Pumpkin Cake

Pumpkin Cake | Real Food Real Deals

Fall is here, so it’s pumpkin time in my house.  I’ve been perfecting this pumpkin cake for years.  It’s one of my favorite treats in the fall, and I can feel good about eating it.  I find that pumpkin recipes don’t need nearly as much oil or added moisture as other baked goods because the pureed pumpkin is so moist.  This recipe uses gluten-free flour, but it also works well with white whole wheat flour.  Frosting is optional, and I think the cake tastes great with or without the frosting.

Ingredients for the Cake:
1¾ cup gluten-free flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. salt
4 eggs
¼ cup coconut oil
⅔ cup maple syrup
⅓ cup applesauce
2 cups pumpkin puree

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9 x 13 inch baking dish.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the wet ingredients.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir until well-combined.
  5. Bake for 30-40 minutes, until the cake is set and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Ingredients for the Icing:
¼ cup palm oil shortening or softened butter
2 tbs. solid coconut oil
¼ cup maple syrup
½ tsp. vanilla extract
1 tbs. milk (I use rice milk)

  1. Combine all ingredients in a stand mixer and mix until well-combined and smooth.
  2. When the cake has completely cooled, spread the icing in a thin layer on the cake.  If you want a thick layer of frosting, double the recipe.

Pumpkin Cake Price Breakdown

This cake costs $7.16 to make, or $.45 per piece.  This pumpkin cakes uses lots of healthy ingredients, so you can feel good about serving it to your family.


  1. says

    I had a Starbuck’s pumpkin cake yesterday (too sweet) and thought I gotta make some of that soon. I love the frosting squiggles on your cake, looks nicer than a big smear (though I won’t be opposed to eating that, either!) Thanks for posting your GF recipe! :)

    • says

      As much as I love a bakery muffin, they’re always too sweet for me. And I have a big sweet tooth, say that’s saying something! The frosting squiggles are a fun presentation, but it does taste the same no matter how you smear it on.

  2. Nathalia Chadwick says

    Thank you so much for your recipes. I started “eating clean” in January and had the crazy notion that that meant no more sweets lol. I do have a question on the flour I’ve been using oat flour for some recipes. Can I do that with this? If not would coconut flour work or be too sweet? Otherwise I have to go shopping immediately :)

    • says

      Nathalia, this recipe converts well between my gluten-free flour and whole wheat flour. I haven’t baked with oat or coconut flour, but I think they would work fine here because of the high moisture content. Let me know if you try it!

  3. Sarah W says

    My cake is cooling now, so excited! Question: does this need to be stored in the fridge after being frosted or can it sit on the counter for a day or two (if it lasts that long!)? Thanks!

    • says

      I hope you like it, Sarah! You can store it on the counter for a couple days. If you need to store it for longer, I recommend cutting it into pieces and freezing it. Enjoy!

      • Sarah W says

        The cake is so yummy, however my frosting is brown and not as fluffy as yours. This is my first attempt at a non-powdered sugar frosting, so I guess I just need to get the hang of it.

        • says

          I hope it tastes okay! I think the coloring in my picture is a little off because the frosting does come out slightly brown with the maple syrup. You can always leave the frosting off – it tastes great both ways.

  4. Analeis says

    Ahhhh this cake is simply amazing! I realized I only had three eggs when I was finished combining the dry ingredients…oops! So I subbed the fourth egg for 1/4 cup of Greek yogurt. I also used organic oat flour and replaced the oil with more applesauce. To reduce the sugar I replaced the maple syrup with Truvia baking blend. Such a wonderful, healthy, guilt-free recipe! Thanks so much :)

Leave a reply. I'd love to hear from you!