumpkin puree
1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened at room temperature
1/4 C (1/2 stick) butter, softened at room temperature
3 C confectioners’ sugar
1 t vanilla extract
1 t ground cinnamon (fresh ground if you can, DO IT)
Preheat oven to 375F. Grease or line cupcake tins. Sift flour together with spices, salt, baking powder and baking soda then set aside.
Beat butter and sugars together in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add eggs to the sugar mixture one at a time, beating until egg is completely incorporated before adding the other. Add milk and puree and beat until combined. Gradually stir in the flour mixture until just incorporated (do not over-mix this last step or you’ll have tough cupcakes).
Pour batter into prepared cupcake tins and bake in preheated oven 25 minutes or until golden and the tops spring back when lightly pressed. Cool in tins 5 minutes before removing to cool completely on wire racks.
While the cupcakes cool prepare the icing by creaming the cheese and butter together until blended smooth. Beat in confectioners’ sugar a little at a time until incorporated. Add vanilla and cinnamon and beat until fluffy and well combined.