Perfectly spiced pumpkin cupcakes topped with a generous “cloud” of marshmallow frosting.
The month of November comes and goes way too quickly, am I right?! Thanksgiving gets lost in the premature holiday madness. I call this the “christmas creep.” And I’m totally against it this year. That is, until you put a peppermint mocha in front of me.
Anyway, long live the pumpkin! Today we have pumpkin cupcakes topped with a cloud of marshmallow frosting on the menu. These spiced cupcakes remind me of my favorite Thanksgiving side dish: sweet potato casserole. Though I rarely make it with marshmallows on top anymore (um, am I boring or what?), the toasty marshmallow goo was my favorite part when I was young. Shocking. And biting into today’s cupcake evokes pure, sweet nostalgia.
I FREAKIN’ LOVE THESE PUMPKIN CUPCAKES.
Before the frosting comes the cupcake. The pumpkin cupcake recipe I use for these is the pumpkin cupcake recipe I’ve been making since last year. It’s my favorite. The cupcakes are moist, flavorful, soft, and cakey. Simply perfecto.
In this particular post, you’ll see that I’m clearly in love with my pumpkin cupcake recipe. You’ll find a handful of suggested ways to make them. Including topped with cream cheese frosting, topped with cinnamon swirl frosting, and topped with dark chocolate frosting. Why not add one more frosting to the mix? My thoughts exactly as I whipped today’s recipe up a couple weeks ago.
What I love the most about these pumpkin cupcakes is that they aren’t overly sweet.
Oftentimes I find that pumpkin desserts are stripped from their deep, complex pumpkin flavor because they are weighed down with too much sugar. I remember a few years ago, my sister and I were following a recipe for pumpkin bars– I truthfully can’t remember what it was exactly– and the 8×8 pan recipe called for 5 cups of sugar. At that point, why even add any other flavors?? I felt the onset of 7 cavities when I took a bite.
Only 2/3 cup of brown sugar sweetens this batch of cupcakes (brown sugar for a touch of molasses flavor, of course), so the pumpkin and robust spices can really stand out. Now, let me remind you that I’m only talking about the bare cupcakes at this point! Marshmallow anything is obviously just, well, sugar. But that is why I pair this frosting with a flavorful, spiced, and not at all “toothache-y” (technical terms) cupcake. There’s certainly a lot of sweetness going on, but it’s not overdone. The sweet marshmallow frosting compliments the pumpkin cupcake perfectly.
These cupcakes aren’t “toothache-y.” I think that’s my new favorite word.
The marshmallow frosting today is inspired the marshmallow filling for my s’mores cupcakes. And, to be honest, it’s my favorite part about that cupcake recipe! The marshmallow frosting is thick and fluffy. Easy to pipe on with your favorite frosting piping tip, or simply slathered on with a knife. I used my trusty Wilton #12 round tip here.
Bake a batch of these pumpkin cupcakes (while sipping some honeycrisp apple sangria perhaps? how festive of you.) and really embrace these few weeks before Thanksgiving.
Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make. ♥
Spiced Pumpkin Cupcakes with Marshmallow Frosting
Perfectly spiced pumpkin cupcakes topped with a generous "cloud" of marshmallow frosting.
- 1 and 3/4 cups (220g) all-purpose flour (measured correctly)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice1
- 2/3 cup (133g) packed dark brown sugar2
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup (227g) pumpkin puree (canned is best here)
- 1/2 cup (120ml) vegetable oil
- 1/3 cup (80ml) milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup (120g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 cup marshmallow creme (marshmallow fluff)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 Tablespoons (45ml) heavy cream3
- 2 cups (240g) confectioners' sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Spray a 12-count muffin pan with non-stick spray or line with cupcake liners. Set aside.
- Make the cupcakes: In a large bowl, toss the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice together until combined. Set aside. 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.
- Spoon the batter into the prepared cupcake cups. Fill only about 1/2 - 2/3 full. If you have extra batter for 1-2 cupcakes, bake a 2nd batch. Bake for 17-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool completely before frosting.
- Make the frosting: In a medium bowl using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter, marshmallow creme, vanilla, and cream on medium speed until completely smooth. Add 2 cups confectioners' sugar and the salt slowly with the mixer running on low, then increase the speed to high and beat for 1 minute. If it looks too thin, add 1/4 cup more confectioners' sugar. Frost cooled cupcakes however you'd like. I used a Wilton #12 piping tip.
- Make ahead tip: Cupcakes can be made ahead 1 day in advance, covered, and stored at room temperature. Frosting can also be made 1 day in advance, covered, and stored in the refrigerator until ready to use. Decorate/assemble cupcakes immediately before serving. Leftover cupcakes keep well covered tightly at room temperature or in the refrigerator for 3 days. Frosted or unfrosted cupcakes can be frozen up to 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
- You can make your own 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice by blending a pinch each of ground ginger, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, ground cloves, and ground allspice.
- 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.
- Cream is preferred over milk or half-and-half for the frosting to obtain the creamiest texture and richest taste.
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Try my Pumpkin Cake Cheesecake next!