Tis the season for Vegan Pumpkin Spice Cake. Who am I kidding, ’tis the season for pumpkin spice everything. From cookies to caramels, count me IN. When I stumbled upon organic pumpkin puree for only 50 cents per package, I had to snap up a few and turn them into a cake.
But not just any cake. This Vegan Pumpkin Spice cake is Momofuku style. Momofuku is a bakery in New York that makes the most notoriously delicious and beautiful cakes. I was obsessed with them in my non-vegan days, they have a salty-sweet element that’s to die for. Now I have fun creating healthier plant-based versions of my old favorites and more. Like this Vegan Pumpkin Spice Cake.
It’s moist whole-wheat pumpkin spice cake layered with pecan cookie pieces and vegan cream cheese frosting. The pecans give the cake a salty crunch but the real kicker here is the milk soak. It adds an extra layer of flavor and moisture and makes every bite pure heaven.
I baked four versions of this Vegan Pumpkin Spice Cake to make sure it’s just right. Momofuku style cakes require a spring form pan and acetate strips, just consider it an investment in deliciousness and beautiful cakes!
Vegan Pumpkin Spice Layer Cake
A decadent fall classic with a healthier twist. Moist whole-wheat pumpkin spice cake layered with pecan cookies crumbles and dairy-free cream cheese frosting.
Pecan Cookie Crumbles
- 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup crushed pecans
- 3/4 cup melted coconut oil
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
Pumpkin Spice Cake
- 2 1/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour
- 1 1/2 cups pumpkin purée (1 can)
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 2/3 cup coconut oil
- 1/2 cup non-dairy milk
- 4 tbsp molasses
- 2 tbsp vanilla
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- 2 tsp allspice
- 1 1/2 tsp ground cloves
- 1 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/8 tsp sea salt
- 4 tsp baking powder
Pumpkin Cream Cheese Frosting
- 8 oz vegan cream cheese
- 3/4 cup coconut or vegetable shortening
- 1 1/2 cups organic powdered sugar
- 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- 4 tbsp non-dairy milk
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with wax paper. Add all ingredients except the coconut oil into a stand mixer bowl and mix on medium low speed until evenly mixed. Stream the oil in and mix until the dough begins to clump together. It will look like grains of sand and small clusters. Use your hands to form the clusters into larger cookie pieces and crumble them onto the wax paper. Bake at 350 for 11-12 minutes. Set aside. These may be made ahead and stored in an airtight container for up to three days.
Pumpkin Spice Cake
Preheat the oven to 375. Grease a 9x13 baking pan with coconut oil and a few sprinkles of flour. Combine all ingredients into a stand mixer bowl. Using the paddle attachment, beat at medium speed until the mixture is smooth. Reduce speed to slow, add the baking powder then slowly add the flour 1/2 cup at a time. Mix until the batter is combine but no longer. It will be very thick.
Pour the mixture into the pan. Use a spatula to smooth out the top. Bake at 375 for 25-27 minutes. Check for doneness with a toothpick at 25 minutes. Let the cake come to room temperature. If you're in a hurry to assemble your cake, place the pan in the freezer for a few until cool.
Combine the vegan cream cheese and shortening in a stand mixer bowl and beat on medium high until smooth and creamy. Use a spatula to scrape down the sides and mix for another 15-20 seconds. Low the speed to medium the sprinkle in the powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time until even. Add the pumpkin pie spice and increase the speed to medium high. Beat for 1 minute. Use immediately or store in the fridge in a closed container for up to three days.
Combine the milk soak ingredients in a small bowl. Pop the cake out of the pan onto a cutting board. Using a 6 inch pan as a stencil, cut out 2 full circles and 2 half circles from the cake. Line the bottom of the 6 inch spring form pan with parchment paper . Use two large acetate strips to line the ring of the pan, forming a mold. Tape the sheets together to secure the mold in place.
Use the two cake halves to form your bottom layer, saving the prettier full circles for the more visible layers. Fill in the middle with cake scraps and press the layer down with the back of your hands. Brush 1/2 the milk soak onto the layer. Top with 1/5 of the frosting then sprinkle 1/3 of the cookie pieces onto the frosting. Gently press down with your hands then top with another 1/5 frosting. Layer a full cake circle on top and repeat the process for your second layer, saving the larger prettier cookie pieces for your top layer. Finish with a full circle of cake, 1/5 frosting, and large cookie pieces on top of the cake.
Cover the cake mold and freeze for six hours or overnight to set the layers. When ready to serve, remove the cake from the mold and let thaw for 2-3 hours before cutting. (It also tastes great frozen!)
Cake will stay fresh covered in the freezer for up to two weeks.
This Vegan Spice Cake takes about two hours to bake and assemble. It’s perfect for lazy Sunday baking projects and even better for holiday parties.
Did you make this recipe? Leave us a comment below and tell us all about it! While you’re at it, post a photo of your creation to Instagram with the tag #carrotsandflowers 🙂
If you love Vegan Pumpkin Spice cake and other gorgeous naked layer cakes, check out our Red Velvet Cake with Macadamia Cookie Crumbs and our Strawberry Chocolate Matcha Cake. To save this Vegan Pumpkin Spice recipe for later, pin the photo below!
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