Gluten-Free Spice Cupcakes with Pumpkin Swirl Cream Cheese Frosting

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Spice Cupcakes with Pumpkin Swirl Cream Cheese Frosting


Spice cake has always been a favorite of mine. When I was little, I’d always request it for my birthday. Heck, I still do! So it’s no surprise that these gluten-free spice cupcakes with pumpkin swirl cream cheese frosting make an appearance at our house AT LEAST once each autumn.

Recipe card and recipe updated on 9/1/21.

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How to Make Gluten Free Spice Cupcakes with Pumpkin Swirl Cream Cheese Frosting

There is nothing better than the smell of gluten free spice cupcakes baking in the oven. It’s cozy, comforting, and pretty much the best thing ever. My recipe for spice cupcakes is thankfully very easy. It’s a one bowl affair, no stand mixer required. That means less cleanup too. These little cakes are light with a tender crumb and tons of spicy cinnamon flavor.  When topped with pumpkin swirl cream cheese frosting they are TO. DIE. FOR. The frosting pretty much tastes like pumpkin cheesecake. I added a little nutmeg, ginger and cloves to kick up the cake mix a just touch. And you know what? These two belong together. Seriously.

Ingredients  

  • 2 cups gluten-free all purpose flour blend
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum omit if your flour blend already contains it
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon cloves
  • 1 ½ cups brown sugar
  • ½ cup avocado oil or canola oil
  • ½ cup lowfat buttermilk
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For The Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 4 ounces of cream cheese room temperature
  • ½ cup butter softened
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt

For The Pumpkin Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 8 ounces cream cheese room temperature
  • ½ cup pumpkin puree
  • 5 tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1-2 drops orange food coloring if desired

Instructions for Gluten Free Spice Cupcakes with Pumpkin Swirl Cream Cheese Frosting 

  • Preheat oven to 400 °F. Whisk the flour, xanthan if using, baking powder, salt, spices, and sugar together in a large bowl. Be sure to break up any clumps of brown sugar. Add the oil, buttermilk. eggs and vanilla extract and whisk until smooth.
  • Spoon the batter into a paper-lined muffin tin, filling each about ⅔ full. You should have 1 dozen cupcakes. Bake for about 15-18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cupcake comes out clean. Cool completely on a rack.
  • Prepare the cream cheese frosting. Place the cream cheese and butter in the bowl of your mixer and beat to combine. Add the sugar, vanilla and salt and beat until smooth. Remove from mixer, place in one side of a large zip-top bag (fitted with a large star piping tip if desired) and set aside.
  • Clean the mixer bowl, then add the cream cheese and pumpkin and beat until combined. Add the brown sugar, pumpkin pie spice and vanilla extract and beat until smooth. Add a drop or two of orange food coloring, if desired and mix to combine. Spoon the frosting into the other side of the large zip top bag next to the plain cream cheese frosting.
  • If you haven’t already, snip off a corner of the bag and carefully twist the top of the bag to force the frosting down in the bag.
  • Pipe (or swirl) the frosting decoratively over each cupcake. Chill until ready to serve.
Gluten Free Spice Cupcakes with Pumpkin Swirl Cream Cheese Frosting
Gluten Free Spice Cupcakes with Pumpkin Swirl Cream Cheese Frosting

I think you’ll love these gluten free spice cakes with pumpkin swirl cream cheese frosting as much as we do. Serve them for dessert at any autumn festival, picnic or party. Or make them just because.

Love pumpkin spice and everything nice? We’ve got you covered!

Did you make this recipe? Be sure to leave a comment and star rating below (⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐). It means a lot and helps my content get seen! Post a picture and tag us on Instagram using the hashtags #agirldefloured #deflouredrecipes! Thank you!

Gluten Free Spice Cupcakes with Pumpkin Swirl Cream Cheese Frosting

Gluten-Free Spice Cakes with Pumpkin Swirl Cream Cheese Frosting

Alison Needham
These spiced cupcakes are delicious on their own. But it’s the pumpkin swirl cream cheese frosting that really brings them up over the top. Serve them for dessert at any autumn festival, picnic or party. Or make them just because.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12 cupcakes
Calories 492 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
  

For the Cream Cheese Frosting

For the Pumpkin Cream Cheese Frosting

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 400 °F. Whisk the flour, xanthan if using, baking powder, salt, spices, and sugar together in a large bowl. Be sure to break up any clumps of brown sugar. Add the oil, buttermilk. eggs and vanilla extract and whisk until smooth.
  • Spoon the batter into a paper-lined muffin tin, filling each about ⅔ full. You should have 1 dozen cupcakes. Bake for about 15-18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cupcake comes out clean. Cool completely on a rack.
  • Prepare the cream cheese frosting. Place the cream cheese and butter in the bowl of your mixer and beat to combine. Add the sugar, vanilla and salt and beat until smooth. Remove from mixer, place in one side of a large zip-top bag (fitted with a large star piping tip if desired) and set aside.
  • Clean the mixer bowl, then add the cream cheese and pumpkin and beat until combined. Add the brown sugar, pumpkin pie spice and vanilla extract and beat until smooth. Add a drop or two of orange food coloring, if desired and mix to combine. Spoon the frosting into the other side of the large zip top bag next to the plain cream cheese frosting.
  • If you haven’t already, snip off a corner of the bag and carefully twist the top of the bag to force the frosting down in the bag.
  • Pipe (or swirl) the frosting decoratively over each cupcake. Chill until ready to serve.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cupcakeCalories: 492kcalCarbohydrates: 71gProtein: 7gFat: 22gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 95mgSodium: 321mgPotassium: 163mgFiber: 3gSugar: 54gVitamin A: 2094IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 149mgIron: 2mg
Keyword Gluten Free Spice Cakes Pumpkin Swirl Cream Cheese Frosting
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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64 Comments

  1. Celeste parker says:

    you had me at PUmpkin Cheesecake 🙂

  2. Samantha M. says:

    These cupcakes look amazing! Fall, the time for everything pumpkin! It’s my favorite!!

  3. Kristina Castillo says:

    I have never tried any GF mixes…but I trust Kyra’s!

  4. Jessica Sullivan says:

    I have never tried of them, but I adore anything snickerdoodle. I am going to order some mixes so that I can try this recipe. It sounds YUMMY!

  5. joanne harp says:

    I’ve only tried Betty Crocker but have the snickerdoodle mix and want to make these cupcakes!

  6. I tried Kyra’s snickerdoodle cake mix and made cupcakes with cinnamon cream cheese frosting. They were fantastic and I would love to try her other mixes!

  7. I’ve tried the Bob’s red mill mixes and they are great.

  8. Stephanie says:

    I’ve never tried any GF mixes, but HAVE tried Kyra’s cupcakes and they are Amazing!

  9. I’ve used Hodgsin Mills cake mix but would love to try Kyra’s!

  10. I’ve tried Betty Crocker and Bob’s Red Mill. I liked them but would love to try other options!

  11. Lisa Johannes says:

    My daughter is 11 and was just diagnosed with Celiac Disease on Sept 19. The whole gluten free world is new to us. We are in the learning stages. We did make cupcakes using Pillsbury yellow cake mix. With her frosting them you barely know the cake is there!! (One mix, 2 frostings 🙂 We aren’t familiar with many brands yet so any to try would be GREAT!!!

  12. I have only tried Betty Crockers! I’d love to try some of Kyras Bake Shop items:)

  13. I have not tried any GF cake mixes yet. I was just diagnosed with Celiac Disease 6 weeks ago and haven’t baked anything for me yet. However these little cupcakes are going to my list of “MUST MAKE!”

  14. Jennifer C says:

    Looks great. I’d love to try these mixes.

  15. I can’t wait to try some of these cupcakes – they sound wonderful!

  16. Lisa Andersen says:

    I have only had the ones you had made me 🙂 Win for me!!

  17. I am fairly new to gluten free. Im also on weight loss diet.
    But I am Leary of mixes because of gmo. So what I have
    made I have used almond or coconut flours. where can I
    find these mixes by Kyra?

  18. I haven’t tried any gf mixes. I would love
    To start with yours!

  19. I haven’t tried any cake mixes yet — I’m pretty new to GF.

  20. I just tried a spice cake mix from Namaste Foods. It was delicious. It had suggestions for making it into gingerbread or applesauce cake too- I’m ready to try those. I think the icing you suggested would be great with this cake, although it is tasty without icing too. I also considered making a cinnamon icing for the top. Yum.

  21. Jana Dieter says:

    This looks absolutely fabulous! Love postings of recipes with Kyra’s mixes!

  22. Matt Stringham says:

    I have used the Betty Crockers and think they are pretty good. I also tried a willams sonoma. I would love to win this because I have Celiac and a wheat allergy so it is always good to have a new option!

  23. I have tried Namaste and Better Crocker’s mixes, and had mixed reactions to both bands. I’ve always wanted to try Kyra’s mixes, so I hope I win so I can try them out!

  24. I haven’t tried any but I love baking and I would love to try your mixes.

  25. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you for sharing Kyra’s cake mix!. We’re still in the process of learning the gluten free world. The Pumpkin Swirl Cream Cheese cupcakes look amazing!!! Can’t wait to try them with my frozen pumpkin puree! I sincerely Thank you again, but most importantly my gut Thanks you!!! 😉

  26. Bonnie W. says:

    Mmmmm…those look AWESOME. I would LOVE to use your mixes!

  27. I.ove the look of the frosting!

  28. Denise Fedor says:

    I have only tried Betty Crocker. They are just okay.

  29. I’m glad I’m in Portland visiting my daughter – I’ll have to find the bakery, buy the mix and give it a go.

  30. S. Harris says:

    The only GF cake mix I’ve tried (other than ones I have made myself) is Betty Crocker, both the vanilla and chocolate. I thought they were okay, but I usually doctor up a cake mix anyway, with ad-ins and toppings ans such. I don’t like to buy GF cake mixes because they are so darn expensive, I can make the same thing with ingredients I already have on hand for 1/4 of the price (albeit it’s a lot more work so sometimes I just break down and buy one).

  31. So happy I found your blog! My little man is GF and who doesn’t love pumpkin! 🙂 Can’t wait to try your recipes!

  32. So happy I found your blog! My son is GF…and we all LOVE pumpkin!
    can’t wait to try this out!

  33. I am so excited to have found your blog. My 5 year old son was just diagnosed with wheat allergies a month ago. This has been a whole new journey. My son will be so excited to try a sweet treat he can actually eat!

  34. Heather L. says:

    These cupcakes sound delicious! I am new to gluten free and spice cake is probably my family’s favorite cake. We have been missing it and I can’t wait to try it tonight! Thank you!

  35. Heather L. says:

    Sorry- pushed enter too soon! Not enough coffee yet this morning… We have tried the Betty Crocker mixes and they were okay. Not great, not bad, just okay.

  36. I’m drooling! Those cupcakes look incredible. I’ve heard great things about Kyra’s – guess it’s about time I place an order 🙂 Thanks for the great post!

  37. I have never tried a gluten free mix, but I am excited to try this one. Thanks for the chance to win.

  38. I’m a little nervous to try any of the GF cake mixes that I have seen. That being said I do like the Pamela’s Brownie mix.

  39. I’ve tried Pamela’s, Bob’s Red Mill, and many other brands over the years. I usually like most of the pre-mixed gf baking options. I find it a lot easier to start with a packaged mix and then add my own ingredients to mix up the taste, over stocking all of the possible gf baking ingredients in my pantry.

  40. Monica Rose says:

    I’ve got a box of my local supermarkets organic brand GF spice cake mix in my kitchen right now. This looks like my nap time project for today. Yay for Fall flavors and lazy Saturdays!!

  41. First time reader here! Saw this post as a pin on Pinterest and as a recent GF convert, I have yet to try any boxed mixes but this one sounds awesome! Thanks for the recipe!

  42. Brooke Organista says:

    I’ve tried Bob’s Red Mill. It’s ok. My daughter likes it but
    I would love to try Kyra’s though.

  43. Patti Self says:

    We have just started to try GF items, since finding one of our family members has Celiac. baking has been a challenge. Hope these mixes get us off on the right foot

  44. I haven’t tried cake mix but I like arrowhead mills brownie mix

  45. Emily Nielsen says:

    I’d love to try these mixes!

  46. Emily Nielsen says:

    I haven’t tried these mixes and don’t use mixes often either, but the Betty Crocker & Better Batter mixes both are great!

  47. I’ve tried the Safeway Grocery Store brand of GF chocolate cake mix and it was pretty good. I made it for a friend who is GF and she liked the cupcakes I made with them.

  48. I just have got to make these. They are beautiful! Wonderful site!

  49. Jeannie S says:

    They look so lusciously delicious!

  50. I have tried Bob’s Red Mill cinnamon raisin , which was pretty good to start with but got hard and dry too quick; the other was Wegman’s gf corn bread mix, which was wonderful and even preferred by the rest of the family that still eats wheat/gluten. I would love to try these mixes and recipe for them on myself and my family!

  51. Chris Longfors says:

    I have only tried the Betty Crocker and Bob’s Red Mill cake mixes. Can’t wait to try the snickerdoodle cake mix !!!!

  52. I have not tried any gf boxed mixes. I have only used gf flour blends that I make.

  53. I have tried Bob’s Red Mill cinnamon raisin bread mix, and that was OK, but got dry and hard too fast. Wegman’s gf cornbread mix was the favorite of all, even the rest of the family that still eats wheat/gluten! I would love to try these especially with the recipe in this post!

  54. These cupcakes look mouthwatering. Can’t wait to make them. They will be perfect for my birthday on Thanksgiving Day!

  55. Jill Schappa says:

    I agree that Bob’s Red Mill makes some great mixes… those are the only ones I’ve really tried. I have a few other local brands in my cupboard that I haven’t tried yet but am hoping to soon. After I try them out I’ll make sure to comment if they are worth noting

  56. Jessica T says:

    The swirl frosting looks sooo good! I don’t have much experience with pre-made gluten free cake mix, it’s usually hard to find. Id love to try some!

  57. Peter Robe says:

    First, as you may know, Kyra just won the Food Network’s hit show Cupcake Wars for the THIRD time this past Saturday. And she’s still the only Gluten-Free winner ever.

    Second, her book, “Sweet Cravings: 50 Seductive Desserts for a Gluten-Free Lifestyle”, has great recipes. And there’s a fun, short video intro to the book at http://www.tinyurl.com/kyrasweet

  58. I cannot eat rice at all anymore. I actually got arsenic poisoning from the rice I eat. So any of the 1 to 1 blends don’t work for me because they all have rice flour in them. I have a few blends that don’t but they are very different. One has lots of tapioca and smaller amounts of other flours, like sorghum or millet. One is garbanzo bean flour based, and others have almond flour with other things. They don’t all work. I am trying out miscellaneous blends on gluten free recipes that have rice flour containing blends. Have you heard of anyone who baked with any of these and had luck? Thank you.

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