Jen’s Seriously Hella-Awesome Pumpkin Cupcakes Extraordinaire


  • 1 18.5-ounce box yellow cake mix (Plus the ingredients called for in the package directions.  I used the Duncan Hines Moist Deluxe)
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 1/2 t. vanilla extract
  • 1 15-ounce can pumpkin puree (I only had 29oz. cans, so I used half)
  • 2 8-ounce bars cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • Candy corn
  • 1/2 to 1 C half n half
  • Lined muffin cups


  1. Heat oven to 350° F. Prepare the cake mix as directed but with the following changes: Add 1/2 teaspoon of the pumpkin pie spice, substitute the pumpkin puree for the water called for in the package directions, add 1 t. vanilla, and add 1/2 cup half n half.  If it doesn’t look smooth enough, use the other 1/2 cup.  I kind of eyeballed it.  Emma thought I knew what I was doing but I was totally winging it.
  2. Stir together to combine, then use a hand mixer to blend.
  3. Divide the batter among muffin tins and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean, 18 to 22 minutes. I did about 20 minutes on mine.  Let cool.
  4. Meanwhile, using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese, 1 t. vanilla, and confectioner’s (powdered) sugar until creamy. Taste it, and if it’s too “cheesy”, add another 1/2 t. vanilla.  I also added about a teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice to the icing, but you couldn’t really discern it was in there.  I knew the cupcakes were pumpkiny, so I didn’t really care.  So you can add it, or more, or not at all.  Spread on the cupcakes and top each with a piece of candy corn.

If they come out great, make sure you tell them I came up with this recipe.  If they suck, your direction-following is extremely sub-par, and I don’t even know you.  PS dogs like pumpkin cupcakes.  PPS do not sit near them later.  God.