Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cupcakes

A spin-off of my original and highly popular pumpkin chocolate chip bread recipe, these Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cupcakes are mix of pumpkin, spice, chocolate and cream cheese and are a big hit in my house!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cupcakes by JavaCupcake.com

Is it too early for pumpkin?  It IS September.  There ARE  rain and clouds here in Germany.  The temperature IS in the 50s and the commissary has Halloween candy for sale.  Those are all sings that’s it’s perfectly okay to start baking with pumpkin, right?


Good.  Now that we’re all in agreement.  Let’s get to these cupcakes.

The most popular recipe on my blog is my Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread.  People rant and rave over how amazingly delicious it is!  AND they love that it isn’t full of sugar.  So I knew that I needed to turn this bread into a cupcake!   But, not just any cupcake… one that really showed off the great pumpkin flavor the bread already had!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cupcakes by JavaCupcake.com

Pumpkin Perfection!

So, if you’re tried the pumpkin chocolate chip bread…. you NEED to try these cupcakes.  You’re really going to love them!


Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cupcakes
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Simple, delicious and full of flavor... these pumpkin chocolate chip cupcakes are sure to please everyone this Fall!
Serves: 18 cupcakes
For the cupcakes
  • 1⅔ cup flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • ¾ cup vegetable oil
  • 1½ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
For the frosting
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 4oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • ¼ cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix)
  • 1lb powdered sugar
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 Tbsp heavy whipping cream
  • mini chocolate chips, for garnish
For the cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 375 F degrees. Line cupcake pan with liners.
  2. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs. Add the pumpkin puree and whisk until combined and smooth.
  4. Mix in the vanilla, sour cream and vegetable oil and whisk until combined.
  5. Pour wet mixture into the dry, flour mixture. Gently fold together until no more dry ingredients can be seen. Make sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl during this process. DO NOT OVERMIX!
  6. Add the chocolate chips and fold gently 2-3 times to combine.
  7. Fill the cupcake liners at least ⅔ full with batter.
  8. Bake 15-17 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  9. Allow to cool in pans for 3-5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
For the frosting
  1. In the bowl of your stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until smooth. Add the cream cheese and mix again until smooth. Scrape the sides of the bowl.
  2. Add the pumpkin puree and beat 1 minute.
  3. One cup at a time, add the powdered sugar, mixing until smooth after each addition.
  4. Mix in the cinnamon, nutmeg, heavy cream and vanilla.
  5. Beat on high for 1-2 minutes or until well combined, smooth and fluffy.
  1. Using a Wilton 1M tip fitted on a piping bag, pipe swirls of frosting onto each cupcake.
  2. Garnish with mini chocolate chips.

Spiced Pumpkin Cupcakes topped with Acorns

You know what I realized this weekend?  I haven’t posted a basic pumpkin cupcake recipe on my blog yet!  How can that be, right?  I’ve posted a bazillion other pumpkin recipes, including two other pumpkin cupcakes (but those were fancy), but not one that was just deliciously full of flavor and easy!  Enjoy these Spiced Pumpkin Cupcakes topped with Acorns!

So this weekend, my daughter’s Girl Scout troop is having a bake sale and I decided to take this opportunity to whip up a batch of Spiced Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese frosting topped with handmade candy acorns!

The recipes for these cupcakes come from Annie’s Eats… but I’ve made it even simpler omitting the mixer and just using bowls and a whisk!

I’ve seen similar acorns topping cupcakes that used mini Nilla Wafers as the “lid” to the acorn, but since I didn’t have access to the the mini’s Nilla’s here… my husband spotted the mini Nutter Butter bites and I think they worked even better with these acorns!  The bites have a textured top which was more realistic and a peanut butter center which made attaching it to the Kiss even easier! No frosting “glue” required!

Not only are these cupcakes super simple to make and the acorns super fun and cute…  this entire cupcake is so delicious!  I will be bringing these to a Bake Sale today to support my daughter’s Girl Scout Troop!  I hope they sell out!


Spiced Pumpkin Cupcakes topped with Acorns
  • 2⅔ cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp cloves
  • 1 15oz can pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 8oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1lb powdered sugar, sifted
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Hershey Kiss chocolate candies
  • Nutter Butter Bites mini cookies
  • Mini chocolate chips
  1. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugars, oil, pumpkin puree and vanilla extract until smooth.
  3. One at a time, crack the eggs into the mixture and whisk until incorporated.
  4. In three parts, add the flour mixture and whisk just until combined. After all the flour has been added, give the batter a good 10 whisks. DO NOT OVER MIX though!
  5. Fill cupcake liners ⅔ full and bake for 17-19 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  6. Leave cupcakes in pan at least 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
  1. In the bowl of your stand mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter together.
  2. Add the sifted flour 1 cup at a time and beat until smooth.
  3. Mix in the vanilla and cinnamon.
  4. Scrape the sides of the bowl and mix on high for 1 minute.
  1. Unwrap the Hershey Kiss candies.
  2. Twist apart a Nutter Butter Bite. Using the side of the cookie that still has peanut butter on it, press it onto of the Kiss with the textured side up.
  3. Press a mini chocolate chip onto the center of the Nutter Butter Bite for the stem. The warmth from your fingers should just barely warm the chocolate enough for it to stick on the cookie.
  4. Arrange 2 acorns on top of each cupcake to garnish.



Dark Chocolate Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes and an Owl Tutorial

Fun for the family, these Dark Chocolate Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes and Owl Tutorial make a sweet treat for your Fall party!

Dark Chocolate Spiced Pumpkin Owl Cupcakes by JavaCupcake

The winds are blowing, the leaves are rustling around the streets and the rain is falling from the grey skies.  Fall is upon us here in Bavaria!

And what is better for Fall than another pumpkin recipe! This cupcake is a one bowl batter that tastes just like pumpkin pie! Because I wanted to decorate these with owls, I had to top them with a chocolate frosting.  Instead of my favorite chocolate fudge frosting that calls for melted butter and baking chocolate, I used a basic chocolate buttercream which used cocoa powder.  I needed something that I could easily pipe and spread and my chocolate fudge recipe can get a bit thick.  This buttercream worked perfectly!

Dark Chocolate Spiced Pumpkin Owl Cupcakes by JavaCupcake

I know these cute owls on top have been floating around the internet, but I just had to give them a try!  Especially since I kind of have this fascination with owls.  (Our son Matthew, now 7 months old, well his baby theme is owls!) Below the recipe, you’ll find a full tutorial on how I made them!



5 from 1 reviews
Dark Chocolate Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes
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Cupcakes that taste like pumpkin pie topped with a spicy chocolate buttercream! Nothing better!
Serves: 12-16 cupcakes
Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes
  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • ½ cup brown sugar, packed
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • ⅓ cup milk
  • 1 cup flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ginger
  • ⅛ tsp nutmeg
Dark Chocolate Cinnamon Frosting
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ½ cup Hershey's Dark Chocolate cocoa
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1lb powdered sugar, sifted
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • pinch of salt
Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F degrees and line cupcake pan with liners.
  2. In a medium bowl, melt the butter in your microwave.
  3. Whisk in the sugars, eggs, vanilla and pumpkin puree.
  4. Sift the dry ingredients onto the pumpkin mixture and whisk until just combined. It will still be lumpy at this point.
  5. Add the milk and whisk until smooth.
  6. Fill cupcake liners ¾ full. NOTE: Don't be afraid to fill these liners full! These cupcakes do better with more batter in the cups and puff up nicely!
  7. Bake 16-18 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  8. Allow to cool in the pan for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
Dark Chocolate Cinnamon Frosting
  1. Cream together the butter, cocoa, cinnamon and vanilla.
  2. One cup at a time, add the sugar and beat on high until smooth.
  3. With the mixer on low, slowly add the heavy cream until you reach your desired consistency. NOTE: If you're just going to basically frost your cupcakes, you'll want the frosting stiff enough to pipe onto your cupcakes. If you're making the owls, make it a little looser so that you can easily decorate your owls.
  4. Mix on high for 4-5 minutes or until fluffy.

Owl Cupcake Tutorial


  • 1 package OREO cookies
  • 1 box Junior Mints candy
  • 1 box Reese’s Pieces candy
  • Frosting (recipe above)
  • Spatula or knife


  1. Prepare the OREO cookies by separating one cookie layer from the cream center, leaving the center in tact.
  2. Pipe a drop of frosting onto each cream center and place a Junior Mint candy on top.  This will create the eyes for the owl.
  3. Separate out the orange Reese’s Pieces candies and set aside.
  4. Using the spatula or knife, frost cupcake creating a flat surface.  At the top of the cupcake, make two little points with the frosting for the owl ears.
  5. Place two eyes on the cupcake, making sure to leave room for the beak and not to cover the ears.
  6. Place an orange candy under and between the eyes for the beak.


Pumpkin Cupcakes with Maple Frosting

I’m so excited!  Not only was our Commissary finally stocked with pumpkin puree but to share my new favorite pumpkin recipe! I just baked it this afternoon and its so delicious thank you Ina Garten for making this pumkinlicious creation that I found off of Pinterest.

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Maple Frosting

Makes 12 servings

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature

1 cup canned pumpkin purée (8 ounces), not pie filling

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed

1/2 cup vegetable oil

Maple Frosting (recipe follows)

1/2 cup coarsely chopped Heath bars, for serving (2 1.4-ounce bars)

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Brush or spray the top of 10 muffin tins with vegetable oil and line them with 10 paper liners.

2. Into a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. In a larger bowl, whisk together the eggs, pumpkin purée, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vegetable oil. Add the flour mixture and stir until combined.

3. Divide the batter among the prepared tins (I use a level 2 1/4-inch ice cream scoop) and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Set aside to cool completely.

4. Spread the cupcakes with the Maple Frosting and sprinkle with the chopped toffee bits.

Maple Frosting

6 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

1/4 teaspoon Boyajian Natural Maple Flavor (I used Mc Cormick)

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

2 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (I just used a wooden spoon and mixed it well), cream the cream cheese and butter on low speed until smooth. Stir in the maple flavoring and vanilla extract. With the mixer still on low, slowly add the confectioners’ sugar and mix until smooth.