This pumpkin caramel pecan crunch cake is going to be your new favorite pumpkin recipe. It’s a perfectly spiced pumpkin cake topped with whipped brown sugar frosting and sprinkled with the most incredible chocolate-covered candied pecan topping.
The Story Behind Pumpkin Caramel Pecan Crunch Cake
I discovered an import store near my home that started stocking canned pumpkin puree about a month ago. Of course it was this brand, which happens to be my favorite! However, they would only put out 3-4 cans of it at a time, probably for people like me who like to stock my pantry up on pumpkin. I may havee cleared them out a few times. The last time I went, they weren’t hiding any supply, though, and had an entire shelf stocked.
I have my favorite pumpkin recipes, but I really was wanting to create something new. So I harnessed all of my creative juices and made this incredible pumpkin cake. I took thought into each part of this cake and really wanted to balance the flavors and texture.
To be honest, I almost didn’t put pecans on the cake because I didn’t want my kids complain about it, but I decided the cake really needed a crunch aspect. In retrospect, I’m so glad I did because it was everyone’s favorite part of the cake. To tell anyone, but I actually kept picking the chocolate covered candied pecans off and sneaking bites of it. It’s really that yummy. Surprisingly, the pecans were raved about by all of the kids and my husband.
If you are looking for a new pumpkin recipe to have in your repertoire, this is definitely the one you are looking for. The recipe may be a mouthful to say, but I promise you’ll be coming back for another bite of pumpkin caramel pecan crunch cake time and time again.
Ingredients Needing for this Recipe
This may look like a long list to ingredients, but I promise it’s a recipe that worth making.
- Flour – this recipe will require all-purpose flour
- Baking Powder
- Baking Soda
- Salt – not table salt
- Cinnamon – if you’d rather use pumpkin pie spice you can
- Oil – I typically use vegetable or canola oil
- Pumpkin Puree – this is the brand I use
- Eggs – you’ll need 4 eggs for this cake
- Pecans – I prefer to use pecan halves and roughly chop them
- Semisweet Chocolate Chips – the recipe calls for semisweet, but if you prefer dark or milk you can definitely use those.
- Brown Sugar
- Powdered Sugar
- Butter – I always use salted butter in my recipes
- Caramel – I used store bought caramel sauce to drizzle all over the top of the cake
Other Pumpkin Recipes You’ll Love
- Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake
- Little Debbie Pumpkin Delights (Copycat Cookie Recipe)
- Pumpkin Spice Cake with a Cream Cheese Swirl
- Pumpkin Pie Cake
- (Better than Starbucks) Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins
- White Chocolate Pumpkin Dream Cookies
- Pumpkin Butterscotch Cake
Pumpkin Caramel Pecan Crunch Cake
For the Cake
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 15 oz. can of pumpkin puree
- 4 large eggs
For the Chocolate-Covered Candied Pecans
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- 3 tbsp brown sugar
- 2 tbsp butter
- ⅓ cup semisweet chocolate chips
For the Brown Sugar Frosting
- ¾ cup light brown sugar
- ¼ cup water
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- 1 cup butter
- 1 tsp milk
- pinch of sea salt
For the Top
- 1 jar store-bought caramel
To Make the Cake
- Preheat the oven to 350℉. Grease a 9×13 pan and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, or in the bowl of an electric mixer, combine all of the dry ingredients for the cake. Use a whisk to evenly combine all of the ingredients.
- Add in all of the wet ingredients and mix for 2-3 minutes until well mixed. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Pour the batter into your prepared pan and bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the middle.
For the Candied Pecans
- While the cake is baking you are going to make the candied pecans.
- Roughly chop your pecans. You don't want them to be too small, but small enough that it isn't going to ruin a bite of cake.
- Put the chopped pecans, butter, and brown sugar in the pan over medium heat and constantly mix the pecans until the butter and brown sugar is melted. Once they are covered with the brown sugar mixture pour them out onto parchment paper.
- While the pecans are still hot, pour the chocolate chips on top. Once they have melted, use an offset spatula to evenly spread the chocolate to cover as much of the pecan as possible.
- Place the pecan mixture in the fridge so the chocolate hardens.
- Once cooled, you can roughly chop again to break any large pieces apart.
For the Frosting
- In a small skillet, add the water and brown sugar.
- Over medium heat, stir the water and brown sugar until the brown sugar is dissolved. This should take about 3-4 minutes. Let cool for about 20 minutes.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip the butter until it is light and fluffy. Slowly add in the brown sugar sauce and continue to whip it until everything is well incorporated. Add in the pinch of sea salt and mix again.
- The frosting should be light and airy.
- Once the cake is completely cooled, spread the frosting on top until there is smooth, even layer. You may not use all of the frosting, but you can store any extras in the fridge for using another time.
- Sprinkle the chocolate-covered pecan mixture on top. Drizzle the desired amount of caramel sauce on top of the pecan mixture.
- Store any leftovers in the fridge.