Cream Cheese, Cupcakes, Frosting, Pecans, Pumpkin

Fall Harder Than You’ve Ever Falled Before

It’s been pumpkin season for a couple months now, and here is my contribution to the litany of pumpkin recipes and ideas out there. This is a recipe that combines two pumpkin treats in one: Pumpkin Cupcakes with Pumpkin Cheesecake Frosting!

Pumpkin Cupcakes

yield: about 16 cupcakes

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp cardamom
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • large egg
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 7.5 oz pumpkin purée, plus two tbsp for the frosting
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line two muffin tins with a total of 16 liners.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and cardamom. Set aside.

In a small bowl, combine the egg, vanilla, pumpkin puree, and buttermilk. Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter, olive oil, and brown sugar at medium speed for 3-5 minutes. Add the dry goods alternately with the wet in a 3:2 ratio, beginning and ending with the dry goods. Scrape down the bowl as necessary while mixing, and give it a good fold or two after you’ve incorporated the last of the flour.

Fill the cupcake cups 2/3 full with batter and bake in the preheated oven for 18-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Frosting

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • 2 tbsp reserved pumpkin puree*
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 4 oz cream cheese

In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and confectioner’s sugar until light and fluffy, 4-5 minutes at medium speed. Add in the pumpkin puree and vanilla. Mix to combine. With the mixer running at medium speed, add in the cream cheese a bit at a time until incorporated. Mix thoroughly on medium speed until there are no visible cream cheese lumps. Adding an extra tablespoon or two of confectioner’s sugar can help this process along.

Dust with cinnamon or top with the following graham cracker crumble

Graham Cracker Crumble

  • 3/4 cup graham cracker flour (made from 4-5 whole graham crackers)
  • 2 tbsp light brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp butter, melted

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment

Whisk together the graham flour, brown sugar, and salt. Pour the melted butter over the flour and mix with a fork until the the crumbs are moist. Pour mixture onto the prepared baking sheet, pressing together like you would for a pie crust.

Bake in the preheated oven for 8-10 minutes until just beginning to brown. Remove and allow to cool completely before breaking up into pieces. This can be made up to 3 days in advance; keep it covered at room temperature.

*You will use about 3/4 of a 15oz can of pumpkin puree in this recipe, so what can you do with the remainder? Personally, I enjoy pumpkin in my oatmeal or swirled into my yogurt!

Pumpkin, Tips and tricks, Waste Not Want Not

A Helpful Trick for Roasting Pumpkin

With Halloween over and Thanksgiving later this week, I had a pumpkin I needed to either toss or roast. And I’m a fan of roasted pumpkin.

I used a trick that’s helped me a lot when dealing with  fresh roasted pumpkin: spread the roasted, cooled, and mashed pumpkin out over a double layer of paper towels. Top with an additional double layer of paper towels and let them soak up excess moisture. It’s the easiest way to “drain” fresh roasted pumpkin, remove excess water, and achieve a thicker puree that more closely resembles the texture of store bought. That way, you can use it in your recipes without worrying about it adding too much moisture to the batter! Now, what to make with this delightful treat…

Roasted Pumpkin

  • One small sugar or pie pumpkin
  • 1/2 tbsp butter, melted
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom

Break down the pumpkin by slicing off one end (to have a flat surface) , setting it on that end, and then halving or quartering it depending on the size. Use a metal spoon to remove and discard the entrails. Slice into pieces of roughly the same size so that they cook evenly.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. In a small bowl, combine the spices. Place the pumpkin segments on the baking sheet. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle over spice mixture. Rub the mixture in to coat the pumpkin evenly.


Roast for 35-40 minutes until charred around the edges and the skin puckers. Let the pumpkin cool on the baking sheet to room temperature. Peel off and discard the skin, placing the flesh in a bowl. Mash the flesh until smooth. Spread the pumpkin out over a double layer of paper towels. Top with another double layer to absorb the moisture. The pumpkin should roll up off the paper towels easily. Store in the refrigerator or freeze for later use.


-fellow food bloggers, this is why natural lighting matters… the sad pic above was taken in the exact same spot just after sundown. 😦