The weather has turned slightly cooler here on the Eastern side of the country, okay okay, it may have only been cool outside for a couple of days but those day snapped me right in to fall. As soon as I woke up to a rainy cold morning I instantly wanted some sort of pumpkiney baked good and a bowl of chili. Thanks to my often hectic work schedule I wasn’t able to get either of them immediately, but I just turned the AC in the house down a couple notches and pretended the weather still justified my fall food cravings. I have been eying these muffins since last year and was finally able to move them from my “must try” bookmark to my “tried & loved” bookmark immediately. I won’t try and fool you into believing these are any kind of healthy, but man are they yummy! I think the next time I make these (which will be in the near future) I will skip the cream cheese filling to help lighten them up a little since my hubby isn’t much for cream cheese anyhow.

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

These muffins are amazingly light, moist, and flavorful so I will definitely be keeping this recipe for my go to pumpkin bread/muffin. The original recipe did call for a streusel topping which I skipped (don’t get me wrong I love streusel, but I wasn’t feeling THAT unhealthy), but you may want to check it out if you are interested. Next time I think I will throw some toasted pumpkin seeds on top of them before baking to add a healthy crunch. In my opinion, these are best served slightly warmed and with a cup of hot coffee, which actually sounds pretty great right now. 🙂 Enjoy!

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins (Print Me)

Yield: 24 regular or 12 large muffins
Ingredients:
For the filling:
8 oz cream cheese, softened (I used light)
1 cup confectioners’ sugar

For the muffins:
3 cups white-wheat/all-purpose flour
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp ground cloves
1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
4 large eggs
2 cups sugar
2 cups pumpkin puree
1¼ cups vegetable oil (or applesauce, I used half of each)

Directions:
To prepare the filling, combine the cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar in a medium bowl and mix well until blended and smooth. Refrigerate the mixture while you make the muffins to allow it to cool and thicken slightly.

For the muffins, preheat your oven to 350˚ F and line or spray your muffin pans. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, pumpkin pie spice, salt and baking soda then whisk to blend. In a large bowl using an electric mixer on medium-low speed combine the eggs, sugar, pumpkin puree and oil until blended. Turn the mixer to low and add in the dry ingredients, mix just until incorporated.

Fill each muffin pan with just enough batter to cover the bottom of each well (about 1-2 tablespoons). Scoop a small amount of the cream cheese mixture into each muffin well, then top each with the remaining batter, covering the cream cheese completely.

Bake for 20-25 minutes (30-35 for large muffins). Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely before serving. It may be tempting to eat them hot from the oven, but the cream cheese will be extremely hot, patience is a virtue.

Slightly adapted from: Annie’s Eats

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