It doesn't seem that the pumpkin spice trend is going to let up anytime soon...or ever. I don't need pumpkin spice potato chips or anything (*shudders at the thought*), but these Pumpkin Spice Latte Cupcakes are right up my alley!
These Pumpkin Spice Latte Cupcakes are tender and spiced with a hint of espresso! To top them off, stabilized whipped cream and a sprinkle of pumpkin spice! Now you can get your PSL fix in cupcake form!
You know that I'm always striving for the best flavors possible in all my bakes! Getting pumpkin flavor is no problem, and the spices are a cinch. For the "latte" part of the PSL flavor profile, I turned to espresso powder. Measurements for each of the ingredients are included in the recipe card, below.
- Espresso Powder - For flavor. Espresso powder is an awesome way to add espresso flavor without adding liquid.
- Baking Soda & Baking Powder - For leavening.
- Ground Cinnamon, Nutmeg, & Cloves - For flavor. The "spice" in pumpkin spice!
- Pumpkin Purée - For flavor, moisture, and gorgeous color, too!
- Sugar - For sweetness and keeping the cupcakes soft and moist.
- Brown Sugar - For sweetness with a little warm molasses flavor.
- Vegetable Oil - For moisture and richness.
- Eggs - For moisture, richness, and a little leavening. You want your eggs to be at room temperature.
Whipped Cream Ingredients
- Unflavored Powdered Gelatin - Gelatin "stabilizes" the whipped cream. You won't taste the gelatin, and there's no gelatinous feel to the final product! Make sure to use *unflavored* gelatin, and note that the use of gelatin means that the recipe is no longer vegetarian. If you don't want to use gelatin, check out my 'Substitutions' section, below.
- Heavy (Whipping) Cream - Can't make whipped cream without it! Cold cream will whip up faster and fluffier!
- Powdered Sugar - For sweetness. I prefer powdered sugar because it dissolves completely, and the small amount of cornstarch in the powdered sugar also helps to stabilize the whipped cream.
- Vanilla Bean Paste - For flavor and gorgeous black vanilla bean flecks in the whipped cream!
Here's how to make these beauties, step by step! Additional detail is included in the recipe card, below.
Making the Cupcakes
- Combine the dry ingredients and whisk to combine. Set aside.
- In another bowl, combine the pumpkin, sugar, brown sugar, and vegetable oil. Add eggs one at a time and whisk to combine.
- Add the dry ingredients in two additions, mixing with a spatula until just combined. Divide the batter between the cups of the pan.
- Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow cupcakes to cool completely.
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Making the Whipped Cream
- Pour water into a small bowl. Sprinkle the gelatin evenly over the top and allow to bloom, then microwave until gelatin mixture is melted. Allow to cool slightly.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the cold heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla bean paste. Whip until you reach soft peaks.
- With the mixer running, drizzle in the gelatin mixture. Continue whipping to stiff peaks.
- Pipe or dollop the whipped cream on top of the cooled cupcakes.
Here are a few substitutions that you can make to this recipe:
- Instead of espresso powder: Espresso powder is the best ingredient to use for that "latte" flavor, since it's ground so finely. That said, you can substitute with instant coffee, but you'll want to grind it down as smoothly as possible so you have uniform flavor throughout your cupcakes. If you'd rather not use espresso powder, you can leave it out and you'll just have pumpkin spice cupcakes.
- Instead of gelatin: If you don't have gelatin or prefer not to use it, you can just leave it out and top the cupcakes with regular (non-stabilized) whipped cream. If you do this, you'll want to add the whipped cream to the cupcakes immediately before serving. Alternatively, you could frost the cupcakes with a half batch of this vanilla buttercream instead.
- Instead of vanilla bean paste: If you don't have vanilla bean paste, or prefer not to use it, you can substitute with an equal measure of vanilla extract.
While the whipped cream is stabilized, I recommend you add it to the cupcakes as close to when you plan to serve them as possible. The cupcakes can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, and are best eaten within a day.
Without the whipped cream, the baked and cooled cupcakes will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to five days. For longer storage, baked and cooled cupcakes can be frozen in an airtight container for up to three months. Just thaw, then add the whipped cream!
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Pumpkin Spice Latte Cupcakes
Pumpkin Spice Latte Cupcakes
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease a standard muffin pan or line with paper liners. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients (flour, espresso powder [see note], baking soda, baking powder, and spices). Whisk to combine. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine the pumpkin, sugar, brown sugar, and vegetable oil. Whisk to combine. Add eggs one at a time, whisking to incorporate the first before adding the second.
- Add the dry ingredients in two additions, mixing with a spatula until just combined. Divide the batter between the cups of the prepared pan (each cup will be about ⅔ full).
- Bake 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow cupcakes to cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes before turning them out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
For Whipped Cream
- Pour water into a small bowl. Sprinkle the gelatin evenly over the top and allow to bloom for about 10 minutes. You want to ensure that none of the gelatin is dry.
- Once the gelatin is bloomed, place in the microwave for about 10 seconds, or until the gelatin mixture is melted. Set aside to cool slightly.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla bean paste (see note). Using the whisk attachment, whip on medium speed until you reach soft peaks.
- With the mixer running on low speed, drizzle in the gelatin mixture. Increase the mixer speed to medium, and continue whipping to stiff peaks.
- Transfer the stabilized whipped cream to a pastry bag to pipe on top of the cupcakes, or dollop the whipped cream on top with a spoon. Sprinkle with spices, if desired (I just topped mine with cinnamon).
- While the whipped cream is stabilized, I recommend you add it to the cupcakes as close to when you plan to serve them as possible. The cupcakes can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, and are best eaten within a day.Without the whipped cream, the baked and cooled cupcakes will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to five days. For longer storage, baked and cooled cupcakes can be frozen in an airtight container for up to three months. Just thaw, then add the whipped cream!Enjoy!
Nutrition information is provided as a courtesy and is only an estimate.