Thursday, September 20, 2012

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

In addition to the weather, leaves changing, and decorations, nothing says "Fall" better than the smell of pumpkin treats baking in your oven. With the change in weather already occurring, the itch to get my fall decor has been intensely growing. So today, up went the fall decor and in the oven went the first batch of pumpkin treats - Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins.

These are an incredibly easy, but absolutely delicious treat that will fill your home with the smell of fall happiness (there are no words to describe the bliss that is still overtaking the house as my fingers fly over the keys trying to describe the joy). I used a spice cake mix in order to use something out of the pantry as Daniel has declared I have a couponing habit (I call it being thrifty), but you can use a spice cake recipe eliminating the wet ingredients. Even better news, these babies are semi-healthy as the oil and eggs are replaced by pumpkin and pumpkin alone. With fat free cream cheese, these little joys can become a fall staple in your kitchen.

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

1 box  Duncan Hines Spice Cake Mix
1 15 oz can of pumpkin puree
1 8 oz block cream cheese
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla

1. Line a cupcake pan with 12 cupcake papers and spray with cooking spray. Pre-heat oven at 350
2. Combine the cake mix and pumpkin until well mixed
3. Beat the cream cheese with powdered sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla until fluffy.
4. Fill the cupcake wrappers half full and use a spoon to make a little well in each cupcake.
5. Place a heaping teaspoon full of cream cheese mixture into each center.
6. Cover with remaining pumpkin batter. 
7. Bake at 350 for 25 - 35 minutes (I use stoneware so my baking times are a little longer).

Optional: I sprinkled mine with oatmeal and cinnamon sugar for decor.

Don't worry if they are full going into the oven as my picture shows below. They will not rise as much as they normally would had you used eggs and oil.

Now assuming your fall decor is already up, your house is ready for fall!

Side comment: Does anyone put their pumpkins and turkeys out at the same time? I have convinced myself that this is completely normal as my fall comes down the week before Thanksgiving in order for Christmas to go up. By putting them out now, I am able to give my turkeys as much face time as possible.  And my jack-o-lanterns get turned around after Halloween to be just pumpkins. Totally normal . . . right?

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