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slices of pumpkin cake in a sheet pan with a caramel icing on top

Pumpkin Sheet Cake

  • Author: Melissa Griffiths-Bless this Mess
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 30 1x


Easy pumpkin sheet cake with a rich caramel icing that will feed a crowd!



For the Cake:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 2/3 cups sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 15-ounce can pumpkin puree

Caramel Frosting

  • 8 tablespoons of unsalted butter (1 stick)
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


For the Cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a jelly roll pan well (18 by 13 inch baking pan) and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl add the flour, cinnamon, baking powder, soda, salt, all spice, and ginger. Use a whisk to combine well and set aside.
  3. In the bowl of your stand mixer add your sugar, oil, and eggs and beat until well combined and thick, about 5 minutes. Add the pumpkin puree and beat until combined, about a minute. Reduce the mixer speed to low and slowly add in the flour mixture. Mix until the mixture just starts to come together (don't over mix).
  4. Give the batter a stir with a rubber spatula to make sure it's full combined and then add the batter to the prepared pan. Use the spatula to spread it out evenly in the pan. Bake for 18-22 minutes until the cake springs back lightly when touched and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow the cake to cook before making the icing.

For the Icing:

  1. Bring the butter and brown sugar to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is foamy, 3 to 5 minutes.
  2. Whisk in the milk and bring the mixture to a boil and then remove it from the heat. Stir in the powdered sugar and vanilla until the frosting is smooth.
  3. Spread the warm frosting evenly over the top of the cool cake and then let it set, about 25 minutes, before serving.


  • This recipes is from the America's Test Kitchen Family Baking Book page 250.
  • Don't dump all the frosting in one spot. The cake has a pretty thin layer so pour the frosting out evenly over the cake and use an offset spatula to finish spreading it out. Don't try to work frosting over too much or worry about getting it perfectly smooth. As the frosting cools it will start to set and if you spread it too much it will make it look chunky and will start to pull the cake up. A little imperfection here is going to be better than trying to mess with it too much. If it really bothers you, a few cute fall sprinkles on top fill hide most any icing imperfections.
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: pumpkin cake recipe, easy pumpkin sheet cake, autumn cake, fall baking