Pumpkin Donuts with Cream Cheese Icing & Candied Pepitas


Pumpkin Donuts with Cream Cheese Frosting and Candied Pepitas | From My Sweet Heart

Autumn is my favorite time of year and October is my favorite month.  The reasons are many.  I was born in October.  You can trick or treat for your favorite candy in October.  Honeycrisp apples are here!  The days are still mild.  The nights are comfortably cool.  Nature’s colors are richer and more vibrant.  My cooking becomes heartier.  And baking warms my kitchen on a regular basis.

Oh…..and the pumpkins!  So many recipes, so little time!  But I’ve decided to kick off the season with donuts!

These baked pumpkin donuts are light and airy;  iced with a little sweetened cream cheese and topped with crunchy, spiced honey pumpkin seeds.  They were also an editor’s pick and featured in Yahoo Shine in Canada!

But speaking of a thousand pumpkins . . . . .

I belong to a fun group called the Theme Weavers.  Each month we engage in a week long celebration of …..something.  This month it is pumpkins!  And I was more than happy to bake with it.



Pumpkin Donuts with Cream Cheese Frosting and Candied Pepitas | From My Sweet Heart


I am finding that there are many ways to create donuts.  Baked, cake like, yeast or fried.  I love them all!  This recipe is basically the baked pumpkin doughnut recipe from King Arthur’s Flour.  The only thing I changed up a bit was the spices that I used.


Baking them in a donut pan creates a smaller donut.  But they are just as flavorful and I like the petite size!



Pumpkin Donuts with Cream Cheese Frosting and Candied Pepitas | From My Sweet Heart


Level of Difficulty:  Very easy

Yields:  1 dozen, soft, pillowy donuts



  • 1/2 of a cup of vegetable oil
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups of granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups of pumpkin puree
  • 1 teaspoon of Vietnamese cinnamon
  • 1/2 of a teaspoon of ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 of ateaspoon of ground ginger
  • 1/8 of a teaspoon of ground cloves
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
  • 1 3/4 cups of all purpose flour


Preheat your oven to 350°F and light coat 2, 6 doughnut pans with cooking spray.

Beat together the oil, eggs, sugar, pumpkin, spices, salt and baking powder until they are smooth.  Add the flour and stir just until all of it has been incorporated.  Fill the wells of the doughnut pans about 3/4 of the way full.  I actually put the batter into a piping bag.  Trying to fill it using spoons or a small ice cream scoop was just too messy!  Bake the donuts for about 15-18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Cool on a wire rack before icing.



Pumpkin Donuts with Cream Cheese Frosting and Candied Pepitas | From My Sweet Heart




  • 2 cups of pepitas
  • 1/4 of a cup of honey
  • 1 Tablespoon of unsalted butter
  • 1 Tablespoon of light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice
  • a pinch of salt

Melt the butter in a small saute pan over medium high heat.  Add the pumpkin seeds, pumpkin pie spice and the salt.  Toast the seeds until some of them just begin to turn golden brown.  I like the look of some of the green seeds in the mix.  But you can certainly toast them until they are all golden.  Add the honey and the brown sugar and stir the seeds to coat.  Spread them out on a parchment lined baking sheet to cool.  Use these to top the cream cheese icing if you can resist nibbling on them while you bake!



Pumpkin Donuts with Cream Cheese Frosting and Candied Pepitas | From My Sweet Heart




  • 8 ounces of cream cheese at room temperature
  • 1 cup (or more) of powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract
  • 4-5 Tablespoons of half and half (or more if needed, and you may use milk)

In the bowl of your electric mixer, whisk the cream cheese until it is smooth.  Add the powdered sugar and vanilla.  And then add the half and half 1 Tablespoon at a time, until the icing is at your desired consistency.  I liked my icing a little thicker and found pouring the icing over the donuts with a spoon to be the easiest way of covering them.  Garnish them immediately with the candied pepitas and enjoy!



Pumpkin Donuts with Cream Cheese Frosting and Candied Pepitas | From My Sweet Heart


So, what pumpkin dreams did the Theme Weavers weave?








  • Pumpkin Scones from Beka (our over achiever with her 2nd entry…you go girl!) @ Kvetchin Kitchen
  • Pumpkin Ice Cream from Monica @ The Grommom


Try 1 or 2.  Or all 14!  For more Theme Weaver recipes check out Crêpe Week, Beer Week, Soup Week, Sweets for Your Sweetie Pies Week and Berry Week!


Follow my blog with Bloglovin!


  1. says

    Your pumpkin donuts look fabulous, especially with that creamy frosting and the candied pepitas. Pure genius! I just made pumpkin donuts, also based off of the King Arthur recipe. Made mine into mini donuts and loved the result!

  2. says

    The combination of spices is amazing. I have Vietnamese Cinnamon and I love it! I also have a mini donut pan that I’ve never used. Do you actually have your blog name engraved on the serving plate? OMG that’s awesome!!!!

  3. says

    I’m a pumpkin donut lov-ah and you, my friend, totally nailed it with the honey spiced pepitas! With having the nut allergies that we do, I always have pepitas & sunflower seeds in the house to add little crunch when need be. Never in a million years did it occur to me to candy the seeds! My parents are visiting this weekend. I think they will appreciate waking up to these little lovelies on Saturday morning!

  4. says

    I don’t understand…. how do you get the frosting to look so PERFECT? It’s flawless! Another gorgeous recipe, Anne. I love everything about this one – the pumpkin, the spices, the glaze and the pepitas. Simply fabulous.

  5. says

    Fact: doughnuts are my weakness. I love them. I’m still upset with my mom for selling an early edition of Beard on Bread, which contained my favorite doughnut recipe. I know I can probably find a version online, but it won’t be the same. I’m on the hunt at used book stores.
    These look divine. While I’m NOT a pumpkin fan, I do like pumpkin doughnuts (to me, they taste like a spice cake), and cream cheese icing and pepitas? Yum. I may have to buy a doughnut pan and try these babies out!

  6. says

    Anne, This time of year everyone is baking with pumpkin and Pumpkin Donuts has got to be the most creative. I love the Pumpkin and cream cheese icing combination. Is that a “From my Sweet Heart” cake plate? Love it!

  7. says

    Anne, I was born this month too! Happy Birthday!!! Your donuts look amazing. I just love donuts. Honestly, I think they are my most favorite treat of all the baked goods out there :)

  8. says

    I admit: I’ve never made homemade donuts! I’m afraid if my boys know its possible I’ll never be off the hook! :) But these look so yummy, I think I’ll have to surprise everyone and try it! Thank you. I love fall too…My bday is in October too…(When is yours? We should virtually party. :))

  9. says

    Anne, these donuts just look lovely! So delicate and yet so…FULL! I think I just love the snappy contrast of glaze+pepitas with the actual donut.

    Also, thank you SO MUCH for your sweet words re: food photography. I love the speckled idea and that was exactly the kind of encouragement I needed to hear at that point. This is real life. And sometimes, not everything goes quite according to plan!

    Happy Pumpkin Week, beauty!


  10. says

    Although I don’t anything could replace fried, filled donuts (I love the jelly ones!), when it comes to cake-type donuts, I’ve come to prefer the baked. Loads of flavor, easy, and much healthier. We’ve never make pumpkin ones – we’ve been missing out! These look terrific – thanks so much.

  11. says

    Happy Birthday sometime this month! :) So glad to share this Bday month with such a great woman! Pumpkin donuts – now that’s a new one. I saw these donut pans over at JustOneCookbook the other day and now I’m seeing them again. You guys are really trying to get me to buy one with all of these delicious donuts recipes. Love these, but I don’t think the pepitas would make it to the topping. I’d eat them all right out of the pan.

  12. says

    Wow, these look absolutely fantastic. I’m a big fan of donuts AND pumpkin (even if the weather won’t permit me to feel like it is really fall. I mean, 90 yesterday. Come on!). So these donuts are on my must make list, for sure!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge