Pumpkin muffins and cream cheese frosting—do you even remember a time when these two weren’t joined at the hip?
And who cares if you don’t. It shouldn’t be any other way.
What you’re about to see is the plushest pumpkin muffin with not just the silkiest of cream cheese frostings, but a secret silkiest swirl of cream cheese baked right into the batter. Cheesecakey filling + frosting = DOUBLE amazingness.
(Because nobody likes half-assed.)
I first discovered Pumpkin Cream Cheese Swirl Muffins a couple years ago over at The Novice Chef and they blew my mind. The best thing since sliced pumpkin bread.
My healthy, breakfast-friendly riff on Jessica’s recipe swops out the refined sugars, the addition of honey making it ultra moist (but don’t fret, there’s no soggy bottoms; I’ve rejigged the other liquid ingredients!). I also do a DIY pumpkin spice blend—it’s super-simple, and tastes like autumn magic.
One little thing: these beauties don’t dig the freezer. But really, it’s a non-issue, because the muffins won’t be begging for any prom dates. (Bake. Inhale. Repeat.)
P.S. The silky cream cheese frosting is totally optional. If you want the full-blown foodgasm, go for it, but if you wanna tone it down for the breakfast run (and I’ll never say you should), the muffins are already that pumpkin-cream-cheese combo heaven all on their own.Print
The plushest of pumpkin muffins with a silky cheesecake frosting AND secret swirly cream cheese filling. No refined sugar, but DOUBLE deliciousness. 🖤
For the muffins—
- 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
- 2 tsp true cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ginger
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 can (around 425g) 100% pumpkin purée
- 3/4 cup honey or maple syrup
- 2 large eggs
- just over 1/3 cup rapeseed or olive oil
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
For the secret cream cheese swirl—
- 225g (just under a cup) cream cheese/ soft white cheese
- 2 generous tablespoons honey or maple syrup
- 1 large egg yolk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the cream cheese frosting—
- 1/2 stick (around 50g) salted butter, softened
- 1 cup cream cheese/ soft white cheese
- 3/4 cup honey or maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 375°F / 180 C / Gas Mark 4. Arrange unbleached muffin cases in muffin tray.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, spices, baking soda and salt.
- In a large bowl, whisk pumpkin and honey together. Then add eggs, oil of choice and vanilla extract. Whisk until fully combined.
- Pour in flour mixture a little at a time, whisking only until you see no lumps.
- Using a ladle, spoon batter into muffin cases, filling 3/4 of the way for each.
- In a medium bowl, whisk cream cheese/ soft white cheese until smooth. Pour in honey, egg yolk and vanilla extract and whisk again until smooth and blended.
- Using a tablespoon, dollop one spoonful of the cream cheese mixture onto each muffin. Use a toothpick to swirl into the batter (think a few tiny swirls in a circular motion).
- Bake for 20-23 minutes, until the muffins are slightly springy to the touch (or an inserted toothpick comes out clean).
- Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
- Whisk together the butter and the cream cheese / soft white cheese. Pour in the honey and vanilla, then whisk again until silky smooth. Pop frosting in the refrigerator until chilled, and then smooth over completely cooled muffins.
* These muffins taste amazing fresh from the oven OR chilled—so feel free to bake ‘em the night before for the lushest breakfast everrr.