Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins with Walnut Streusel
Pumpkin, pumpkin, pumpkin. I find myself asking a lot lately why pumpkin isn’t a year-round sort of thing. I mean, it’s just soooo gooood. I think a petition needs to be started for this cause (somebody get on that please!). Anyways, I am just up to my elbows in pumpkin and I am loving it. Especially, these pumpkin muffins! I beg you; please make these muffins and see if you don’t fall in love and want to get on board with the pumpkin-desserts-year-round cause.
Start by getting the dry ingredients ready: sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Then, cut up some cold butter and mash it into the flour mixture using a pastry cutter until it’s all crumbled and incorporated.
Now, whip out that good orange stuff and mix it with evaporated milk, an egg, and vanilla. It’s already lookin’ good!
Pour the pumpkin mixture into the flour mixture and fold them together until it’s all just one big mixture. Taste it if you must but, remember, this batter serves a greater purpose!
Fill the cups of a greased muffin pan halfway full. I’m so stoked that this recipe makes exactly a dozen muffins! Eek! But, set it aside for now to make the cheesecake batter. I know, I know. Patience, grasshopper.
This part is easy. Just beat together cream cheese, sugar, an egg, and vanilla on high speed in an electric mixer until well-combined. This took me all of 2 minutes. Did I mention that these muffins are easy?
Now, using a piping bag or a Ziploc bag with the corner snipped off, squeeze the cheesecake batter into the center of the pumpkin batter in each muffin cup until the pumpkin rises to 2/3 full in the cup. Then, set it aside again to make the walnut streusel. I know.
But this part is fast too! Just combine flour, brown sugar, chopped walnuts, and melted butter in a bowl and crumble it up with your fingers until it’s, well, crumbly.
Now, we are finally in the home stretch! Generously top each muffin cup with the streusel until their each well-covered. Then, very lightly press the streusel flat into the batter with your fingers until it’s embedded. And pop them in the oven and bake at 375 for 23-25 minutes until the cheesecake is set.
Tah-dah! They puff up a lot in the oven and then deflate a tad bit while they cool in the pan so you gotta wait a few minutes before taking them out of the pan. I know. I know. I know.
But, see how pretty they are? And, if you eat ’em right outta the pan while they’re still warm, like my impatient self did, they are knee-weakeningly (is that a word?) GOOD! I could have eaten the whole pan while standing there at the kitchen counter.
Hmmm . . . cheesecake goodness, wrapped in pumpkin goodness, topped with nutty, streusel goodness. Yes, in fact, I do believe that is the definition of perfection!
Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake Muffins with Walnut Streusel
Source: All Things Sweet original recipe
Yield: 12 muffins
Pumpkin Spice Muffins
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1-1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 cup (4 tbsp. or 1/2 stick) cold unsalted butter
1-1/4 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 cup evaporated milk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Generously grease a muffin pan.
Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt. Cut in butter with a pastry cutter until it is fully incorporated. In a separate bowl, mix together pumpkin, evaporated milk, egg, and vanilla. Pour pumpkin mixture into the flour mixture. Fold gently until mixture is just combined.
Pour into prepared muffin pan—fill each cup 1/2 way full. Set aside and make cream cheese filling.
Cream Cheese Filling
8 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg, at room temperature
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
In a medium bowl beat cream cheese, sugar, and egg on high speed with an electric mixer until fluffy and smooth. Add vanilla and mix. Transfer mixture to a piping bag fitted with a plain tip or a zip-top bag with the corner snipped.
Insert piping bag or corner into the pumpkin batter and pipe until the batter rises and fills the muffin cups two-thirds full. Set aside and make streusel.
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup chopped walnuts
2 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
Combine all streusel ingredients in a bowl. Blend using fingers to well incorporate. Generously top pumpkin/cream cheese batter with streusel.
Bake for 23-25 minutes or until the cheesecake is set. Allow to cool in pan for 15 minutes, then remove muffins to a wire rack.