Oooooh today. Hello three oh. Nice to meet you.

Pumpkin S'mores Cupcakes I howsweeteats.com

For as long as I can remember, I have ALWAYS wanted to be older. I wanted to be a grown up, if not only because it seemed super fun. You know, doing whatever you wanted and all, whenever you wanted. Doing things that people in movies do. People in books do. Nothing that people I know do, but still. Doing those things. As a kid, I was much more interested in hanging out with my parents and other adults. In high school, I wanted to be in college and in college, I wanted to be in my 20s or 30s, happily settled doing, well… anything else other than being stuck in school.

I don’t sound like too much fun now, do I? I’m really not. Maybe this year I will lighten up. Blame it on my first born child syndrome. But whatever! Right now, I’m exactly where I’ve always wanted to be. I’m not anywhere near what I thought I wanted, or where I thought I would be, but it turns out that right where I am… is perfect.

Pumpkin S'mores Cupcakes I howsweeteats.com

Even though I lambasted myself last year over the fact that OMGI’vebeenalivefor30years, that feeling didn’t stick around too long. Attribute it to a busy year or simply becoming too annoyed with myself to think about it any longer, I didn’t really consider my age too much these last 364 days except for when I found myself doing things like blasting Rod Stewart while working out or hopping in bed at 7:30 or writing old lady blog posts.

I spent most of my early 20s falling in and out of love Taylor Swift style (yeah yeah, I know… but I’m not gonna pretend to be somebody I’m not), with not only people but with things, careers, hobbies and preferences. I spent my mid 20s trying to decipher exactly which of those things I really loved Taylor Swift style (does she even know yet?) and seriously struggling to “find myself”…aka being born in the 80s and feeling entitled to having theeee perfect life and oh my god what does it all meeeeean. My late 20s consisted of figuring out just how the heck people stay married for real (um this is nothing like my favorite chick lit novels) and wondering how on Earth it will ever be possible to have a child (and actually… birth it) in my selfish world and still be able to lay on the couch for six hours at a time while simultaneously watching absolute trash on TV, talking on speakerphone, painting my nails and playing fruit ninja. Serious first world problems, I’m aware.

Pumpkin S'mores Cupcakes I howsweeteats.com

If you told me that at age 30 I’d be writing many fragmented and run-on sentences about the food I love to eat on the internet, sharing my life everyday with some invisible internet friends and taking pictures of things I’m about to put in my mouth… I would have clichély laughed in your face. In fact, I still am sort of laughing.

If you told me that at age 30, the age where my dad had two kids, the age where my mom was yet to be married, the age that a fabulous 80s drama was made after and the age that is prime time to be George Clooney girlfriend material… that I would be writing and doing what I wanted to do when I was eight years old, I’d clichély laugh in your face again.

Pumpkin S'mores Cupcakes I howsweeteats.com

Of course, I’ve learned many important things by this age, including but not limited to the fact that you should never drink a large open cup of liquid while sitting over your brand new computer, that you should always, always be yourself and own it, that way when people talk smack on you (which they always will), it doesn’t really matter because you’re being YOU, how to successfully poach an egg and feel awkward and alone in thinking that it’s really *not* that hard (sorry), the grass is always greener (though it’s truly green where you water it, thanks Justin Bieber) and that making your bed every morning really does make you feel better, as does NOT eating all of the foods or drinking all of the vodkas… all the time every time.

I think those make for an acceptable, fabulous life… right?

Pumpkin S'mores Cupcakes I howsweeteats.com

Oh and if you were looking for the longer token list of things I’ve learned by 30, I will leave you with perhaps the most important: if you find yourself baking s’mores cupcakes and you do not own a culinary blow torch because you a. are too poor to buy one 2. too lazy to buy one or c. would rather spend that money on shoes (duh), one of those long Bic candle lighter thingies works wonders. Tricks of the trade, my friends.

Pumpkin S'mores Cupcakes I howsweeteats.com

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Pumpkin S'mores Cupcakes

Yield: makes 12 cupcakes

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 16-18 minutes

Total Time: 1.5 hours

Ingredients:

graham crust
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs

cupcakes
1 1/3 cups loosely packed brown sugar
1 large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3/4 cup pumpkin puree
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 cup milk

fudge ganache filling
4 ounces chopped milk chocolate
2 tablespoons heavy cream

marshmallow frosting
4 large egg whites
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a muffin tin with lines.

Combine the melted butter and graham crumbs together, mixing well until combined. Spoon about 1/2 tablespoon into each cupcake liner, pressing with the back of a spoon to form a crust.

To make the cupcakes, whisk egg and sugar together in a large bowl until combined and no lumps remain. Add in vanilla extract and butter, then whisk in pumpkin puree. Add in flour, baking soda, powder, salt and pumpkin spice, then add in milk and stir until combined and smooth. Drop about 1/4 cup of batter on top of each graham cracker crust, filling the liners 3/4 of the way full. Bake for 16-18 minutes, or until cupcakes are set and spring back at the touch. Let cool completely.

While cupcakes are baking, heat the heavy cream until warm. Pour over the chopped milk chocolate in a large bowl, then use a spoon or whisk to stir until melted and combined. Let sit until cupcakes are cool, then fill a pastry bag with the chocolate and insert the top straight down into the cupcake, squeezing the ganache inside. You can also use a ziplock bag as your pastry bag or a small spoon - cutting off a small hole in the top of the cupcake and spoon the mixture down in.

To make the frosting, combine the egg whites, sugar and cream of tartar in a heat-proof bowl, preferably the bowl of your electric stand mixer. Place over top of a double-boiler that contains simmering water, and whisk constantly for 3-4 minutes until the sugar has dissolved and the egg whites are slightly warm. Immediately remove the bowl and place it on your stand mixer with the whisk attachment, beating slow at first and gradually increasing the speed to high. Beat for 6-7 minutes until glossy and thick, then beat in vanilla extract for another minute until combined. Frost cupcakes! You can torch the frosting if you'd like, as well as cover the top in additional graham crumbs. I stored these at room temp in a large tupperware container with the layer of plastic wrap over top.

Note: this frosting recipe makes a TON - at least double for these cupcakes. It stores great in the fridge for a few days but you may want to double the cake recipe or halve the frosting recipe if you just want 12 cakes.

[cupcakes from my sweet potato pie cupcakes, frosting from martha stewart]

Pumpkin S'mores Cupcakes I howsweeteats.com

K. Done talking about being 30. Oh except that I hope this year is EXACTLY like these cupcakes. Injected with fudge ganache and topped with something fluffy and light.

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222 Responses to “Pumpkin S’mores Cupcakes.”

  1. #
    151
    purelymichelle — November 7, 2012 @ 10:30 pm

    Happy Birthday Jess!!

    these look like the perfect birthday cake (cupcake!)

    xoxoxo

    Reply

  2. #
    152
    Leah — November 7, 2012 @ 10:48 pm

    happy birthday!! 30 is going to be awesome!

    Reply

  3. #
    153
    Cindy — November 7, 2012 @ 10:49 pm

    I’ve drooled over your blog for about 6 months or more now and have never commented. So, three things:
    1. Super happy birthday to you {singing}!
    2. Continue to be grateful for milestone birthdays (i’ve had a couple more than you)
    3. Continue doing what you love and are obviously so freaking great at.

    Reply

  4. #
    154
    Michelle — November 7, 2012 @ 11:02 pm

    Happy birthday, lovely lady! 30 looks good on you, promise!

    Reply

  5. #
    155
    Melissa — November 7, 2012 @ 11:16 pm

    happyy birthday! i’m off this weekend (so excited! i’m a resident) and think i know what one of my baking projects will be :)

    Reply

  6. #
    156
    Ellie — November 7, 2012 @ 11:21 pm

    We have the same birthday! It’s my 18th, I rang it in with vegan robot-shaped cake and your coconut-milk ice cream, modify-ed to be gelatin free :) have an awesome day, and I’m laughing at how much I’m like you. I can’t wait for 30!

    Reply

  7. #
    157
    Jill — November 8, 2012 @ 12:52 am

    Happy Birthday, Jessica! You’re gonna rock 30! Hope it’s been amazing! xoxo

    Reply

  8. #
    158
    Tracy — November 8, 2012 @ 1:44 am

    Happy Birthday Jessica!!

    Reply

  9. #
    159
    Nichelle L. — November 8, 2012 @ 5:04 am

    Happy birthday! You are my favorite blogger and everyday I look forward to reading what you write because you’re freakin hilarious and I feel the exact same way about turning 30 lol!! Thanks for being yourself and pinning things that cause me to be unproductive for hours at a time :)

    Reply

  10. #
    160
    Marsha Hubert — November 8, 2012 @ 7:19 am

    Happy Birthday! Love your blog, pictures, and recipies!

    Reply

  11. #
    161
    Debbie — November 8, 2012 @ 7:42 am

    Yum! These look amazing! I have been trying to pin the recipe for 10 minutes … can’t pin directly from your pin button OR from my “pin it” button. Is it just me, or is there a problem? i think I am going to have to make these today!!!

    Reply

  12. #
    162
    Jen @ Savory Simple — November 8, 2012 @ 8:18 am

    Happy birthday! What a great way to celebrate!

    Reply

  13. #
    163
    K.To — November 8, 2012 @ 8:22 am

    Happy Birthday! Welcome to the threesomething club. I’ve been here for a month or two and all we do is party :p and wonder what to do with our lives and paint our grey hairs and eat cupcakes and figuring out how we can have kids and actually have time to blog and watch Mad Men… so nothing new really :)

    Have a blast!

    Reply

  14. #
    164
    Emily @ Life on Food — November 8, 2012 @ 8:44 am

    Happy Happy Birthday! Great choice for a celebration.

    Reply

  15. #
    165
    Brooke — November 8, 2012 @ 9:22 am

    Happy birthday Jess!! So happy i discovered your blog this year. You make me realize that writing about something that may seem so silly like food or shoes can actually be so much fun!!! Reading this everyday brightens the rest of my day! Hope you have a fabulous week of parting Kim K style!!! xo

    Reply

  16. #
    166
    Debbie D — November 8, 2012 @ 9:50 am

    Have a wonderful birthday. The best is yet to be. If it is any consolation, a new decade starts on a 1, so you still are in your 20′s decade ready to embark on your third decade. Did that make sense? Have a wonderful day and a wonderful year.

    Reply

  17. #
    167
    Paige Colson — November 8, 2012 @ 9:53 am

    Happy Happy Birthday invisible internet friend! I hope you have a wonderful memorable positively spun introduction into your 30s!

    Reply

  18. #
    168
    Elizabeth@ Food Ramblings — November 8, 2012 @ 10:21 am

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

    Reply

  19. #
    169
    Nikki — November 8, 2012 @ 10:29 am

    Happy Birthday Jessica! 30 is a great year, enjoy it, because it’ll go by fast! Thanks for sharing this cupcake recipe, they look and sound delicious!

    Reply

  20. #
    170
    Jocelyn — November 8, 2012 @ 11:56 am

    Happy BIrthday!!!! I’m sure this year will be just as awesome for you as the last few!!! You are such an inspiration to all of us:-) Now honestly where is the bowl of frosting…I’m feeling a face plant coming on!!!! Holy yum!!!

    Reply

  21. #
    171
    Jenn H — November 8, 2012 @ 12:00 pm

    My new screensaver (the one of the fully done cupcake) ! Droooooool!

    Reply

  22. #
    172
    MikeVFMK — November 8, 2012 @ 12:36 pm

    happy belated! The thirties are the amazing, so get ready and buckle your seat belt. And what better way to kick off a new chapter in your life than with these cupcakes, which, by the way, look ridiculous. I’m salivating like pavlov’s dog. it isn’t pretty. but at least these cakes are!

    Reply

  23. #
    173
    Paula @ Vintage Kitchen — November 8, 2012 @ 1:05 pm

    I think you´re about to have the best ten years of your life. Happy Birthday Jessica! That bic torch tip is the best thing ever!

    Reply

  24. #
    174
    Lauren Hardy — November 8, 2012 @ 1:29 pm

    Jessica,

    Your photography is fun, intentional and very artistic! What kind of camera do you use? Someday I’ll be able to afford a nice one so I can take better food photos.

    Definitely trying these next week. Might even feature them on my blog. :)

    Lauren

    Reply

  25. #
    175
    Marra Mazzella — November 8, 2012 @ 1:37 pm

    Happy Birthday Jessica! I enjoy your blog so much and have made so many of your recipes so far. It also seems that we share the same birhday! So cheers to us.

    Reply

  26. #
    176
    The Higley Kitchen — November 8, 2012 @ 1:56 pm

    Wow, what an amazing idea!
    Looks super tasty and I am glad that you are where you always wanted to be.

    Reply

  27. #
    177
    Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes — November 8, 2012 @ 2:08 pm

    Happy birthday to you!!!!

    Reply

  28. #
    178
    Amber @ Slim Pickin's Kitchen — November 8, 2012 @ 2:13 pm

    I know I’m a wee bit late, but happy, happy, happy 1st anniversary of your 29th birthday! I hope your special day was everything you hoped for and more! Those cupcakes look absolutely phenomenal and are topped with my go to frosting! Yum! I’m also *stoked* about the freakin’ Bic lighter!!!!!!!! I don’t have a blow torch either (but want one so badly) so that is just a wonderful tip to know! Squeeee! Uumm…how else could I possibly include more exclamation points in this post?!?!?!?!?!? There ya go ;)

    Reply

  29. #
    179
    Jessica — November 8, 2012 @ 2:29 pm

    Happy 30th!!!!! I just hit it this year too….it seems like a shock until it’s over, and then ur just like, huh, well, whatever I love your sense of humor, and that you get to do what you love….thanks so much for sharing your heart with all your loyal readers. xxx

    Reply

  30. #
    180
    Kristen M. — November 8, 2012 @ 2:31 pm

    Happy Birthday Jessica! Welcome to your 30′s! These cupcakes looks fabulous. They are like two of my favorite sweet treats combined.

    Reply

  31. #
    181
    Lisa — November 8, 2012 @ 3:07 pm

    Happy Birthday! These cupcakes look deeeelicious!

    Reply

  32. #
    182
    Lorie — November 8, 2012 @ 5:06 pm

    Amazing! will have to make these soon! Happy Birthday, too!!

    Reply

  33. #
    183
    Laura Dembowski — November 8, 2012 @ 5:07 pm

    Those look amazing! I’m fairly certain there’s nothing better in life than homemade marshmallow. I was and still am exactly like this. I always want to be older and have my life under control. I’m not sure I’ve ever had a friend my age. The high point of my month is having dinner out with my parents and some of their friends. I’ve never fit in in life, but now I think I’m starting to find my way. I’m just happy to know I’m not alone :)

    Reply

  34. #
    184
    Sue Turnbeau — November 8, 2012 @ 7:06 pm

    Enjoy each birthday…it only gets better! Just saw cupcake on pinterest and had to find recipe and now laughed enough to make a nice end to a long day. Can’t wait to make these but that would mean a)having all that stuff on hand or b) getting off couch that is so comfy and going to store….guess it will be just as good another day! Thanks for sharing!!

    Reply

  35. #
    185
    Lindsay @ The Live-In Kitchen — November 8, 2012 @ 7:13 pm

    Happy birthday! I love being your invisible internet friend. :)

    Reply

  36. #
    186
    Heather — November 9, 2012 @ 12:04 am

    Pretty sure that homemade marshmallows are THE BEST THING EVAR!!!

    Reply

  37. #
    187
    Loretta | A Finn In The Kitchen — November 9, 2012 @ 12:21 pm

    Happy 30th! These cupcakes are an absolute dream! That marshmallow frosting is too amazing…

    Reply

  38. #
    188
    Carolyn Carter — November 9, 2012 @ 3:25 pm

    I just finished making these and they are AMAZING!!!!! I could eat the entire bowl of icing. My hips and thighs than you!!!!

    Reply

  39. #
    189
    Jess — November 9, 2012 @ 6:47 pm

    These look amazing! :)

    Reply

  40. #
    190
    Sam — November 10, 2012 @ 2:02 pm

    So I just discovered your blog and after reading a few words was instantly entertained. The more I read the more I grew oddly suspicious of how similar your thoughts were to mine…the sense of humor…the 90s sitcom love…the food….even the font. Seriously, I feel like I am being overly wordy but I love this lovely font that I am typing in and just want to see more words and l e t t e r s p o p u p.

    Then I read this post and the world made sense again.
    We share the same birthday- obviously. It’s a scorpio thing.

    Its weird how the world works sometimes.

    Reply

  41. #
    191
    Natalie (@fashionatalie) — November 11, 2012 @ 1:07 pm

    These looks *amazing*! Gorgeous photos, and I must try them soon :-)

    Reply

  42. #
    192
    jeannie — November 16, 2012 @ 3:07 pm

    I love your writing style and please continue with your rambling run on sentence laden blog posts. It encourages those of us who are NOT grammar nazi’s to be free to just “get it out” “write it down” in our own blogs without some grammar soldier rapping our knuckles with the ruler.

    Reply

  43. #
    193
    Elsebe — November 16, 2012 @ 6:47 pm

    You take GLORIOUS pictures!!!!!!!

    Reply

  44. #
    194
    Simone — November 26, 2012 @ 4:40 pm

    Oh my gosh. Made these for Thanksgiving and they were incredible. Except for the fact that I could not get the frosting to peak..and then it didn’t stay on the cupcakes…instead it slimed all down the sides and soaked into the cupcakes [mind you still tasting AMAZING].
    Suggestions? Any idea where I went wrong?

    Reply

  45. #
    195
    Jenn — October 4, 2013 @ 9:52 am

    Made these last night and so far, 2 thumbs up. The marshmallow fluff was surprisingly easy to make. In the past, I’ve stayed away from making candy-type sweets because I thought it would require special equipment but not so for these. The cupcakes were super moist too with the pumpkin puree and ganache solidified just enough in the cupcake sitting at room temperature overnight.

    Reply

  46. #
    196
    Ann Key — November 7, 2013 @ 8:25 pm

    I have made this icing and love it but was wondering if you have ever tried making it with brown sugar and what the results might have been?

    Reply

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