Soft, sweet pumpkin cake topped with tangy frosting. This vegan pumpkin cake with cream cheese frosting is the perfect addition to your thanksgiving dessert table! Totally vegan, gluten free, and naturally sweetened.
Say hello to your thanksgiving dessert!
Hey hi HELLO.
This vegan pumpkin cake with cream cheese frosting is the stuff fall dreams are made of. I’ve been SO excited to share it with you, and I’m so happy the day is finally here! Throw the pies out the window, THIS is what I want on my thanksgiving dessert table. Okay, don’t actually throw pies out the window. Unless they aren’t vegan, then chuck them. Kidding! Not really though.
I’ve never been a huuuuge pie fan (though I do have a recipe for MY kind of pie coming later this week!). Cake has always been, and always will be, my favorite! One of the main reasons for that is that with cake, comes frosting. I LOVE frosting. My little brother is known for scraping all the frosting off and eating just the cake. Or even worse, eating cupcakes before they’ve been frosted at all. Like, how are we related?! A cake without frosting is just a sad, sad (still totally delicious), muffin-like thing.
Turns out, you don’t need dairy (which is an INCREDIBLY cruel, horrible industry) for some rich, luscious, frosting! With Thanksgiving coming up, I wanted a non-pie option for all of you to enjoy and to take to your get togethers to impress your fam and friends! This vegan pumpkin cake with cream cheese frosting looks pretty lovely, if I do say so myself, and the method and ingredients are still really simple.
The cake itself starts with a mix of almond flour and banana flour. I first tried this combination for my favorite chocolate cake, and loved how it came out. The almond flour gives the cake a soft texture, while the banana flour helps hold things together. Oat flour would probably work if you don’t have banana flour, but I haven’t tried it in this specific recipe.
Next is some pumpkin pie spice, of course! We’ll need two tablespoons, which seems like a lot, but spread throughout the whole cake it’s necessary for the warm spice flavor to come through. Soooo good. I love fall.
To the dry ingredients we’ll add some date paste for sweetness, pumpkin because, it’s a pumpkin cake, yo! Then a bit of almond milk to bring things together. I always use unsweetened, but any plant based milk would work here.
Bake the cake for 50 minutes, then let it cool completely! I turn mine out on a wire rack so that it’ll cool faster. We don’t want any melty frosting issues, ya know?
One of the best parts of this pumpkin cake is the texture. It’s rich and dense, in the best way. A friend of mine tasted it and said it almost eats like a pumpkin pie, with a softer center, and firmer on the edges. So don’t expect a light, fluffy cake, here! The pumpkin gives the cake a great dense, thick texture, and I love it.
While the cake is cooling, make your vegan cream cheese frosting. I’m completely in love with this frosting. Totally plant-based, and it couldn’t be easier. Throw some soaked (and drained) cashews, almond milk, stevia, and apple cider vinegar in your food processor, blend for about 5 minutes, and you’ve got rich, tangy, luscious vegan cream cheese frosting.
My husband and I frequently wonder who actually came up with the random idea of soaking cashews then blending the heck out of them to make sweets like this cheesecake and this frosting. If you know who that person is, do tell. We’d like to thank them every day for the rest of our lives for vegan dessert magic.
Once the cake is totally cool and the frosting is ready, it’s time to make things pretty!! We eat with our eyes first, so this is important, right?! Especially if you’re taking your cake to a non-vegan gathering, it can’t hurt to make it look as appetizing as possible 🙂
When I make these single layer cakes I love plopping the frosting on top and just spreading it over the top, but for this one I was feelin fancy so I piped some cute little rosettes (is that what they’re even called? I’m not a cake decorator, if that wasn’t obvious already, ha). If anything warrants some extra effort for decorating, it’s the holidays. If you don’t have a piping bag you can just spread the frosting and sprinkle some nuts over the top, or some more pumpkin pie spice! Whatever you feel like to make it look cute, cause honestly, it’ll be delicious AF regardless.
This vegan pumpkin cake with cream cheese frosting is practically begging to make an appearance at your thanksgiving or holiday parties! Rich, dense, sweet and spiced cake, complemented with a perfectly rich and tangy cream cheese frosting.
Sigh. I love fall. And cake.
Have a happy, healthy week, friends!