We were at soccer practice when a storm rolled in. In Florida, the skies can go from clear to hurricane-like in 5 minutes. And it doesn’t just rain; the heavens open up and cover you in blankets of water. The storm had its way with us and we were soaked from head to toe when my three boys and I ran to our car…which wouldn’t start. Uggh! My husband was out of town so I called my friend Jenee who sent her husband to my rescue.
Since my car was in the shop all day Saturday getting fixed, I took advantage of being home bound. I plugged in my Leaves air freshener, busted out my Halloween decorations with the boys, and baked these muffins as a thank you to my friends for helping me.
I’ve seen these muffins ALL over the Internet. Supposedly they are a Starbucks knockoff. But I had to know, as The Girl Who Ate Everything, if they were really worth all the hype.
Yes. Yes, they are. I usually like to let the food do the talking, but honestly they are one of the best muffins I’ve ever had – let alone made. Super moist, chock full of spices, and just like a muffin you would get in a bakery. A cream cheese surprise in the middle mixed with the pumpkin is divine. They do have a couple of steps in making them, but it’s worth it. Eat them warm, cold, or room temperature. I ate WAY too many.
|Put a generous dallop of the cream cheese mixture in the middle of the batter. I put mine a little too high on a couple and the cream cheese poked out the top. Oops.|
|For the topping, you are supposed to cut in the butter with a pastry blender. I usually start doing it that way then end up mixing it with my hands. Just make sure you pop it back in the fridge if you use your hands because it’s supposed to be cold.|
- 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 4 large eggs
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 cups pumpkin puree (see Note)
- 1¼ cups vegetable oil
- ½ cup sugar
- 5 tablespoons flour
- 1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- To prepare the filling, combine the cream cheese and powdered sugar in a medium bowl and mix well until blended and smooth. Transfer the mixture to a piece of plastic wrap and shape into a log about 1½-inches in diameter. Smooth the plastic wrap tightly around the log, and reinforce with a piece of foil. Transfer to the freezer and chill until at least slightly firm, at least 2 hours. The mixture will still be somewhat soft but firmer.
- To make the muffins, preheat the oven to 350? F. Line muffin pans with paper liners. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, pumpkin pie spice, salt and baking soda; whisk to blend. In the bowl of an electric mixer combine the eggs, sugar, pumpkin puree and oil. Mix on medium-low speed until blended. With the mixer on low speed, add in the dry ingredients, mixing just until incorporated.
- To make the topping, combine the sugar, flour and cinnamon in a small bowl; whisk to blend. Add in the butter pieces and cut into the dry ingredients with a pastry blender or two forks until the mixture is coarse and crumbly. I always get inpatient here and mix it together with my hands so that it looks like the texture of wet sand. I know you aren't supposed to do it this way but I'm impatient. Transfer to the refrigerator to chill until ready to use.
- To assemble the muffins, fill each muffin well with a small amount of batter, just enough to cover the bottom of the liner (1-2 tablespoons). Slice the log of cream cheese filling into 24 equal pieces. Place a slice of the cream cheese mixture into each muffin well. You want to put the cream cheese lower than you think because it will rise a lot during the baking process. Divide the remaining batter among the muffin cups, placing on top of the cream cheese to cover completely. Sprinkle a small amount of the topping mixture over each of the muffin wells.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely before serving. I like them warm, cold, and room temperature.
Source: Annie's Eats