Moist, flavorful pumpkin cupcakes are topped with extra creamy cream cheese frosting in this seriously scrumptious recipe! Get the perfect amount of pure pumpkin, combined with pumpkin spice in these delicious fall cupcakes.

pumpkin cupcakes on plate topped with cream cheese frosting

Image yourself with a warm cup of apple cider, the aroma of fall filling your house with the smell of pumpkin, and flashing visions of leaves changing colors on the trees outside. This picture perfect fall vision is all yours, when you bake up these delicious and easy Pumpkin Cupcakes!

They’re moist, flavorful and if it’s possible for one sweet treat to taste like fall, this is that treat! Make them in a traditional cupcake size, or make mini cupcakes to easily snack on and share. These cupcakes are easy to make and are topped with a classic cream cheese frosting.

To up the pumpkin flavor even more, you can also add pumpkin pie spice to the cream cheese frosting. It’s fall ya’ll, time to celebrate all the pumpkin goodness!

ingredients for pumpkin cupcakes

Ingredients

  • For the cupcakes
    • All-purpose flour
    • Baking soda – make sure both the baking soda and baking powder are fresh and not expired. Expired leavening agents will leave you with dense cupcakes, and we want light, fluffy cupcakes!
    • Baking powder
    • Kosher salt
    • Pumpkin pie spice – click the link for my homemade 5 ingredient spice blend, or purchase prepared pumpkin pie spice in the spice aisle at the grocery store. In a pinch, you can also use 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon + 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg, instead of the pumpkin spice.
    • Brown sugar
    • Granulated sugar
    • Unsalted butter
    • Eggs
    • Pumpkin puree – when purchasing pumpkin in a can at the grocery store, make sure it says 100% pure pumpkin, and not pumpkin pie filling. They’re generally right next to each other and the labels look very similar!
  • For the cream cheese frosting
    • Cream cheese
    • Unsalted butter
    • Confectioners sugar – also known as powdered sugar
    • Vanilla extract

Instructions

I’ve included step by step photos below to make this pumpkin cupcake recipe super easy to follow at home. For the full detailed recipe instructions and ingredient quantities, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

flour, baking soda and spices in mixing bowl

Step 1: add flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and pumpkin pie spice to a mixing bowl. Stir to combine the ingredients.

cupcake dough in stand mixer with raw eggs

Step 2: using a stand mixer, or electric hand mixer, combine softened butter with brown sugar and granulated sugar. Add the eggs to the stand mixer, or a large bowl, if you’re using a hand mixer.

cupcake batter in stand mixer with pumpkin puree

Step 3: beat to combine the ingredients, then add the pumpkin puree to the stand mixer.

flour mixture in stand mixer with pumpkin cupcake batter

Step 4: add the flour mixture to the stand mixer. Mix on low speed at first, increasing the speed up to medium until the dry ingredients are combined with the wet ingredients.

cupcake liners in muffin pan filled with pumpkin cupcake batter

Step 5: spoon the cupcake batter into a lined muffin pan. Fill each muffin liner approximately 2/3 full of batter. Place into a 350°F preheated oven for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cupcake comes out clean.

cream cheese frosting ingredients in stand mixer

Step 6: while the cupcakes are baking, prepare the cream cheese frosting. Add softened butter and cream cheese to a stand mixer with the paddle attachment. Add powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Turn the mixer on low at first, then up to medium, until all ingredients are combined. Scrape the sides of the bowl along the way, as needed.

When the cupcakes come out of the oven, transfer them to a wire baking rack to cool completely. Once the cupcakes have cooled, either spread the cream cheese frosting on the cupcakes, or transfer the frosting to a piping bag and pipe the frosting on the cupcakes.

pumpkin cupcakes with cream cheese frosting on plate

Pro tips

  • This recipe makes approximately 30 full-sized cupcakes, or 60 mini cupcakes.
  • You can make this recipe without a stand mixer or electric hand mixer, it will just take a little extra effort to mix everything by hand.
  • Remove the eggs from the refrigerator before starting this recipe, so they come up to room temperature. Cold eggs don’t incorporate into batter as well as room temperature eggs.
  • Leftover cupcakes should be stored in the refrigerator, because of the dairy in the cream cheese frosting. If you’d like, you can microwave leftover cupcakes for 20 seconds to warm them up. The cupcakes will stay good, stored in an airtight container, in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • The cupcakes are okay left out at room temperature for up to 4 hours.
  • If the cream cheese frosting is too thick, add 1-2 tablespoons milk to thin it out. Continue to add milk until it reaches your desired consistency.
  • To add more pumpkin spice flavor to the recipe, mix 1-2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice into the frosting. You can also simply mix in 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon to make cinnamon cream cheese frosting, a delicious topping for these cupcakes!
  • To make this recipe gluten free, use a gluten free flour blend instead of traditional all-purpose flour. I recommend Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 gluten free baking flour.

Tools for this recipe

pumpkin cupcakes with cream cheese frosting in orange paper liners on plate

More pumpkin recipes

Try these other popular pumpkin recipes to pumpkin spice up your life!

pumpkin cupcakes with frosting sitting on white plate
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Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Moist, flavorful pumpkin cupcakes are topped with extra creamy cream cheese frosting in this seriously scrumptious recipe! Get the perfect amount of pure pumpkin, combined with pumpkin spice in these delicious fall cupcakes.

Ingredients

Cupcakes

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 large eggs
  • 15 ounce can pumpkin puree

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 16 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups confectioners sugar, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

Cupcakes

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • Get your cupcake pans ready by adding paper liners.
  • In a medium bowl, mix together the dry ingredients, the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and pumpkin pie spice.
  • Beat together the granulated sugar, brown sugar and butter in a stand mixer on medium speed, or with an electric hand mixer.
  • Add the eggs, and continue to beat on medium speed until combined.
  • Add the pumpkin puree, and continue to beat on medium speed until combined.
  • Add the combined dry ingredients to the stand mixer. Beat on low to begin, then turn up the speed to medium and mix just until combined.
  • Spoon the cupcake batter into the cupcake liners.
  • Bake the cupcakes for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  • Transfer the cupcakes to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Add all of the ingredients to a stand mixer.
  • Mix on medium speed until smooth and creamy.
  • If the frosting is too thick, add 1-2 tablespoons milk to thin it out. Continue adding milk until it reaches your desired consistency.
  • Spread the frosting onto the cupcakes once they’ve cooled completely, or transfer the frosting to a piping bag and pipe it onto the cupcakes.

Notes

  • This recipe makes 30 full-size cupcakes or 60 mini cupcakes. If making mini cupcakes, only bake for 18-20 minutes. 
  • To make a healthier version of these cupcakes, use 1/2 cup butter and 1/2 cup applesauce, instead of 1 cup butter.

Nutrition Facts

Calories 259kcal (13%)Carbohydrates 31g (10%)Protein 3g (6%)Fat 15g (23%)Saturated Fat 9g (45%)Polyunsaturated Fat 0.5gMonounsaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0.4gCholesterol 62mg (21%)Sodium 202mg (8%)Potassium 74mg (2%)Fiber 1g (4%)Sugar 23g (26%)Vitamin A 2522mg (50%)Vitamin C 1mg (1%)Calcium 25mg (3%)Iron 1mg (6%)
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