Baker’s Delight: Pumpkin Cupcakes

My husband’s favorite cake is pumpkin spice and so it is an annual tradition for his October birthday. This year, I decided to switch it up and develop a new recipe. I think we might have a new favorite! Instead of a cake, I made cupcakes (adapting a recipe from allrecipes.com) and filled them with a maple cream and then frosted them with a cinnamon maple buttercream. I considered just making a cinnamon frosting but when I tasted it, I thought the maple syrup would be a good element to add…and it was. These take a little bit of time and effort but they are worth it!

PUMPKIN CUPCAKES w/Maple Cream Filling & Cinnamon Maple Buttercream Frosting
Print This Recipe

2 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. ground allspice
1/2 tsp. salt
1 Tb. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 c. butter, softened
1 c. white sugar
1/3 c. brown sugar
2 eggs, room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 c. milk
1 c. pumpkin puree

Preheat an oven to 375 degrees F. Line 24 muffin cups with paper liners. Combine together the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, clove, allspice, salt, baking powder, and baking soda; set aside.

Beat butter and sugars with an electric mixer in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, allowing each egg to blend into the butter mixture before adding the next. Stir in the milk and pumpkin puree after the last egg. Stir in the flour mixture, mixing until just incorporated. Divide the batter into the prepared muffin cups (I use an ice cream scoop).

Bake in the preheated oven until golden and the tops spring back when lightly pressed, 20- 25 minutes. Cool in the pans for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack. While still a little warm gently hollow out a portion in the center of each cake (I used a cylinder to remove the centers).

While the cupcakes are baking and cooling, make the filling and frosting (recipes below). Once the cupcakes are cool, fill with the maple cream and frost.

FILLING

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
3 Tb.  pure maple syrup, divided
1/3 c. heavy whipping cream

Using an electric mixer, mix the cream until light and fluffy. Add 2 Tb. maple syrup. In a separate bowl, whip the whipping cream until soft peaks form. Add 1 Tb. maple syrup and continue whipping until stiff peaks form. Gently fold the maple whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture. Chill until ready to fill.

FROSTING

1/2 c. butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tb. pure maple syrup
4 c. powdered sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 c. milk (may need a little more)
pinch of salt

Cream butter, vanilla, and maple syrup until light an fluffy. Add sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Slowly add milk until desired consistency is reached.

Holidays: Easter Dessert

I just love that cupcakes are so popular these days. The delicious, sweet, mini cakes make a beautiful presentation and are perfect for holidays, birthdays, company, dessert buffets, and more. Today I’m sharing two recipes for homemade cupcakes.

These key lime cupcakes are amazing. If you only make one of these recipes, make these. They are fabulous! I think they are probably my most favorite cupcake ever.


KEY LIME COCONUT CUPCAKES w/WHITE CHOCOLATE LIME FROSTING
(adapted slightly from foodnetwork.com)
Print This Recipe

3/4 c. (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 c. granulated sugar
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 heaping tsp. grated key lime zest
2 Tb. key lime juice (I used  freshly squeezed)
1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 c. buttermilk
1 1/3 c. loosely packed sweetened coconut flakes

White Chocolate Lime Frosting:
5 oz. white chocolate (I used Baker’s)
1/2 c. butter, room temperature
3 1/2 – 4 c. powdered sugar
Pinch salt
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 Tb. key lime juice (I used freshly squeezed)
1/4 c. sour cream
Finely grated key lime zest, for garnish
Shredded, sweetened coconut, for garnish
White chocolate, grated, for garnish

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line muffin pans with cupcake liners.

Using an mixer, cream the butter and sugar on high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. With the mixer on low speed, add the eggs, 1 at a time, scraping down the bowl after each addition. Add the vanilla extract, key lime zest and juice and mix well. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In 5 parts total, alternately add the dry ingredients and the buttermilk to the batter, beginning and ending with the dry. Mix until just combined. Fold the coconut into the cupcake batter.

Line a muffin pan with paper liners and fill each liner 3/4 full. A spring loaded 1/4 cup ice cream scoop works great for this and ensures the cupcakes are all the same size. Bake for 25 minutes or until the tops begin to brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Remove cupcakes from oven and allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes and then transfer cupcakes to a baking rack to cool completely. Makes 14 cupcakes.

While the cupcakes are cooling you can make the frosting. In a small heat proof bowl, melt the white chocolate in the microwave. Let cool until just slightly warm. Meanwhile, using a hand mixer, beat the butter until light and fluffy. With the mixer on low, gradually add the powdered sugar until well combined. Add the salt, vanilla extract, key lime juice, and sour cream and mix until very smooth. Add the melted white chocolate and mix just until incorporated. Pipe icing on to the cupcakes and garnish with sweetened, shredded coconut, shaved white chocolate, and grated lime zest.

These vanilla cupcakes were moist and delicious! I used a simple vanilla buttercream to frost them and topped them with a white chocolate covered strawberry. My kids decorated their cupcakes with spring colored sprinkles.

VANILLA CUPCAKES
(adapted from foodnetwork.com)
Print This Recipe

1 3/4 c. cake flour
1 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
2 c. sugar
1 Tb. baking powder
3/4 tsp. salt
1 c. butter, cut into cubes
4 eggs
1 c. whole milk
2 tsp. vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line cupcake pans with paper liners; set aside.

Combine in a bowl both flours, sugar, baking powder and salt. Mix on low speed until combined for about 3 minutes. Add in cubed butter, mixing until just coated with flour.

Add eggs 1 at a time until combined. Slowly add milk and vanilla to batter until completely mixed scraping down the bowl as you mix.

Scoop batter into baking cups filling about 2/3-3/4  full. Bake until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 17 to 20 minutes. Makes 24 cupcakes.

Frost with your favorite icing. I made buttercream.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
1/2 c. butter, melted
4-5 c. powdered sugar
dash of salt
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
milk – to reach desired consistency

Combine all with a hand mixer. Add food coloring if desired. Pipe or spread onto cooled cupcakes.