An easy dessert to feed a crowd on Thanksgiving…this pumpkin sheet cake with chocolate frosting is gluten free and vegan, and so delicious!
What are your Thanksgiving plans?
If you’re hosting, one thing that may be on your mind is the dessert table. And if you are baking for those who have food allergies, you probably want to make sure that your desserts are not only delicious, but also free of the most common allergens.
Now, I know some of you probably are purists…you want pumpkin pie. I hear you. There are quite a few recipes for dairy free pumpkin pie out there…this one looks particularly good.
And some of you, (including my family!) insist on at least one apple pie. This vegan apple tart is delicious with a yummy crumble topping.
But if you’re in the mood for cake instead of pie, or if you have any children who just aren’t pie fans, this pumpkin sheet cake may be just the recipe you’re looking for. It’s a gluten free and vegan pumpkin cake covered with chocolate frosting. Rich, delicious, dairy free, and allergy friendly chocolate buttercream frosting.
This pumpkin sheet cake can feed a crowd, and it can even be prepared the day before serving. Just store it in the refrigerator, then let it come to room temperature before serving. The pumpkin puree will keep this gluten free cake from drying out.
Can you make pumpkin cake with fresh pumpkin?
Yes, if you prefer to use fresh pumpkin, that will be fine. You can learn how to make homemade pumpkin puree here.
How many servings are in a 9×13 cake?
You can get 16-18 servings out of a 9×13 cake pan. I like the slices to be a little larger, so I usually do four rows with four pieces in each row. You could also do six rows with three pieces in each row to get 18 pieces.
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Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Chocolate Frosting (Vegan, Gluten Free).
For the cake:
- 3 cups gluten free flour blend
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon ginger
- 3/4 cup organic cane sugar
- 3/4 cup light brown sugar
- 2/3 cup organic canola oil or melted vegan buttery spread
- 1 1/8 cup pure pumpkin puree
- 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup water
For the frosting:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Place the gluten free flour blend, baking soda, baking powder, salt, spices, and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Whisk together.
Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and put the pumpkin puree, organic canola oil, vanilla extract, and water inside. Stir everything together until smooth.
Pour the batter into a 9x13 pan and smooth out with the back of a spoon. Bake at 350 degrees for about 28 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Let the cake cool completely, then make the frosting.
Put the vegan buttery spread in a mixing bowl and beat until fluffy. Add the unsweetened cocoa powder and mix. Keep mixing, and alternate adding the sifted powdered sugar and the non-dairy milk until all the powdered sugar is gone and the frosting is a smooth, spreadable consistency.
Frost the cooled cake, then store in the refrigerator if not serving the same day. This cake can be made up to one day ahead of time.
My gluten free flour mix works very well in this recipe.
If you don't need to be gluten free, you can use all-purpose flour.
This cake can be made the night before you need to serve it. The pumpkin puree will keep it moist.
If you prefer vanilla frosting, try my dairy free buttercream frosting on top of this cake.
Can you freeze this pumpkin sheet cake?
If you want to make this cake way ahead of time, I would recommend making the cake and freezing it. Then you could thaw it out and make the frosting before serving. The texture of the frosting may change slightly if you freeze a frosted cake.
If you’re looking for more ideas for your holiday table, try this dairy free chocolate pudding pie, or this vegan gluten free cornbread stuffing. You may also like this post about gluten free and vegan Thanksgiving recipes.
This post was originally published in November 2016.