My Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins are stuffed with a cream cheese filling and topped with my easy (no pastry cutter needed) streusel. They’re perfectly spiced and moist–such a fun fall breakfast treat! Recipe includes a how-to video!
Cream Cheese-Stuffed Pumpkin Muffins
If you thought you loved my regular pumpkin muffins, just wait until you try this cream cheese-stuffed version! These pumpkin cream cheese muffins are perfected to be moist, not too sweet, and just the right amount of indulgent (although I’m 100% unopposed to eating sweets for breakfast; have you seen my pumpkin coffee cake?!). The very best part is what’s inside: a sweet, cheesecake-inspired surprise that you wouldn’t suspect from the outside.
The second-best part of this recipe is the streusel topping. Not only is it buttery, spiced, and sweet, but it’s also incredibly EASY, thanks to my favorite no-pastry cutter technique. You’ll never make streusel the old way again!
Why you’ll love my recipe:
- Fast–takes less than an hour to make.
- Has that bakery flavor and look you love (especially in my parchment paper liners).
- Tastes like a pumpkin roll in muffin form…yum!
- Uses my easy streusel, which means there’s no pastry cutter needed!
What You Need
Here’s what you need to make these moist, cream cheese-stuffed pumpkin muffins:
- Brown sugar. I recommend using either all light brown sugar or a mix of dark and light. Using all dark brown sugar will make your muffins too sweet/rich (and that’s coming from someone who used to think sugar cubes counted as a snack).
- Butter. Use unsalted butter in the muffins (since we add salt ourselves) but you can use salted butter in the streusel since its such a small amount.
- Pumpkin. Make sure you are using 100% pure pumpkin and NOT pumpkin pie filling!
- Pumpkin pie spice. If you don’t have any on hand, give my homemade pumpkin spice a try.
- Cream cheese. Brick-style, full-fat cream cheese is the only kind I recommend here.
SAM’S TIP: Because of the heavy cream cheese layer in the center, these muffins have a tendency to deflate a bit after baking. That’s not really a problem (unless you are some sort of muffin-top purist), but I do take a few measures to prevent this: making sure to add enough muffin batter over the top of the cream cheese filling to cover it entirely, and using a spoon to make sure the edges around the cream cheese are filled in as well.
Remember, this is just an overview of the ingredients I used and why. For the full recipe please scroll down to the bottom of the post!
How to Make Them
First, we’ll prepare our cheesecake filling and muffin batter:
- Combine cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla until smooth. Set aside.
- Cream together the butter and sugars, then add the eggs.
- Stir in the pumpkin and vanilla, then add the milk.
- Combine the dry ingredients in a separate bowl, then gradually fold them into the wet ingredients.
- Portion 2 tablespoons of muffin batter into cupcake liners and create a small divot in each muffin with a spoon.
- Top each muffin with 1 tablespoon of cheesecake filling, then top with more batter.
Then we’ll preparing our streusel (it’s so easy!) and bake:
- Combine the flours, sugar, and cinnamon.
- Add the melted butter, then toss with a fork to create a clumpy mixture.
- Evenly distribute over muffins, pressing slightly into the tops as you go.
- Bake for 23-25 minutes and let cool in the pan for 10-12 minutes before removing to a cooling rack.
SAM’S TIP: I like a lot of streusel on my muffins, so much that my beloved apple muffins usually get complaints because the recipe makes so much streusel–but I use every bit of it! To appease those of you who are less streusel-friendly, I cut the recipe in half for these muffins, but if you’re a streusel fiend like me…you know what to do.
Frequently Asked Questions
You’ll want to store your muffins in an airtight container in the refrigerator where they will keep for 2-3 days.
These pumpkin cream cheese muffins should hold up well in the freezer. Just make sure to wrap them really well and store in an airtight container.
If your muffins are dry, it’s likely the batter was accidentally over-mixed. This is easy to do with quick breads, so make sure to switch to a spatula when you combine the wet and dry ingredients and stir until just combined. However, note that baking the muffins even a minute or two too long can also result in dense, dry muffins!
I don’t know about you, but a hidden cheesecake filling might just be my favorite kind of surprise 😍. If you’re a fan, too, you’ll probably also enjoy my blueberry cream cheese muffins and my chocolate cheesecake muffins!
Let’s bake together! I’ll be walking you through all the steps in my written recipe and video below! If you try this recipe, be sure to tag me on Instagram, and you can also find me on YouTube and Facebook
Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins
Cream Cheese Filling
- 8 ounces cream cheese softened to room temperature (225g)
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar (65g)
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¾ cup butter softened (165g)
- ½ cup sugar (100g)
- ¼ cup brown sugar packed (50g)
- 2 large eggs (room temperature preferred)
- 1 cup pumpkin puree (225g)
- 1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 Tablespoons whole milk (30ml)
- 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour (150g)
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin spice
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¾ teaspoon baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup all-purpose flour (63g)
- ⅓ cup light brown sugar firmly packed (67g)
- 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
- ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3 Tablespoons butter (salted or unsalted is fine), melted
- Preheat oven to 375F (190C) and line a 12 count muffin tin with paper liners.
Cream Cheese Filling
- Place cream cheese in a mixing bowl and stir until smooth. Add granulated sugar and vanilla and stir until creamy and completely combined. Set aside.
- In a medium-sized bowl, use an electric mixer to cream together softened butter and sugars until well-creamed.
- Add eggs and beat until combined.
- Stir in pumpkin puree and vanilla extract until combined, then add milk and stir well. Be sure to scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure that all ingredients are well combined.
- In a separate, medium-sized bowl, whisk together flour, pumpkin spice, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
- Using a spatula, gradually add dry ingredients and wet and stir until just combined — do not over-mix!
- Portion about 2 tablespoons of pumpkin muffin batter into the bottom of each muffin liner. Use the back of a spoon to make a small crater/nest in the center of the batter.
- Drop a heaping tablespoon of cream cheese filling into the nests you've created then drop/smooth more pumpkin muffin batter overtop, taking care to completely cover the cream cheese and filling liners ¾ of the way full.
- Whisk together flour, sugars, and ground cinnamon until combined.
- Add melted butter and toss/claw together ingredients until clumpy.
- Evenly divide streusel over pumpkin batter.
- Transfer muffins to 375F (190C) preheated oven and bake for 23-25 minutes or until tops are beginning to turn golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with dry pumpkin muffin crumbs.
- Allow to cool before serving.
StoringStore leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered an estimate only. Actual nutritional content will vary based upon brands used, measuring methods, cooking method, portion sizes, and more.