holiday cupcake

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Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting


Yields 1 dozen cupcakes

The things you’ll need

Ingredients

Cupcake
  • 1 ¾ cup all purpose flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup packed light brown sugar
  • ½ cups oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Frosting
  • 8 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
  • ½ cup butter
  • 2 ½ cup sifted powdered sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Equipment
  • 2 large mixing bowls
  • Medium mixing bowl
  • Whisk
  • 2 rubber spatulas
  • Electric mixer
  • 2 sets of whisk attachments
  • Baking sheet lined with parchment paper
  • Ice cream scoop
  • Cupcake tray
  • Orange silicone liners
Decoration
  • Decorating bag fitted with a #849 tip
  • Pumpkin candies

Let’s get Started!

Cupcake
  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together flour, spices, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, use a hand mixer to combine the sugars, oil, pumpkin, eggs and vanilla extract until smooth. Fold in dry ingredients until just combined.
  4. Scoop batter into lined cupcake tray about ¾ full. Bake for 20 to 22 minutes. Allow to fully cool before frosting.
Frosting
  1. Use a hand mixer to beat cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy. Add in powdered sugar, salt, vanilla and cinnamon and mix until smooth.

Time to decorate!

  1. Scoop frosting into a decorating bag fitted with a #849 tip. Pipe two swirls on top of each other and top with a pumpkin candy.
  2. Ta-da! Pumpkin cupcakes with cinnamon cream cheese frosting!
2

“Broken Glass” Cupcakes"

The recipe for the “glass” is essentially one for caramel. The trick is to cook it for a shorter amount of time than usual so it stays clear.

PREP: 45 MINS TOTAL TIME: 1 HOUR 15 MINS

YIELD:Makes 3 ½ dozen

INGREDIENTS

  1. 4 ½ cups cake flour (not self-rising)
  2. 2 tablespoons baking powder
  3. ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  4. ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  5. Salt
  6. 1 ½ cups whole milk
  7. 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  8. 2 sticks plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  9. 2 ¼ cups granulated sugar
  10. 7 large egg whites, room temperature

FOR THE CARAMEL

  1. 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  2. ¾ cup water

FOR THE FROSTING

  1. 1 pound cream cheese, room temperature
  2. 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  3. 6 cups confectioners’ sugar
  4. ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  5. 1 cup cherry preserves, strained, for garnish

DIRECTIONS

STEP 1

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Make the cupcakes: Line cupcake tins with baking cups. Sift flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ¾ teaspoon salt into a medium bowl. Combine milk and vanilla in a measuring cup.

STEP 2

  • Beat butter with a mixer on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy. Reduce speed to medium, and gradually add granulated sugar in a slow, steady stream. Beat until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to low, and add flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with milk mixture, beginning and ending with flour.

STEP 3

  • In a clean bowl, whisk egg whites with a mixer on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form. Fold one-third of the whites into the cupcake batter. Fold in remaining egg whites in 2 batches.

STEP 4

  • Divide batter among baking cups, filling each halfway full. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of each comes out clean and the tops spring back when lightly touched, 18 to 20 minutes. Let cool completely in tins set on wire racks.

STEP 5

  • Meanwhile, make the caramel: Bring granulated sugar and water to a boil in a small high-sided saucepan, stirring, until sugar dissolves. Reduce heat to medium-high, and cook until mixture just starts to turn pale gold around edges. Remove from heat, and immediately pour caramel onto a rimmed baking sheet. Working quickly, tilt pan to spread caramel to edges to make a very thin layer. Let cool to harden.

STEP 6

  • Make the frosting: Beat cream cheese and butter with a mixer on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy. Gradually add confectioners’ sugar and vanilla. Beat until creamy and spreadable.

STEP 7

  • Frost each cupcake using an offset spatula. Twist pan to release and break caramel in order for it to resemble broken glass. Place a shard or 2 of caramel “glass” in the center of each cupcake. Drizzle or pipe cherry preserves where caramel has entered the cupcake.

Vegan Earl Grey Cupcakes with Tea & Lavender "Cream Cheese” Frosting

I’ve always been a big lover of tea, but especially recently I’ve been obsessed with Earl Grey. I often find myself getting a nice London Fog instead of a coffee. These cupcakes were only bound to happen. I was struggling to find what to bake for a Christmas party when these suddenly popped into my head.

They were a little bit tricky to nail! I knew that to make these I was going to start out with a vanilla base recipe then add the tea, but HOW is the question. I started out by steeping some extra strong tea and allowing it to cool. I then added some of it to vanilla batter but it then became too runny, so I added a little bit more flour but then the mixture became to glutinous and the flavour wasn’t very strong. They ended up baking okay, they achieved nice domes and the texture wasn’t awful, it was just too dense for my liking and it tasted a little bland. Instead of steeping the tea, I decided to just add the leaves directly into the batter. I used my vanilla cupcake recipe and emptied 4 teabags into the mixture. Once the batter was mixed I was concerned with how they’d come out because I didn’t taste a strong earl grey flavour but the batter consistency was right so I stuck them in anyway. 10 minutes into baking, the most wonderful tea aroma filled my house and I immediately knew they were going to work. The tea just needed some heat to activate the flavour and they turned out so good. I served them at my Christmas party and everyone raved about them. Whenever I bake something, my plan is to make it “not taste vegan”, and these were just that. I also made a vegan cream cheese frosting and infused with with more tea and lavender.

The texture on these is amazing. I used my go to vanilla cupcake recipe and the flavour of the earl grey tea just sank so well into them. They are light, fluffy, and moist. Heres what you’ll need to make them:

CUPCAKES: (makes 12)

1 ¾ cup all purpose flour
1 cup cane sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
½ cup coconut oil
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
4 Earl Grey tea bags
Mix the sugar, almond milk, coconut oil, vanilla, tea and vinegar together until smooth. Then add the flour, baking powder and baking soda and mix until just combined. Bake at 350 C for minutes and you’re set!

FROSTING:

¾ tub vegan butter (Earth Balance)
½ tub Daiya cream cheese
2 tsp vanilla
4 cups icing sugar
Strong brewed tea infused with lavender petals
Whip the butter and cream cheese together until fluffy and well combined. Then add the icing sugar 1 cup at a time until the frosting is fluffy and smooth. Then add your vanilla and tea to taste. This will make enough frosting for 12 cupcakes if you pipe a swirl on them like in the picture, but you can half the recipe if you want to spread them on. I sprinkled mine with some dried lavender, but get creative!