On Willpower [pumpkin spice latte cupcakes]

The (Not So) New Girl has better willpower than anyone I know.  Our workplace is often overflowing with cookies, brownies, and whatever leftover piece of grocery store sheet cake from your grandma’s birthday celebration your family didn’t want.  Once Mrs. CV(D) and I decide something is worth the calories, we go all out, and eat to our heart’s content.  But not The (Not So) New Girl.  She values restraint and moderation, and I do admire her for that.

pumpkin spice latte cupcakes.

I just don’t know how she does it.

This is all a long-winded way of saying that The (Not So) New Girl had a birthday, and it took a full 363 days of life after it happened for me to make her cupcakes.  We had to find a window in which I had time to bake and she deemed it acceptable to consume the calories.  And if that day was two days before her next birthday, then so be it.  She requested Pumpkin Spice Latte cupcakes.  I’m affectionately titling them “basic” cupcakes, to be best enjoyed while wearing yoga pants and Uggs.

To make 24, you will need:

For the cupcakes:

2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
3 tbsp. espresso powder
2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp. grated nutmeg
1/8 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. salt
1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin puree
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup canola or vegetable oil
4 large eggs
½ cup coffee or espresso, for brushing

For the icing:

2¼ cups heavy cream, chilled
¼ cup confectioners’ sugar

For garnish:

Caramel sauce

To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350°F. Line cupcake pans with paper liners. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, espresso powder, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and salt. Stir together and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, blend together the pumpkin, granulated sugar, brown sugar and oil. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. With the mixture on low speed, add the flour mixture in two additions, mixing just until incorporated.

Fill the cupcake liners about three-quarters full. Bake until the cupcakes are golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 18-20 minutes. Transfer the pans to a wire rack and let cool for 10 minutes, then remove the cupcakes from the pans. While the cupcakes are still warm, brush them two or three times with the coffee or espresso, allowing the first coat to soak in before repeating. Let cool completely.

To make the frosting, place the heavy cream in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whip on medium-low speed at first, gradually increasing to high speed. Blend in the confectioners’ sugar gradually. Whip until stiff peaks form, being careful not to over-beat. Use a pastry bag fitted with a decorative tip to frost the cooled cupcakes. Sprinkle with ground cinnamon and drizzle with caramel sauce. Store in an airtight container and refrigerate.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s