Pumpkin Cheesecake Cupcakes with Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting

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Bite out of a Pumpkin Cheesecake Cupcake {OperationDinnertime.com}

Someone call the doctor. Or better yet, just start rolling me to the Emergency Room. I seriously need a doctor…to remedy the amount of sugar I’ve consumed over the past two hours. AND IT’S NOT EVEN THANKSGIVING YET! Oh boy. Looks like all of my weight loss efforts have flown out the window (and probably crash landed on some remote island).

I started the week out on an anti-pumpkin campaign. That’s why I made an Easy Chocolate Party Cake in the middle of pumpkin season. It’s not that I don’t like pumpkin. Quite contrary, I love pumpkin. I’ve been known to buy pumpkin crunch squares from Starbucks in the middle of spring, but this year has felt different. I just couldn’t get into the pumpkin mood. I tried to with my Pumpkin Yogurt Pound Cake, but that seemed to stem from my need for pound cake more than my love of pumpkin. Maybe it’s because we didn’t get to go to the pumpkin patch this year during Halloween or maybe because the weather outside feels like spring. Whatever it was, it kept me from making anything pumpkin…until last night.

I finally got my procrastinating self into the kitchen (at 11 pm in the evening) and started baking. I had wanted to try this recipe from Dorothy over at Crazy for Crust since I first saw it posted. It is Pumpkin Pie Marshmallows, and it was what I originally had planned to bring to the in-laws for Thanksgiving. Unfortunately, the Hubby said there would be pumpkin pie overload so we should bring something different. Hmmm, well I decided to make it anyway. What I failed to notice was that it needed to cool for 8 hours before we could dig in, and Hubby had a major craving for something sweet.

After a quick search, I found a recipe for Pumpkin Cheesecake Cupcakes. The beautiful thing about the recipe was that I had everything I needed on hand, and it was so simple to put together. The end result? Pure pumpkin heaven. No joke. I am so glad I made them. I hadn’t made cupcakes in months, so they helped me get over my rut. This might turn out to be a very cupcakey holiday season.

Hubby had one before bed without frosting and he said they were awesome. He might have just been glad to get his sugar fix before he fell asleep.

Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting {OperationDinnertime.com}

I actually didn’t make the frosting for them until this morning. I debated back and forth as to whether or not to even frost them. You can guess which side won. The frosting was just as easy to throw together. Talk about an Ah-Ha Moment. This frosting is phenomenal. I was piping frosting into Hubby’s mouth. Yes, it was that good. We probably should stay away from everything sweet tomorrow considering how much frosting we consumed today.

If you’re a procrastinator like me and still don’t know what to bring to Thanksgiving dinner, make these cupcakes. You won’t be sorry.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Cupcakes with Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting
Adapted from Dwell on Joy
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 12-18 (1 cupcake each)

For Pumpkin Cheesecake Cupcakes
  • 1 package of ⅓ less fat cream cheese (8 oz), room temperature
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 egg white
  • 1-1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract, divided
  • 1-1/2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1-1/2 tsp baking powder
  • ¾ tsp kosher salt
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ cup canola oil
For Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 2 Tbsp butter, softened
  • 1 package of ⅓ less fat cream cheese (8 oz), room temperature
  • ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 cups powdered sugar, sifted

For the Pumpkin Cheesecake Cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Move rack to lower third of the oven.
  2. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with baking cups.
  3. Beat the cream cheese & powdered sugar together for 3 minutes.
  4. Add the egg white and vanilla. Beat again to combine.
  5. In another bowl, whisk together the flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, and salt to combine.
  6. In a separate bowl, beat together the pumpkin pie puree, 2 whole eggs, 1 tsp vanilla, sugar, and oil.
  7. Slowly add the dry flour mixture to the pumpkin puree mixture and mix until just combined.
  8. Layer a large spoonful of pumpkin batter on the bottom of a baking cup.
  9. Add a large spoonful of cheesecake batter, and then another large spoonful of the pumpkin batter.
  10. Bake 25 minutes, or until the cupcakes are springy to the touch.
  11. Allow to cool completely before frosting.
For the Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting
  1. Beat together the butter, cream cheese, and vanilla .
  2. Add the brown sugar and cornstarch and mix until combined.
  3. Slowly add powdered sugar until frosting is thick.
  4. Put frosting into a gallon-sized ziploc bag and clip off the corner.
  5. Pipe onto cooled cupcakes.

Make sure you use pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling.


Signature {OperationDinnertime.com}


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