Best Pumpkin Cupcakes

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These moist Pumpkin Cupcakes are so easy to make and perfect for fall! They’re pumpkin spiced (of course) and also have hints of maple.

Pumpkin Cupcakes
Perfect for fall and especially the month of October, these delicious pumpkin spice cupcakes channel classic autumnal flavors.

I love to frost them with apple butter caramel icing (pictured above), pumpkin pie frosting, or cream cheese frosting. You can also make a cinnamon cream cheese frosting or add light brown sugar for even more fall flavor!


Top down shot of all the pumpkin cupcakes ingredients labeled
With simple ingredients, making this easy pumpkin dessert couldn’t be easier!

You’ll need a few special ingredients to make this recipe:

  • Pumpkin puree: You can use either canned or homemade pumpkin puree. 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; it’s already sweetened and will ruin these cupcakes.
  • Maple syrup: A small touch of maple syrup makes these cupcakes stand out. They won’t have a strong maple flavor; rather, it’s a nice background flavor.
  • Dark rum or apple cider: Using rum or apple cider (if you would rather not use alcohol) enhances the fall flavors of the cupcake. These are not prominent flavors, but they make a big difference from using water or milk as the liquid in the recipe.
  • Pumpkin pie spice:  This is a must! You can buy it 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 It’s Made

Tip: If you’ve never made any cupcakes before, refer to my guide about how to make cupcakes for lots of tips and tricks to help you make them right on the first try!

  1. Start by whisking together flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, and salt.
Pouring pumpkin pie spice out of a small glass blown into a larger glass bowl with dry ingredients
The signature warm flavors of pumpkin spice make this recipe for pumpkin spice cupcakes nostalgic and comforting.
  1. Next, combine sugar, pumpkin, and eggs in a large mixing bowl and beat them until smooth.
Adding eggs to pumpkin puree
Real pumpkin puree ensures that this easy pumpkin dessert is moist and tender with a delicious and distinct pumpkin flavor.
  1. Mix in the oil, rum (or apple cider), and maple syrup.
Adding maple syrup to kitchen aid mixer with pumpkin cupcake batter in it
Using maple syrup gives your pumpkin spice cupcakes some additional sweetness and a rich, autumnal flavor.
  1. Slowly add the flour mixture (dry ingredients) to the pumpkin liquid (wet ingredients) and mix until just combined.
Pumpkin cupcake batter in a kitchenaid mixer with the beater raised.
You can mix your batter by hand, but I prefer to use a stand mixer fitted with a flat/paddle beater.
  1. Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full.
  2. Bake at 350 F for 20-25 minutes. You’ll know that the cupcakes are done when a toothpick inserted into the center of one comes out dry.

Expert Tips and FAQs

Frosting Ideas

  • 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.

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

Pumpkin Cupcakes
If you can’t get enough pumpkin, top your pumpkin spice cupcakes with a pumpkin flavored frosting!
  • 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
Combining this easy pumpkin dessert with another fall favorite–apple butter caramel icing–is a great way to harness all the flavors of the season!
Cupcakes on a white stand with vanilla frosting topped with cookie brooms and sniches
Pumpkin spice cupcakes are a versatile treat that can be topped with a wide variety of frostings. You can even turn these into pumpkin chocolate chip cupcakes.


Can I make this as a cake?

You can make this exact pumpkin cupcake recipe as a pumpkin Bundt cake and it comes out amazing! This batter is the ultimate way to bake any kind of easy pumpkin spice dessert.

Can I turn these into mini cupcakes?

Yes! You can convert these to mini cupcakes. You will end up with about twice as many cupcakes, and the bake time should be reduced to about 12 minutes. Always use a cake tester or toothpick to test for doneness!

How long do these cupcakes last?

They last about 3 days at room temperature, up to five days in the refrigerator, and they can be frozen unfrosted for several months.

Did you make this recipe? Leave a review!
Pumpkin Cupcakes
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4.94 from 16 votes

Pumpkin Cupcakes

This recipe for pumpkin spice cupcakes yields perfectly moist pumpkin desserts that pair well with a wide variety of delicious frostings and other toppings!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 24 cupcakes
Calories 279kcal
Author Stefani


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 3 cup sugar
  • 15 ounces pumpkin puree a heaping 1 1/2 cups
  • 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


  • 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


Calories: 279kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 27mg | Sodium: 201mg | Potassium: 80mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 2797IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 20mg | Iron: 1mg
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Recipe Rating


  1. Wer ruft ansays:

    Thank you for sharing the recipe. I love that you and your boy, you do everything together.

  2. Annsays:

    5 stars
    Wow, honestly speaking, I salivate on these photos! Everybody around me knows that I am a real fan of pumpkin and all dishes that contain pumpkin! Thank you for the recipe! I am sure these cupcakes will turn out to be a real joy for gourmets! How long do they stay fresh and how should I store them, only in a refregeator? Your blog is always full of appetizing photos and creative ideas. I also like that you chose one direction and develop it, keep it up.

    • Stefsays:

      Thanks so much! If you use the caramel frosting, store them at room temperature for about four days. If you use the pumpkin pie frosting, they need to be refrigerated and they will last about five days.

  3. Miriamsays:

    Love it. Thank you

  4. jawalabssays:

    receive seems tasty worth to try

  5. jawalabssays:

    receive seems more spicy to me , but need worth to try after this, thanks

  6. Susansays:

    4 stars
    Printed recipe, cloudy Sunday here, just great for baking these pumpkin cupcakes! Cannot wait to devour lol xx

  7. Sabrinasays:

    5 stars
    These would be a great addition to my Thanksgiving day dessert table. So perfect!

  8. Jennifersays:

    5 stars
    Pumpkin Everything! Yes please!! Absolutely delicious <3

  9. Conniesays:

    5 stars
    This is legit a pumpkin cupcake. Love that you used real pumpkin pie as frosting. Quick and genius!

  10. GZRsays:

    Are there any dairy-free replacements that would work instead of evaporate milk for the frosting?

  11. Tarynsays:

    5 stars
    These are such a nice change from pumpkin pie! Thanks for a great recipe.

  12. Jillian Wadesays:

    5 stars
    I love that this recipe uses pumpkin puree in both the cake and the frosting. This recipe is definitely a keeper!

  13. Michael Wurm Jr.says:

    5 stars
    Pumpkin PIe Frosting is so genius! I adore this recipe. A must-make for fall! Yum!!

    xo Michael

  14. Jess Ksays:

    Love the pumpkin pie frosting idea. Can’t wait to try these, pinned!

  15. Jaidesays:

    I love pumpkin everything! These look amazing!

  16. Tara Kuczykowskisays:

    5 stars
    Love the pumpkin pie used as frosting — genius!!!

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