This pumpkin dump cake is a creamy pumpkin pie filling topped with a decadent pecan butter cake. Serve with ice cream on top for the perfect end to any fall dinner or holiday meal.
I can’t get enough pumpkin this time of the year, some of my favorites include pumpkin gooey butter cake and pumpkin chocolate chip cookies. This pumpkin dump cake is so very easy to make, and with just minutes of prep you end up with an amazing two layered dessert that’s perfect for feeding a crowd.
When I think fall, I think pumpkin. There are so many amazing treats to be had! This pumpkin dump cake happens to be super easy to make, but looks really impressive because it bakes up into a layered dessert with tons of flavor and texture.
How do you make pumpkin dump cake?
This cake starts with a pumpkin pie style filling which is made from pumpkin puree, sugar, eggs and evaporated milk. The pumpkin mixture goes into the bottom of the pan and a layer of powdered cake mix goes on top. The finishing steps are sliced butter and chopped pecans – no mixing required! Bake it all up and you’ve got a delicious fall treat.
What is a dump cake?
A dump cake is a dessert where ingredients are layered in a pan and baked – literally everything is just dumped into the pan. This pumpkin cake does use one bowl to mix together the filling, but it’s totally worth the extra dirty dish to take that step.
Tips for pumpkin dump cake
- Be sure to use canned pumpkin puree, NOT pie filling. Pie filling contains other ingredients and will not set the same way.
- This recipe calls for yellow cake mix, but spice cake mix is also a great option.
- Not a fan of pecans? Try walnuts or almonds, or leave the nuts out entirely. You could even try flaked coconut for a different flavor variation.
- This cake can be served warm, cold or at room temperature. To get neat slices, you’ll want to chill it before cutting. Otherwise just use a big serving spoon and scoop it onto plates. You can reheat cold slices of cake for 20 seconds in the microwave if you like to eat it warm.
- Make sure that the butter is sliced thin so that you can cover the entire surface area of the pan with butter.
If you’re a major pecan fan, you can add a sprinkle over the top for garnish before you serve your pumpkin dump cake. While this cake is perfectly delicious on its own, it’s even better when served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and a drizzle of caramel sauce.
I am not the biggest fan of pumpkin pie, so I often serve pumpkin dump cake instead for Thanksgiving. I think this cake is much easier to make than pie, which is also a bonus.
As soon as the calendar hits September, I stock up on pumpkin puree so that we can enjoy this pumpkin dump cake for the colder months to come. It’s always a huge hit!
More fall desserts
Pumpkin Dump Cake Video
Pumpkin Dump Cake
- 29 ounce can pumpkin puree do not use pumpkin pie filling
- 12 ounce can evaporated milk
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 3 eggs
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 box yellow cake mix
- 1 1/2 cups chopped pecans divided use
- 1 cup butter cut into thin slices
- cooking spray
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 9" x 13" pan with cooking spray.
- Place the pumpkin puree, evaporated milk, brown sugar, eggs, pumpkin pie spice and vanilla extract in a bowl. Stir until smooth.
- Pour the pumpkin mixture into the prepared pan.
- Place the cake mix and 1 cup of pecans in a bowl; stir to combine.
- Sprinkle the cake mix over the pumpkin layer.
- Place slices of butter all over the cake mix layer. Sprinkle the remaining pecans over the top.
- Bake for 45 minutes or until golden brown and set. Let cool for at least 15 minutes, then serve. Top with ice cream and caramel sauce if desired.
This post was originally published on October 8, 2018 and was updated on August 29, 2019 with new content.
Can just regular pumpkin be used? There isn’t any pumpkin purée’ to be found anywhere within a 40 mile radius.
What do you mean by regular pumpkin? Pumpkin puree is just canned pumpkin that doesn’t contain any other ingredients.
This looks delicious! I have it in the oven now. It’s been in for an hour and still isn’t set in the middle. Does it need to chill in the fridge to set?
The bottom layer firms up after it’s chilled!
This is such a delicious recipe! Can’t wait to make it again
Has anyone made this is an InstantPot or a slow cooker? My oven went out and I want to make this so bad.
Unfortunately this really needs to be made in the oven!
I’m making today for a Halloween Party!
Are they any way of making the pumpkin a little thicker .i love it but my hubby & kids thinks it would be better if the pumpkin filling could be thicker . THANK you
If you chill it the filling will thicken.
Looks delicious, but I love sweet potato can I use sweet potato for the filling instead?
Yes that’s fine!
Does it have to be in the refrigerator if storing for 4 days
Yes it should be refrigerated!
I love this cake and I’ve used it with yellow and spice mixes..both are good. I did make a change to the cake mix where I melted 1/2 cup of butter, added it to the cake mix and made a crumble out of it. When I layered the butter slices some of the cake mix was left dry..not a good look.
How long will the cake last in the refrigerator?
Up to 4 days!
Made it Thanksgiving day and here on Monday night just had a piece and should be good for at least 2 more days.
Do amazing I can’t stop eating it! Everyone asked for the recipe!
You said, let cool for at least 15 minutes. Is that all it needs? I seen further down in the comments that you said it needs to chill to fully set up. Should I cool on counter and then refrigerate to chill it before serving? If so, how long? I want to get this right!
Thanks so much! Making this on Thanksgiving this year!!!
You can serve this hot, cold or at room temperature, it’s your preference. When it’s warm it’s more like a pudding cake. When it’s chilled it cuts up into firmer squares as shown in these photos. There’s not really a right or wrong here!
Thank you SO much for explaining that more! I will post after I make it for Thanksgiving! Happy Thanksgiving!!!