Cranberry White Chocolate Cupcakes

Carrie of  Carrie’s Sweet Life had a great idea earlier this month. I “know” Carrie from an online community I participate in that’s all about cooking and baking. She wanted to form a group of people who bake together. We named ourselves “What’s Baking?” as a play on the online community we’re a part of.

For the first month, Carrie chose the theme: fall cupcakes. I struggled with this theme quite a bit. I didn’t want to go with pumpkin. I thought it would be too predictable and I wanted to try something more creative. After bringing home some fresh cranberries from the cranberry festival, I knew I wanted to use crans. I started thinking about what flavors go well with cranberries and since I’ve already made a maple walnut cranberry cupcake, I decided to go with white chocolate.

I decided to sub half of the vanilla with some Fiori Di Sicilia that I grabbed at King Arthur Flour. I haven’t had a chance to use it and according to KAF: You know that wonderful marriage of flavors you taste when you combine vanilla ice cream and orange sherbet in the same bowl? That’s what Fiori di Sicilia tastes like. We find that using it in just about anything mild and sweet–anything where competing flavors, like chocolate, don’t interfere–adds a wonderfully mysterious taste. Your friends will be guessing just what you’ve done to your sugar cookies or yellow cake or sweet bread to make them taste SO good! It really does smell like a creamsicle and I thought it would complement the white chocolate and cranberries well (especially since the cranberry mousse has orange zest in it!).

I filled the cupcakes with some homemade cranberry sauce to add another punch of flavor and color. These cupcakes are amazing and would be a great dessert for Thanksgiving or Christmas! I’m going to be mean and post the recipes for the cranberry sauce and the cranberry mousse in the next couple of days. Sorry to do that to you, but they’ll be up soon!

One Year Ago: Pumpkin Cranberry Muffins

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Yield: 18

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
4-oz white chocolate, chopped
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup plus 1 tbsp milk

Directions:

Preheat oven to 325F. Line muffin pans with cupcake liners.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.

In a small, microwave-safe bowl, melt the chopped white chocolate by heating it in 30 second intervals in the microwave. Stir well with a fork between each interval and cook only until the chocolate is smooth when stirred.

Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time, followed by melted white chocolate and vanilla. Alternate adding in some of the milk and some of the flour mixture, starting and ending with the flour mixture. Mix until just incorporated and no streaks of flour remain.

Divide batter evenly into muffin cups.

Bake for 20-23 minutes until a tester comes out clean and the tops spring back when lightly pressed with a fingertip. Cool on a wire rack.

To Assemble the Cupcakes:
Once cupcakes are cooled completely, use the cone method to remove part of the cupcake. Fill with cranberry sauce. Pipe cranberry mousse on top of cupcakes.

Store cupcakes in the refrigerator.

Recipe from Baking Bites


Don’t forget about my Power of Pink Challenge – make something PINK by the end of the month to raise Breast Cancer Awareness!

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45 Responses to “Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake Brownies”

  1. #
    1
    Becca — September 28, 2009 at 2:25 pm

    These look fantastic and are so festive!

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    The Woman — September 28, 2009 at 2:48 pm

    Oh my, these look divine! I recently made something similar, but with no chocolate – just a pumpkin batter with cream cheese topping. But I definitely think I must try these too.

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    ABowlOfMush — September 28, 2009 at 3:15 pm

    These are absolutely beautiful!

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    Carrie — September 28, 2009 at 3:41 pm

    Look wonderful!

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    oneordinaryday — September 28, 2009 at 4:54 pm

    These look awesome. I just wish it made a bigger pan!

  6. #
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    Jen — September 28, 2009 at 4:56 pm

    They’re pretty rich, but I would imagine you could just double it and make it in a 9×13 pan if you wanted!

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    Ingrid — September 28, 2009 at 5:14 pm

    I made pumpkin spice brownies on Friday and they were delish so I bet these are EVEN BETTER! Thanks for sharing and I’ll be following your tweaks!
    ~ingrid

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    Justin — September 28, 2009 at 5:41 pm

    i always make a pumpkin cheesecake in the fall with a ginger cookie crumb crust, but i’m liking the chocolate component in your recipe even more.

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    Mia — September 28, 2009 at 5:49 pm

    oh yum – love pumpkin, and the chocolate/pumpkin combo looks wonderful!

  10. #
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    Heather@BFM — September 28, 2009 at 6:03 pm

    These look great! Is there a way I can make them non-dairy? Something I can sub the cream cheese for? Thanks!

  11. #
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    Jen — September 28, 2009 at 6:12 pm

    Heather – I’ve had great luck subbing Tofutti Better than Cream Cheese in cheesecake recipes in the past. I think that would definitely work and you could use Earth Balance in the brownie portion. Let me know how it turns out if you try it.

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    Jennifer — September 28, 2009 at 7:41 pm

    Hi Jenn! I just wanted to let you know that you won the giveaway on my blog last week. I emailed you, but never got a response. Could you email me your mailing address to jennharton@paducah.com. I have to pass it along to myblogspark so they can send you your prize package!

  13. #
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    Heather@BFM — September 28, 2009 at 8:11 pm

    Thanks, Jen…I’ll let you know how they come out!

  14. #
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    nutmegnanny — September 28, 2009 at 9:01 pm

    OH wow these do look delicious! I love all that swirled pumpkin…yum!

  15. #
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    Nina — September 29, 2009 at 4:29 am

    Those look amazing!

  16. #
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    Irene — September 29, 2009 at 7:14 am

    Wow, I love these! My husband would die of happiness of I made these for him – pumpkin cheesecake is his favorite thing for fall.

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    thereddeer — September 29, 2009 at 12:25 pm

    They look like tiger fur – very cool! What an interesting flavour combination.

  18. #
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    Colleen — September 29, 2009 at 6:26 pm

    We love these at my house! I like your idea of dark chocolate – I will have to try that next time.

  19. #
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    stephchows — September 29, 2009 at 7:16 pm

    beautiful! And they look so delicious!! I agree I don’t normally think of pumpkin with chocolate… but you have me convinced!

  20. #
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    Stephanie Wagner — September 29, 2009 at 11:55 pm

    The tops of these are a work of art! Love it!

  21. #
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    Nancy @ Live love laugh — September 30, 2009 at 12:34 am

    Three of my favorite thi ngs in one dessert! Chocolate and pumpkin and cheesecake! How perfect…
    ~Nancy

  22. #
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    Nancy @ Live love laugh — September 30, 2009 at 12:34 am

    Three of my favorite thi ngs in one dessert! Chocolate and pumpkin and cheesecake! How perfect…
    ~Nancy

  23. #
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    tagskie — October 1, 2009 at 8:00 am

    hi.. just dropping by here… have a nice day! http://kantahanan.blogspot.com/

  24. #
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    Pantry Raid Blog — October 6, 2009 at 2:58 am

    The side-view shot totally won me over. These look delicious!

  25. #
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    bakingsimplicity — October 6, 2009 at 2:21 pm

    This looks so yummy.
    I now know what to make for the office potluck!

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    Skylar Wolfe — October 12, 2009 at 7:39 pm

    Those look amazing. I love pumpkin with chocolate, I plan on making these soon.

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    fawkes — October 14, 2009 at 5:14 am

    Your brownies look delicious! I am curious since I would like mine to taste more like pumpkin pie than plain pumpkin should i add pumpkin pie spices or follow your recipe for the spices?
    Thanks!

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    Jen — October 14, 2009 at 12:03 pm

    fawkes – There are a decent amount of spices in the pumpkin portion of the batter. I would recommend making is as the recipe states, then taste it before you pour it into the pan. Maybe then add some pumpkin pie spice if you’d like.

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    lifeoftheparty — October 20, 2009 at 1:42 pm

    I made these over the weekend and they were scrumptious!! I’m not a huge fan of pumpkin but this recipe is now a fall staple. I plan on making them for the family on Thanksgiving…thanks for sharing this!

  30. #
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    strmywthr3 — October 21, 2009 at 1:06 pm

    I made these the other day and they were great! a hit at work! yum! thanks!

  31. #
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    malelanie — October 29, 2009 at 2:21 pm

    I stumbled across your blog from a Facebook friend and made these brownies last night. DELICIOUS!! I doubled the recipe and it does just fit in a 9×13 pan and took about 60 mins to bake. It’s worth the wait for them to be chilled in the fridge. The flavors are even more delicious that way.

  32. #
    32
    Dorothy — October 29, 2009 at 8:00 pm

    Oh YUM! And gorgeous, to boot. I never thought pumpkin and chocolate go together either, until I tried it! 🙂 Now I’m hooked. Good idea to double up on the cheesecake layer…you can never have enough pumpkin cheesecake after all!

  33. #
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    nutmegnanny — October 30, 2009 at 3:10 pm

    Thank you so much for participating in our event! These brownies look amazing. They say Halloween to me for sure!

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    Shortcake — November 2, 2009 at 4:52 pm

    I made these– now I love them! Will be repeated each fall 🙂

  35. #
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    Lexi — January 4, 2010 at 3:54 pm

    Amazing! I loved these so much I played with them a bit and made cranberry cheesecake brownies for my christmas baking.(I didn’t stumble on to these till christmas.) I’ll let you know when I put those up on my blog! With credit to you of course!

  36. #
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    Jen — January 4, 2010 at 3:59 pm

    Lexi – cranberry cheesecake brownies sound very intriguing. Can’t wait to see them.

  37. #
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    Kasey — March 3, 2010 at 1:37 am

    Hi Jen! I made these for Heather@BFM’s (comment listed above) birthday and she loved them! Unfortunately I could not find the Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa powder (I tried 3 stores) so I had to make them with the regular cocoa powder. Can you tell me where you found the Hershey’s Special Dark??

  38. #
    38
    Jen — March 3, 2010 at 1:57 am

    Kasey – I have actually had a hard time finding it as well. I had actually all but given up on it until one day it caught my eye at the grocery store. I proceeded to buy all three containers. I would say just keep an eye out for it and good luck!

  39. #
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    Pup Wanna Be — September 28, 2010 at 12:35 am

    1/2 cup of flour seems like very little. Is that correct?

  40. #
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    Jen — September 28, 2010 at 12:50 am

    Pup – Yes, that is the correct amount of flour. Most brownie batters have very little flour in them.

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    rachellehcar — September 29, 2010 at 1:39 am

    Just made these- delicious! I only had the milk chocolate powder, so I’m excited to try it again with the special dark powder.

  42. #
    42
    Courtney — September 13, 2012 at 6:35 am

    I doubled the recipe and it perfectly filled a 13×9 pan so you might try it. 🙂 And they are amazing. Also I used margerine not butter and found they were more moist. Happy Baking!

  43. #
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    alyssajade23 — October 12, 2014 at 4:15 pm

    I made these with my nieces and over all they were pretty good, but something about the pumpkin part tasted off. Still, fun and festive to make!

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