Halloween Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes
13 tea bags Bigelow Pumpkin Spice Tea*
1 ¼ cups boiling water
1 ¾ cup sugar
¾ cup vegetable oil
1 (11-ounce) can mandarin oranges, drained, discard liquid
½ cup tea concentrate
2 teaspoons real vanilla extract
2 teaspoons freshly grated orange zest
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2 ½ teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
2 cups shredded carrots
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, slightly soft
1 tablespoon butter, softened
2 tablespoons tea concentrate
3 ½ cups confectioners' sugar
Place tea bags in a 2-cup glass measure. Add 1 ¼ cups water. Steep tea for 10 minutes.
Squeeze all liquid from tea bags into cup. Discard tea bags. (About 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons tea concentrate.)
Heat oven to 350 F. Spray 2 (12-cup) muffin tins with baking spray; alternatively use paper liners set aside.
In large mixing bowl add sugar, vegetable oil and eggs. Mix at high speed, scraping bowl often, until thick and creamy (1 to 2 minutes).
Add mandarin oranges, ½ cup tea concentrate, vanilla, and orange zest. Continue mixing, scraping bowl often, until well mixed (1 minute).
In medium bowl stir together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt.
Add flour mixture to tea mixture. Continue mixing, at low speed, until well mixed (1 to 2 minutes).
Add carrots; mix well.
Place batter in muffin cups filling about ½ to ¾ full. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from oven; cool.
Meanwhile, in medium mixing bowl place cream cheese and butter. Mix at high speed, scraping bowl often, until light and creamy (1 minute). Add 2 tablespoons tea extract. Mix well.
Add confectioners' sugar; continue mixing, scraping bowl often, until soft and creamy (1 to 2 minutes).
Frost top of each cupcake with frosting.