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pumpkin crunch cake with cream cheese frosting
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4.85 from 32 votes

Great Pumpkin Crunch Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

What better way to celebrate the season than with my Pumpkin Crunch Cake! It will definitely bring smiles to your table and soon become your new family fall tradition.
Prep Time45 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time1 hr 10 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Servings: 20
Calories: 942kcal


Crunch Topping

  • 3 cups walnuts finely chopped
  • 3 cups vanilla wafers about 75 cookies
  • 3 cups brown sugar
  • 8 oz butter

Pumpkin Crunch Cake

  • 1 ¼ cup sugar
  • 6 oz butter softened
  • 16 oz can solid pack pumpkin not pumpkin pie mix
  • 2 ½ cups flour
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 Tablespoon pure vanilla
  • 1 Tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 ¼ Teaspoon baking powder
  • ¾ Teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ Teaspoon salt
  • 4 large eggs

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 24 oz cream cheese
  • 16 oz mascarpone
  • 8 oz softened butter
  • 2 cups confectioners sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon pure vanilla


Crunch Topping

  • Melt Butter
  • In a food processor, pulse cookies to a fine crumb
  • Then Pulse walnuts to a fine chop
  • Add in Brown Sugar and mix well.
  • Add in Melted Butter and blend together.
  • Divide mixture into 4  9-inch round Cake Pans, pressing into bottom and spreading it evenly into the cake pans. Reserve about 2 cups of the mixture which will be baked to use on the sides of the cake.
  • Set pans aside and begin cake.
  • Preheat Oven to 350 degrees.

Pumpkin Crunch Cake

  • In your mixer beat sugar and butter for about 5 minutes until light and fluffy, scraping down the bowl frequently.
  • Add-In Pumpkin and all the rest of the ingredients, except the eggs. Mix just until blended.
  • Add in the eggs, one at a time just until blended.
  • Divide batter equally into your 4 prepared (greased and floured) cake pans, smooth it out and make it as even as possible in the pan.
  • Bake the reserved crunch mix for 8-10 minutes at 350 degrees F. Or until it crisps up a bit. Don't let it burn!
    Allow to cool before adding to the sides and top of the cake.
  • Bake in a 350-degree oven for about 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. If you use 2 racks to bake on in the oven, at the halfway mark rotate the pans Allow pans to cool about 10 minutes, then turn them out onto wire racks and allow to completely cool.
  • break up the extra crunch mix to very small bits to use to decorate the cake with.
  • While your cakes are baking prepare a Cream Cheese Frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Whip the cream cheese, mascarpone, and butter till very smooth and creamy
  • Slowly add in the confectioner's sugar while the mixer is on low setting
  • Add in vanilla and mix well. Set aside till needed.


  • After your cake is completely cooled ( you can even refrigerate for a few hours) begin frosting the layers and putting the cake together.
  • After you have assembled all the layers with some frosting between them, start to spread the remaining frosting on the sides and top.
  • When finished frosting, coat sides and top with your extra crunch mixture ( you can eliminate this step).


*You can substitute cream cheese for the Mascarpone, I don't always have it on hand. You may want to increase the butter a bit cutting that amount from the cream cheese. If you have a favorite cream cheese frosting recipe, use that!
*feel free to eliminate the extra frosting on the sides of the cake and the additional crunch topping on the sides, the original cake was served simply with only whipped cream between the layers.
**I always use standard size 9 inch round cake pans. You can use other size pans but your cooking times will need to be adjusted
****If your cake sticks to the bottom of the pan, place it on a burner of your stove for about 15 seconds, the heat will help release the cake from the pan. This process works for all cakes. Just be careful and judge how hot and evenly your stove top heats the pan.
After heating place a plate on top of the pan, and invert quickly. Tap the pan with the heel of a knife to help release the cake.


Calories: 942kcal | Carbohydrates: 88g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 63g | Saturated Fat: 31g | Cholesterol: 170mg | Sodium: 540mg | Potassium: 323mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 64g | Vitamin A: 5148IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 159mg | Iron: 2mg