Pumpkin cupcakes on a board

Pumpkin cupcakes

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(50 ratings)

Prep: 15 mins Cook: 25 mins


Makes 12

Use grated pumpkin or butternut squash for these gorgeous, spiced cupcakes

Nutrition and extra info

  • un-iced

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal386
  • fat23g
  • saturates7g
  • carbs43g
  • sugars30g
  • fibre1g
  • protein4.3g
  • salt0.45g
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  • 175ml sunflower oil
    Sunflower oil

    Sunflower oil

    Sunflower oil is made from pressing sunflower seeds and extracting the oil. It's usually…

  • 175g light muscovado sugar
  • 3 large eggs



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition packed with protein and a…

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 200g coarsely grated pumpkin or butternut squash flesh



    Pumpkins are the most famous of all the winter squashes, and are most associated with Halloween…

  • 100g sultanas
  • grated zest 1 orange



    One of the best-known citrus fruits, oranges aren't necessarily orange - some varieties are…

  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon



    A fragrant spice which comes from the inner bark of a tropical tree. When dried, it curls into…

  • 200g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda, or baking soda, is an alkali which is used to raise soda breads and full-…

For the frosting

  • 200g tub full-fat cream cheese
  • 85g icing sugar
  • toasted chopped pecans to decorate (optional)
    Pecan nuts



    Related to the walnut, pecans are native to America, and grow enclosed in a glossy, browny-red…


  1. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Line a 12-hole muffin tray with paper cases. Pour the oil into a large bowl and add the sugar, eggs and vanilla. Beat together, then add the grated pumpkin, sultanas and orange zest.

  2. Stir in the cinnamon, flour and bicarbonate of soda, the mixture will be quite wet. Spoon into the cases. Bake for 25 mins until firm and springy to the touch and a skewer inserted in the centre of a cupcake comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack. At this stage you can freeze the cakes for 4 months.

  3. To make the frosting, beat the cream cheese and sugar together until smooth then spread on top of the cupcakes. Leave plain or decorate with toasted pecans. Store in the fridge, but return to room temperature to serve for the best flavour and texture.

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Comments, questions and tips

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nurturebird's picture
8th Aug, 2013
These are delicious... really simple and freezable ... marvelous!
12th May, 2013
Made these 5 times now, they are amazing and everyone asks for the receipe !! I didnt add the sultanas as my daughter doesnt like them, added a little orange juice to the cake mixture, they turned out really moist - for the frosting i added a little more icing sugar with a little orange juice, piped the fosting and finished with grated orange zest, soo yummy
6th May, 2013
Am I the only one who finds cream cheese frostling very runny?
12th Nov, 2012
Very easy and a real crowd pleaser!!
10th Nov, 2012
Forgot to rate!
10th Nov, 2012
These are yummy! I was a bit dubious when I saw how wet the batter was but they turned out beautifully.
7th Nov, 2012
I made these with butternut squash and they were some of the best cakes I've ever made. You get that lovely orangey taste alongside the moistness of the squash. They rose so tall in cake cases, however, that I couldn't ice the top, so I cut the tops off, iced the and put them back on again, ala. the fairy cakes from days of yore. If you want to ice the tops, I would maybe use muffin cases. Fantastic recipe.
4th Nov, 2012
I made these for haloween with my step daughters. Great fun! We used fondant icing instead of the frosting and coloured it green and blue with spiders webs and bats etc on top. Loved by all who tried them and the kids had hours of fun making gareish toppings!! The mix was very runny but excellent once cooked, tasted great and lasted well in an airtight tin. I have just eaten one 4 days later, still tastes good. Will make again, yum yum!
31st Oct, 2012
WOW! These are delicious!!! Kept the recipe the same and they turned out stunning. Very moist and light. I am a new pumpkin fan. Excellent Halloween treats!
30th Oct, 2012
Have just made this and am very impressed! I used butternut squash and followed the recipe exactly - really light and moist sponge. Tastes a lot like carrot cake...delish!


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