Naked Pumpkin Cake with Caramel Buttercream

A naked Pumpkin Cake with Caramel Buttercream for your Thanksgiving!

It’s been one of those weeks where I am wiped out. I wish I could say TGIF but it’s going to be an even busier weekend. So I am going to keep it short today and tell you to simply make this pumpkin cake with caramel buttercream if you can this weekend or keep it in your back pocket for Thanksgiving.

It’s a stunner that will be perfect for holiday gatherings. Starting with my favorite spiced pumpkin cake recipe, I filled this moist and delicious cake with a creamy sweet caramel buttercream and topped it off with drizzles of caramel. It could only get better if you used salted caramel sauce as I imagine a sweet and salty combo with pumpkin will just be great.

A naked Pumpkin Cake with Caramel Buttercream for your Thanksgiving!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Naked Pumpkin Cake with Caramel Buttercream
Yield: 1 8-inch layer cake

Naked Pumpkin Cake with Caramel Buttercream

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes


For the Cake:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 15 ounces (~1 1/2) cups pumpkin puree
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup milk, room temperature

Caramel Frosting

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup homemade caramel sauce, plus more for topping


For caramel
Place the sugar in an even layer in a 3.0-Quart Saucepan from the KitchenAid® Stainless Steel 10-Piece Set and set over medium heat. When sugar starts to bubble around the edges, whisk constantly until all of it melts (you will have clumps of sugar in your whisk but keep whisking, they will dissolve). Once the sugar dissolves, let it cook for about 2-3 minutes as it browns. Keep your eye on the caramel, as it will easily burn at this stage. Whisk in the butter and mix until completely melted. Remove pan from heat and gradually add in the heavy cream. Whisk until smooth. Whisk in the sea salt until dissolved (if using). Transfer caramel immediately into a glass jar and let cool completely.

For cake
Preheat KitchenAid® 30-Inch 5-Element Electric Convection Slide-In Range to 325 degrees F. Butter and flour three 8-inch round cake pans. Line with parchment rounds and grease parchment.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves.

In the bowl of your KitchenAid® Stand Mixer, beat the brown sugar and eggs until light and fluffy. Gradually add in vegetable oil and mix until just combined. Beat in pumpkin puree and vanilla extract. Alternate the dry ingredients and milk, in three batches, and beat until combined between each addition.

Divide batter equally into prepared pans. Bake cake 40 to 45 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean.

Let cakes cool in pan for at least 10 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack. Let cool completely before frosting.

For frosting
In the bowl of your KitchenAid® Stand Mixer, beat butter on medium high until smooth about 2-3 minutes. Reduce speed to low and add sugar, one cup at a time. Beat until combined. Add vanilla, heavy cream and caramel sauce and beat to combine. Increase speed to medium and beat frosting until smooth and fluffy.

To assemble
Place one layer of cake onto a cake board or plate. Spoon about half of the frosting onto cake. Top with second layer of cake and the rest of the frosting. End with the last layer of cake. Top cake with caramel sauce.

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This post is sponsored by KitchenAid. All opinions are 100% mine as usual. Thank you for supporting the occasional sponsored posts that make it possible for me to continue to create quality content!