This easy gluten-free pumpkin sheet cake with whipped cream frosting is the ideal dessert to feed a crowd at Halloween or Thanksgiving.
My most perpetual pregnancy craving has been and continues to be cake. Last week I was desperate for some, and became fixated on making a sheet cake. Sheet cakes are really the best kind when you’re baking to satisfy a craving. Why? They’re huge and fast. There’s no need to prep more than one pan or stack and fill layers. It’s a snap to make them look nice with no piping. They also bake and cool super quickly because they just have one relatively thin layer.
This gluten-free pumpkin sheet cake turned out wonderfully and is so easy to make. I found a pumpkin sheet cake recipe over on Two Peas & Their Pod, and adapted it to be gluten free and even simpler. I also changed the frosting to whipped cream, which is so fast and tasty (and not overly sweet!) but lets the pumpkin spice flavors of the cake shine. To keep things streamlined and avoid having to measure multiple flours, I used a gluten-free flour blend that I’ve had success with in the past. I eliminated the butter browning and cooling to keep things quick, and made the whole batter in the bowl of the stand mixer instead of using two bowls. I also used individual spices instead of pumpkin pie spice mix, which I can’t bring myself to buy, but I’ve provided notes so that you can use either.
The frosting is just classic whipped cream, sweetened with a bit of powdered sugar and flavored with vanilla, with the key addition of sour cream or mascarpone cheese. When you’re choosing between the two, keep in mind that sour cream provides a bit of tang reminiscent of cream cheese frosting, while the mascarpone is more subtle and just adds richness. We’re not using one of these additional dairy products for their taste, though: we’re using them to stabilize the whipped cream. When you whip cream with a little bit of mascarpone or sour cream, it holds up much better, stays fluffy much longer, and is much less likely to sort of slump over and melt on you if things get a bit too warm.
I imagine you will probably make this gluten-free pumpkin sheet cake to feed a hungry Halloween crowd or balance out the pie-centricity of Thanksgiving dessert tables. However, I of course cannot judge you if you follow in my footsteps and polish off the vast majority of it all by yourself across just two days!
Looking for more vast expanses of cake? Try my easy Texas sheet cake, which is both gluten and dairy free.
Looking for more pumpkin? I’ve got you big time. Try chocolate pumpkin crème brûlée, Instant Pot pumpkin pie, baked pumpkin custards with maple whipped cream, pumpkin crème brûlée pie bars, pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin swirl brownies, or vegan pumpkin spice ice cream. Cake recipe adapted from Two Peas & Their Pod. *If you have pumpkin pie spice, you can use two teaspoons of that instead of all the individual spices. **I have not tested this cake with other flour blends, but if you have a gluten-free flour that works well as a one-to-one replacement for wheat flour, it's worth a try here!
For the gluten-free pumpkin sheet cake:
For the whipped cream frosting:
Cake recipe adapted from Two Peas & Their Pod.
*If you have pumpkin pie spice, you can use two teaspoons of that instead of all the individual spices.
**I have not tested this cake with other flour blends, but if you have a gluten-free flour that works well as a one-to-one replacement for wheat flour, it's worth a try here!
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