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A must-make during the fall season, pumpkin crunch cake is the ultimate combo of a moist pumpkin flavored cake topped with a pecan crunch topping. Pumpkin crunch cake is a decadent pumpkin treat that uses simple ingredients to create a great alternative to traditional pumpkin pie.
Brimming with fall flavors, this moist pumpkin cake would be a perfect addition to your Thanksgiving table. This yummy fall dessert is easy to make using box cake mix and canned pumpkin puree.
A perfect pumpkin fall dessert, top this cake with whipped cream, a drizzle of caramel sauce, or a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Enhance the pumpkin flavor experience by enjoying a slice of cake with a warm mug of homemade pumpkin spice latte.
Pumpkin crunch cake satisfies every pumpkin craving with its mouth-watering combination of smooth pumpkin and crunchy pecans. With all the festive fall flavors you’re looking for, this crunchy cake is a crowd pleaser.
Pumpkin Crunch Cake Ingredients
- Pumpkin puree
- Half and half
- Sugar - granulated sugar
- Sugar - light brown sugar
- Pumpkin pie spice
- Eggs - large eggs
- Cake mix - box yellow cake mix
- Pecans - chopped
- Whipped topping - optional
Adding the pecans to the top of your pumpkin crunch cake is what gives this pumpkin cake its ‘crunch.’ You can either buy chopped pecans from the store or you can buy them whole and chop them yourself with a knife. Another way to break up whole pecans is by putting them in a Ziploc bag and then crushing them into smaller pieces with a rolling pin.
If you don’t want to use pecans you can substitute a different nut, like crushed walnuts or cashews, in their place. If you have a nut allergy or don’t like nuts, you could also omit them altogether, and use graham cracker pieces or Skor bits for a bit of crunch instead.
You can use any brand of boxed cake mix for this pumpkin crunch cake. White cake, vanilla, French vanilla, or spice cake would also taste delicious.
How to Make Pumpkin Crunch Cake
FIRST STEP: Preheat oven to 350°F.
SECOND STEP: Spray a 9x13 baking dish.
THIRD STEP: Use a stand mixer or large mixing bowl. Combine pumpkin puree, half and half, sugars, and pumpkin pie spice.
FOURTH STEP: Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each egg, until all ingredients are well blended.
FIFTH STEP: Pour pumpkin mixture into greased 9x13 baking dish.
SIXTH STEP: Spread dry yellow cake mix over pumpkin mixture.
SEVENTH STEP: Sprinkle pecans over dry cake mix.
EIGHTH STEP: Drizzle melted butter over pecans.
NINTH STEP: In a preheated oven, bake pumpkin crunch cake for 45 to 50 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
TENTH STEP: Remove cake and allow to cool completely before serving.
ELEVENTH STEP: Serve with whipped topping, if desired.
Can I freeze pumpkin crunch cake?
You can freeze this pumpkin cake recipe to keep it longer. I like to cut individual pieces and freeze them separately for a single serving later on. Pumpkin crunch cake will last for up to 4 months this way.
Can I use a different cake mix?
This easy pumpkin crunch cake would be delicious using a white cake, vanilla, French vanilla, or spice cake mix instead of yellow cake.
Can I leave out the nuts?
Of course! You can leave the nuts off entirely or you can substitute them for graham cracker pieces or Skor bits for a bit of crunch.
How to Store Pumpkin Crunch Cake
IN THE FRIDGE: Store leftover Pumpkin Crunch Cake in an airtight container or covered in plastic wrap in the refrigerator for up to three days.
IN THE FREEZER: Pumpkin crunch cake can be stored in an airtight freezer-safe container in the freezer for up to 4 months. For easier serving, you can cut individual pieces and freeze them separately.
Pumpkin Crunch Cake
- 15 ounces pumpkin puree
- 1 ½ cup half and half
- ¾ cup sugar
- ¼ cup light brown sugar packed
- 2 ½ teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- 4 large eggs
- 1 box yellow cake mix
- 1½ cup pecans chopped
- 1 cup butter melted
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- SECOND STEP: Spray a 9x13 baking dish
- Use a stand mixer or large mixing bowl. Combine pumpkin puree, half and half, sugars, and pumpkin pie spice.
- Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each egg, until all ingredients are well blended.
- Pour pumpkin mixture into greased 9x13 baking dish.
- Spread dry yellow cake mix over pumpkin mixture.
- Sprinkle pecans over dry cake mix.
- Drizzle melted butter over pecans.
- In a preheated oven, bake pumpkin crunch cake for 45 to 50 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Remove cake and allow to cool completely before serving.
- Serve with whipped topping, if desired.