Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Pumpkin Ginger Cupcakes with Butterscotch Cream Cheese Frosting

Okay, so I think that I have found a new favorite pumpkin recipe - at least in the cupcake department. I was fooling around online recently looking for fun, new pumpkin recipes (since it's officially fall) and stumbled upon this recipe for pumpkin ginger cupcakes on (one of my favorite websites).

I could tell just by looking at the ingredients that these cupcakes were going to be amazing, for they combined the typical pumpkin related ingredients (cinnamon, clove, allspice, etc.) with butterscotch flavored pudding. Can I just say that I am seriously a fan of butterscotch anything! A couple of Christmases ago, I discovered this butterscotch gingerbread cookie recipe, and they are to die for, so when it came to butterscotch and pumpkin, I was sold.

The cupcakes also use candied/crystalized ginger, which we happened to have on hand since my husband had bought some for my nausea when I was pregnant with our 5-month-old daughter. It was a fluke that truly paid off. ;)

I never want to make up a bunch of cupcakes to just have lying around the house; though (my husband and I are still on a mission to lose weight), but I knew that I had some visiting teaching appointments scheduled this week, so I thought it'd be the perfect opportunity to experiment with this new recipe - since I had the excuse to give some away. :)

The only problem with the recipe was that it didn't have any info on what type of frosting to use, so I improvised - cue (once again) the butterscotch! I immediately thought that butterscotch cream cheese frosting would really complement the pumpkin cupcakes, since they were being made with butterscotch pudding, but I had never made it before, so I was going to have to do some more improvising.

I have had this recipe for white chocolate peppermint cream cheese frosting that I put on red velvet cupcakes at Christmas time (another recipe that is to die for) and it uses white chocolate chips that you melt and add to cream cheese frosting that is made with peppermint extract. I immediately thought of this heavenly frosting and decided that I would do something similar with these cupcakes, only that I'd melt butterscotch chips and add them to the cream cheese frosting instead (while also replacing the peppermint extract with vanilla, like more traditional cream cheese frostings).

What can I say? They were seriously amazing! After trying one, I asked my husband what he thought and he said that they were just okay - that he'd have to have a second one to form a more accurate opinion. Ha! Right! He did have a second one, and then said something along the lines of, "You are officially the queen of making fatty-maker food that is irresistible." Hehe. I am totally going to take that as a compliment. ;)

Anyway, here is my frosting recipe:

Butterscotch Cream Cheese Frosting

1 1/2 cups butterscotch chips, finely chopped (this helps with the melting process)
1 8-ounce package of cream cheese, at room temperature
1 stick butter, at room temperature
2 tsp. vanilla
4 - 5 cups powdered sugar

1. Place the butterscotch in a small bowl in the microwave on high for one minute. Remove the bowl from the microwave and stir with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula until it is smooth. Set the butterscotch aside to cool.

2. Place the cream cheese and butter in a large mixing bowl. Beat with an electric mixer on low until well combined (30 seconds). Stop the machine. Add the melted butterscotch on low speed until just combined, 30 seconds. Add the vanilla and 2 cups of powdered sugar and blend on low speed until the sugar is incorporated, 30 seconds more. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat until the frosting is fluffy, 1 minute more, adding the rest of the powdered sugar until you reach the desired consistency.

I piped my cupcakes with a ziploc bag (a little trick I learned a while back for when you are in a jam and don't have a piping bag), then decorated them with candy corns and Halloween sprinkles.

And there you have it - the most amazing pumpkin cupcakes EVER - and just in time for fall baking. Yay! :)

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