Apple Butter Cupcakes with Pumpkin Buttercream Frosting

apple butter cupcakes with pumpkin buttercream frosting

These apple butter cupcakes topped with pumpkin buttercream frosting allow all the flavors of fall to meld together in one bite! They’re absolutely delicious, and totally a must-make to enjoy with family and friends this season!

apple butter cupcakes with pumpkin buttercream frosting

I’ve made a couple of batches of these in the last couple of weeks, and they always leave a trail of smiles behind.

apple butter cupcakes with pumpkin buttercream frosting

This post contains affiliate links for your convenience. You can read my full disclosure policy here. 

I’ve made the apple butter cake a number of times from this cookbook that I love (I’m not sure there was ever a more perfect title of a book for me to own) – my friend Reagan gave it to me for my birthday several years ago.

united cakes of america cookbook - I use the recipe in here for the apple butter cake

The recipes are wonderful, and it’s just a really beautiful cookbook to display. I adapted the cake recipe ever so slightly for these cupcakes, and then instead of using the author’s recipe for apple butter frosting (which is absolutely delicious, by the way), I changed it up by creating the pumpkin buttercream to top them off instead. Apple + pumpkin is just too yummy for me to resist, and the icing in this cookbook for the apple butter cake is much better for a whole cake rather than cupcakes (it’s thin and runny – doesn’t pipe well onto cupcakes). Anyway, I love this cookbook and this apple butter cake!

apple butter cupcakes with pumpkin buttercream frosting

Make these cupcakes for a fun evening at home with your family, to bless a neighbor or bring to a potluck, add them to your Halloween or Thanksgiving menu, provide them for a fall baby or bridal shower you might be throwing…no matter who eats ’em, they’ll offer a reminder that fall is here and it’s time to slow down and enjoy some sweet moments with others.

apple butter cupcakes with pumpkin buttercream frosting

Some deliciously sweet moments.

apple butter cupcakes with pumpkin buttercream frosting

Yum! Such a delightful way to savor the season! The recipe for the cupcakes & frosting is below, but you can adjust the baking time if you decide you want to turn this recipe into one large cake rather than a bunch of cupcakes.

If you make these cupcakes and want to add a fun embellishment to them, go check out my post on how to make candy fall leaves (SO EASY) to decorate these for a fall-themed get-together!

how to make candy fall leaves

Looking for some great fall supper recipes to have before you top a meal off with these delicious cupcakes? Check out some of my faves – King Ranch Chicken, Cabbage Soup, Shepherd’s PieHarvest Soup, Creamy Enchilada Soup, Pumpkin Chili, & Savory Spaghetti Sauce! All of these are hearty, nutritious, and flavorful – the PERFECT combination!

What are some of your favorite cooler weather recipes?!

Want to save this yummy recipe?! Be sure to pin it to your favorite Pinterest board!

Moist and delicious apple butter cupcakes - tasty homemade fall dessert recipe, perfect for fall parties, a Halloween treat, or Thanksgiving dessert! Fun for cozy fall-themed dinner parties and potlucks! #easyentertaining #falldesserts #cupcakes #appledesserts

Apple Butter Cupcakes with Pumpkin Buttercream Frosting

4.48 from 42 votes
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 24 -48+ cupcakes
Author: The American Patriette


  • 10 tbsp unsalted butter softened
  • 2 c granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 1/2 c all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 c milk don't use skim, but you can use 1%, 2% or whole
  • 1 c apple butter homemade or store-bought - doesn't matter!
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • -----------------------------------------------
  • 1 stick unsalted butter softened
  • 1/3 c unsweetened pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • Dashes of: ginger allspice, cloves, and nutmeg
  • 2 tbsp shortening
  • 3.5 c powdered sugar



  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • With a stand or a hand mixer, cream together 10 tbsp softened butter and granulated sugar.
  • Begin mixing in one egg at a time.
  • Add flour a bit at a time, mixing between additions (I typically add in about 1/2 c at a time).
  • Add baking powder, salt, and cinnamon and continue to thoroughly mix. Scrape the sides of the bowl periodically to ensure everything gets blended properly.
  • Mix in milk, apple butter, and vanilla.
  • Once your batter is well-blended, pour into cupcake liners, leaving just a little bit of room (maybe about 1/4 of an inch) between the top of the batter and the top of the liner.
  • After you fill all the liners in the cupcake tin, place the cupcake tin on the middle rack and bake according to the size of cupcakes you're making.*
  • Once the cupcakes are finished baking (toothpick comes out clean from testing the center cupcake), remove them from the baking tin and set them on a cooling rack.
  • Repeat steps 8-10 with remaining cupcake batter.
  • Once they're fully cooled, you can top them off with the pumpkin buttercream frosting.


  • Using a stand or hand mixer, cream together 1 stick softened butter and pumpkin puree. Add in shortening and continue mixing.
  • Add spices and mix.
  • Pour in sugar - about 1/2 c at a time - and allow it to cream together with the other ingredients. Once the frosting is smooth with no lumps of sugar, it's ready to frost onto the cupcakes!


*IMPORTANT: If you're making regular-sized cupcakes (12 cupcakes per cupcake tin), bake them for 22 minutes at 350. If you're making mini-cupcakes (24 cupcakes per cupcake tin), bake them for 18 minutes at 350. [br][br]You'll likely get a little more than 24 regular-sized cupcakes or a little more than 48 mini-cupcakes with this batter. The frosting amount will be plenty whether you decide to make regular-sized cupcakes or mini ones!



    1. Yes and no! When it comes to adding flavor with spices like these, I don’t think there’s a “perfect” ratio – you can just add what you have, and I think you’ll be fine. If you only add in pumpkin puree with spices, I don’t think the icing will be as distinctly flavorful, but it will still TASTE good. It just won’t be as “spicy.” However, if you don’t have all of those spices but do have cinnamon and perhaps nutmeg or allspice, I’d mix those in a little at a time, do some quick taste tests, and go from there. 🙂

    1. Hi Colleen, I’m sorry, I have no idea! I’ve never baked at a high altitude, so I wouldn’t have the expertise to help you make those adjustments. I’d perhaps go look at other cupcake recipes & search for “how to bake cupcakes at high altitudes” and see if that helps. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating