Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Buttercream Icing

I hardly ever say this because I'm always trying new recipes, but I think I've found my favorite cupcake recipe! My favorite flavoring is pumpkin and these cupcakes take a full can of pumpkin and tons of pumpkin pie spices, yum. And this recipe keeps the light airy consistency of a cupcake instead of veering into dense muffin territory- which is always a danger when baking with pumpkin. The salted caramel thing is something I've stayed away from because, hello, salt in my dessert? No thanks! However, after trying this very mild (on the salt) icing recipe I think I can see the benefits of adding the salt. Anywho here are the pics of the final product:

What is that new prop you ask? I bought a cupcake stand from whitneysmith on Etsy and am loving it for showing off my cupcakes. Check out all her amazing handmade ceramics here: Whitney Smith Pottery

Recipe (Adapted from Smells Like Home)

1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 c brown sugar
1/3c + 3T sugar
3c cake flour
3t baking powder
1 1/2t baking soda
1 1/2t ground cinnamon
1 1/2t ground ginger
1/2t ground nutmeg
1/4t ground cloves
3/4t salt
1/4t freshly ground black pepper
3 large eggs
3/4 cup buttermilk mixed with 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla (you can make buttermilk
from 3/4c milk +3t white vinegar-let sit before using)
1 can (15oz) pumpkin puree

Preheat to 325F.

In large bowl, beat butter and sugars until fluffy.

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

Add eggs to the large bowl one at a time, allowing each egg to be fully incorporated before adding the next. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add flour mixture and buttermilk, alternating until all of each mixture is incorporated. Beat in pumpkin until smooth. Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full. Bake for about 15 minutes. Cool in pans for 5 minutes, then cool fully on racks.

Salted Caramel Buttercream Icing

3 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
3T vegetable shortening
1T vanilla
2 1/4 lbs powdered sugar
1/2c caramel topping (like for ice cream)
1/4t Kosher salt

Cream the butter and shortening in a large bowl. Add vanilla, salt, and caramel topping and combine well. Add powdered sugar until the consistency that you desire has been reached.


  1. Uhhh HELLO! These sound/look amazing! Question: what is cake flour? Can I just use regular flour?

  2. They were amazing, so delish! Cake flour is not the same as all purpose flour, it has less protein and makes the cake softer and lighter. THey say you can use 2T corn starch + 1c flour as a substitute, but cake flour is pretty easy to find. It's usually in a box instead of a bag in the flour aisle on a higher shelf than the all purpose.