Wednesday, December 9, 2009

In MY Kitchen: Pumpkin Dump Cake with Cinnamon Whipped Cream

IMG_4716 (by Ateupamateur)

This recipe actually comes from a co-worker of mine, Colleen, who brought it to our company Thanksgiving luncheon a few years ago. It was such a hit, she gave out the recipe all day long. And I've made it for Thanksgiving or Christmas meals each year ever since. It resides under several names. Some people just call it "Pumpkin Dessert" but I like the name "Pumpkin Dump Cake" because that is basically what it is.

IMG_4595 (by Ateupamateur)
Colleen's recipe.

We used to make "dump cake" of many varieties when I was growing up in Girl Scouts. This concoction was basically any type of fruit, yellow box cake and butter thrown together in a dutch oven and baked over a campfire for several hours. It was SO good and a particular favorite of mine. You will see the similarities in this recipe, for certain, as we move forward. Maybe that's why I like it so much!

IMG_4596 (by Ateupamateur)
This would be the "ingredients" photo...

...except that by taking this photo I realized I did not have all the ingredients on hand. I had to stop right there and take the butter out of the refrigerator and go to the store for some pecans. Details.

IMG_4599 (by Ateupamateur)
Which makes THIS the REAL "ingredients" photo. Ahem.
Moving on...

IMG_4592 (by Ateupamateur)
Spray or grease a 9x13 pan.

I use PAM for baking because it is oh so easy and does the trick very nicely. It basically gives you, in a spray can, a layer of grease and flour, in seconds. I am sure it will turn out it is as bad for you as Agent Orange or Nicotine. But until then, I'm using it, sister! And maybe after.

IMG_4601 (by Ateupamateur)

In a mixing bowl, combine one can of pumpkin, one can of evaporated milk, three eggs, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ginger and 1 1/2 cups of sugar. This recipe is not for the faint of heart. And we're just getting started!

IMG_4604 (by Ateupamateur)
Mix it all together.

I want to point out that this mixture is VERY, well, liquid. And, on the occasion when I have used organic pumpkin, for some reason, it is even MORE liquidy. Almost so liquid that it is hard to handle. I don't know why. Probably because the non-organic pumpkin has Agent Orange and Nicotine in it.

IMG_4605 (by Ateupamateur)
Once combined...

IMG_4606 (by Ateupamateur)
...pour it into that prepared 9x13 pan.

IMG_4609 (by Ateupamateur)
Then evenly sprinkle an entire box of yellow cake mix on top.

Yes, the entire box. This is one of those moments when the "too liquidy" organic pumpkin becomes problematic. The mixture is not viscous enough - is viscous the word I want there? maybe not - isn't enough of something to hold the cake mix. It sinks into it more when you use organic pumpkin. At the end of the day, I don't know that it matters, but you don't get the layered effect.

IMG_4611 (by Ateupamateur)
Then take about 1/4 to 1/2 cup of pecans...

IMG_4612 (by Ateupamateur)
...and beat the crap out of them.

Or use your much more sophisticated nut chopping apparatus of your choice. I just like the bag and the tenderizer method. Knock yourself out. Just coarsely chop them.

IMG_4614 (by Ateupamateur)
And sprinkle them on top.

Now this is where I deviate slightly from Colleen's recipe - I put the nuts on before the next step, the butter. I think having the nuts on there before the butter does two things. First, it salts the nuts, (because I use salted butter for this recipe) and who doesn't like salted pecans, and second it browns them up a bit. So do it however you'd like. Before or after the butter, add some coarsely chopped pecans.

IMG_4616 (by Ateupamateur)
Then, God help me, melt TWO STICKS of butter.

IMG_4618 (by Ateupamateur)
And while the - gulp - butter is melting, notice how pretty the side of the dish is at this point.
A little pumpkin parfait, no?

IMG_4620 (by Ateupamateur)
Then, arteries snapping, pour all that butter on top of the entire thing.

IMG_4621 (by Ateupamateur)
Lord help me.

IMG_4623 (by Ateupamateur)
Stick it in the oven on 350 degrees.

Now, Colleen's recipe calls for it to bake for 45 minutes. I have always found it takes at least an hour to get done where it's not "jiggly" in the middle. That is a highly technical cooking term. That means, when you put a toothpick in the center, it is still "jiggly" if it doesn't come out clean. And, if you used that organic, liquidy (another highly technical term) pumpkin, it might even take an hour and fifteen minutes. That's just been my experience. For what it's worth.

IMG_4625 (by Ateupamateur)
While it is baking, make up the cinnamon whipped cream!

IMG_4626 (by Ateupamateur)

I used one cup of heavy whipping cream, some vanilla, cinnamon and powdered (or confectioner's) sugar. I did not measure. I tasted it as I went and if I felt it was not sweet enough, not cinnamon-y enough, etc, I added more. It's OK, I promise. You can taste whipped cream and tell whether you like it or not. You can do it. And it's fun.

IMG_4628 (by Ateupamateur)
Whip that cream.

IMG_4630 (by Ateupamateur)
Whip it good.

And, Lord help me, if I had to whip cream before the electric mixer, you would never have had whipped cream at my house. Sister, it takes long enough with an electric mixer. God bless those women who lived before the electric mixer. For one. God bless 'em.

IMG_4633 (by Ateupamateur)
When you form "hard peaks" you're done.
Put it in a container and chill until ready to serve.

IMG_4711 (by Ateupamateur)
When it's fully cooked, it will look something like this.

IMG_4713 (by Ateupamateur)
This dessert is best served warm.
It just isn't as good cold. Maybe it's all that butter.

IMG_4715 (by Ateupamateur)
Add some of that whipped cream and enjoy!

It is good, sister. Forget that there are two sticks of butter in it and make some for your next holiday. In the words of Paula Deen, "Honey, I'm your COOK, not your DOCTOR!" Paula in all her southern high calorie sweetness would approve of this recipe. It is irresistible!
Pumpkin Dump Cake with Cinnamon Whipped Cream

For the dump cake:
1 can pumpkin
1 can evaporated milk
3 eggs
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1 1/2 cups of sugar
1 box yellow cake mix
1/4 to 1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans
2 sticks of butter

For the whipped cream:
heavy whipping cream
confectioner's sugar

To prepare the cake:

Spray or grease a 9x13 pan. Combine the first six ingredients in a mixing bowl until well blended. Pour mixture into prepared 9x13 pan. Sprinkle top evenly with yellow cake mix and pecans. Melt butter and pour evenly over pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.

To prepare the whipped cream:

Combine ingredients in amounts you see fit in a mixing bowl and whip until hard peaks are formed. Taste it and add more of something if you think it needs it. Refrigerate until serving.

To serve:

Serve cake warm with a dollop of cold whipped cream on top. Savor ever butter flavored bite.
The End of this recipe. I hope you'll enjoy making it for your holiday gathering.

This seems like a good place to tell you (you know, after this really fattening recipe) that I did indeed lose a little more weight last week - more than I imagined, anyway. I lost another 3.8 pounds to take the total to 23.6 pounds lost since late October- eeking to that 25 pound mark by Christmas, by God. Eeking ever so slightly every day. And learning to love green vegetables even more because they fill you up, have virtually no calories and are even good for you. Amen to that.

Best wishes for your Wednesday. See you tomorrow.


  1. I loved this entry. Maybe it was the continued Devo references. Maybe it was the word "jiggly." Maybe it was your awesome news of continued weight loss...

    But most likely, it was the image of the two sticks of melted butter. A delicious image that will get me through the day.

    Have a good one!


  2. This sounds delicious! (and dangerous!) Thanks for sharing a new twist on dump cake; going to try it for our office party Friday.


  3. Amy...loving these recipes...thanks so much for taking the much fun to see the pics too! You are a gem! Love you!!!


  4. Looks awesome! Trying very soon!

  5. I love pumpkin anything! Thanks for sharing! :)


  6. Two good recipes in 2 days! I am very excited!


  7. Yummy in my tummy!

  8. i think beating the crap out of the pecans is my favorite part...

  9. Congrats on the continued weight loss - wow!!! You are really doing it sister!! Love love love this In Your Kitchen segment - so many great recipes! Thanks for including past recipes too. Those cheesy chicken enchiladas will be made next week. Velveeta...mmm...

  10. Ok, I made it tonight it was a huge hit!!


  11. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.


Please leave your name (first name only is fine) with your comment!