This sweet, creamy, crunchy Pumpkin Walnut Crunch Cake is similar to other Pumpkin Crunch Cake desserts but uses walnuts instead of pecans, and a homemade “cake mix” instead of a packaged cake mix, and includes a sprinkling of cinnamon sugar on top. Serve warm with ice cream for a crowd-pleasing Fall or Thanksgiving dessert!
With the record-setting heat that we are experiencing right now, I am looking forward to Fall. I love everything about Fall. Football, cooler weather, Fall foliage, and of course, Fall foods, especially Fall desserts! So I wanted to start my Fall baking.
However, my husband, Mr. Gridiron Grub Guru, is not a fan of pumpkin pie. If I serve it at a Thanksgiving dinner, he will pass it up every time. To him, pumpkin pie is bland and boring. However, I (and the rest of our extended family who comes over the for Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays) love pumpkin pie.
This is why each year I try to come up with other pumpkin recipes as an alternative to pumpkin pie.
So I have come up with a compromise that I’m certain will please even the pickiest of eaters, including Mr. Gridiron Grub Guru. It dresses up the sweet, creamy pumpkin pie by adding a crunchy cake layer on top. With walnuts and cinnamon sugar sprinkled on top, it is a certain home run!
Since Mr. Gridiron Grub Guru has now tried the Pumpkin Walnut Crunch Cake, I can confidently say that it has his enthusiastic stamp of approval. He even asked that I serve it this Thanksgiving. Even his Mom loved it, and usually, she is my pickiest eater.
If you can make pumpkin pie, and you can bake a simple cake, then making this Pumpkin Walnut Crunch Cake will be a breeze.
I recommend serving the Pumpkin Walnut Crunch Cake warm with a scoop of ice cream on top, but it is delicious on its own as well.
For which occasion will you be making this Pumpkin Walnut Crunch Cake?
If you like this recipe, be sure to check out my other awesome pumpkin recipes!
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- 1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree
- 1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 4 whole large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
- 2¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 1¾ cups granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup nonfat dry milk
- 2½ teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ cup chopped walnuts
- 1 cup butter, melted
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9x13 inch baking pan with baking spray (or butter and flour the pan.)
- In a large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree, evaporated milk, eggs, white and brown sugars, vanilla, and pumpkin pie spice until all ingredients are thoroughly combined and the batter is smooth.
- Pour the pumpkin mixture into a prepared pan and spread evenly with a spatula.
- In a medium bowl, stir together all the ingredients for the "cake mix" layer until well combined.
- Sprinkle the dry "cake mix" over the top of the pumpkin layer.
- Sprinkle the top of the cake with chopped walnuts and drizzle the melted butter over the top.
- In a small bowl, stir together ¼ cup sugar with 2 teaspoons cinnamon.
- Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mixture evenly over the top of the cake.
- Cover the pan with foil.
- Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes. Remove the foil. Continue baking an additional 25 - 30 minutes or until set.
- Remove pan to a wire rack to cool completely.
- One serving suggestion is to top with ice cream before serving.