Pumpkin Spice Latte Cake

Autumn is here so I felt like it was time to make something autumn-ey.

So I made this pumpkin spice latte cake.

THE FLAVOUR OF THIS CAKE WAS AMAZING, it was also so soft and moist, AND AGAIN THE FLAVOUR WAS SO GOOD. If you like pumpkin spice lattes, or just anything pumpkin flavoured, you need to try this!

A slice of the pumpkin spice latte cake on a white plate, with the full cake in the background.

Video Tutorial

The pumpkin cake layers

So this cake has 3 different parts to it, you got the pumpkin cake layers, a coffee/milk mixture that we are going to pour over the baked cake layers, and then a cream cheese frosting.

The first thing we are going to make is the cake layers because these need to be baked and left to cool for a few hours.

Here are the ingredients you will need for this:

  • Plain flour – also known as all purpose flour.
  • Pumpkin pie spice
  • Baking powder and baking soda
  • Salt – to help enhance the flavours.
  • Pumpkin puree – if you’re in the UK, I feel like pumpkin puree is not the easiest thing to find. I just got mine from Amazon.
  • Light brown sugar – I used brown sugar instead of white sugar. The brown sugar adds a lot more flavour and moisture.
  • Oil – this is for moisture too. Any flavourless oil works, but I like to use vegetable oil.
  • Eggs
  • Vanilla extract
  • Instant coffee – In the recipe card below, I’ve said to dissolve 1 tablespoon of coffee with 1 tablespoon of water. You can use as much or as little coffee as you want though. I personally didn’t want the coffee flavour to be too strong, but you could make it stronger.
The top of the pumpkin spice latte cake, with a slice taken out of it.

The milk mixture

Whiles the cake layers are baking, you can make the coffee/milk mixture.

Once the cakes have baked and are still hot, we’re going to poke some holes into it using a knife or skewer, then we’re going to pour this milk mixture over them.

If you’ve looked at a few of my other cake recipes before, this is something I do a lot.

I feel like pouring milk mixtures over cakes is a great way to add flavour and it also makes the cakes taste more moist.

It’s kind of like a tres leches cake, but with only one kind of milk, and also much less milk. We don’t want to add too much, because then they will be too soft to stack and decorate.

Anyway, all you need for this is:

  • Milk – any milk does work but personally I think whole milk works best.
  • Instant coffee – again you can add more or less. I’ve wrote, in the recipe card, to use 2 tablespoons but it’s up to you.
  • Pumpkin pie spice
  • Brown sugar 

All you need to do is heat all this together until the coffee has dissolved. 

STRAIN THIS MIXTURE 

I apologise for yelling, but I wanted to make it clear.

Because of the pumpkin pie spice, this mixture can end up with some lumps or grains of powder.

We don’t want to pour this onto our cake.

So you can either pour the milk through a fine mesh sieve, or a muslin cloth (this is what I used), or maybe even a coffee filter. I’ve never used a coffee filter so I don’t really know what it does, but I think it would work.

1 of the pumpkin cake layers inside of a silver tin, before being baked.
1 of the pumpkin cake layers inside of a silver tin, after being baked.

The cream cheese frosting

The last thing we are going to make is the cream cheese frosting.

You of course can fill and ice this cake with whatever frosting or buttercream you want.

But I feel like cream cheese frosting screams autumn to me, so that’s what I went with.

It’s a super simple frosting, all you needs is unsalted butter, icing/powdered sugar, vanilla extract and cream cheese.

A few tips 

Use softened butter

The first step is to beat the butter, icing sugar and vanilla together.

It will be soooo difficult to do this with cold butter. So make sure your butter is softened.

Sieve your icing sugar

Typically in baking, I don’t ever sieve. I feel like most of the time it is unnecessary.

BUT whenever using icing sugar, I recommend always sieving it.

Icing sugar can be very lumpy, so it’s best to sieve it. Especially when making a frosting or buttercream, we don’t want a lumpy or grainy frosting. 

Use full fat cream cheese

Low fat cream cheese will not work.

You will end up with a super liquidy frosting, this is not good. So full fat cream cheese should be used.

The cream cheese frosting inside of a bowl.

Decorating the cake

Once your cake layers have fully cooled and soaked up the milk mixture, you can finally decorate.

Decorate this however you want, I just filled the layers with the some cream cheese frosting, then covered the whole cake with the frosting. Then I added walnuts onto the sides.

That’s all I did, I kept it simple.

I haven’t included walnuts in the recipe because they were extremely unnecessary. You don’t need to add them, honestly it’s a bit random for a pumpkin spice latte cake.

But I think some added texture is always nice in cakes, so that’s why I added them. But it’s up to you!

The full pumpkin spice latte cake after being decorated.

Here are a few other cake recipes I think you need to try too:

Pumpkin Spice Latte Cake

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Ingredients

  • For the cake layers:
  • 250g plain flour

  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice

  • 2 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 400g pumpkin puree

  • 250g light brown sugar

  • 250ml vegetable oil

  • 4 eggs

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 1 tablespoon instant coffee dissolved in 1 tablespoon hot water (you can add more or less coffee depending on how strong you want the flavour to be)

  • For the milk mixture:
  • 300ml milk

  • 2 tablespoons instant coffee (again, you can use more or less)

  • 1-2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar

  • For the cream cheese frosting:
  • 300g unsalted butter, softened

  • 300g icing sugar, sieved

  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

  • 600g full fat cream cheese

Directions

  • Making the cake layers:
  • Start by pre-heating your oven to 180c/350f. Also grease and line two 8 inch cake tins. Leave these aside.
  • In a large bowl, add the flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Whisk these together.
  • In a separate bowl, add the pumpkin puree, brown sugar, oil, eggs, vanilla and coffee/water mixture. Whisk until combined.
  • Pour this wet mixture into the flour mixture, then whisk just until you get a smooth batter.
  • Pour this into your prepared cake tins, then bake at 180c/350f for around 40-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  • Making the milk mixture:
  • Whiles the cake layers are baking, get the milk ready.
  • In a pot, add all the ingredients for the milk mixture. Place this onto medium heat.
  • Heat this just until all the coffee has dissolved and the mixture starts to simmer. Take this off the heat.
  • Because of the pumpkin pie spice, this mixture will have some lumps or grains of the powder in this, you want to get rid of this. You can either do this using a very fine mesh sieve, or a muslin cloth, or maybe even a coffee filter (I've never used a coffee filter before so I might be wrong).
  • Once the cakes have baked, and they are still hot, poke some holes into them using a knife or a skewer.
  • Now pour the milk mixture over them. Leave these aside for a few hours, to soak the milk and cool completely.
  • Making the cream cheese icing:
  • In a large bowl, add the softened butter, half of the icing sugar and the vanilla. Mix these until combined.
  • Add the rest of the icing sugar, mix until combined again, then beat this mixture for 5 minutes.
  • After 5 minutes, add the cream cheese into this and mix until you get a smooth, thick frosting.
  • Decorating the cake:
  • Once the cake layers have soaked up the milk and have cooled completely, you can fill and decorate it.
  • Place one of the layers down onto a cake board or plate, spread some cream cheese frosting over this, then add the 2nd layer of cake on top.
  • Now you can decorate it however you want, I just covered it with the frosting, added a swirl on top, then covered the sides of the cake with some chopped walnuts.
  • After decorating, it is done. Cut into it and enjoy!
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