Pumpkin Mini Muffins

We can tell fall has arrived when every magazine you pick up has a pumpkin recipe of some sort. This one is especially good because of the frosting. If you don't feel like making the muffins, make the frosting and hand everyone a spoon. These really are good, and easy. They also freeze beautifully unfrosted. Thaw and frost as needed.

Pumpkin Mini Muffins
Makes about 5 dozen
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2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon EACH of ground nutmeg, ginger, allspice and cloves
1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree
3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
Maple-Cream Cheese Frost ( recipe following)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place paper baking cups into miniature muffin pans.

Combine flour and next 7 ingredients in a medium bowl.

Combine pumpkin and next 4 ingredients in a large bowl. Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture, stirring just until moistened. Spoon batter into cups, filling two-thirds full.

Bake in batches, 15 to 17 minutes. Let cool in pans, on wire rack 5 minutes. Remove from pans, and let cool completely. If you are freezing some, now is the time to freeze in air tight containers for up to 3 months.

If using now, it's time to frost.

Maple Cream Cream Frost
Makes about 4 1/2 cups

16 ounces cream cheese softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
4 cups powdered sugar

Beat first 3 ingredients in a large bowl at medium speed with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Gradually add powdered sugar, beating at low speed after each addition until well blended.

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