Writer and Photographer Francine Coles

The biggest issue I find with pumpkin pie is that not everyone loves its texture. So switch it up this year and serve this cake to your Thanksgiving dinner guests. You’ll be everyone’s holiday hero! It’s a delicious spiced butter cake topped with a pumpkin pie mixture that, when baked, is out of this world!

Serves: 8


For the Spiced Butter Cake:
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon apple cider or white distilled vinegar
1-1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

For the Pumpkin Pie Topping:
4 ounces full-fat cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup pumpkin purée (not pumpkin pie filling)
2 cups powdered sugar
1 large egg + 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of kosher salt


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray the inside of a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick cooking spray and line the bottom with parchment paper.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, spices and salt. In a large bowl, whisk together butter and sugars, followed by egg, vanilla and vinegar. Pour in dry ingredients and use a rubber spatula to fold the batter together. Spread in the bottom of the prepared pan and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together cream cheese and pumpkin puree. Whisk in powdered sugar one cup at a time, followed by vanilla, eggs, cinnamon and salt. Pour pumpkin pie topping over the spice cake batter. It should self-level, so there’s no need to spread it.

Bake for 35-40 minutes. When the cake is fresh from the oven, carefully run a knife around the edge of the pan to prevent it from sticking to the sides. Allow to cool in the pan for 20 minutes, then remove the springform ring and continue to cool to room temperature. Chilling the cake will speed up this process.

Once cooled, top the cake with a light dusting of powdered sugar, slice, serve and enjoy!