Tag Archives: pumpkin cupcakes

Pumpkin Shandy Cupcakes with Ginger Limoncello Buttercream

27 Sep


September is a month of transitions. We still have the bright, warm, sun-filled days of summer, but awaken to chilly mornings with just the slightest little nip in the air to remind us autumn is just around the corner. We can still wear shorts and flip-flops, but maybe we’ll trade in that tank top for a long-sleeved tee. The trees themselves reflect this transition, still dressed in bright green leaves, but with a canopy of beautiful reds and oranges and yellows adorning their crowns. And I know I’m not the only one who is starting to look at her oven with love again, appreciating (instead of dreading) the warmth it fills the kitchen with while baking up a batch of some special treat I’ve been waiting all summer to try.


Now is also the time we begin to swap out our Leinenkugels and Blue Moons for the beloved pumpkin ales: Southern Tier’s Pumpking, Weyerbacher’s Imperial Pumpkin Ale, and Sam Adam’s (8.5% abv!) Fat Jack, just to name a favorite few. All delicious to be sure, but what a shame there isn’t a way to smoothly transition from those bright, citrusy summer ales of summer to the heady, spicy brews of fall. Or is there?


Ladies and gentlemen, I introduce to you Traveler Beer Co.’s Jack-O Shandy! As the bottle claims, it’s a fine wheat beer with lemon peel (hence the shandy part) with natural flavors and PUMPKIN added (hence the pumpkin ale bit)! At last, the perfect summer-to-fall transition beer. No more Leinenkugel withdrawals, no more Pumpking spice harsh. Finally, the perfect way to segue from summer to fall, brew-wise. Thanks Travelers!


Inspired by such a delightful shandy, I decided to try a little baking transition of my own. And so I offer for your late summer/early fall culinary enjoyment my pumpkin shandy cupcakes. A light, spicy pumpkin cupcake topped with my delicious limoncello buttercream, topped with a dusting of crushed ginger cookies. These yummy cakes will be the perfect finish to any end-of-season picnic or that first hayride of the fall. But enjoy them while you can. Because like the beautiful fall foliage, pumpkin ale season is short…so many pumpkin ales, so little time….


Pumpkin Shandy Cupcakes

1 box spice cake mix

1 cup canned pumpkin (not pie filling)

2 eggs

2/3 cup Traveler Jack-O Shandy

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake  tins with paper liners – I was able to get about 18 cupcakes.

Mix all ingredients at low speed until combined, then at medium speed for about 2 minutes.

Fill cupcake tins about 2/3 full.

Bake for 17-20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely before frosting.

Limoncello Buttercream Frosting

3/4 cup butter, room temperature

4 cups confectioners sugar

pinch salt

grated lemon peel

juice from one small/medium lemon

1 – 2 tablespoons Limoncello, or to taste

2-3 Trader Joe’s Triple Ginger Cookie Thins, crushed

Cream butter until soft. Add sugar, salt, lemon peel, lemon juice and limoncello, mixing at low speed until combined, then at high speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Frost as desired and sprinkle with crushed cookie crumbs.



Pumpkin Spiced Rum Cupcakes with Biscoff Marshmallow Frosting

21 Nov


With Thanksgiving rapidly approaching, one thing has become abundantly clear: America is having a full on love affair with pumpkin. What started as an innocent flirtation with a little pumpkin spice coffee has blossomed into a full-fledged affair. It seems that as soon as we flip the calendar to October 1st,  pumpkin-flavored everything comes out of the woodwork.

Nowhere is this more evident than a trip to Trader Joe’s. There you can satisfy your pumpkin fix with a little pumpkin bread or pumpkin scones. Feel free to top either with a shmear of pumpkin cream cheese. Looking for something delicious for dinner? How about serving up some pumpkin-filled ravioli. Head down the frozen food aisle  to pick up a box of pumpkin macarons (highly recommend) or a few scrumptious pumpkin filled croissants (really highly recommend). They even have pumpkin flavored doggie treats! And I love Trader Joe’s all the more for it.

But with this total pumpkin saturation, I felt the last thing the world needed was another pumpkin flavored anything….until I saw Frugal Foodie Mama’s recipe for Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Biscoff Marshmallow Buttercream, and I knew what I had to do. Out came my old friend, Captain Morgan, and my little bottle of marshmallow vodka and I was set. Tinkered with the recipe just ever so slightly and I was able to pull out of the oven the most delicious, fall-spiced cupcakes ever, topped with the lightest, fluffiest, biscoff-iest tasting frosting imaginable (they say it’s giving my Rumchata frosting a run for its money).

So push some of those pies aside and make room at your Turkey Day table for these amazing little cupcakes….you’ll be ever so thankful you did.


Pumpkin Spiced Rum Cupcakes

1 box spice cake mix

1 cup canned pumpkin (not pie filling)

2 eggs

1/3 cup water

1/3 cup Captain Morgan’s Spiced Rum

2 Tablespoons vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake tins with paper liners –  I was able to get about 16 cupcakes.

Mix all ingredients at low speed until blended, then at medium speed for about 2 minutes. Fill cupcakes tins about 2/3 full. Bake for 17-20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely before frosting.


Biscoff Marshmallow Frosting

1 cup butter

1/2 cup Biscoff (or Trader Joe’s) cookie spread

4 ounces marshmallow Fluff

2 cups confectioners sugar

1 Tablespoon marshmallow vodka

Cream butter, Biscoff and Fluff in bowl of stand mixer. Add sugar and vodka and blend at low speed until combined, then at high speed until light and fluffy. Frost as desired. (If you have any frosting leftover, may I suggest creating sandwich cookies using Sweetzels spiced wafers? SO yummy!)

I topped mine with a little cinnamon sugar, but a sprinkle of pumpkin pie spice or maybe some crushed walnuts would also work well.



Spiced Rum and Pumpkin Cupcakes

22 Oct

Today I am enjoying for the first time ever, a Captain Morgan Spiced Rum and Coke. Or, as it is more commonly known, a Captain & Coke.


This would not be a big deal if I was say, only 18 or 21 and new to the drinking thing. But I’m not. Some how or other, I just missed the whole Captain and Coke craze by at least a decade….maybe 2. Let’s just say it’s a generational thing and leave it at that.

So why now? I blame it on the commercials. I am not ashamed to admit that I love a good TV commercial. (I don’t think I’m alone in this, take a look at what happens during the Super Bowl.) And Captain Morgan puts out some great commercials…trendy music, lavish sets, beautiful women in stunning costumes, and a rascal of a Captain Morgan making fantasies come true. If drinking spiced rum can make all that happen, sign me up.


So while waiting for that handsome pirate to come whisk me off my feet, I found the following recipe, courtesy of Cupcake Project and Rum Therapy. A great combination of fall spices, pumpkin and rum that comes together to make a moist, dense cupcake, topped with a delicious spiced rum and cream cheese frosting. These cupcakes are simply decadent. Think of them as another fantasy come true – courtesy of the Captain.


Spiced Rum and Pumpkin Cupcakes

Makes 12 cupcakes

1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup pumpkin purée
2 large eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup spiced rum
1/4 cup maple syrup

Whisk together flour, spice, baking soda and salt

In a large bowl, combine sugar, pumpkin, and eggs. Beat until smooth.
Mix in the oil, rum and maple syrup.
Slowly add the dry ingredients and mix just until fully incorporated.
Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full.
Bake at 350 F for 20-25 minutes.
Set on rack to cool.

Spice Rum Cream Cheese Frosting

8 oz. cream cheese
1/4 cup butter
2-3 cups powdered sugar (use more or less to achieve the consistency you like)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons spiced rum

Beat cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add powdered sugar, 1/2 at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in vanilla, cinnamon and spiced rum. Beat until you reach desired consistency, adding more sugar as needed.


%d bloggers like this: