Friday, November 29, 2013

Copycat Starbucks Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

Is it the day after Thanksgiving?

Yes.

Should I have posted this recipe earlier in the week so you could all make these delicious treats for a Thanksgiving breakfast, or a Black Friday 3 a.m. waiting-in-line snack?

Probably.

But timely blogging just isn't my strong suit, people. Plus- these muffins are too scrumptious to only be made one or two days out of the year.

So grab some cream cheese and crack open that spare can of pumpkin, it's muffin time!

...which will probably lead to 'muffin top time'....




Starbucks Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

Preheat the oven to 350, and line a muffin tin with paper cups. You can lightly spritz the top of the muffin tin with cooking spray, as the muffins will rise, but this isn't necessary.

Sweet Cream Cheese Filling:

  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened 
  • 2 TB sugar
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla
Using an electric mixer or a very strong rubber scraper and some elbow grease, mix the cream cheese, sugar and vanilla together until smooth. Cover the bowl and allow to chill in the fridge until baking time. (Note: I usually double my filling recipe because I always seem to run out.)


Candied Pumpkin Seeds (I didn't have any seeds on hand, and it was too cold to go out and get some, so I left these out. Don't judge.)
  • 2 TB brown sugar
  • 1 TB water
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 TB shelled, plain pumpkin seeds
Combine sugar, water and cinnamon in a medium skillet on medium heat. Add the pumpkin seeds and stir constantly for about 2 minutes- the water should have evaporated and the sugar crystalized. When the sugar begins to harden, immediately pour the seeds onto a parchment lined plate, separating any seeds that are clumped. Allow to cool completely. 


Muffin Batter
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp cloves
  • 1/2 tsp allspice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 eggs 
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling!)
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt in a medium bowl. In a large bowl/KitchenAid, mix eggs, sugars, and vanilla together on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add pumpkin and oil, then mix another 30 seconds. Add in the flour mixture and blend together for an additional 30 seconds, or until the batter is free of lumps. 

To Assemble:

Fill muffin cups to the top with the pumpkin batter. Grab the cream cheese filling from the fridge and scoop up approximately one tablespoon of filling. Roll gently into a ball, then press into the center of each muffin until mostly covered by the batter. Sprinkle a few of the candied pumpkin seeds on top.

Bake 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool in pan for 5-10 minutes, then remove to a rack to cool completely. You may need to run a knife lightly around the tops to remove the muffins from the tin. 

Leftovers can be stored in the freezer for pumpkin time, any time. Just defrost at room temp for 2 hours.

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