1 standard size box spice cake mix (I typically use Duncan Hines)
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 cup canned pumpkin
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 pkg. (8 oz.) Cream Cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
3 1/2 – 4 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup caramel ice cream topping sauce
Pinch of salt
Extra caramel sauce for drizzling onto cake and/or on to frosting.
Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. Place 24 cupcake liners in cupcake pans.
In a large bowl, combine cake mix, water, eggs, oil, pumpkin and cinnamon. Once all ingredients are combined, mix on medium speed for two minutes.
Fill cupcake liners with batter approximately 2/3 of the way full.
Bake for 17-22 minutes or until tops spring back lightly when touched.
Remove from oven and place on wire rack. If drizzling with frosting, use a knife, fork or even straw to poke 2-3 holes per cupcake, and drizzle caramel sauce over holes while cupcakes are still warm. Allow to cool completely prior to frosting.
BEAT cream cheese, butter, caramel and vanilla in large bowl with mixer until blended. Gradually beat in sugar. Blend in salt. Spread or pipe onto cupcakes. Optional, garnish with a drizzle of caramel sauce and pinch of sea salt.
STORE cupcakes in refrigerator.