Pumpkin Mocha Cupcakes

Pumpkin Mocha – is that even a thing? I refuse to Google it – I prefer to think I’m awesomely brilliant, even though I am sure that’s not even remotely the case.

These cupcakes came about after I received a new comment one of my first posts here on MBA for Chocolate Cupcakes. Sometimes it makes me wince a little to look back at photos, writing, and recipes from over 4 years ago. And even though I’ve thought about deleting/editing so many of them, they are a constant reminder of the progress I’ve made as a blogger.

When I approved the comment, I actually laughed out loud at the way the recipe was written and was immediately embarrassed. Yet something compelled me to immediately print it out and make it again – only this time with a Fall spin.

Pumpkin makes any cupcake deliciously moist. Adding mocha flavor to the mix just means an uber-decadent cupcake experience that could just be Thanksgiving-changing.

I’m glad I made these again. Sometimes it’s worth going back to see where you’ve been, so that you can really see how far you’ve come. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

*Edit: Due to a cut and paste error the recipe was edited on 11/21/12 at 1:30 pm EST

Pumpkin Mocha Cupcakes

Yield: about 36 cupcakes

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 18-22 minutes


For the Cupcakes

2 cups Gold Medal all-purpose flour
2 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons homemade pumpkin pie spice
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup pumpkin spice coffee, hot
1 cup hot water
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

For the Pumpkin Spice Buttercream

2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 pounds (about 7 1/2 cups) confectioners' sugar, sifted
1/2 cup pure pumpkin puree
2 teaspoons homemade pumpkin pie spice
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract


1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line a muffin tin with paper liners.

2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, or in a large bowl with a whisk, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, pumpkin pie spice, and cocoa powder until thoroughly combined.

3. Add in oil, coffee, water, eggs and vanilla. Mix until well combined and smooth. Batter will be thin.

4. Using a large cookie scoop, distribute the batter between 36 muffin wells; about 3 tablespoons of batter per well.

5. Bake in preheated oven for 18-22 minutes or until the tops of the cakes spring back when lightly touched. Allow cupcakes to cool inside muffin tins for about 10 minutes.

6. Remove cupcakes from muffin tins and allow to fully cool on a wire rack. Once cupcakes are cool, prepare your frosting.

For the Pumpkin Buttercream

1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter medium-high speed for about 6 minutes.

2. Turn the mixer down to low speed and gradually add in the confectioners' sugar until it is completely incorporated. Add in pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice and vanilla and mix until incorporated. Turn off the mixer and check the buttercream for taste and texture - add more spice if necessary. Turn the mixer back up to medium-high speed and beat the mixture for about 3-4 minutes or until light and fluffy. If the buttercream is a bit too thick, you add in a bit of milk one teaspoon at a time until the desired consistency is reached.

3. Pipe the frosting onto the cooled cupcakes and if desired, garnish with a sprinkling of festive Fall sprinkles.


-If you don't like the idea of coffee in your cupcakes, simply substitute another cup of hot water for the coffee.


This post is part of an ongoing relationship between My Baking Addiction and Gold Medal Flour. In June of 2012, My Baking Addiction attended a Farm to Table event in Kansas City to learn why Gold Medal has been America’s flour of choice for 125 years. Although this is a sponsored post, the views and opinions expressed are our own and based upon our personal experiences with Gold Medal Flour.

36 Responses to “Pumpkin Mocha Cupcakes”

  1. Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar — November 21, 2012 at 10:36 am

    These sound totally lovely and delicious! Yum!


  2. Jen — November 21, 2012 at 10:39 am

    I love the look of these but I’m very confused with the directions. I think that you may have mixed up some of the cupcake ingredients under the buttercream heading (eggs, coffee, vanilla? — don’t those go in the cupcakes?) Thanks in advance for the clarification…


    • MBA — November 21, 2012 at 1:44 pm

      Thanks for letting me know of the error. Due to a cut and paste error some ingredients ended up in the wrong place. The corrections have been made. Have a great day!

  3. Kim — November 21, 2012 at 10:48 am

    I think the ingredients got a little tangled- the eggs go in the cupcakes right? Not the frosting? :-)


  4. Danielle Wood — November 21, 2012 at 10:48 am

    Hi there,
    I just wanted to double check, you have 2 tsp of vanilla extract on the buttercream ingredients twice. Is this an error? Thanks! Looks delish.


    • MBA — November 21, 2012 at 1:42 pm

      Thanks for letting me know of the error. Due to a cut and paste error some ingredients ended up in the wrong place. The corrections have been made. Have a great day!

  5. Oh my your cupcakes are just adorable! I love the combination of mocha and pumpkin!! I love the leave sprinkles on top!! Happy Thanksgiving!


  6. Anna-Lisa — November 21, 2012 at 11:12 am

    I just wanted to let you know that the list of ingredients for the cake and frosting is a bit jumbled.
    And.. Do you think it would be possible to substitute some of the oil for pumpkin puree in the cake batter?


    • MBA — November 21, 2012 at 1:41 pm

      Thanks for letting me know of the error. Due to a cut and paste error some ingredients ended up in the wrong place. The corrections have been made. Have a great day!

  7. Nicole — November 21, 2012 at 11:27 am

    Where did you find that adorable flatware? I’m assuming plastic?


    • MBA — December 19, 2012 at 10:07 pm

      The flatware is from Anthropologie. You are correct, they are plastic.

  8. Sadie — November 21, 2012 at 11:29 am

    While the cupcakes sound awesome, I think the most importent thing here is the spoons. They are great.


  9. Jaime @ Jaim's Kitchen — November 21, 2012 at 12:17 pm

    These are just brilliant! I thought I’ve had enough pumpkin recipes to last a lifetime but these sound so scrumptious. I think you are absolutely right about looking back and seeing the progress. Had a great conversation with another blogger today and she was saying how we all strive for perfection in our blogs but we’ve all started from somewhere. Our blogs grow together with us, and that makes the journey so much more meaningful to follow. Your blog just keeps getting better x


  10. ThisBakerGirlBlogs — November 21, 2012 at 1:58 pm

    Pumpkin and mocha? Sounds like a winner :D


  11. olivia — November 21, 2012 at 5:33 pm

    these sound great but i amjust a bit confused on the coffe. do you buy the whole pumpkin spice coffe or do you make coffe and add pumpkin spice to it?


    • MBA — November 21, 2012 at 10:02 pm

      The pumpkin spice coffee is a Keurig brand k cup so the it’s purchased as flavored coffee. I just simply made a cup of the coffee using the k cup and added to the recipe. I hope this helps and have a great day!

  12. Brittany — November 21, 2012 at 8:45 pm

    Hi there ! I am wondering how you get pumpkin spice cofffe? Please and thank you !


    • MBA — November 21, 2012 at 9:48 pm

      The pumpkin spice coffee is a Keurig brand flavored coffee cup. Simply make a cup of their coffee and add to the recipe. Good luck and I hope this helps!

  13. Karly — November 22, 2012 at 11:27 am

    I play that game all the time. I think of some brilliant combo and then refuse to google. In my head, I’m super awesome. :)


  14. Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious — November 23, 2012 at 1:01 am

    I actually made these for thanksgiving dessert and it was an absolute hit! Thanks for such an awesome recipe :)


    • MBA — November 24, 2012 at 7:33 pm

      I am so glad you enjoyed the recipe! Thanks for stopping by and providing your feedback – have a great day!

  15. Brittany — November 23, 2012 at 10:25 am

    Thanks ! I dont have a keurig :/ o the little cups do you think some regular coffe that was strong would work with like a pumpkinspices in it ?


    • MBA — November 24, 2012 at 8:03 pm

      I haven’t tried using regular coffee in this particular recipe, but I’m sure it would taste just as yummy! Good luck and have a great day!

  16. buttercream bakehouse — November 25, 2012 at 7:35 am

    What a great combo….must try this!


  17. JulieD — November 26, 2012 at 1:02 pm

    These look and sound fantastic!!


  18. Jeff @ Cheeseburger — November 26, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    Ok, you are awesomely brilliant! These pumpkin mocha cupcakes are amazing!


  19. Loretta | A Finn In The Kitchen — November 27, 2012 at 12:11 am

    Pumpkin buttercream sounds like something I’d eat off a spoon…


  20. Jeanette — November 27, 2012 at 12:09 pm

    Made them, they were as fabulous as they sound


  21. Kasia — December 13, 2012 at 11:26 am

    Those look so yummy!


  22. Hannah — January 2, 2013 at 5:08 pm

    This was seriously amazing. It only made 24 cupcakes, which was more than enough, so I cut the frosting in half. My only issue was the frosting was entirely too sweet, so I added more pumpkin. Unfortunately this seemed to affect the texture of the frosting. But overall it was amazing and received many compliments tonight when I served it!!


    • MBA — January 4, 2013 at 9:20 am

      I am so glad you enjoyed the recipe. The frosting, by itself, is rather sweet; after experimenting, it seems to compliment the flavor of the cake beautifully. Thanks for stopping by and providing your feedback – have a great day!

  23. serene — March 15, 2013 at 9:51 am

    Please may I have the conversions table from cups to grams. Thank you..


  24. YV — May 17, 2013 at 4:25 pm

    I love that you have a section just for pumpkin!


  25. Sarah — November 10, 2014 at 11:07 am

    Is the pumpkin purée supposed to go in the frosting or the cupcakes?


    • Jamie — November 10, 2014 at 4:30 pm

      It goes into the buttercream. I hope this is helpful. Thanks for visiting.



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