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Light and dainty, these Pumpkin Ginger Cupcakes are topped with a creamy ginger frosting made of mascarpone and cream cheese. These soft and moist mini cupcakes definitely belong on your fall dessert table!

Mini pumpkin cupcakes with cream cheese frosting on a serving platter

Soft & moist mini cupcakes

This recipe is so fun! It yields mini cupcakes that are soft, moist, and flavorful. The pumpkin ginger cupcakes are deliciously spiced, with the perfect balance of fall flavors, and each one is topped with a puff of ginger frosting. So good and perfect for fall!

Due to their fun size and delightful flavor, these mini cupcakes are actually one of my favorite fall treats. They make a perfect Thanksgiving dessert too, a nice alternative to pumpkin pie and the perfect size for a dessert buffet.

My favorite part of these mini pumpkin cupcakes is the frosting. It’s a mix of cream cheese and mascarpone cheese, which makes it both creamy and light. The minimal flavor of the frosting is the perfect blank canvas for any spices you want to add – in the case of this recipe, ginger.

Whip these cupcakes up during the holiday season and prepare to indulge in utter deliciousness. And since they are mini, you can enjoy more than one at a time!

Mini pumpkin ginger cupcakes, one cut in half

What you’ll need

Both the pumpkin cupcakes and ginger frosting use just a handful of ingredients to create this indulgent treat.

Ingredient notes & substitutions

  • Unsalted butter – Butter should be softened but not melted.
  • Granulated sugar – You could use a mix of brown sugar and granulated if desired.
  • Pumpkin puree – I used canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling!). Fresh pumpkin puree would likely work as well but I haven’t tested it.
  • Eggs – Allow eggs to come to room temperature.
  • Vanilla extract & salt – For additional flavor.
  • All-purpose flour – I only recommend all-purpose flour for these cupcakes.
  • Baking powder & baking soda – Help create the light and fluffy texture.
  • Pumpkin pie spice – You can find a blend at the store or make your own.
  • Ground ginger – Adds the zangy ginger flavor throughout the cupcakes and frosting.
  • Milk – Any dairy milk will work but whole milk will yeild the best results.
  • Mascarpone & cream cheese – Mascarpone is similar to cream cheese but lighter and combining the two gives you a mild, light, and creamy frosting. However, if you don’t have mascarpone on hand, you can swap it for softened, unsalted butter.
  • Vanilla paste – If you don’t have vanilla paste, you can use more vanilla extract.
  • Confectioners’ sugar – Used in the frosting for stability and sweetness.

How to make pumpkin ginger cupcakes

These mini ginger cupcakes are quick and easy to make! All you need is a mini muffin tray and a mixer!

  1. Make the cupcake batter. Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy, then beat in the pumpkin puree. Add the eggs one at a time, then the vanilla. In a separate bowl, whisk the dry ingredients together. Gradually add to the pumpkin mixture, alternating with milk.
  2. Bake. Transfer 1 tablespoon of batter into each muffin cup. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the pan and cool completely on a wire rack.
  1. Make the ginger frosting. Beat the mascarpone and cream cheese until fluffy. Mix in the vanilla and ground ginger until incorporated. Add one cup of sugar and beat until smooth. For thicker frosting, beat in more sugar.
  2. Frost the cupcakes & enjoy! Once the cupcakes have cooled, top with the ginger frosting.

Can I make these as regular-sized cupcakes?

While I love the cuteness of mini cupcakes and think they’re perfect for holidays because A) you get more cupcakes and B) they’re the perfect size for a dessert buffet, you can absolutely make full-sized pumpkin ginger cupcakes.

For regular cupcakes, you’ll want to add an additional ½ teaspoon of baking soda to ensure they rise properly.

Then just line a 12 cup muffin pan with liners and fill ⅔ full with the batter and adjust the bake time to 17 to 19 minutes.

Follow the rest of the recipe as normal.

Pumpkin ginger cupcakes on a white serving tray

Tips for success

For fluffy and moist cupcakes, here are a few things to keep in mind.

  • Use room temperature ingredients. The eggs and milk should both be room temperature before adding to the recipe. I usually just let mine sit on the counter for 30 minutes or so.
  • Don’t worry if the wet ingredients look curdled. Once you add the eggs and vanilla, mixture may look curdled. This normal and will smooth out once the flour is added.
  • How to tell when the cupcakes are done. The easiest way to tell when the mini cupcakes are done baking is if cupcake springs back when touched.
  • Let the cupcakes cool before frosting. It’s important to let the cupcakes cool to room temperature before frosting – otherwise, the frosting may melt.

Serving suggestions

Serve these cute little pumpkin ginger cupcakes at room temperature after baking or chilled. I like to keep them in the fridge until it’s time to put them on the dessert table, to prevent any melting.

If you love ginger, you can add some chopped crystallized ginger to the tops before serving for an extra twist.


How to freeze & store

  • How to store. Frosted pumpkin cupcakes can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Unfrosted cupcakes will keep for 5 days in the fridge.
  • How to freeze mini cupcakes. These mini cupcakes can be frozen, unfrosted, for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge then frost before serving.

More pumpkin recipes

Pumpkin Ginger Cupcakes

Pumpkin Ginger Cupcakes

Yield: 48 mini cupcakes
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes

Light and dainty, these Pumpkin Ginger Cupcakes are topped with a creamy ginger frosting made of mascarpone and cream cheese. These soft and moist mini cupcakes definitely belong on your fall dessert table!

Ingredients

For the cupcakes

  • ½ cup (113 g) unsalted butter, softened
  • ¾ cup (150 g) granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (244 g) pumpkin puree
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (260 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (120 ml) milk, room temperature

For the frosting

  • 8 ounces (226 g) mascarpone cheese, softened
  • 8 ounces (226 g) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla paste, or vanilla extract
  • ¾ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1-2 cups (120-240 g) confectioners' sugar

Instructions

Make the cupcakes

  1. Heat oven to 350ºF degrees. Line two mini muffin pans with paper cups. Set aside
  2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy. Beat in the pumpkin puree. Add the eggs one at a time; beat well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla extract. The mixture may look curdled, this normal and will smooth out once the flour is added.
  3. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, ginger, and salt in a medium bowl; stir with a fork or whisk. Gradually add the flour mixture to the pumpkin mixture alternating with the milk. Begin and end with the flour mixture.
  4. Spoon 1 tablespoon of batter into each prepared muffin cup. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until the cupcake springs back when touched. Remove from pan immediately and allow the cupcakes to cool completely on a wire rack.

Make the frosting

  1. Beat the mascarpone and cream cheese on medium speed until fluffy. Beat in vanilla extract and ground ginger just until incorporated.
  2. Add one cup of the sugar and beat on low until smooth. Beat in more sugar if thicker frosting is desired. Spread the frosting over cooled cupcakes. 

Notes

Pumpkin puree: I used pure pumpkin puree from a can. I imagine homemade puree would work also but I've not tested it.

Mascarpone: It's very similar to cream cheese but lighter and creamier. Mixed with the cream cheese, you'll get a mild, light, and creamy frosting. I highly recommend using it. However, you can swap it for softened, unsalted butter if needed.

Additional ginger flavor: If you LOVE ginger, garnish the tops of the frosted cupcakes with chopped crystallized ginger.

To make regular sized cupcakes: Add an additional ½ teaspoon of baking soda. Line a 12 cup muffin pan with paper liners and fill ⅔ full with batter. Bake cupcakes for 17-19 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with only a few moist crumbs.

Make ahead tips:

  1. The frosted cupcakes can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  2. Unfrosted cupcakes will keep for up to 5 days in the refrigerator. Or 3 months in the freezer. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and frost before serving.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 48 Serving Size: 1 cupcake
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 110Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 24mgSodium: 75mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 0gSugar: 8gProtein: 1g

The nutrition information provided is for convenience and as a courtesy only. It is not guaranteed to be accurate because nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator and input the exact ingredients you used in the recipe.

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27 Comments

    1. Thank you for the kind words, Analida!

    1. Me either, Kelly! I want to add it to everything, haha! Thank you so much for reading. 🙂

  1. Congratulations to your hubby! I’m sure he’s so appreciative of your support during is 6 month training period:) I love how bright and fun these little cupcakes are and how you described the frosting as a puff… I’ve never used mascarpone cheese before in frosting, but it sounds perfect. Pinned!

    1. Thank you, Heather. I sure hope he’s appreciative. You must try the mascaropne cheese in frosting, you will love it!

  2. Yay, congrats to your husband, Jen! I’m so happy and excited for you guys! These cupcakes are gorgeous and are perfect for a celebration! The pumpkin cupcakes look so soft and flavorful and I love that they are mini too 🙂 And that ginger frosting with caramel drizzle looks to die for!!! Pinning 🙂

    1. Thanks for the kind words and the pin, Kelly! You are always so nice. 🙂

    1. You’re a sweetheart, Manali! Thanks for the pin.

    1. You’re so kind, Stacey! Thank you!

    1. I know, right! These cupcakes will certainly take all the stress away! Thanks for reading, Julie!

  3. Congratulations on your new house and to your husband! What an exciting time for you. These little cupcakes look so amazing! You really can’t beat the pumpkin, ginger, and caramel sauce combo. Pinning to try ASAP!

    1. Thanks for pinning, Erin!

  4. Congratulations to your husband, Jen! How exciting! I’m so glad you shared these cupcakes. They look incredible! I’m in awe of your frosting piping skills. Mine always turns out like a big fat blob, so I’m loving yours! And what a great idea to make a ginger flavor, so perfect for these pumpkin cupcakes! Pinned!

    1. It takes the right tip, Gayle. After many blobs, I finally invested in larger tips. I believe the one I used here is the Wilton 2D. Thanks for the pin!