Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Pumpkin Muffins with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

For the very first time in my life, I bought and roasted an actual pie pumpkin and used part of the puree in this recipe. Honestly, it was worth it. I'm the kind of baker/cook that gets a lot of satisfaction from doing things from scratch, so this was really fun and not too much extra work. The hardest part is cutting the pumpkin. Could those things be any tougher? Can't imagine how I would have done it without my awesome knife. Love that thing.

The roasting part is so simple and if you want to be really high volume, buy a few and do them all at once. If you have some sort of self-control, you'll be able to freeze the extra puree until you need it. I have none.

Sugar Pie Pumpkin Puree
Makes about 2-4 cups, depending on pumpkin size

Sugar pie pumpkin (do as many as you want, but you'll only need one for the muffins)
Coconut oil or butter for greasing pan

Preheat oven to 375 F.

Cut pumpkin in half to separate into a top and bottom. Scoop out seeds and stringy flesh with a spoon.

Lightly oil a baking pan with coconut oil or butter. Rub some oil on the exposed pumpkin flesh (I realize that sounds a little off...) and place the cut side down on the pan.

Bake for 20-30 minutes or until soft when pierced with a fork.

Let cool and scrape out filling into a food processor. Process until smooth.

Pumpkin Muffins
Adapted from Baking From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan
Makes 12 muffins

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cardamom
1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar plus 1 tablespoon honey, combined
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup pie pumpkin puree or canned unsweetened pumpkin puree
1/4 cup full-fat canned coconut milk, stirred to the consistency of milk or whole milk

Preheat oven to 400 F.

Generously grease muffin tin with butter or line with muffin papers.

In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices.

Using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment set to medium speed, stir the butter until softened. Keeping the mixer on medium speed, add the sugar and honey mixture and continue beating until the mixture is light and fluffy. Scrape the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed.

Add eggs, one at a time, combining well between each addition. The mixture will become watery and may have some small lumps. This is fine. Beat in the vanilla.

With the mixer speed on low, add in the pumpkin and coconut milk. Stir until evenly combined.

Finally, add your flour mixture, stopping the mixer when the dry ingredients have just incorporated into your wet batter. Over mixing at this point will make your muffins tough. It fine to have a few streaks of flour here and there. The batter will be light and fluffy.

Equally distribute the batter between your 12 molds and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the middle of a muffin comes out clean.

Once finished, immediately remove from pan and allow to cool on a drying rack.

For my frosting recipe, I wanted that classic cream cheese frosting with something a little extra. I didn't want it overly sweet and wanted my additional flavors to shine. None of them are overwhelming, but if you want to mostly taste cinnamon, vanilla, maple, etc., just double that ingredient. This recipe would be great on any pumpkin baked good or even banana bread. I was aiming for a 'close your eyes and sigh when it hits your tongue' response and I think we got it here!

Maple Cream Cheese Frosting
Makes about 2 cups

8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup powdered sugar (I powdered my own regular sugar which yields slightly more than 1/2 cup)
1 tablespoon maple syrup (the real stuff)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons pumpkin puree (homemade or canned)

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the cream cheese and butter until smooth and creamy.

Add the remaining ingredients and stir to incorporate. The mixture may be slightly soupy, which is just fine. If you want to make it a little easier to work with, put the frosting in the refrigerator for about 15 minutes.

Using an apple corer, plunge the corer into the middle of each muffin, pushing straight down (not to the very bottom), giving a twist, and pulling out the core. This little cavity can be filled with your cream cheese frosting and then frosted if you desire. I desired...

You should note that coring the muffins will yield 12 free mini muffins that can be eaten immediately with a dollop of frosting. 

Once frosted, the muffins should be kept refrigerated, but they are best if eaten immediately.



  1. those look AMAZING!! One question.. why are you posting this right when I decide to quit sugar and flour for a week? I need to get rid of my spare tires (yes.. multiple.. haha) I am going to try a crustless sugarless pumpkin pie but not sure if I'm holding out much hope on the results :) haha

  2. If you think this is bad, just wait until tomorrow! But I promise the next one will be healthy...good luck on the pie. That sounds like quite the ambitious undertaking. Let me know if it turns out!

  3. Oh boy. Love pumpkin muffins and the filling just makes them even better! They look amazing. :)

    1. Thanks Erin! They sure didn't last long!


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