Pumpkin Caramel Layer Cake

Pumpkin Caramel Layer Cake


I am brimming with excitement today. Here are the reasons why: 1- This is the best cake I have ever made and I can’t wait to share the recipe with you. 2- I leave today for San Francisco! Woohoo! And you know what is waiting for me there? A weekend of fun including the Food Buzz festival and getting to visit Andy’s hometown. Yup- I’m a happy girl.

Remember the first time I tried to make a layer cake? Yeah it didn’t turn out that well. This one was much different! Now I know that my layers aren’t exactly even, and I think I know how to fix it for next time, but is it so bad if I actually kinda like them this way? Sometimes I think a little less than perfect can be the most beautiful.

Guys I must say that this is one amazing cake. The frosting you may have seen before. Remember these cupcakes? When I made them back in May I used it on a Coconut Vanilla Bean Cupcake. Now even though they were outstanding, I had bookmarked this pumpkin cake recipe it was originally paired with for sometime in the fall. The frosting comes together like so: make caramel sauce, add cube by cube of cream cheese until the frosting is silky and caramel-y and delicious. Chill for a few hours so it gets nice and spreadable- and there you go. Pair it with the most soft and fluffy pumpkin cake, cinnamon sugar pecans and a drizzle of caramel sauce, and this is a fall dessert at it’s best. Trust me!

Pumpkin Caramel Layer Cake

Pumpkin Caramel Layer Cake


  • Frosting:
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 1/2 sticks, 6 ounces unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 pound cream cheese, cut into 2-inch cubes
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Cake:
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 1/4 cups light brown sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • One 15-ounce can pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • Cinnamon Pecan Topping:
  • 1 cup crushed pecans
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Caramel Sauce for drizzle: I like this recipe


  1. In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar and water. Cook over high heat, stirring, until the sugar is dissolved. Using a wet pastry brush, wash down any crystals from the side of the pan. Cook over moderate heat without stirring until a medium-dark amber caramel forms, about 9 minutes. Remove from the heat and immediately stir in the butter and heavy cream. (Don't worry if the butter separates.) Stir in Vanilla extract.
  2. Transfer the caramel to the large bowl and using an electric mixer, beat at low speed until the caramel cools slightly and comes together, about 5 minutes. With the mixer on, beat in the cream cheese, 1 cube at a time and beating well between additions, until silky. Transfer the frosting to a bowl and refrigerate until very firm, at least 6 hours.


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Butter and flour two 8-inch round cake pans.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour with the baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, baking soda, nutmeg and cloves.
  3. In a bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the brown sugar and eggs at medium-high speed until fluffy, 3 minutes. Beat in the oil, then beat in the pumpkin puree. Alternately add the dry ingredients and the milk in 3 batches, beating well between additions.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pans and smooth the tops. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Let the cakes cool on a rack for 20 minutes. Run a knife around the edges to loosen the cakes, then invert them onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  5. Using a serrated knife, carefully slice each layer of cake in half to make 4 thin cake layers.
  6. Place one layer on a plate and spread with 1 cup of the caramel–cream cheese frosting. Top with the the next 3 layers and repeat. Then, frost the top and side. Top with Candied pecans and Caramel Sauce (optional) Refrigerate the cake for 2 hours before serving.

For the Pecan Topping:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Combine sugar, cinnamon and salt. Whisk egg white until frothy and discard about half. Add the nuts. Toss until well coated. Add dry ingredients and stir well.
  2. Spread nuts on a cookie sheet lined with foil, in a single layer.
  3. Bake for 20 minutes.
  4. Once cool- break the pecans apart and sprinkle on top of the cake.


*The cake can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 days. Serve cold or at room temperature.

Nutrition Information:
Serving Size: 1 grams
Amount Per Serving: Unsaturated Fat: 0g

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

Adapted from: Food and Wine


  1. Audra-how wonderful this giveaway is and yes I one that wished for the cake stand! I completely understand the issues you have had with layer cakes and I definitely need to get more practice.
    Your cake here looks amazing and I have printed the recipe. Love the pumpkin caramel flavor combo. What would I put on the cake plate…it would have to be a perfectly layered and tasty birthday cake for my husband!

  2. Wow, this looks absolutely wonderful! I tip my hat to you!
    I’d love to enter the giveaway – I’d top this stand with either a Baumkuchen-torte or an Apfelstreuselkuchen (apple streusel cake). I’m German, and I love our denser cakes that are very unlike the fluffy cakes most common in the U.S.. Plus I think a light streusel cake would contrast beautifully with the copper! :)
    I’m also following you on Twitter (kirikiri1) and liking you on facebook (Kerstin Wolff). (I

  3. This cake is absolutely beautiful. So funny, I saw the pic of the cake stand and was wondering where I could find it, then I read about the giveaway. Exciting!! Since I have a cake stand obsession, I would add it to my collection, but I would proudly display some pumpkin cupcakes on it.

  4. What an unusual and beautiful cake stand. I think my chocolate layer cake topped with ganache and gold shimmer sugar would look amazing on it!

  5. Can’t wait to make this! My cakes never look perfect, but displayed on a cake plate as this, they would all look amazing. It is a gorgeous stand!

  6. Gorgeous cake stand and cake! It’s beautiful and I would love to make it. If I won that plate your cake here is exactly what I would put on it! This might be on my Thanksgiving dessert table this year. Thanks for the great photos and recipe.

  7. I am a Facebook fan!!!! And your cake looks amazing. I am definitely going to be making it before the end of the year!!!!! Thanks for this great cake!

  8. This cake is simply to die for. I actually love the uneven layers because it makes it that much more appealing. Wow. I follow you on twitter, but I just liked you on Facebook (I have to figure out how to make a page). GREAT giveaway.

  9. I can’t decide which is more beautiful, the cake or the stand! I have to say, I would definitely make this to put on it. (& I think I will anyway, cake stand or not) Thank you for sharing such amazing recipes. (I made the salted caramel brownies the other day. oh my…)

  10. Your cake is a beauty! I’ve never attempted a layer cake and I’m pretty scared to lol! Sometimes I’m not big on pumpkin but man your photos, plus the addition of caramel, have me wanting to try this! And your cake stand is lovely, I’d love to win it! Since I don’t ever make cakes I’d have to find a nice red velvet, or carrot cake recipe to display on it :)

  11. What an amazing cake!! And a great giveaway. I don’t make nearly enough but I would have to come up with something extra special to put on that cake stand. I’m thinking a caramel apple cake, since you’ve already covered pumpkin.

  12. I would definitely put my famous Carrot Cake on the Copper Canyon Cake Stand…plus the alliteration is to hard not to love itself.

  13. Would love to make this Pumpkin Caramel Layer Cake with Cinnamon Pecan Topping cake and display it as a centerpiece on that beautiful stand for our Thanksgiving dinner~

  14. My little sister’s 16th birthday is coming up soon. I would use the cakestand as the centerpiece for her birthday table. with a beautiful cake on it of course!

  15. Oh my gosh this cake looks awesome!! i’m drooling! If I won the stand I would try to attmept this cake!

    Have fun in SF!! =)

  16. Your cake looks GORGEOUS, and I don’t think “imperfect” layers make it look any less delicious (MORE delicious, if anything, since it shows it was homemade). I would put Christmas cake on the cake stand–it’s an angel food cake with raspberry jam and whipped cream that we made for Christmas breakfast every year.

  17. This cake looks amazing! The caramel and pumpkin go so great together :) If I won this awesome giveaway, I would definitely display all sorts of things on it; cakes, cookies, brownies, bars, and anything else you can think of! It’s perfect for Christmas, the color and design are spot on :)

  18. I love everything you post – and this cake looks amazing! (Still coasting off the massive victory of your caramel-stuffed snickerdoodles.)

    If I won the stand, I’d use it for my coconut layer cake – it takes a whole day to make but it’s worth it :)

  19. That cake stand is pretty spectacular. Of course, a cake stand is nothing without a beautiful cake like yours. It’s very Potter-esque to me. I think I have to top it with some cauldron cakes for sure.

  20. Wow! This cake is simply gorgeous! I’m going home for Thanksgiving and my Mom’s favorite cake is German Chocolate. I would love this cake stand to display a big beautiful home-made German Chocolate Cake on as a surprise for my Momma :)

  21. I would definitely love to put a big delicious cake on here! Maybe even this pumpkin one since I am loving pumpkin lately! Or maybe a chocolate gingerbread one… or something seasonal like that!

  22. Lovely cake, as always, like with your other dessert creations! :) I am definitely going to try out this recipe at some point. As for what I would put on top of a Copper Canyon Cake Stand if I won, a Tiramisu cake!

  23. The cake stand and cake are beautiful! I would have to say some kind of pumpkin cake, I just love the fall spices!!

  24. I would LOVE to win the cake stand and can think of many things to display on it, including the Pumpkin Caramel Layer Cake that I will be making shortly :) Also, my famous Giant Cupcake (made with an awesome cake mold) would love great on the stand!

  25. I would make this cake and display it! Seriously, that cake is beautiful and so many of my favorite flavors. Or maybe carrot cake… or my chocolate-caramel cake… or… well… you can’t go wrong with cake! ;)

  26. I think that cake looks pretty amazing on the stand. My favorite though is a double dark chocolate. What a beautiful piece of art!

  27. I would put my grandmother in laws famous Banana Cake on it. Its so moist and delicious that is simply needs to be featured only by the best.. nambe

  28. OMG! This cake looks divine!! I can’t believe how you keep making my mouth water post after post, the pumpkin pie cupcakes are such a huge hit in my social circle… I made them three times in October! Can’t wait to try this cake, I’d happily display it on that gorgeous cake stand if I won!

  29. This is a beautiful stand. I would try to make this cake. I would love it for Thanksgiving (or any day really). Thanks for the wonderful recipes!

  30. Oh, I remember! The cake stand is stunning! As for what I’d display….I’d make that cranberry up-side down cake I’ve been wanting to make. Like the stand – perfect for the season!

    Thanks for the giveaway and have a GREAT time in San Francisco!

  31. This cake stand is so elegant! And this cake looks perfect on the stand. Can not wait to make this for Thanksgiving!!

  32. That cake is beautiful and would be perfect for Thanksgiving. Can I use a cake stand for a pie? I’m going to try a cranberry apple walnut pie for the holidays and if it turns out the way I want it to, I want it shown off with style!

  33. LOL I totally saw this cake stand with the cake and copy and pasted the cake recipe from the Nambe website just yesterday. I love Nambe and I love the Pumpkin Cake it is fantasty delicious!!! I would display almost anything sweet on such a beautiful cake plate!

  34. What an exciting giveaway!! I’d display the pumpkin butter cake I’m planning on making around thanksgiving! LOVE the colors of this stand!



  35. This cake looks delicious:) and the frosting sounds amazing! As for the cake stand, I would def make your pumpkin caramel cake for thanksgiving, its beautiful and sounds tasty and is perfectly themed for the holidays!

  36. That gorgeous cake stand can certainly hold a Red Velvet Cheesecake smothered in a velvety smooth cream cheese frosting.

  37. This recipe looks SOOO good! I would make a caramel apple cheesecake and display it on this stand…the colors would go perfectly together! Great way to display a fall dessert!

  38. This cake sounds absolutely delicious! I am going to have to bookmark it for sure!
    I would display just about anything on this! Cookies, bars, my birthday cake (only a couple months away). So pretty!

  39. What a beautiful cake stand (and a luscious looking cake). I would love to make your Peanut Butter-Chocolate Tart with Pretzel Crust to go on this. I’ve been wanting to make it for a while and I think it would look fabulous on this stand! I also like you on Facebook.

    [email protected]

  40. I would make Apple Honey Nut cake with browned butter frosting. The cake stand would make it look extra amazingly delicious

  41. Well the possibilities are endless but I’d have to display a black forest cheesecake I’ve been dying to share with everyone. Would look awesome on this cake stand. Have fun at the festival. So jealous, wish I could go.

  42. I love the cake and especially the cake stand! I have gone through almost your entire website printing out recipes for parties and things and not one has turned out wrong.

    This year for my new years resolution I decided to start making cakes for all my friends birthday’s. As such I have gotten a lot better, but I usually serve my cakes on paper plates or borrow cake plates cause they are so expensive. I finally bought one from Salvation Army, but had to leave it in Utah when I moved to California 2 months ago,

    If I won the cake plate I would use it to display my friends birthday cakes and the tasty recipes from your site!

    [email protected]

  43. I think your pumpkin caramel layer cake looks stunning on this very beautiful cake stand… if I were to win this stand I would display a new york style strawberry cheesecake with fresh strawberries along the bottom edge, I’m a lover of fruit on cake :)
    [email protected]

  44. This cake looks unbelievably delicious! I am bookmarking it to make soon. Congrats on being in FoodBuzz Top 9, and have so much fun at the conference. I’d love to win this cake stand. My husband’s 30th birthday is coming up in December (!!!), and I’d like to display his favorite cake (shadow layer) on it!

  45. THIS is a showstopper cake! It’s Beautiful and looks so good!!!
    I think I may have to add this one to my Thanksgiving menu :)

    Congrats on Top 9!


  46. After work tomorrow, I am diving into baking this cake – cannot wait! This cake stand doesn’t want to be stored away in the cupboard. It will prominently display my sweet treats along with the colorful fruits & veggies I purchase weekly at our local farmers market!

  47. Beautiful cake, fabulous cake stand!

    I’d use that cake stand for displaying my hubby’s favorite strawberry cake in the summer and in the fall, a nice, spicy apple bundt cake.

    Thanks for the recipe and the nice giveaway!

  48. What a gorgeous cake! So glad I found your blog. I would display a gingerbread cake decorated with gingerbread people. The colors would be lovely! Thanks. :)

  49. I would put my Mom’s pound cake on it! It is our family favorite and how we still have her with us at every holiday! I have now figured out the right time to open the oven door to make it fall just right! She used to HATE when we intentionally made it fall, but it makes it SO much better! LOL!

  50. Gorgeous! I’d make something simple to show off the beautiful cake stand – like a flourless chocolate cake with a light dusting of powdered sugar.

  51. Gasp….Your recipe looks positively AMAZING…and I pushed the “bookmark” key with unbridled gusto!!
    The only OTHER cake I would deem worthy of the gorgeous cake stand is my own “signature” cake (according to family and friends)..CASHEW MERINGUE TORTE w/CHOCOLATE GANACHE..for its “show-stopper” factor (she tried to say humbly, yet failed).

  52. This cake stand is truly a piece of art. I would serve dessert on it every Friday night to my family and friends. It would make any dessert look beautiful but I think my triple layer chocolate marble cake would look amazing on it. When it isn’t being used for dessert I would keep it on my kitchen counter displaying fruit, like the beautiful pears that are in season right now. It would also make a pyramid of apples look gorgeous against the copper colour. I love it!

  53. Love Nambe, don’t have a cake stand because I never found one that wasn’t plain and boring, will buy this one if I don’t win it and will grace it with your beautiful cake!

  54. Is it possible to see this cake recipe and NOT answer your question with, “I plan to display this fantastic layer cake on that fantastic cake stand??” Although, a nice 7 layer chocolate fudge cake wouldn’t look too shabby perched on the stand either…hmmm…

  55. I have a 4 layer White Chocolate Mint Cake sprinkled with Green Jimmy’s that I would love to display on that beautiful cake stand. It was a cake that I had baked only one time for my son’s birthday and have been meaning to recreate it for his 17th birthday.

  56. Love the cake stand. I would totally make the Pumpkin Caramel cake because I love love anything caramel and this cake is totally calling my name.

    This would be great on the Thanksgiving table!


  57. oh my goodness, that cake looks SO delicious! i’d love to try to make that pumpkin caramel cake and put it on the stand (perfect timing for Thanksgiving too)!

  58. I’m cooking & freezing LOTS of fresh pumpkin these days and can’t wait to try your delicious cake! However, I have an amazing dark chocolate layer cake that would look perfect on that cake stand….

  59. As a Thanksgiving Day baby about to turn 50, I was “shopping” for a new pumpkin cake recipe to celebrate the event with my family. During a search I saw this delicious looking cake on a beautiful and artistic cake stand. Being an artist myself, I thought “what a wonderful pair”. For the past several years I have made a vegan, triple layer pumpkin cake with penuche frosting for my birthday, this year, I think I’ll make your pumpkin cake. As for the giveaway of the cake stand, since I will be celebrating my 50th on the 23rd this year, I’d top it with a pumpkin “birthday” cake (your recipe) and rejoice at the gathering of my family. Thanks for sharing your creative genius. Happy Thanksgiving too.

  60. Your recipe sounds amazing! And I would love this cake stand; I would make a pumpkin cheesecake (that I’ve been craving recently…) or attempt to make a layer cake like yours! Have fun in SF!

  61. That is one delicious looking cake. I would totally make a cake to display on that cake stand.

    cereza25 at yahoo dot com

  62. I would display my grandmothers cinnamon cake on the cake plate and it would be so beautiful with a dollie pattern of confectioner’s sugar and the intoxicating smells that it would give off would everyones brains float up to the ceiling and then back down…

  63. I would make my favorite sweet potato cake with white chocolate frosting! YUM! :)

    email is snspivy @ gmail dot com

  64. I’d make THIS very cake and put it on the cake stand. Actually I’d BEG you to make me the cake, and I’d eat it, with my hands (I’m not a very classy girl), right off the cake stand. WOW! it looks to die for good!!!!

  65. Ooooh, love the cake and the cake stand. I think if I won the stand I’d have to make the cake to go on it – they look fabulous together!

  66. Your cake looks wonderful! We always have angel food cake for birthdays, with drippy chocolate on top, so that is what I would have to display on the gorgeous cake stand. thanks for the opportunity to win it, have a great weekend!

  67. I found this yummy looking cake and had to stop and see what it was. Needless to say, this is on my list to make this holiday season. I too have a little bit of trouble with the layered cakes, but this one sounds too yummy to pass up. If I were to win the cake plate, I’d display this cake on the cake stand. The cake stand is beautiful and would love to have it. Thanks for posting the recipe.

  68. Oh wow! This sounds amazing and it is a beauty! Pumpkin and caramel together is divine! I would definately display a delicious fall cake featuring apples or pumpkin on the cake stand! I am now following you on Facebook.

  69. This recipe looks amazing! This is definitely going on my ‘recipes to try’ list! I collect unusual pedestal cake plates and I would love this one to add to my collection! It would would look wonderful at Thanksgiving displayed on my grandmother’s antique sideboard topped by an Apple Pound Cake with Caramel Glaze.

  70. This cake is beautiful! I will be making this soon as I love anything with pumpkin…the cake plate is awesome and hope it comes to live with me…..

  71. What a cool giveaway! And I LOVE your cake. I’d probably display a lovely layered carrot cake on this beautiful cake plate :)

  72. I’d definitely attempt to make the pumpkin cake (which a little bird told me was the most delicious cake she’d ever eaten) and then would display it on the cake stand. <3

  73. I just found your site. I like this. And I love the cake stand. I don’t even own one and I bake all the time. I think I would put on that stand a chocolte indulgence cake of some sort to reflect the bronze. The cake would have pecans, fudge, and caramel dripping from its sides. Or else I would put A pumkin swirled cheesecake on it. Sprinkled with nuts and caramel. I’m just on a caramel kick.

  74. That is a gorgeous cake stand and the cake is one I’m attempting for our thanksgiving (as a Brit married to an American).
    If I had that stand, I would use it to display the strawberries, cream and summer fruit sponge layer cake my husband wants for his 30th birthday!
    Thanks for the lovely recipes.

  75. Oh man, what wouldn’t I put on that stunning cake stand! I’d start with some thanksgiving pies, but I think it would look lovely even with just some fruits on it.

  76. This looks incredible!! I love all of your recipes so much. If I won the cake stand, I would make & display my grandmother’s famous carrot cake! It is my grandfather’s absolute favorite, and his birthday is the day before Thanksgiving.

  77. If I won this dessert platter I would use it at my wedding reception (in march) for one of the desserts we are serving!

  78. Oh my goodness! I would LOVE to make this cake and display it on that cake stand. What a fabulous pair.

    P.S. CONGRATULATIONS on your engagement!!!!

  79. I made this for my birthday cake, and it was AMAZING!!!!!! Some of the pecans started to burn after about 15 minutes, but everything else was perfect. Thank you!

  80. Greetings, I think your site could be having web
    browser compatibility problems. When I take a look at your blog in Safari, it looks fine however when opening in I.E., it’s got some
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  81. I know you posted this some time ago, but I have a question. Did you by any chance make extra frosting? The original Food and Wine recipe has only two layers spread with 1 cup of frosting in the middle. I noticed you also used 1 cup between layers, but you have four layers. Can you confirm that the frosting recipe you use here is enough for four layers? Thank you!

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