Pumpkin Dessert is a moist and soft pumpkin-flavored pound cake drizzled with a sweet cream cheese glaze. While both are amazing on their own, the cream cheese glaze really takes this dessert to a whole new level of deliciousness! If you love everything pumpkin, make sure you check out my Pumpkin Cheesecake and Pumpkin Waffles!

That GLAZE though!!
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Pumpkin Dessert

Yes, I described this dessert as a pound cake, but it does not exactly meet the criteria. The definition of a pound cake is “a rich cake containing a pound, or equal weights, of each chief ingredient, typically flour, butter, and sugar”. So, although it does not officially qualify as such, it has the amazing flavor and texture density that a pound cake does. And, of course, it has all the pumpkin flavor you would expect from a pumpkin dessert!

This takes pumpkin to a whole new level!

Ingredients & Substitutions

Room Temperature Ingredients: I can’t stress enough that this cake needs to be made with room temperature ingredients (butter, eggs, buttermilk). This will ensure easier mixing and helps achieve that perfect crumb.

Glaze: This glaze is totally customizable, but I do encourage you to try it as-is first. If you don’t happen to have buttermilk on hand, make your own or use whole milk instead. However, using milk will create less depth of flavor and will result in a sweeter glaze.

Pure Pumpkin vs. Pumpkin Pie Filling

100% Pure Pumpkin, also known as pumpkin puree, is cooked pumpkin that is blended or mashed into a smooth texture. There should be no seasoning, spice, flavoring, or sugar added. Pumpkin Pie Filling has spices and sweeteners added. They should not be used interchangeably.

This takes pumpkin to a whole new level!

When to add the Glaze

In this recipe, I have you make the glaze first, but don’t be tempted to eat it before adding it to the cake! Anyway, when it comes to adding the cream cheese glaze, you can do it while the cake is still warm or after it has cooled. If you drizzle while the cake is warm, the glaze will soak into the cake more. If you drizzle when the cake is cool, the glaze will appear thicker. It’s the right choice either way!

What is a Tube Pan?

A tube pan is any type of round baking pan that has a hollow tube in its center. The tube helps large, deep cakes bake faster. It often has detachable sides.

If you do not have a tube pan, you can use a bundt pan. If you do not have a bundt pan, simply place a glass cup or ramekin in the middle of a large cake pan (I recommend at least a 9-inch for this cake, 10-inch is ideal) before pouring the batter inside.

This takes pumpkin to a whole new level!

How to Store Pumpkin Dessert

Because of the cream cheese glaze, store this cake in the refrigerator, covered, for 3-4 days. If you do not add the glaze, store the cake, wrapped in plastic wrap, at room temperature for up to 3 days. You can also freeze the cake without the glaze for up to 3 months.

More Pumpkin Desserts

4.60 from 5 votes

Pumpkin Dessert

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Pumpkin Dessert is a moist and soft pumpkin-flavored pound cake drizzled with a sweet cream cheese glaze.


Cream Cheese Glaze

  • 5 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • cup (83 g) confectioners' sugar
  • cup (82 g) buttermilk, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Pumpkin Cake

  • ¾ cup (150 g) granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup (150 g) light brown sugar, packed
  • ½ cup (1 stick / 113 g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin pie filling
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups (375 g) all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¾ cup (184 g) buttermilk, room temperature


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a 10-inch tube pan with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.


  • To the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, add the cream cheese, confectioners' sugar, buttermilk, and vanilla. Combine until fully incorporated, about 5 minutes, or until smooth. Set aside.

Pumpkin Cake

  • In a large bowl, add granulated sugar, brown sugar, and butter. Beat with a mixer at medium speed for 3-5 minutes, or until well blended.
  • Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  • Stir in pumpkin pie filling and vanilla.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • Alternate adding the flour mixture and buttermilk to the sugar mixture, beginning and ending with the flour mixture.
  • Transfer the batter into the prepared pan.
  • Bake for 50-55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean, a few crumbs are okay.
  • Let the cake cool in the pan for 10-15 minutes on a wire rack. Remove from pan, and allow it to continue cooling on a wire rack.
  • Drizzle the glaze on the warm or cooled cake.



I said pumpkin puree in the video – that was an error, I meant Pumpkin Pie Filling!
The difference between pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie filling is the additional spices added to the pumpkin pie filling.
If you only have Pumpkin Puree available, you will need to add extra seasoning to the recipe. 
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

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Meet Amanda Rettke

Amanda Rettke is the creator of I Am Baker, and the bestselling author of Surprise Inside Cakes: Amazing Cakes for Every Occasion – With a Little Something Extra Inside.Over the course of her 15+ year blogging adventure, she has been featured in and collaborated with the Food Network, New York Times, LA Times, Country Living Magazine, People Magazine, Epicurious, Brides, Romantic Homes, life:beautiful, Publishers Weekly, The Daily Mail, Star Tribune, The Globe and Mail, DailyCandy, YumSugar, The Knot, The Kitchn, and Parade, to name a few.

Reader Comments

  1. I have two baking in the oven right now. My kitchen smells like fall! Smells so good with the pumpkin! Can’t wait to eat of piece of it!😊

  2. I would like to cut back on serving size from 12 to 16. Slices can you help with the recalculation of calories
    Also, I would like to cut back the sugars by 1/4 c ea.

    I’m a diabetic and need some advise please

    1. Hi Joanne – I have not made any of those substitutions so can’t speak about their effectiveness. If you have diabetes and want to start adapting recipes to fit your needs, one thing you can do is experiement.

  3. I cannot wait to make this Pumpkin Pound Cake.
    Also, Amanda l just wanted to say that. I am so inspired by you and have followed you and your recipes. I’m always looking for the recipes make my family and friends go Ooooo, Ahhhhh! I know I can count on you & your recipes to do that!
    E. Scheidel

  4. You left out the allspice. My mom always added the 5 spices for good pumpkin pie or anything pumpkin related.

  5. I almost got the recipe backwards… because scratch recipes so rarely call for pumpkin pie filling, and cooks are usually warning folks *not* to use pumpkin pie filling when they mean canned/pureed pumpkin. I use my own fresh roasted and pureed pumpkin. Glad I read the notes! I’m looking forward to making this this afternoon.

    1. I have been making this recipe for years now and it is the absolute best fall cake and is a huge hit every single time. My kids call it “Pumpkin cake season” and one of them requests it now for his birthday cake.
      A few things:
      I have made this cake with pumpkin pie filling and just pumpkin puree and pumpkin puree with pumpkin pie spices and they are all incredible. I’ve made it in a tube pan and a bundt pan and they both turned out fantastic. The glaze is the best part and I’ve made it a few different ways but in general I find that the more cream cheese and buttermilk, the better. I use a whole block of cream cheese and probably a half cup or more buttermilk. It’s nice to have enough glaze to cover the whole cake.

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