Pumpkin Cranberry Cupcakes

For your Rosh Hashanah table.

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pumpkin cranberry

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Before eating pumpkin or squash (k’ra’a in Hebrew) on Rosh Hashanah, some families say “yikarul’ fanekhaz’ khuyoteinu”–may our good deeds call out our merit before You. Others use the resemblance between the word “k’ra’a” (pumpkin) and the word “kara”–to cut or rip–to express the hope that any bad deeds will be ripped out of God’s book.


  1. 1 15oz can pumpkin puree
  2. 1 egg
  3. 1 teaspoon vanilla
  4. 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter or margarine, softened
  5. 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  6. 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  7. pinch of nutmeg
  8. 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  9. 1 teaspoon ginger
  10. 1 teaspoon baking soda
  11. 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  12. 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  13. 2 cups all-purpose flour


Preheat oven to 350 and line a cupcake pan with paper or silicone liners. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and powder, and spices; set aside. In a separate bowl, cream the sugars and butter together until fluffy. Add the eggs, vanilla, and pumpkin puree, stirring until fully combined. Fold in the cranberries.

Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet, stirring until just combined. Pour batter into prepared cupcake tins, filling each tin approximately 3/4 full. Bake for 20-25 minutes until a tester comes out clean. Allow to fully cool, then frost as desired or sprinkle with confectioners sugar.

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Leah Koenig is a writer and cookbook author whose work has been published in The New York Times Magazine, Saveur, CHOW, Food Arts, Tablet, Gastronomica, and Every Day with Rachael Ray. Leah writes a monthly food column for The Forward and a bimonthly column for Saveur.com called “One Ingredient, Many Ways.” She is the former Editor-in-Chief of the award-winning blog, The Jew & The Carrot, and she is a frequent contributor to MyJewishLearning.com, where her recipes are very popular, and highly praised. Her first cookbook, The Hadassah Everyday Cookbook: Daily Meals for the Contemporary Jewish Kitchen, was published by Rizzoli in 2011. The book was named one of the “Best Books of 2011? by Library Journal and The Kitchn called it “a big, beautiful book that is also down-to-earth and completely accessible.”

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