I can’t believe Thanksgiving is barely over a week away! I love this time of year and all of the flavors and smells that come along with it. One of my favorite flavors of this season is pumpkin, and I find myself drawn to all of the pumpkin flavored goodies out there. So when I saw these cupcakes, I knew I had to make them.
These were everything I was hoping for, but even though I liked the frosting, I’d recommend leaving it off because the cupcakes are good enough without it. And that way, you can call them a muffin and have one for breakfast!
Cheesecake-Filled Pumpkin Cupcakes
adapted from Every Day with Rachael Ray November 2009
Makes 1 dozen cupcakes
one 8-ounce package cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 large eggs plus 5 egg whites
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup light brown sugar
Place a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat to 350°. Line a 12-cup muffin pan with baking liners. Using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar for 3 minutes. Beat in 1 egg white and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla.
In a bowl, whisk the flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt. In another bowl, mix the pumpkin puree, 2 eggs, granulated sugar, oil and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Whisk in the flour mixture.
Layer each muffin cup with some of the pumpkin batter, then the cream cheese mixture, then more of the batter. Bake until springy to the touch, 25 minutes. Let cool.
Using the electric mixer, beat the brown sugar, remaining 4 egg whites and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Fill a medium saucepan with enough simmering water to reach a depth of 1 inch; place the mixing bowl on top. Whisk the mixture until it registers 160° on an instant-read thermometer.
Transfer the bowl back to the mixer and beat at high speed until fluffy; lower the speed and beat to room temperature, about 5 minutes. Beat in the remaining 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Transfer the frosting to a pastry bag; pipe large rosettes on top of the cupcakes.