These 3 ingredient pumpkin muffins may become your new favorite recipes for this classic fall bake. Made with spice cake mix and pumpkin puree, the easy pumpkin muffins have all the autumn flavors and require only minimal prep.
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3 ingredient pumpkin muffins with cake mix
If you are as obsessed with pumpkin season as I am, you will adore these scrumptious pumpkin muffins using cake mix. Come fall, they are on repeat in my household. They have a soft, moist texture, taste perfectly spiced, and have beautifully domed muffin tops.
With a batter that consists of only spice cake mix, canned pumpkin, and milk, these delicacies come together so quickly. Plus, you can customize them with chocolate chips and pecans or ice them with cream cheese frosting.
These pumpkin cake mix muffins are great for breakfast or a tasty afternoon snack that is surprisingly easy to make. It’s a wonderful way to enjoy those classic autumn flavors with minimal effort!
Reasons to love cake mix pumpkin muffins
For years, I was skeptical of baking muffins with cake mix. I kept thinking they wouldn’t taste the same as muffins baked from scratch.
But I finally tried it and was so impressed. Pumpkin spice cake muffins taste so good! You’d never know they were made from a mix.
- Amazing flavor + texture: The muffins have such a soft, bouncy texture, and the lightly spiced aroma makes you want to come back for more.
- Pantry basics: All the ingredients are pantry and fridge staples. I always have a box of cake mix, a can of pumpkin, and some milk around.
- Simple to make: The batter mixes quickly, and after a short stint in the oven, these spice cake and pumpkin muffins don’t take long to cool, and you can dig in.
- Pumpkin bread: Don’t worry if you don’t have a muffin pan. The recipe can also be made as 3 ingredient pumpkin bread.
3 ingredient pumpkin muffins are a delicious way to enjoy pumpkin season. I kept the pumpkin muffins recipe very simple and only used 3 ingredients. Scroll down to the recipe card for specific quantities.
- Canned pumpkin: You need one 15 oz can of pumpkin, I always use Libby’s. Make sure to use canned pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling. You can also prepare the recipe with homemade pumpkin puree.
- Spice cake mix allows us to cut back on the ingredients and replaces flour, sugar, spices, and baking powder. It provides sweetness and structure to the muffins. I created this easy pumpkin muffin recipe for a 15.25 oz box of cake mix. Several popular brands carry this size.
- Milk or water: I find that adding milk or water makes the recipe even better. The extra liquid creates a smoother batter and keeps the muffins super moist. Any type of milk works here, but I prefer whole milk for the best flavor.
How to make 3 ingredient pumpkin muffins
Okay, are you ready to make the best pumpkin muffins with cake mix? The steps for these 3 ingredient pumpkin muffins are very simple and straightforward.
Step 1: Prepare for baking
Preheat the oven to 350°F / 180°C / gas mark 4 and adjust a rack in the middle of the oven. Line a regular-size, 12-hole muffin tin with paper liners.
Step 2: Combine ingredients
In a large mixing bowl, stir together the cake mix, pumpkin puree, and milk. If using mix-ins like chocolate chips or nuts, fold them in now.
Step 3: Fill muffin pan
Divide the batter evenly between the muffin cups. A cookie scoop works well to portion the batter.
Step 4: Bake
Bake the muffins in the preheated oven for 22 to 25 minutes. To test the doneness, insert a toothpick or cake tester in the center of a muffin. The muffins are ready when it comes out clean with only a few crumbs.
Step 5: Cool
Take the muffins out of the oven and let them cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Then transfer them onto a wire rack to cool completely. You can also enjoy some warm, they are delicious.
Step 6: Decorate
If desired, frost your 3-ingredient pumpkin muffins with cream cheese icing or drizzle with a powdered sugar glaze.
This easy 3 ingredient pumpkin muffins recipe is very simple and totally doable – even when you’re new to baking with minimal ingredients. Here are 2 tips that will help you to get the best pumpkin muffins:
- Cookie scoop: I find using a large cookie scoop or old-fashioned ice cream scoop makes scooping the batter into the muffin liners a breeze.
- Baking time: The baking time can vary because every oven heats differently. The 3 ingredient cake mix muffins are done when a toothpick or skewer inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean, and the edges look golden brown. Underbaking can result in deflated and dense muffins.
Variations & mix-ins
As always, there are several customizations and add-in options for making 3 ingredient pumpkin muffins. Here are some ideas:
- More spices: To make your 3 ingredient cake mix muffins even more flavorful, add 1 to 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice or ground cinnamon.
- Chocolate chips: Chocolate chips and pumpkin are the perfect pairing and take this easy pumpkin muffins recipe to the next level. To make chocolate chip pumpkin muffins, simply fold 1 cup chocolate chips into the muffin batter and then bake as instructed.
- Pecans: Fold 1 cup chopped pecans into the batter and sprinkle some more onto the top of the muffins before baking.
- Dried fruit: Feel free to add 1 cup cranberries or raisins to the muffins. They add a subtle sweetness and make the pumpkin muffins very festive.
- Nuts & seeds: Top the muffins with 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, or soy nuts for a bit of crunch and heartiness in every bite.
- Streusel: To make streusel pumpkin muffins, prepare the streusel from my blueberry muffins recipe and sprinkle them over your muffins before baking.
- Frosting: To turn these 3 ingredient muffins into a dessert-worthy treat, garnish the cooled muffins with cream cheese frosting. You get rich fall flavors paired with tangy cream cheese icing. Just yummy!
How to store 3 ingredient pumpkin muffins
Homemade spice cake pumpkin muffins store well. If you’re not ready to serve your pumpkin muffins right away, put them in an airtight food container or zip-top bags and store them at room temperature for 5 days.
Can you freeze cake mix pumpkin muffins?
Yes! Easy pumpkin spice muffins are super freezer friendly and can be kept frozen for 2 months. That way, you can always have a quick pumpkin treat at hand to enjoy with your morning coffee or pumpkin spice latte.
What is the best spice cake mix for 3 ingredient pumpkin muffins?
I’d say pick your favorite spice cake mix. We love Duncan Hines Perfectly Moist Spice Cake Mix and Betty Crocker’s Super Moist Cake Mix.
Kruzteaz Spice Cake and the Gingerbread Cake & Cookie Mix from Betty Crocker will probably work too, but I haven’t tested these. If you need a gluten-free option, consider the gluten-free spice cake mix from Namaste.
Can I use another cake mix?
Absolutely! The best thing is that you can whip up this 3 ingredient pumpkin muffin recipe with any cake mix you like and have available for so many great flavor combinations.
Vanilla and white cake mix works well. Chocolate and devil’s food cake mix is an excellent option for chocolate pumpkin muffins. And carrot cake mix brings spices and nuts to the table.
Can I make this recipe without cake mix?
Yes, you can make 3 ingredient pumpkin muffins without cake mix. My simple pumpkin bread recipe can be turned into muffins. It uses condensed milk, pumpkin, self-rising flour, and optionally pumpkin pie spice.
More pumpkin recipes
Got room for more easy pumpkin recipes? Always! I’ve rounded up a few more ideas for you to try. They are perfect for autumn baking and will have your house smell amazing!
- Condensed Milk Pumpkin Pie
- White Chocolate Pumpkin Cookies
- Pumpkin Pudding
- Condensed Milk Pumpkin Bread
- Pumpkin Pancakes
- Evaporated Milk Pumpkin Pie
Other muffin recipes
We love muffins! They are perfect for breakfast and snacking. Here are a few more yummy muffin recipes that are perfectly tender and packed with delicious flavor!