With fall comes Halloween, blustery fall weather and pumpkin spice everything. We've got two great recipes to spice up your fall and celebrate everyone's favorite spooky holiday. Take some time this fall to try making Pumpkin Carrot Cupcakes and Halloween Popcorn Balls.
Pumpkin Carrot Cupcakes
- 2 sticks of unsalted butter (softened)
- 1 ½ cups sugar plus two tablespoons
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 3 egg yolks, 6 egg whites
- 1 ¼ cups canned pumpkin
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups grated carrot (do not need to peel)
- 2 ½ cups all purpose flour
- 5 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon ground ginger
- 1 tablespoon ground cardamom
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon allspice (optional)
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves (optional)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Whip softened butter until creamy.
- Add ½ cup brown sugar and 1 ½ cups white sugar and mix together until well incorporated, about 4 minutes.
- Add three egg yolks and blend for about 3 minutes.
- Add canned pumpkin and vanilla and blend for another 3 minutes.
- Fold in grated carrot.
- In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, nutmeg, allspice (if using), ground cloves (if using) and salt. Stir until well mixed.
- Slowly mix the flour mixture into the pumpkin mixture. Mix on the lowest speed until all combined.
- In a separate bowl, whip 6 egg whites with the 2 tablespoons of sugar until stiff peaks form (should easily stick to whatever you’re mixing with).
- Stirring with ⅓ of the egg whites at a time, fold the egg whites into the pumpkin batter mixture until smooth and incorporated.
- Divide batter among your cupcake tins (which have been sprayed with some sort of cooking oil I would hope) almost to the top.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes until a toothpick stuck in the cupcake comes out clean.
- Top with a frosting of your choice!
Halloween Popcorn Balls
Every year on Halloween Nikki’s mother would make these popcorn balls, adding orange food coloring to give them a pumpkin appearance and we would wrap them up in sandwich bags with green wrapping ribbon. Her mom would set them out on the Halloween treat table where trick or treaters could pick the homemade popcorn ball treats or a wrapped candy option if they choose. Even the parents would accompany their trick-or-treaters to the door to get their own popcorn ball. To this day her family can’t celebrate Halloween without marshmallow popcorn balls.
- 1 bag of Jet Puffed marshmallows (miniature melts faster)
- 1 stick of unsalted butter (8 tbsp)
- 2 bags of microwave popcorn of your choice
- 1 tsp vanilla
- Cook popcorn in the microwave according to instructions on the bag. Remove any unpopped popcorn kernels and set aside.
- Melt butter in a large saucepan on low heat. Add marshmallows and vanilla and cook until marshmallows are completely melted and mixture is well blended, stirring constantly.
- Place popcorn in a large bowl (I grease mine with a small bit of butter to mitigate the sticking). Add marshmallow mixture and toss until popcorn is evening coated.
- Shape into 10 (3-inch) balls with lightly greased hands. Place on a sheet of waxed paper; let stand until firm.
Special Tip: Don’t have a stove-top? You can use your microwave.
Microwave butter in a large microwaveable bowl on high for 1 minute. Add marshmallows and vanilla; toss until marshmallows are evenly coated with butter. Microwave 1 1/2 minutes or until marshmallows are completely melted, stirring after 45 seconds. Continue as directed.