If you're thinking this is the wrong season for pumpkin muffins... You're wrong. It is never the wrong season for pumpkin anything. And also if you're thinking that - we can't be friends anymore and you can't come to my birthday party.
Speaking of birthday parties, I made these for my hubby's birthday breakfast. I had him look through my recipe binder and I said I'd make him anything he wanted. He chose these. I knew we were a match made in pumpkin heaven. I'm really not sure there is any food on this earth that I love more than muffins. Cupcakes fit in the muffin category since they are basically just a muffin on crack. A muffin to the nth power. The "it" girl at the muffin high school. A muffin all dressed up with nowhere to go... but my mouth.
However, these muffins are almost like an inside-out cupcake. They have everything perfect about a muffin (sweet, moist, perfect crumbly streusal top) but they have a sweet, creamy, smooth filling. And they have pumpkin!!! I made them in my jumbo muffin pan and they were perfect. If you don't have a jumbo muffin pan, you could make them in a regular size muffin pan - but I prefer the jumbo because the topping-to-muffin and filling-to-muffin ratios are so much better in the jumbo. Not to mention the fact that the jumbo just means more muffin for your mouth! Also, the jumbo muffin pans are super cheap on Amazon.
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
6 tablespoons butter
6 tablespoons chopped pecans
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups white sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups canned pumpkin
1/3 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line muffin pans with paper liners.
To make the filling: In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese until soft. Add egg, vanilla and brown sugar. Beat until smooth, then set aside.
For the streusel topping: In a medium bowl, mix flour, sugar, cinnamon and pecans. Add butter and cut it in with a fork until crumbly. Set aside.
For the muffin batter: In a large bowl, sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Make a well in the center of flour mixture and add eggs, pumpkin, olive oil and vanilla. Beat together until smooth.
If making Jumbo Muffins: Place 2 tablespoons pumpkin batter in muffin cups. Make a bit of a well in the batter, without going all of the way through to the bottom. Then add two tablespoons of the cream cheese mixture right in the middle of the batter. Try to keep cream cheese from touching the paper liner. Next, cover with 1/4 cup more batter. Sprinkle on the streusel topping.
If making regular size muffins: Place 1 tablespoon muffin batter in muffin cups. Make a bit of a well in the batter, without going all of the way through to the bottom. Then add one tablespoon of the cream cheese mixture right in the middle of the batter. Try to keep cream cheese from touching the paper liner. Next, cover with 2 tablespoons more batter. Sprinkle on the streusel topping.
Bake at 375 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out without any orange batter on it (white cream cheese is ok).