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Halloween baking: pumpkin cupcake recipe + decorating ideas


Halloween is a perfect time to go back to your kitchen to do your share of fragrant fall baking and make your own spooky pumpkin flavored cupcakes to lift up your holiday spirit and prepare for festivities. The fans of traditional pumpkin cupcakes, who’ve been looking for a classical recipe for their cook book, will definitely love this basic pumpkin cupcake recipe which makes incredibly moist and flavorful cupcakes you may use as a delicious base for pretty much any Halloween-themed cupcake decorating idea out there.

You’ll fall in love with their soft texture, incredible pumpkin and cinnamon taste and low in sugar batter. One of the greatest things about this recipe is that you don’t even need a mixer to make them! Just combine the ingredients, mix the batter till smooth, pop it into the cupcake tins and bake them till done. And, there’re a million and one ways to decorate them.

So, let’s look at the actual pumpkin spice cupcake recipe and a few Halloween-themed decorating ideas for them. Gather your ingredinets and bake along!

Basic pumpkin cupcake recipe

What you need to bake pumpkin cupcakes:

  • 1 and 3/4 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup of pumpkin puree
  • 2/3 cup of brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup of vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup of milk
  • 2 large or 3 small eggs
  • 1tsp of baking soda
  • 1tsp of baking powder
  • 1tsp of pumpkin spice
  • 1tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1 and 1/2tsp of ground cinnamon
  • 1/2tsp of salt

How to make pumpkin cupcakes:

  1. Take a couple of preparation steps. You’ll need to preheat your oven to 350oF, find a cupcake/muffin tin and line it with Halloween-themed liners to match the decoration idea of your choice. If you don’t have any liners, make sure to generously spray each individual tin with the non-stick spray or grease them with vegetable oil.
  2. When that’s done, grab a large bowl and combine all of your dry ingredients (apart from brown sugar) in it. Mix well until combined.
  3. Take another bowl, crack the eggs into it and add brown sugar. Whisk the eggs and brown sugar until the mixture turns quite smooth and even.
  4. Add the leftover ingredients (pumpkin puree, vegetable oil, vanilla, and milk) into the bowl with egg and sugar mixture and stir everything together until well-combined.
  5. Pour the wet mixture into the bowl with dry ingredients and use a wooden spoon to incorporate them. You may use a hand mixer to do that, but a wooden spoon will be just fine. In fact, I’d prefer using a wooden spoon not to over whisk the batter.
  6. Once the batter is done, spoon it into the lined tins. Depending on the size of your tins, this recipe will make from 12 to 14 cupcakes.
  7. Pop the cupcakes into the preheated oven and bake them there for 17-20 minutes till they’re all done. As usual, you may check their readiness with the help of a wooden toothpick or a match.
  8. Let your cupcakes cool down completely before decorating with frosting.

Cream cheese frosting for pumpkin cupcakes

What you need to make cream cheese frosting:

  • 4oz of unsalted softened butter
  • 4oz of softened cream cheese
  • 2 cups of powdered sugar
  • 1tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1tsp of pumpkin spice (optional)

How to make cream cheese frosting:

It’s probably the easiest and the tastiest frosting to make.

You just need to beat butter and cheese to together on high mixer speed till the mixture is fluffy and well-combined, then add powdered sugar and beat it into the cheese-butter mixture on low speed and finish the process by adding vanilla and pumpkin spice.

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How to decorate pumpkin cupcakes

  1. Pumpkin topped cupcakes

    The first option is quite basic, yet really cute and adorable. You just need to spoon your frosting into the piping bag, make frosting swirls on your cupcakes and decorate the top with pumpkin-shaped candy. You may add orange and green sprinkles as well.

  2. Pumpkin lookalikes

    To make your cupcakes look like real pumpkins, add some orange food coloring into your frosting and spread in on cupcakes using a spoon.

    With a toothpick, make some indentations to imitate the texture of pumpkin skin and insert pieces of pretzel sticks or green sour straws in the middle of cupcakes instead of stems. You may create those indents, as well as vines, using green and orange icing pens.

    If you happen to have orange decorating sugar, you may sprinkle your cupcakes with it as well. Don’t they look just adorable?

  3. Pumpkin spice scarecrow cupcakes

    Coat your cupcakes in frosting and attach a mini waffle ice-cream cone to its side to make a scarecrow’s hat. Don’t have ice-cream cones? Make the scarecrow’s hat out of 2 gumdrops.

    Then, with a black icing pen, draw the scarecrow’s mouth. Use a candy corn to make his nose and a couple of jelly beans with tiny candy-coated chocolates on top to make his eyes.

    Finally, make his crazy fringe out of thin strips of kiwi fruit. Isn’t he just a cutie?

Visit Countryliving.com for more Halloween cupcake decorating ideas.

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