Micah A. Leal
Active Time
25 Mins
Total Time
1 Hour 25 Mins

The genius of this recipe is in the way the pie filling and cake batter meld into one sliceable cake in the oven. This recipe starts with a layer of graham cracker crust at the base of a springform pan. We pour most of a pumpkin pie filling over top of the crust. Some is reserved and mixed into a box of yellow cake mix to create a thick batter to spread on top of the pumpkin layer in the pan.

The moisture from the pumpkin filling hydrates the crust in the oven so that the layer of graham bakes into the bottom of the pie filling. On top of the pie filling, the cake batter relaxes as it heats and fuses with the pumpkin underneath it, allowing for some of the pumpkin filling to maintain its smooth custard texture while the remaining filling flavors the thick yellow cake above. Once the whole cake cools, it can easily be removed from the springform pan and sliced to reveal all of the different layers connected into one. This makes for a delicious pie-cake that defies the conventional standards for a cake or a pie alone. It’s both rich and smooth as well as soft and moist, and like most pies and cakes, it’s extra delicious served with freshly whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9-inch springform pan with cooking spray and line the outside with a layer of aluminum foil; set aside.

Step 2

Make Graham Layer: combine ingredients in a bowl until the melted butter is equally distributed. Press evenly into the bottom of the prepared springform pan.

Step 3

Make Pumpkin Layer: Whisk together all of these ingredients until everything is fully incorporated and no bits of egg whites are left unincorporated. Set aside.

Step 4

Make Cake Layer: Pour all of these ingredients into a bowl. Scoop out 1/2 cup of the Pumpkin Layer filling and add to the bowl with the cake mix, pecans, and melted butter. Whisk all together until no lumps of cake mix remain.

Step 5

Evenly spread the remaining Pumpkin Layer filling over the graham cracker layer in the pan. Use a spoon to dollop the Cake Layer batter gently over the Pumpkin Layer and spread around to make an even layer. (Note: it’s perfectly fine for some of the Pumpkin Layer underneath to mix with the Cake Layer.)

Step 6

Place springform pan on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 1 hour, covering the cake for the last 15 minutes of baking if necessary to prevent over browning. Run a knife around the cake’s edge when you remove it from the oven, but allow it to cool completely before removing the cake from the springform pan.