Pumpkin Cupcakes - Best Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes Recipe
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Best Pumpkin Cupcakes

Pumpkin cupcakes are simple and perfect for fall! I make so many different fall cupcakes, but pumpkin spice cupcakes trump them all as the perfect cupcake for Thanksgiving, Halloween, or any crisp autumn day. 

Pumpkin Cupcakes

These cupcakes are super moist and have a great pumpkin spice flavor.

What Makes These Pumpkin Cupcakes Special

In addition to the typical pumpkin cupcake ingredients, I like to use dark rum and maple syrup in them. The rum and maple enhance the fall flavors. If you would prefer to not use the rum, you can replace it with apple cider.

While most people frost cupcakes made with pumpkin using cream cheese frosting, I like to use apple butter caramel icing or pumpkin frosting on mine!

What You’ll Need for This Recipe

Pumpkin Puree

You can use either canned or homemade pumpkin puree. (If you make your own, be sure to save the pumpkin seeds to make toasted pumpkin seeds!)

If you use canned pumpkin puree, make sure to buy the can that says pumpkin puree or pureed pumpkin. Do not buy pumpkin pie filling. Pumpkin pie filling is already sweetened and will ruin these cupcakes.

Pumpkin Pie SpicePumpkin Spices

Every good pumpkin cupcake needs pumpkin pie spice!

You can buy pumpkin pie spice pre-made or you can make your own mix using:

  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

How to Make Pumpkin Cupcakes

If you’ve never made any cupcakes before, refer to my how to make cupcakes guide for lots of tips and tricks for cupcake making!

To make pumpkin cupcakes:

Start by whisking together flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, and salt.

Whisking Dry Ingredients

In a large bowl, combine the sugar, pumpkin, and eggs. Beat until smooth.

Mix in the oil, rum, and maple syrup.

Slowly add the flour mixture and mix until fully incorporated.

Adding flour

Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full.

Bake at 350 F for 20-25 minutes. You’ll know that cupcakes are done when a toothpick inserted into the center of one comes out dry.

The Best Frosting for Pumpkin Cupcakes

One of my favorite ways to frost pumpkin cupcakes is with pumpkin frosting made from pumpkin pie.

You actually bake a pumpkin pie without the crust (or buy a pumpkin pie from the store and remove the crust) and pipe the pie directly on top of the cupcake!

Amazingly, pumpkin pie has the perfect texture for a pipeable frosting.

Pumpkin Cupcakes

To pipe the frosting, I suggest using a Wilton 1A star tip. This tip makes the perfect swirl.

Pumpkin Cupcake

If you don’t want to make or buy pumpkin pie to frost your pumpkin cupcakes with, apple butter caramel icing goes fabulously with pumpkin cupcakes.

The combination of two of fall’s best flavors (apple and pumpkin) works really well!

Pumpkin Cupcakes

You could always pick a classic like cream cheese frosting, vanilla frosting or chocolate frosting, or pick any one of my many frosting recipes that you think would go best. You really can’t go wrong!


Pumpkin Bundt Cake

You can make this exact pumpkin cupcake recipe as a pumpkin bundt cake and it comes out amazing!!

You can also convert these to mini cupcakes. You will end up with about twice as many cupcakes. The bake time will reduce to about 12 minutes. Always use a cake tester or toothpick to test for doneness!

Other Pumpkin Desserts

If you are looking for a lighter pumpkin dessert. Try my pumpkin chiffon cake. It’s airy like angel food.

You can always make a pumpkin pie, but I like to make a chocolate pumpkin pie because everything is better with chocolate.

You may also want to try the triple chocolate pumpkin cake from A Dash of Sanity! It sounds incredible!

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Pumpkin Cupcakes
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4.89 from 9 votes

Pumpkin Cupcakes

Simple and perfect pumpkin cupcakes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword pumpkin cupcakes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 24 cupcakes
Calories 208kcal
Author Stef


Pumpkin Cupcake Ingredients

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 3 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup dark rum apple cider works as a substitute for the rum
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • pumpkin frosting optional
  • apple butter caramel frosting optional
  • vanilla frosting optional


Pumpkin Cupcake Instructions

  • Whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, and spices.
  • In a large bowl, combine the sugar, pumpkin puree, and eggs. Beat until smooth.
  • Mix in the oil, rum, and maple syrup. Beat until smooth.
  • Slowly add the flour mixture and mix until fully incorporated.
  • Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full.
  • Bake at 350 F for 20-25 minutes or until a cake tester or toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean.
  • Once cool, frost with the frosting of your choice!



To Make Homemade Pumpkin Puree
  1. Start with pie pumpkins. A 2 pound pumpkin will yield enough puree for the cupcakes.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  3. Slice the pumpkins in half, vertically through the stem, and scoop out the seeds and strings.
  4. Place halves, cut-side down, onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
  5. Roast, uncovered, for 40-60 minutes, or until tender.
  6. Puree with a blender or immersion blender.
  7. Drain off any liquid using a cheesecloth.
To make homemade pumpkin pie spice, use a blend of 
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves


Nutrition Facts
Pumpkin Cupcakes
Amount Per Serving
Calories 208 Calories from Fat 18
% Daily Value*
Fat 2g3%
Saturated Fat 1g5%
Cholesterol 27mg9%
Sodium 201mg8%
Potassium 75mg2%
Carbohydrates 43g14%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 30g33%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 2423IU48%
Vitamin C 1mg1%
Calcium 19mg2%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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