Pumpkin Spice Buttercream Frosting

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This easy Pumpkin Spice Buttercream Frosting is perfect for Fall! It’s flavored with pumpkin and lots of spice and great for frosting cakes, cupcakes, cookies and more!

An Easy Pumpkin Buttercream Recipe

When it comes to American buttercream recipes, they really couldn’t get any simpler to make. There’s no need to cook eggs or anything – just combine your butter (and shortening, if you chose to use it) with your powdered sugar and add your flavorings. Easy peasy!

The trick with buttercream though is to be sure that when you add your flavorings – which often end up being liquid or something similar – to not to add too much. Depending on what you’re using your frosting for, making it too thin can cause it to not hold it’s place or shape. But then making it too thick can make it difficult to pipe or spread, or even cause it to not stick well. So if you aren’t familiar with working with buttercream, it may take a few times to get the “feel” of the consistency you want, but in the meantime, check out my post on getting the right frosting consistency for a little help.

Pumpkin Spice Buttercream Frosting being mixed in a mixing bowl


So to make this Pumpkin Spice Buttercream, you’ll start with the same base ingredients as my Vanilla Buttercream Frosting.

  • Unsalted Butter
  • Shortening – This can be replaced with additional butter, if you prefer.
  • Powdered Sugar
  • Pumpkin Puree
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Ground Cinnamon
  • Ground Nutmeg
  • Ground Cloves
  • Ginger
  • Salt

The shortening can seem a little unusual, but it can always be replaced with additional butter. I just often find that an all-butter buttercream is super buttery, so a little shortening cuts that down a bit. It can also help the frosting stay a little more stable when warm. Even just at room temperature, buttercream made with some shortening just keeps better, in my opinion. But again, if you just really aren’t a fan, go with all butter.

Pumpkin Spice Buttercream Frosting piped into a clear glass jar

How to Make Pumpkin Spice Buttercream Frosting

Once you’ve combined your butter and shortening, you’ll add about half of the powdered sugar. You don’t want to add it all right away, or it’ll be too thick to stir and clump together.

After the powdered sugar is well mixed in and smooth, it’s time to start adding the flavoring and spices. Start by adding the pumpkin puree. Add three to four tablespoons to start. If you’re looking to have a little thicker buttercream, start with three. If you think you’ll want it a little thinner, you could start with four. Just remember – you can always add more liquid, but once it’s added, you can’t un-add it.

Stir the pumpkin puree in, along with your spices. Feel free to adjust the spices to your liking, but I personally love the combination of the cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger.

Next, add the remainder of the powdered sugar. I’m often asked about reducing the amount of powdered sugar. I know it can seem like a lot, but in an american buttercream, it’s what gives the frosting it’s volume and helps with consistency. I don’t usually recommend reducing it – you’d end up with less frosting and possibly one that’s too thin – but you can. And in the case of this buttercream, it’s even tricker because if you reduce the powdered sugar, you likely won’t be able to add as much pumpkin puree before the frosting gets too thin. So you end up missing out on flavor. Your call though.

From there, just add more pumpkin puree until you have the consistency you want and your Pumpkin Spice Buttercream Frosting is ready to go!

Pumpkin Spice Buttercream Frosting on a mixer beater blade

How to Use Pumpkin Buttercream Frosting

The flavor of this buttercream is delicious! Full of pumpkin and spice and great to add to your favorite desserts. Add it to the top of a pumpkin cupcake, vanilla cupcake or frost a vanilla cake or chocolate cake with it – the options are endless! And if you like, check out my tutorials for how to frost cupcakes and frosting a smooth cake to help you get the perfect look and finish with your buttercream!

More great buttercream and topping recipes:

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
Fudgy Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
Homemade Strawberry Frosting – Two Ways
Homemade Whipped Cream

Pumpkin Spice Buttercream Frosting piped into a clear glass jar

More pumpkin recipes to enjoy:

The BEST Pumpkin Bread
Spice Cake with Pumpkin Mascarpone Buttercream
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Layer Cake
Pumpkin Sheet Cake
Pumpkin Cheesecake
Classic Pumpkin Pie

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Pumpkin Spice Buttercream Frosting piped into a clear glass jar

Pumpkin Spice Buttercream Frosting

  • Author: Lindsay
  • Prep Time: 8 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 8 minutes
  • Yield: about 2 1/2 cups
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: No Bake
  • Cuisine: American


This easy Pumpkin Spice Buttercream Frosting is flavored with pumpkin and lots of warm spices. It’s the perfect topping for fall cakes, cupcakes, cookies, and more!


  • 1/2 cup (112g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (95g) shortening (can substitute with additional butter)
  • 4 cups (460g) powdered sugar
  • 45 tbsp pumpkin puree*
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • Pinch or two of salt


1. Combine butter and shortening in a large mixer bowl and beat until well combined.
2. Add 2 cups of powdered sugar and mix until well combined and smooth.
3. Add vanilla extract and 3-4 tablespoons of pumpkin puree and mix until well combined and smooth.
4. Add spices and mix until well combined.
5. Add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until well combined and smooth.
6. Add additional pumpkin puree until desired consistency and flavor is reached. Check out my post on frosting consistency, if needed.


*Use canned pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling.


  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 3307
  • Sugar: 392.4 g
  • Sodium: 2352.2 mg
  • Fat: 194.9 g
  • Carbohydrates: 404.5 g
  • Protein: 1.4 g
  • Cholesterol: 244 mg


About Lindsay

I'm a wife and a mom to twin boys and a baby girl! And I've got a serious sweets addiction! Bring on the treats!

Scripture I’m Loving

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” Matthew 11:28-29