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These individual pumpkin cakes have been a fall standby long before Pumpkin Spice Lattes came on the scene. Indeed, our cupcakes are deliciously moist, bursting with pumpkin flavor, and topped with a creamy icing that’s decadent but not too sweet. Not to mention, we devised a shortcut that makes whipping up these pumpkin cupcakes for a Halloween party or autumn potluck so much simpler: We start with a box of yellow cake mix to eliminate lots of measuring and mixing. The quick batter comes together with pumpkin puree (rather than the water typically called for on the box), for a dense, satisfying cupcake.


Credit: John Kernick

Recipe Summary

15 mins
40 mins
Makes 24 cupcakes


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Heat oven to 350° F. Line two 12-cup muffin tins with paper liners. Prepare the cake mix as directed but with the following change: Add the pumpkin pie spice and substitute the can of pumpkin puree for the water called for in the package directions.

  • Divide the batter among the prepared muffin tins and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean, 18 to 22 minutes. Let cool.

  • Meanwhile, using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and sugar until creamy. Spread on the cupcakes and top each with a piece of candy corn.

Nutrition Facts

210 calories; fat 9g; saturated fat 4g; cholesterol 20mg; sodium 205mg; protein 3g; carbohydrates 30g; fiber 1g.