Fluffy Pumpkin Sheet Cake

pumpkin cake on plate

Fine. It’s fall. I accept it. Don’t get me wrong, I *love* fall, it’s just that here in TX the temperatures are still scorching and the mosquitoes are still attacking. If it weren’t for football and I’d still be in denial! 

The good thing about autumn is that I happen to have a Better Homes and Gardens cookbook from 1981 that has tons of fall recipes! My grandmother sent it to me years ago, bless her heart. I think my my favorite thing about it is that she used coupons, photos, and other pieces of paper to mark her favorite recipes. Anyone interested in $4.99 sirloin tips from Bonanza?

pumpkin cake overview

Interestingly, this recipe is listed in the cookbook as “Pumpkin Bars.” I think it is obvious by looking at it, however, that it is actually a cake. My spidey senses tingled when I saw baking powder and baking soda listed in the recipe, but I decided to go with it. Like I expected, what came out of the oven was a super warm and deliciously thick cake! Expect lots of recipes from this book. I plan to be like Diddy and take hits from the eightayyyys and make them taste so cray-zayyy.

The full (adapted) recipe will be listed after the jump! 

The first thing you’re going to want to do is get all of your dry ingredients into a bowl and whisk them together.

pumpkin cake dry ingredients

Then, get all of your wet ingredients into separate bowl and whisk those together too.

pumpkin cake wet ingredients

Add your wet ingredients to your dry ingredients and whisk those together. (Man, I sure hope you have a whisk.)

pumpkin cake adding wet to dry

And then your batter will be nice and thick, like this. Notice that I had to switch to a spatula. If you want to fold in some nuts or dried fruit at this point, this batter is perfect for it. I opted to leave it as is.

pumpkin cake batter

Add the batter to an ungreased 8×8 pan and smooth it out as level as possible. Full disclosure: I did add some parchment paper to the bottom just in case.

pumpkin cake in pan

Now put her in a pre-heated 350º F (176º C) oven for approximately 25-30 minutes until nice and baked, like this! Let the cake reach room temperature before you add any icing or else you risk having it melt all over the place.

pumpkin cake baked

Speaking of the icing, it couldn’t be easier. Whisk together your your room temperature butter, cream cheese, and maple syrup.

pumpkin cake maple cream cheese frosting fats

Now add your salt and powdered sugar…

pumpkin cake icing sugar

And beat together until nice and smooth.

pumpkin cake smooth icing

Now dump it on top of the cake and smooth it out the best you can.

pumpkin cake iced

And create a fancy design with your spatula, if you wanna.

pumpkin cake textured icing

And that’s it!

pumpkin cake fork

I think the most surprising thing about this cake is how tall it got, which is funny considering what I said above about my spidey senses tingling. The texture is phenomenal. It’s moist, yet crumby, and perfectly able to hold up to layering if you wished to make a layer cake instead. The pumpkin spice combined with the maple in the cream cheese really screams autumn even if it doesn’t necessarily feel like it outside. Since most of the sweetness is confined to the icing, you could just as easily skip it to make this a breakfast cake to nibble on with some coffee.

pumpkin cake bite

I hope you’ll give it a try! 

Until next time <3

THE Pumpkin Spice Sheet Cake Recipe
Yields 1
A super moist and crumby pumpkin sheet cake.
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
40 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
40 min
For the cake
  1. 1 c (125 g) all purpose flour
  2. 1 tsp baking powder
  3. 1/2 tsp baking soda
  4. 1 tsp pumpkin spice
  5. 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  6. 2 eggs
  7. 1 c (8 oz) unsweetened pumpkin puree
  8. 3/4 c (150 g) granulated sugar
  9. 1/2 c (120 g) vegetable oil
For the icing
  1. 3 oz room temperature cream cheese
  2. 1/2 stick of butter
  3. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  4. 2 c (250 g) powdered sugar
  5. 1 tbsp of maple syrup
  6. 1 pinch of salt
For the cake
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Whisk together your flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin spice, and cinnamon.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together your eggs, pumpkin puree, granualted sugar, and vegetable oil.
  4. Combine the wet and dry ingredients until you are left with a nice thick batter.
  5. Pour the batter into an ungreased 8x8 inch square pan and bake for approximately 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
  6. Cool completely before icing.
For the icing
  1. Using a hand or stand mixer, cream together your butter, cream cheese, and maple syrup. Add your salt and icing sugar and beat on low speed until combined.
  1. Both recipes can be doubled, tripled, or even quadrupled with no problems!
Adapted from Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book (1981)
Adapted from Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book (1981)
pumpkin pinterest graphic

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