This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.
This moist pumpkin cake with cream cheese frosting is filled with brown sugar, spices, & all your favorite fall flavors.
A Favorite Fall Treat!
This easy pumpkin cake with cream cheese frosting is moist, full of fall flavors, and topped with creamy, smooth cream cheese frosting. You’re going to love it.
Now I don’t know about you, but I always get excited about fall baking. But to be totally honest, I’m not a huge Pumpkin Pie person. So when pumpkin season rolls around I’m always looking for easier pumpkin desserts.
As far as easy pumpkin desserts go, this pumpkin cake with cream cheese frosting is the perfect option. It’s filled with pumpkin, and because we use more brown sugar than white, there’s a delicious hint of caramel that cannot be beaten.
A Simple Fall Cake
Making this pumpkin cake recipe is easy to do! Just follow these steps:
PREP. Preheat the oven to 350°F degrees. Grease & lightly flour a 9×13-inch baking pan.
DRY INGREDIENTS. In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and pumpkin pie spice.
WET INGREDIENTS. In a separate large bowl beat together the oil, sugars, vanilla, and eggs using an electric mixer. Then beat in the sour cream and pumpkin puree.
With the mixer on low speed, carefully beat in the flour mixture being careful not to over-mix.
BAKE. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 35-40 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
Once the cake is cooled, it’s topped with cream cheese frosting. I love how cream cheese frosting isn’t too sweet. Plus it goes so perfectly with spice cakes, Carrot Cakes, and of course this pumpkin spice cake. You can add a few chopped nuts to the top of each piece, or fall sprinkles look cute too.
BEAT. In a large bowl beat together the butter, cream cheese, and vanilla until soft. Then slowly beat in 3 cups of powdered sugar.
Frosting consistency. If the frosting seems too thin, beat in an extra ½ cup powdered sugar. If it seems too thick, beat in 1 tablespoon of heavy cream.
FROST. Frost the cooled cake using a flat knife. Cut into slices, and optionally top each piece with chopped walnuts.
Change up this pumpkin cake with any of these simple variations.
Make cupcakes. For individual servings of this recipe, make cupcakes instead of an entire cake. Simply scoop the muffin tins ¾ full of batter. Bake at 350°F for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. We also have a separate Pumpkin Cupcake recipe!
Spice. Make your own Pumpkin Pie Spice with nutmeg, cloves, ginger, and cinnamon.
Make Your Own Pumpkin Puree
You can substitute 1:1 homemade puree with canned puree. Be careful to drain as much excess moisture from your homemade puree as possible.
Choose small baking pumpkins or they may also say sugar pumpkin or pumpkin pie on the sign. Do not use the jack-o-lantern pumpkins. Here’s how to make your own pumpkin puree:
- Preheat oven to 375°F
- Slice the pumpkins in half from top to bottom and scoop out the seeds and strings.
- Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place pumpkin halves, with the inside of the pumpkin facing toward the foil. Bake for 40-60 minutes depending on the size of your pumpkin.
- Allow the pumpkin to cool enough to handle. Use a sharp knife to carefully cut away the skin. Toss the skin in the trash and place the remainder of the pumpkin in a blender or food processor. Puree until smooth.
- Line a mesh strainer with cheesecloth. Pour puree into the strainer. Let stand at room temperature for 1-2 hours to allow excess moisture to drain.
- The puree should be able to keep its shape when pressed together with the cheesecloth.
- Store leftover puree in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week, or freeze for 9-14 months.
STORE. There are a few ways that this easy pumpkin cake recipe can be stored.
- Unfrosted cake: Store it covered at room temperature for 3-4 days. Or wrap it tightly with plastic wrap and then again with foil and freeze it for about 3 months.
- Frosted cake: Cover and refrigerate it for about 5 days. To freeze, place the frosted cake in the freezer for a couple of hours to let the frosting set before wrapping it with plastic and foil. It will keep in the freezer for 3-4 months. Remove the wrapping before thawing the cake.
Store leftover frosting. Cream cheese frosting can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for about a week. It also freezes really well. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge when you’re ready to use it.
You will want to use pumpkin puree. You can either make your own puree using small baking pumpkins or use canned pumpkin puree which is what was used in this recipe. Do not use pumpkin pie filling.
An unfrosted pumpkin cake can stay at room temperature for 3-4 days, however, if you frost it with cream cheese frosting it should be refrigerated and can last for about 5 days.
For More Yummy Pumpkin Recipes, Check Out:
- Mini Pumpkin Pies
- Pumpkin Waffles
- Pumpkin Bread
- Libby’s Pumpkin Roll
- Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Muffins
- Magic Pumpkin Cake
Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- 1 cup vegetable oil (canola works too)
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 4 large eggs
- 3 tablespoons sour cream (or plain Greek yogurt)
- 15 oz pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F degrees. Grease & lightly flour a 9×13-inch baking pan.
- In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and pumpkin pie spice.
- In a separate large bowl beat together the oil, sugars, vanilla, and eggs using an electric mixer. Then beat in the sour cream and pumpkin puree.
- With the mixer on low speed, carefully beat in the flour mixture being careful not to over-mix.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 35-40 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
Cream Cheese Frosting
- In a large bowl beat together the butter, cream cheese, and vanilla until soft. Then slowly beat in 3 cups of powdered sugar.
- If the frosting seems too thin, beat in an extra ½ cup powdered sugar. If it seems too thick, beat in 1 tablespoon of heavy cream.
- Frost the cooled cake using a flat knife. Cut into slices, and optionally top each piece with chopped walnuts.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.
I love pumpkin cake! Thank you Fiona for sharing this delicious recipe! Go check out, Just So Tasty for more delicious recipes! ENJOY!