Folks, we’ve officially entered party season. If you’re a regular Be Well Philly reader, I’m assuming you (like me) feel a twinge of apprehension tainting your holiday spirit: Will these holiday parties ruin my healthy diet? Nope, not this year—I’ve got you covered.
These pumpkin mini-cupcakes clock in at a cool 115 calories–but that can be our little secret. The cupcakes are sweet and tender, and the frosting is smooth and tangy. Your health-conscious friends will thank you for bringing a guilt-free dessert, and your health-scoffing friends don’t have to know!
If you’re baking for kids, know that these cupcakes are toddler-approved, both because they’re made from “real” ingredients and because my toddler ate three. Another point in the pro column: You don’t have haul out your electric mixer to make ’em. Seriously, these cupcakes came together so quickly I kept picturing that red button from Staples. That was easy.
Pumpkin Mini-Cupcakes with Greek Yogurt-Maple Frosting
For the cupcakes
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour (or white whole wheat flour)
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. salt
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup canola or veggie oil
1/2 cup pumpkin puree (note: not pumpkin pie filling)
1/4 cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla
For the frosting
4 oz. low-fat cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup nonfat, plain Greek yogurt
2 tbsp. pure maple syrup
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line two mini-muffin pans with paper liners (line 16 holes total).
2. Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt in a medium mixing bowl until combined.
3. Whisk brown sugar, oil, egg, pumpkin, milk and vanilla in a large mixing bowl until smoothly combined.
4. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and fold with a rubber spatula until just combined.
5. Fill muffin holes 2/3 of the way full with batter.
6. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until set in the center (touch gently with fingertip). Cool five minutes in pan. Transfer cupcakes to a wire rack to cool completely.
7. To make frosting, whisk cream cheese, yogurt and syrup until smoothly combined.
8. Spoon frosting onto cooled cupcakes and swirl with the back of a spoon to cover the top.
9. Sprinkle with cinnamon and serve.
Per serving: 115 calories, 6.4 fat grams (including 2 grams saturated fat), 18 milligrams cholesterol, 105 milligrams sodium, 11.8 grams carbs, 1.1 grams fiber, 5.2 grams sugar, 2.6 grams protein.
10 Healthy Pumpkin Recipes
Becca Boyd is a wife and mom who teaches culinary courses to students at Radnor High School. She creates healthy and delicious recipes in her West Chester kitchen and blogs about them on her website, Home Beccanomics. See more of Becca’s recipe for Be Well Philly here.