This moist and spicy pumpkin cake is filled with an intoxicating toasted pecan caramel filling and covered in a perfect vanilla buttercream. I love the play of super-soft, pillowy cake with the crunch of nuts and creaminess from the filling.
This is a piece of pumpkin heaven for all you German chocolate cake lovers! Moist pumpkin cake spiced with cinnamon, ginger, allspice et al is filled with a luscious pecan frosting and surrounded by vanilla buttercream and more toasted pecans. This would also work as a naked cake with just the pecan frosting OR you could pair it with with the browned buttercream from my pumpkin poke cake.
A Few Tips
- To get FLAT layers that are moist inside and out try using cake strips! You can buy a set on the shop page or make your own from foil and paper towels at home. I made a whole blog post on it so check it out if you’re interested!
- This recipe actually makes a good deal of batter so you should be fine using 3 eight inch pans. I used six inch rounds and had enough left over batter for a good number of pumpkin cupcakes!
- If you want to maximize the frosting the cake ratio, try splitting the cake layers. The recipe makes more than enough of the pecan frosting to accommodate this modification although I guarantee you will be snacking…
- Make sure to toast your pecans, it makes all the difference! Use pumpkin purée, not canned pumpkin pie filling.
- You can make the cake layers a day ahead; just wrap them up and keep at room temp overnight.
If you enjoyed this recipe then check these out!
If you’ve tried this cake then don’t forget to rate the recipe and let me know how you got on in the comments below, I love hearing from you!
Pumpkin Pecan Cake
Moist pumpkin cake paired with a caramelly pecan frosting and vanilla buttercream.
For the Cake:
- 4 eggs large
- 1 1/2 cups white sugar
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1/2 cup coconut oil
- 1 can pumpkin puree 15 ounce
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ginger
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp allspice
- pinch ground cloves
- 1 tsp vanilla
For the Vanilla Buttercream
- 3 tsp vanilla
- 1 lb confectioner's sugar
- 1 cup butter unsalted, room temperature
- 3 tbs heavy whipping cream
For the Pecan Frosting:
- 1 cup pecans toasted
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1 cup evaporated milk
- 3 egg yolks large, lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup butter unsalted, cut into pieces
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
For the Assembly:
- 1/2 cup toasted pecans
For the Cake:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Butter and flour 3 six inch cake pans. (I always wrap mine in cake strips)
In a mixing bowl, beat together the eggs, sugar, oils, sour cream, vanilla and pumpkin.
Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda, salt and spices; add to wet ingredients and mix thoroughly.
Spread into prepared pans.
Bake for approximately 25 minutes or until centers firm up.
For the Pecan Sauce:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the pecans on a baking sheet and bake for about 8-10 minutes or until lightly browned and fragrant. Remove from oven, cool, and then chop fairly fine.
In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar, milk, egg yolks, butter, and salt. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, and when the mixture begins to boil and thicken, remove from heat (about 5 minutes). Stir in the chopped pecans, and vanilla extract. Let cool until spreadable (about 30-60 minutes).
For the Vanilla Buttercream:
Whip the butter for about 5 minutes, using a paddle attachment (stand-up mixer).
Beat in the confectioner’s sugar slowly.
Add the cream and vanilla. Beat until you have an even, fluffy consistency.
For the Assembly:
Pipe a circle of vanilla buttercream along the perimeter of the cake. Use an ice cream scoop to add pecan frosting to the center of buttercream circle. Do this between each layer.
Cover the cake with a thin crumb coat.
Cover the cake with the buttercream and smooth with an offset spatula.
Using a large closed star tip, pipe dollops around the top of the cake.
Scoop pecan frosting into the middle circle.
Add toasted pecans to the bottom.
Notes: You could use the extra batter for about 6 cupcakes