Pecan Praline Pumpkin Cake

Praline Pumpkin Snack Cake is the ultimate fall treat, with a moist, slightly spiced pumpkin cake topped with a to-die-for praline caramel frosting ~

Pecan Praline Pumpkin Cake is my favorite new pumpkin recipe, and that’s saying a lot.  This cake has the perfect tender crumb, a lightly spiced pumpkin flavor, and an out of this world pecan praline frosting — get ready to drool…

Praline Pumpkin Snack Cake is the ultimate fall treat, with a moist, slightly spiced pumpkin cake topped with a to-die-for praline caramel frosting ~

This cake speaks my language, is it talking to you too?  It’s the kind of cake pumpkin dreams are made of…light and springy, with a rich golden color, touched with all my favorite fall spices — and don’t even get me started on that frosting.  The cake is made in one bowl, and the frosting in one saucepan, so the cleanup is a dream.  And guess what?  Cover the pan with foil, set it on the counter, and the whole thing is just as good the next day.  Dream cake, I’m telling you.

Praline Pumpkin Snack Cake ~

I love to share recipes like this with you that are utterly perfect from start to finish.  The pecans, the caramel, and the spices all elevate this pumpkin cake to company status.  Or make it whenever you’re charged with bringing something wonderful to a gathering.  It’s simple and familiar enough that you can count on everyone loving it, but at the same time it has that wow factor.

Praline Pumpkin Cake is a delicious way to kick off the season, it's a moist, softly spiced cake with a pecan caramel frosting that gets raves from everybody! |

Can we talk praline frosting for a minute?  Sheesh the stuff is good.  It’s as easy as whisking together some butter, brown sugar, and 1/2 and 1/2 in a saucepan, bringing it to a boil, and then stirring in some powdered sugar.  It gets poured over the cake and then showered with toasted pecans.  It doesn’t get any better.

TIP: The praline frosting is like caramel, and it sets up fast.  Plan to have a spreading knife handy when you pour the warm frosting over the cake, and spread quickly before it firms up. 

Praline Pumpkin Cake ~ the perfect fall cake! |

I make no apologies for my pumpkin love, and this Pecan Praline Pumpkin Cake is just the first of many pumpkin-centric recipes to come.   Stock your cabinets with lots of those orange cans, people, you’re going to need them!

TIP: Did you know you can use canned pumpkin as a substitute for eggs, butter, and oil in recipes?  1/4 cup pumpkin = 1 egg     3/4 cup pumpkin = 1 cup butter    and 1/2 cup pumpkin = 1/2 cup oil!

Praline Pumpkin Cake is light and decadent at the same time, it's a must make for fall! |

Have mercy!

*Recipe was adapted from Chef in Training

Praline Pumpkin Snack Cake

Praline Pumpkin Snack Cake


  • 1 15-ounce can pumpkin (not pie filling!)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
    praline frosting
  • 1/2 cup half and half
  • 6 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 heaping cup pecan halves, toasted and chopped


  1. Set oven to 350F
  2. Whisk together the pumpkin, sugar, oil, and eggs until well blended.
  3. Mix in the spices and salt. Fold in the flour and baking soda until everything is well incorporated, but don't over beat.
  4. Spread the batter into a 9x13 pan that has been lightly sprayed. Bake for 25- 30 minutes or until done in the center and a toothpick comes out without wet batter clinging to it.
  5. To make the frosting, heat the half and half, butter, and brown sugar in a saucepan until it comes to a boil, stirring constantly. Take off the heat and beat in the vanilla and sifted confectioner's sugar. Quickly spread over the cake, the frosting will set up quickly.
  6. Top with toasted pecans.


  • Don’t skip toasting the pecans, it makes ALL the difference, it brings out the flavor and crisps the nuts.  You can do it ahead of time, but don’t skip it.  To toast them put the nuts in a dry skillet and heat over medium heat, stirring frequently, until they become fragrant and start to brown.  Watch them carefully, they can burn easily.
  • I love my heavy duty USA 9×13 pan for baking, it bakes perfectly evenly.


don’t forget to pin it!

Pecan Praline Pumpkin Cake is my favorite new pumpkin recipe, and that's saying a lot. This cake has the perfect tender crumb, a lightly spiced pumpkin flavor, and an out of this world pecan praline frosting --- get ready to drool...#cake #pumpkin #pumpkindessert #falldessert #fall #sheetcake #Halloween #Thanksgiving #caramel

Pecan Praline Pumpkin Cake is the ultimate Fall dessert ~

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Leave a Reply


  • Reply
    Nikole Woznicki
    November 22, 2017 at 12:03 pm

    If I don’t have half and half, can I substitute it with heavy whipping cream? If so, would I use the same amount?

    • Reply
      November 22, 2017 at 12:26 pm

      Yes, and yes! Hope you enjoy it Nikole!

  • Reply
    November 1, 2017 at 3:30 pm

    I made this cake yesterday and it has received rave reviews. It is delicious! I made it exactly as directed and it turned out perfectly….and it’s so easy. Thank you, Sue, I think this will quickly become a family favorite!!

    • Reply
      November 1, 2017 at 4:46 pm

      Yay Juliana ~ I love this cake too, in fact I’m just finishing up a post about pecan praline cookies that was inspired by how much I loved this frosting :)

  • Reply
    October 30, 2017 at 4:58 pm

    Hi, this looks wonderful and I just made it, but the frosting hasn’t “set” at all, it’s very runny even after 10 mins in the fridge. I followed the recipe to the letter and let the cake cool for several hours before frosting it. I realized after I’d taken the frosting off the heat and beaten in the confectioner’s sugar that I’d only added a half cup of brown sugar, so I added the other half cup at that point, but did not put it back on the heat. Could that have caused such a difference in texture?

    • Reply
      October 30, 2017 at 7:25 pm

      I think adding the brown sugar at the end would affect the texture, Delia, but the frosting is meant to be a liquid texture when you pour it over the cake. It sets up soon after it cools, right on the cake. Hope this helps!

  • Reply
    Nancy Jalowitz
    October 28, 2017 at 11:04 am

    I don’t have any cardamom and I am 30 miles away from a major store. Can I leave it out?

    • Reply
      October 28, 2017 at 11:09 am


  • Reply
    Cyndi McConnell
    October 13, 2017 at 9:26 am

    I don’t like pumpkin and neither does my husband. Is there anything that you would recommend to substitute for that? I love the idea of praline on top!!

    • Reply
      October 13, 2017 at 3:18 pm

      Yes, in fact I’m in the process of doing an apple version of this..stay tuned! You can try apple butter, apple sauce, or even banana.

    • Reply
      Linda S.
      October 14, 2017 at 8:21 pm

      Do you like sweet potato?

    • Reply
      Rusty H Briggs
      October 16, 2017 at 10:28 pm

      Sweet potato! I hate pumpkin too, but being a Southern gal, always substitute fresh baked and mashed sweet potato and the recipes work out wonderfully. I promise!

  • Reply
    August 14, 2017 at 8:14 pm

    Curious if I could make this as cupcakes? Or two 8″ cakes? I don’t have the pan you specify. Can’t wait to make it!

  • Reply
    July 22, 2017 at 9:20 pm

    I love pumpkin and I love pecan pralines, so what better way to get the best of both worlds! I will be making this tomorrow. By the way, the USA baking pans and sheet pans are awesome! I bought myself a set of 8 for Christmas last year. From me to me! Lol

    • Reply
      July 23, 2017 at 7:17 am

      Hope you like the cake Lyn, and what a great gift, the ‘me to mes’ are always the best ;)

  • Reply
    Cheree Conrad
    July 20, 2017 at 5:39 pm

    Have you ever made it into a 2 layer cake?

    • Reply
      Cheree Conrad
      July 20, 2017 at 5:47 pm

      guess I never finished my question. I would double the frosting maybe ?? I was also thinking of freezing the cake and just preparing frosting when time to serve. Me and husband have a hunting guide service and prep a month to 3 months prior.

      • Reply
        July 20, 2017 at 7:43 pm

        I don’t see why not…’double the frosting’ has a nice ring to it ‘)

  • Reply
    November 23, 2016 at 6:51 pm

    I made this the other week for the first time and it turned out just like the pictures! I was so impressed and it tasted beautiful- I used pumpkin purée which I had made rather than the tinned stuff which I assume might add to the flavour. I was also impressed that all the amounts worked well as I often find the American cup measurements turn out a little off, but this was perfect. This icing is incredible too, haven’t come across a recipe like this for icing before but I will be using it on loads of cakes now!

    • Reply
      November 23, 2016 at 8:54 pm

      I bet your homemade puree was amazing, Ellie, I’m usually lazy and rely on the cans. I’m super happy that you love the cake <3

  • Reply
    October 20, 2016 at 8:37 pm

    I used the frosting over brownies (added pecans and dark chocolate chips to brownies)and my family loved them. Could due the pumpkin cake in a bundt pan for a fancier dessert.

  • Reply
    October 14, 2016 at 6:10 pm

    What is half and half please

    • Reply
      October 14, 2016 at 6:21 pm

      Hi Paula ~ half and half is a mix of light cream and milk, in Britain it’s called half-cream. Hope that helps!

  • Reply
    October 12, 2016 at 9:08 am

    Have thought about or tried this recipe using canned sweet potatoes.

    • Reply
      October 12, 2016 at 10:21 am

      I think if you puree them that should work, as long as there aren’t a lot of additives in the can.

    • Reply
      October 19, 2016 at 7:26 pm

      I want to try with the sweet potatoes. My family isn’t really crazy about pumpkin anything, but love sweet potatoes cook all ways.

      • Reply
        October 19, 2016 at 7:33 pm

        There’s no reason why you couldn’t substitute sweet potato puree in this cake, Jan, let us know how it works out!

  • Reply
    October 7, 2016 at 5:28 am

    Is the sugar amount right at 1/2 cup in the cake?

    • Reply
      October 7, 2016 at 7:25 am

      It’s one cup, Linda, I’m so sorry, that got transcribed wrong, I corrected it.

  • Reply
    September 22, 2016 at 8:40 pm

    Do you put the warm icing on a cooled cake or just when it comes out of the oven? I’m wanting to make it tomorrow.

    • Reply
      September 22, 2016 at 8:59 pm

      I let the cake cool for about 30 minutes, then frosted it. You can cool it a little longer, if you like.

  • Reply
    September 22, 2016 at 6:42 pm

    I just tried this recipe and it came out great except I think the baking soda should be powder because I can still taste baking soda in the finished cake.

    • Reply
      September 22, 2016 at 7:31 pm

      Be super careful to disperse baking soda in the batter, Greg, it can clump and you might taste it then. I usually sift mine into my dry ingredients and then whisk well, after that you definitely shouldn’t taste it.

  • Reply
    September 21, 2016 at 8:45 am

    Oh my god, this cake looks like a dream.

  • Reply
    Ginny Muccari
    September 20, 2016 at 7:32 am

    This sounds like a match made in heaven, pumpkin and praline; where have you been all my life! I can’t wait to try this, thanks for sharing!

    • Reply
      September 20, 2016 at 7:34 am

      It totally is a match made in heaven Ginny!!

  • Reply
    September 18, 2016 at 6:57 pm

    I’ve been following you since 2011, and I remember I made your pumpkin muffins, then your gingerbread muffins, with a 2 year old and baby at my feet. They were instant favorites. I’ve been making many many of your recipes since, and they never disappoint! I love that I can count on a recipe coming from you to work. I made this pumpkin cake today, with my now 7, 5 and added a 1 year old. It’s perfect!! And I just had to tell you, because to this day, my girls and I make “the pumpkin muffins” from all those years ago, and I have a feeling this will be “the pumpkin cake” in 5 more years!

  • Reply
    September 16, 2016 at 5:20 am

    though i don’t care for pumpkin, that glaze would have me eating ALL of this cake!

  • Reply
    Jean |
    September 15, 2016 at 10:15 am

    Sue, I love all things pumpkin too, so this is calling my name!

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