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Easy Pumpkin Cake with Whipped Ganache is the perfect crowd-pleasing recipe for any potluck or party this Fall!
Fall is officially here and I’m ready for PUMPKIN everything all season long.
I don’t know about you but I just love the combination of pumpkin and chocolate.
It’s definitely not as popular as other delightful combinations like pumpkin + caramel, pumpkin + cream (hello PSL), or pumpkin + brown butter, but I’m obsessed with pumpkin + chocolate all the same.
This Easy Pumpkin Cake with Whipped Ganache recipe is one of those super simple surefire hits that’s perfect to keep in your back pocket for any fall potluck, party, or just when the craving hits.
The cake itself is super simple and doesn’t even require an electric mixer. It gets its amazing flavor from lots of warm spices, tangy sour cream, and both white and brown sugars for good measure.
The ganache is just two ingredients! The hardest part is waiting for the chocolate cream mixture to cool before you can whip it up into a fluffy yet rich mousse-like texture that perfectly complements the moist cake. No sugary buttercream or complicated cake decorating here!
This recipe tastes particularly amazing with a cup of coffee or chai. Enjoy!
How to Make Easy Pumpkin Cake with Whipped Ganache
What Type of Pumpkin Should I Use for Pumpkin Cake?
- I used store-bought canned pumpkin puree for this Pumpkin Cake recipe.
- Homemade pumpkin puree may work in this recipe, but I don’t recommend it because it may add too much excess liquid.
- Note: Be sure NOT to use canned pumpkin pie filling for this recipe – it is not the same thing as pumpkin puree.
- Check out my Fresh vs. Canned Pumpkin article for the differences between using fresh pumpkin puree, regular canned pumpkin, and organic canned pumpkin.
Why is There Sour Cream in This Cake Recipe?
Sour cream in cake creates the most amazingly moist texture and flavor. If you don’t have sour cream, you can use plain full-fat yogurt instead.
Check the Age of Your Spices!
We all have that old jar of nutmeg sitting in the back of our pantry, waiting for those couple times a year when it sees the light of day! Before you use that old jar of spice, check the expiration date printed on the jar. If it’s expired, or doesn’t have much of a smell, toss it and buy a new jar. Why? Old spices won’t impart much flavor, so your cake will be underspiced and underwhelming. Fresh spices will be much more potent and aromatic, and bring a ton of beautiful flavor to your cake!
What Type of Pan Should I Use for Easy Pumpkin Cake?
This recipe was tested with an 8-inch square light-colored metal baking pan. If you’re using a glass or ceramic pan, you may need to extend the baking time by 5 to 15 minutes as those materials cook more slowly than metal. Learn more about Glass vs. Metal Baking Pans in my article here.
Can I Double This Pumpkin Cake Recipe?
Yes! Simply double this recipe and bake in a 9 by 13-inch baking pan for about 5 minutes longer.
How to Store Easy Pumpkin Cake with Whipped Ganache
This Pumpkin Cake with Whipped Ganache can be stored inside an airtight container in the fridge for two days.
More Pumpkin Recipes:
- Pumpkin Spice Coffee Cake
- Pumpkin Scones
- Pumpkin Muffins
- Pumpkin Old Fashioned Doughnuts
- Salted Caramel Pumpkin Cheesecake
For the cake:
- 1 1/2 cups (191 grams) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 cup (244 grams) canned pumpkin puree
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup (60 grams) sour cream or plain Greek yogurt, at room temperature
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup (100 grams) packed dark brown sugar
- 1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the whipped chocolate ganache:
- 8 ounces (227 grams) semisweet chocolate, chopped
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment or foil, leaving an overhang.
- In a large bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, and allspice.
- In a medium bowl, stir together the pumpkin puree, oil, sour cream, eggs, brown sugar, granulated sugar, and vanilla. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, then pour in the wet ingredients. Gently stir until just combined.
- Bake for 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Glass and ceramic pans may take longer to bake than metal. Cool.
For the ganache:
- In a microwave-safe bowl, microwave the chocolate and cream in 30-second bursts, stirring between each burst, until smooth. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes, or until slightly firmed.
- Using an electric stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the ganache until light and fluffy, about 3 to 4 minutes. Spread all over the cooled cake before serving.
- The cake can be covered and stored refrigerated for up to 2 days.
This post was published in 2018 and has since been updated with additional recipe tips and information. Photos by Ashley McLaughlin.