Pumpkin and Cream Cheese Muffins with Walnut Streusel

pumpkin and cream cheese muffins

I can’t tell if it’s the crunchy streusel, or the creamy cream cheese filling, or the moist cakey muffin that makes these muffins so addictive.

I had one for breakfast and one for afternoon snack yesterday.

pumpkin and cream cheese muffins

I opened a can of puree pumpkin a few days ago for these pumpkin spice macarons. I just couldn’t resist to use the rest right away. And that’s how I came up with these muffins, which are totally insane, considered how flavourful, crunchy, moist and full of spice they are! And the cream cheese surprise in the middle is simply divine.

pumpkin and cream cheese muffins

Ingredients (12 regular size cupcakes):
2 cups all-purposed flour
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups pumpkin puree
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup canola oil
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Cream Cheese Filling
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup walnut, chopped
3 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease muffin tin or line with muffin liners.
In a small bowl, mix together with a spoon the cream cheese mixture ingredients until smooth. Set aside.
To prepare the topping, combine all the streusel ingredients until crumbly. Set aside.
In a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, spice and salt.
In another bowl, lightly beat the pumpkin, eggs, oil and vanilla.
Pour the pumpkin mixture into the flour mixture. Mix with a spatula until moistened.
Evenly divide half of the batter among the muffin cups. Place 1 to 2 teaspoons of the cream cheese filling in the center of each cup, pressing it gently into the batter. Fill with the remaining batter.
Sprinkle around 1 tablespoon of the walnut streusel on top of each muffin.
Bake until risen and browned, about 20 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes in the pan.


  1. I take a heeping table spoons of the cream cheese mixture and put on wax paper, and put in the freezer the night before I make the muffins , then you just put one in each muffin and that way the cream cheese dosen’t absorb into the muffin while it is cooking.

  2. These are definitely the best pumpkin muffins I have ever had. They are so moist, and the cream cheese centre is a lovely surprise for your guests! Will make these all year round, not only in fall time.

  3. I made these for a bridal shower breakfast for a coworker. They were a huge hit, despite not looking like the pictures. First, I can’t imagine this recipe only making 12 muffins. I’ve baked a lot of muffins and quickly realized this was going to make more. I made 18 and they rose nicely. After reading the comments, I only used 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. The cream cheese mixture was still a bit loose. I refrigerated it for a while before mixing up the muffin batter. It held together well when it was placed on top of the pumpkin batter. It did, however, bake into the muffins a bit, but was still visible in the muffins as more of a stripe or thin layer. I will definitely make these again because they were absolutely delicious. I may try increasing the amount of cream cheese mixture and partially freeze small scoops of it to place in the muffins. Thanks for sharing this tasty recipe!

  4. Made these today. Doctored up the recipe a little. Absolutely delicious. Moist muffins; cream cheese stayed in the center. I used a whole 15oz can of pumpkin purée, 1 tsp of vanilla and only 1/2 tsp of ginger since ginger is a strong spice. In the cream cheese mixture I only used 1 tsp. Vanilla. As soon as they cooled I ate 2 of them. Delicious. Will definitely make again and again.

  5. These turned out delicious for me!! The only comment I have to make is that the cream cheese filling in the middle seemed to bake through the muffin instead of staying in the middle like seen in the picture. I wasn’t sure if it was because of the “tablespoon of vanilla” or maybe it would have worked better if the cream cheese filling was mixed with powdered sugar instead of granulated sugar? Would love to know if anyone else had this problem and was able to figure out a solution. Otherwise they were delicious!

  6. Hi Fanny, Thank you for your prompt reply. I have had some homemade pumpkin pure in the freezer and could not wait to give it a try last night.
    I used spelt flour and coconut oil and to my surprise they came out perfect! Soft and bouncy to the touch with golden crunchy topping, “Mmmm ” can’t resist them, Had 1 for breakfast 1 after lunch and 1 at teatime :) Probably another after dinner LOL

    Thank you so much for sharing, I would definitely keep following!
    Regards from Malta Europe :)

  7. Would it work well if I would substitute the all purpose flour to a nut or an other gran flour other then the wheat flour and the butter to coconut oil ?
    If so which flour would you suggest?

    1. Hi Aida, I would go for 1 cup whole wheat flour and 1 cup almond meal for the muffin. For the streusel topping, I have seen recipe using coconut oil in place of butter. And it worked well according to the comments. :)

    1. Yes, Nancy. Keep them in an air-tight container and freeze them. Put them in 350F oven for 10 to 15 minutes to thaw and make the topping crunchy. :)

  8. I made these muffins yesterday for our family dinner. And everyone loved them!!!!! Such a wonderful recipe. Mine were a bit bigger than yours (jumbo size I think), I thought it would be too much as after-dinner dessert, but almost everyone wanted to have a second one! LOL!

  9. These were a disaster and I’m not sure where I went wrong. I ended up with way too much batter and the streusel wasn’t chunky pieces – just grainy. It seemed like too much flour in the streusel or something so maybe im is measured. They came out fine though – moist and nice texture but they are just way too cinnamony.

  10. Is it really 1 TBSP of vanilla, not 1 tsp, in the cream cheese filling? I just mixed it and it seems like way too much vanilla.

  11. Just tried out this recipe and generally was pleased with it. One disappointment was that the color of the muffin did not turn out like those in the picture. It was all brown and not orange and cream. Not sure if the tablespoon of vanilla extract for the cream cheese is too much. Also, if you’re not a great fan of cinnamon, cutting down on this will definitely be good. I couldn’t really taste the cream cheese or pumpkin as a result of the over-powering (to me) cinnamon flavor.
    Any suggestions for improvement?

    1. Hi Shwu, not sure if your muffins were baked a little too long in the oven, and that came the color?! Or maybe the pumpkin puree that you used? And yes, you can definitely omit the cinnamon if you don’t like it. We happens to really like the spice and pumpkin combination. Hope it helps. :)

    1. Hi, Sara, you can omit the nuts here. I’d suggest to replace half portion of granulated sugar with brown sugar, just to get more a bit more crunch. :)

  12. I’m surprised you were able to have only two yesterday! I would have eaten the whole batch… But I do love carbs! I think these sound so delicious. Cream cheese makes muffins so luxurious… And topped with streusel? heaven!

    1. Thanks, Roxan. You have no idea how long I spent on just looking at the rest hoping I could eat more. LOL!

  13. These look incredibly delicious! Can you substitute the canola oil with olive oil or avocado oil?

    1. Hi Lauren, yes, you can definitely use olive oil or avocado oil. I would suggest to use a light version one though. :)

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