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Celebrate pumpkin spice season with our Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese frosting! A delicious cake loaded with pumpkin flavor in every bite.
As the leaves start to change and the air becomes crisp, there’s nothing quite like indulging in the flavors of fall. And what better way to embrace the season than by baking a delicious Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting?! It’s the perfect treat to satisfy your pumpkin spice cravings!
Reasons You Will Love This Pumpkin Cake
- Easy to find ingredients – this delicious pumpkin cake uses basic pantry staple ingredients.
- Made from scratch – an easy homemade cake using simple everyday ingredients.
- Cream cheese frosting – Topped with a rich cream cheese frosting.
- Crowd-pleasing – Perfect for entertaining this fall, serving up after dinner, or taking to a potluck event.
- Lots of with Pumpkin flavor – The best pumpkin cake you will ever have!
Ingredients Needed to Make Pumpkin Cake
- Flour – You will use all-purpose flour for the base of this cake.
- Salt – Salt is a must as it will truly enhance all the flavors of the cake.
- Baking Soda – Baking soda is going to help the cake to rise and become fluffy.
- Spices – Pumpkin pie spice and cinnamon are used for this cake to enhance the flavor.
- Eggs – You will use large room-temperature eggs.
- Sugar – Opt for granulated sugar to sweeten the cake.
- Oil – Vegetable oil or canola oil both work great for this dessert.
- Pumpkin Puree – Reach for a can of pumpkin puree to mix into this cake batter.
Ingredients Needed to Make Cream Cheese Frosting
- Cream Cheese – Opt for softened cream cheese for the frosting. Full-fat cream cheese is best.
- Butter – Unsalted butter that is softened will be needed for the frosting. Make sure it is real butter, not margarine.
- Powdered Sugar – If you have powdered sugar with clumps sift it first to ensure it is nice and fluffy.
- Vanilla Extract – Vanilla will help sweeten the luscious cream cheese frosting just enough.
How to Make this Delicious Pumpkin Cake
Preheat your oven and prep your baking dish. Add eggs to a bowl and whisk well. Add sugar, oil, and pumpkin puree to the large bowl with eggs and mix to combine.
In a medium bowl add your dry ingredients and mix to combine. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients.
Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan. Spread batter evenly in the 9 x13-inch cake pan and bake as directed. Once done allow the cake to cool on a cooling rack.
How to Make Cream Cheese Frosting
Add your items for the frosting in a bowl and with an electric mixer and whip until nice and creamy. Spread the frosting on the cake and then serve immediately or refrigerate the cake until you are ready to serve.
Tips for Making this Pumpkin Dessert
- For all the chilled ingredients it is best to allow them to come to room temperature. You will find all the ingredients incorporate better with the ingredients if they are room temperature.
- Allowing your cake to cool on a wire rack is going to speed up the cooling process and make sure the cake cools fully all the way through.
- Use an offset spatula for spreading on the frosting.
- I do recommend a hand mixer or stand mixer for whipping up this cake. It speeds up the process. But you can use a whisk just the same.
- Don’t spread on the frosting until you have a cooled cake. Othwerise the frosting will melt into the cake.
Frosting For This Cake
If you want to change up the frosting for this pumpkin spice cake recipe, you can do that. Here are a few ideas below that you could do to spread on top of this spiced pumpkin cake to transform the flavor. All of these will still give you that perfect fall flavor.
- Vanilla Frosting or Buttercream
- Maple Frosting
- Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting
- Chocolate Frosting
- Brown Sugar Frosting
- Skip the frosting for a bare cake.
Storing Pumpkin Cake
Refrigerate the cake until you are ready to serve it up. You will find this cake due to the cream cheese frosting having to be refrigerated or it will spoil. The cake will store for 3-5 days in the fridge.
Or you can opt to freeze the cake if you would prefer. The pumpkin cake freezes perfectly. Just place it in a freezer-friendly container and freeze for 3-4 months. Then thaw the cake in the fridge overnight.
What is the Difference Between Cake Frosting and Icing?
Cake frosting and icing are both sweet toppings used to decorate and enhance the flavor of cakes, but they differ in their ingredients, texture, and application.
- Ingredients: Frosting typically contains butter or shortening, powdered sugar (also known as confectioners’ sugar or icing sugar), and flavorings like vanilla or chocolate. It has a creamy and buttery flavor. Icing, on the other hand, is usually made with powdered sugar and a liquid, such as milk or water. It can be flavored with extracts or other flavorings. Icing has a smoother, thinner consistency compared to frosting.
- Texture: Frosting is thicker and creamier in texture. It can be spread smoothly on cakes and can also be used for piping intricate designs. Icing is thinner and glossier in texture. It is often used for creating a smooth, shiny surface on cakes and cookies. It’s not as suitable for intricate piping work as frosting.
- Application: Frosting is commonly used for filling between cake layers, covering the entire cake, and piping decorative elements on cakes and cupcakes. Icing is often used for creating a glaze on top of cakes, cookies, and pastries. It’s also used for flooding cookies when decorating with royal icing. It’s more of a surface coating than a filling.
- Flavor: Frosting has a richer, buttery flavor due to the inclusion of butter or shortening. Icing has a sweeter and lighter flavor, primarily coming from the powdered sugar and flavorings.
- Appearance: Frosting can have a variety of textures, from smooth to fluffy, and is often used for creating decorative patterns and designs on cakes. Icing typically creates a smooth, glossy, and even surface when applied.
It’s important to note that the terminology can vary regionally, and some people may use the terms “frosting” and “icing” interchangeably. Additionally, there are many variations and recipes for both frosting and icing, so the exact ingredients and textures can vary based on the specific recipe and intended use.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I make cupcakes instead of a 9×13 cake? Yes, you can definitely make cupcakes. Simply line your muffin tin with cupcake liners and fill 3/4 the way full of the cake batter. Then bake for less time and once the cakes are done, cool on a cooling rack. Then add frosting to a piping bag and pipe on the frosting.
Can I make this pumpkin cake a layered cake? Prepare your cake pans and bake up into a layered cake if you wish. Just trim the cake to make the layers level add a crumb coat and then a thin layer of frosting and then prepare the cake with the frosting as you would. Or you could even use a bundt cake pan for this pumpkin dream cake if you wish.
Are pumpkin pie mix and pumpkin puree the same thing? The two are not the same thing. You need to use puree for this easy pumpkin cake recipe. The pumpkin pie mix contains other ingredients besides fresh pumpkin puree, and it would ruin the cake if you used it for the recipe.
Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- 4 large eggs, room temperature
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 can (15 oz) pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 4-5 cups powdered sugar, depending on the consistency
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 13×9 baking pan with non-stick cooking spray and dust with flour.
- In a large bowl, whisk eggs. Add sugar, oil and pumpkin puree and mix until smooth
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice.
- Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until well combined and smooth.
- Evenly spread batter into prepared baking pan.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Remove from oven onto wire rack and cool completely.
Cream Cheese Frosting
- In a mixing bowl, cream together butter and cream cheese until smooth.
- Gradually add powdered sugar while continuing to mix until desired consistency.
- Add vanilla extract and mix well.
- Frost cake.
- Serve immediately or store in refrigerator until ready to serve.
- Store leftovers in refrigerator in airtight container.