My Favorite Pumpkin Cupcakes

Super-moist spiced pumpkin cupcakes that double as muffins. We make them all the time – this is a recipe to hold onto!

Super-moist spiced pumpkin cupcakes that double as muffins. We make them all the time - this is a recipe to hold onto!

Meet my favorite pumpkin cupcake recipe. And guess what? This basic pumpkin cupcake recipe doubles as a pumpkin muffin recipe. Because what’s really the difference between cupcakes and muffins? Sky-high frosting? Streusel? Soft texture? This pumpkin cupcake/muffin recipe can do it all. I call it my “master pumpkin batter.”

Let’s get down to the nitty gritty here. What makes this pumpkin cupcake/muffin recipe my favorite?

  • There is little sugar in the batter. Only 2/3 cup of brown sugar, which leaves enough room for sweet frosting, chocolate chips, streusel, filling, etc.
  • There’s cinnamon – a lot of it!
  • Oil makes them incredibly moist, without tasting greasy.
  • The batter is so easy to make. No mixer required!
  • There are endless possibilities to get creative.

Super-moist spiced pumpkin cupcakes that double as muffins. We make them all the time - this is a recipe to hold onto!

Super-moist spiced pumpkin cupcakes that double as muffins. We make them all the time - this is a recipe to hold onto!

Pile it with cream cheese frosting, like I do above. ↑

Or you can enjoy these pumpkin cupcakes with marshmallow frosting! ↓

Spiced Pumpkin Cupcakes with fluffy marshmallow frosting!

Or even as pumpkin muffins with brown sugar cinnamon streusel and a tempting cheesecake filling. (These are definitely a fall favorite!)

Pumpkin muffins filled with cream cheese filling and topped with sweet cinnamon brown sugar streusel!

And they’re amazing with dark chocolate frosting and extra chocolate chips!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cupcakes with Dark Chocolate Frosting

And, finally, try them with cinnamon swirl frosting and extra festive sprinkles.

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cinnamon Swirl Frosting

Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make. 

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Pumpkin Cupcakes & Pumpkin Muffins

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 18 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours
  • Yield: 14 cupcakes
  • Category: Cupcakes
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


Super-moist spiced pumpkin cupcakes that double as muffins. We make them all the time – this is a recipe to hold onto!


  • 1 and 3/4 cups (220g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice*
  • 2/3 cup (133g) packed dark brown sugar*
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup (227g) pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line a 12-count muffin pan with cupcake liners or spray with nonstick spray. This recipe makes 14 cupcakes, so you will have a couple cupcakes to bake in a 2nd batch.
  2. In a large bowl, toss the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice together until combined. Set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk the brown sugar and eggs together until combined. Whisk in the pumpkin, oil, milk, and vanilla until combined. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Do NOT overmix the batter.
  4. Spoon the batter evenly into 14 cups; fill the unused cups one-third full with water to prevent warping. Bake for 17-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool completely before frosting. Leftover cupcakes keep well covered tightly at room temperature or in the refrigerator for 3 days.


  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Prepare cupcakes 1 day in advance. Keep covered tightly at room temperature. Unfrosted cupcakes can be frozen up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before frosting and serving.
  2. Pumpkin Pie Spice: You can make your own 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice by blending 1/8 teaspoon each of ground ginger, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, ground cloves, and ground allspice. Don’t leave out the 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon too!
  3. Brown Sugar: I usually only use 1/2 cup brown sugar, but I find the pumpkin and spice flavor really excels with just a little more brown sugar. So, I prefer 2/3 cup.
  4. Frosting: See the post above for some frosting ideas and a wonderful pumpkin cheesecake muffin!
  5. Mini Cupcakes/Muffins: For around 30 minis, line mini muffin pans with liners or spray with nonstick spray. Prepare cupcakes as directed. Bake mini cupcakes for 12-13 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  6. Be sure to check out my 10 tips for baking the BEST cupcakes before you begin!

Keywords: pumpkin cupcakes, pumpkin muffins

We had our engagement photos this week! Here’s a sneak peek from our wedding photographer, Megan Beth.

Engagement Photos

These are my favorite pumpkin cupcakes! Add cream cheese frosting or my recipe for cinnamon swirl frosting!


  1. Simonne Bloor says:

    I love love love these cupcakes. I made some for a friend of mine and he came back to me a few days later and said they were hands down the best cupcakes he had ever eaten, so good he stopped what he was doing to eat them. So delish!

  2. I want to try this recipe but is it possible to make a cake with this cupcake batter ? Thanks for answer !

    1. Hi Emilie! I recommend making my pumpkin cake recipe instead. 🙂

      1. Thank you Sally ! I didn’t see this recipe 🙂 Ps: the muffins are delicious ! Not too sweet and with perfect flavor.

  3. Hello Sally ! I made these beauties this week and I’m absolutely F.A.N ! My whole family was agree. (My grandmother also asked me the recipe !!!) So I wanted to thank you to share so AMaziNG recipes with us. <3 !

  4. Hi, I’m trying to avoid sugar. Do you think I could replace it without maple syrup? And how much should I use?

    1. Hi Justyna! If you’re avoiding refined sugar, pure maple syrup is a wonderful alternative. However, I’m unsure of the results using it in this recipe. Coconut sugar would be ideal as it’s dry. Let me know if you try anything!

  5. These look so yummy! Did you make the little pumpkin toppers too?

    1. Hi Brittani! I didn’t. They are the little mellowcreme pumpkins often sold with candy corn.

  6. Hi, Sally! How many calories is 1 muffin/cupcake?

    1. Hi Ally! I’m unsure. Calorie counting calculators online can often be inaccurate (different brands/products/etc) and I would hate to publish wrong information on my website. Feel free to calculate at your own discretion!

  7. These were delicious! I made them for a party, and they were a huge hit.

    I was concerned because my batter wasn’t thick, like in your directions. I think it was because I was using Sprouts Market organic pumpkin, which was thinner. The cupcakes, though, came out light and fluffy.

    The big surprise was the icing. A friend tasted some icing I had in the freezer awhile (which I had defrosted) and yours. Big difference—the other recipe was too sweet. People at the party said that your icing was fabulous.

    Your cream cheese icing is my new “go to icing.”

  8. Can you use almond flour instead of regular ap?or would coconut flour be better?

    1. Hi Chuck! I haven’t tried either, but let me know how the cupcakes turn out if you try either GF substitution.

  9. Absolutely love this recipe, I have already made them three times already and worked perfect every time.

  10. Moist, delicious, and simple to make. I never get to bake with pumpkin – it’s just not a thing where I live! These turned out awesome.

    1. I’m so happy you tried and enjoyed these, Michal!

  11. I baked these today, and topped them with your cream cheese frosting, following your recipes to the letter. The cupcakes are just divine. Thank you Sally (& thank you for also giving the measurements in grams, it helps)

    1. I’m so happy you enjoyed these cupcakes, Ramona!

  12. Do you ever bake gluten free?

    1. Yes! While I don’t use a gluten free flour substitutes I do have a section of recipes on my site that are all naturally Gluten Free Recipes.

  13. I made these for a Thanksgiving dessert a couple years ago. With exception to pumpkin pie, I am not a pumpkin dessert pan – usually. These were surprisingly really good! I highly recommend!

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