There’s no denying that Autumn has arrived when you smell the aroma of Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes baking in the oven! Topped with Maple Buttercream Frosting makes them the perfect New England Autumn treat.
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I do a lot of baking this time of year. Ok…I do a lot of baking no matter what time of the year it is. Once Fall hits though my oven definitely gets quite a work out.
Cake and cupcake baking is a specialty of mine. I run a small Custom Cake business out of my home so I bake a lot of cakes and cupcakes.
Surprisingly though I had never made a Pumpkin Cake or Cupcake! I do make a killer Dreamy High Pumpkin Pie and Apple Pumpkin Spice Bread but I was in unchartered territory making this recipe for Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes.
What’s the difference between a Pumpkin Muffin and a Pumpkin Cupcake?
I’m pretty particular about cake texture. I like my cakes to be moist and tender. Pumpkin muffins can be very moist and delicious but often have more of a denseness to them. Pumpkin Cupcakes on the other hand have a more tender crumb. They are a bit lighter.
These Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes definitely have more of a cake like texture which is perfect in my opinion.
How to make perfect Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes
This cupcake recipe comes together quite quickly. Typically I like to use Cake Flour in a lot of my cake and cupcake recipes. Using Cake flour in place of All Purpose Flour tends to create a more tender crumb which I like.
However, through a bit of trial and error baking this past weekend I finally found a winner in this recipe. Cake flour was used in my first batch and a little too much wet ingredients so the cupcakes were just not up to par.
Pumpkin has a lot of moisture in it so it’s really not necessary to add any other liquid other than oil. The pumpkin also works well with plain old All Purpose Flour so no need to use Cake flour in this recipe.
Tips for making the tastiest Maple Buttercream Frosting
The Maple Buttercream Frosting really compliments the flavor of these Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes. They are definitely the ultimate Autumn New England Cupcake.
To make the tastiest Maple Buttercream Frosting though I do have a few tips.
- Use real Maple Syrup. Using the real stuff will definitely give you the best flavor. Even if you don’t live in New England you can still get Real Maple Syrup pretty easily these days. If your local market doesn’t carry it, it can be easily ordered online. Click here for the Amazon link.
- Use Dark Grade Maple Syrup. Any Real Maple Syrup can be used however the Dark grade syrup has a more robust flavor which is better to use for baking and in this case making buttercream frosting.
- Cream your butter first. Don’t just dump all your ingredients in the mixing bowl all at once and mix it. Start by creaming your butter so that it’s nice and fluffy and paler in color. Then add your confectioner sugar, then add maple syrup and at the end gradually add milk to thin the frosting a bit. This will create a nice creamy and fluffy frosting.
Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream
For the cupcakes
- 1 Cup All purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon Baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon Baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon Ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon All spice
- 1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon Cloves
- 1/2 Cup Canola Oil
- 3/4 Cup Brown sugar ,packed
- 2 Large Eggs
- 1 Cup Canned pumpkin puree, ,not pumpkin pie mix
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
For the Maple Buttercream Frosting
- 2 Sticks Unsalted Butter ,softened
- 3 Cups Confectioner Sugar
- 3 Tablespoons Real Dark Grade Maple Syrup
- 2-3 Tablespoons Milk ,For thinning frosting, start with 2 and if you feel like you want it thinner add more.
For the Cupcakes
- Preheat oven to 350 Degrees F. Line your cupcake tin with 12 paper liners. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl combine all dry ingredients and whisk together. Set aside.
- In a large bowl mix together oil and brown sugar. Add eggs one at a time and mix well.
- Mix in pumpkin and vanilla extract.
- Add dry ingredients to wet and mix well.
- Fill liners about 2/3rds full with batter.
- Bake for 20-22 minutes on center rack.
- Remove and cool cupcakes to room temperature before frosting.
For the Maple Buttercream Frosting.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter until light and fluffy and paler in color. About 3-5 minutes.
- Add Confectioner Sugar and mix for about 2 minutes to combine.
- Add Maple Syrup and 2 Tablespoons of milk. Mix for another 2 minutes. If it still seems thick you can add another tablespoon of milk.
- Pipe or spread on cooled cupcakes.
Recipe adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction
How to decorate Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes
Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes are the perfect Fall recipe to serve over the holidays. You can easily dress them up for the occasion with these easy to make Fondant Pumpkins and Gumpaste Autumn Leaves.
Stop back tomorrow for the tutorial on how to make the cute Gumpaste Autumn Leaves to top your cupcakes with! It’s easier than you think and can be made months ahead of time!