Renewing your spirit one bite at a time

Sourdough Pumpkin Cake (with cream cheese frosting!)


sourdough pumpkin cake

Prepare your taste buds for this autumn-inspired sourdough pumpkin cake topped with luscious cream cheese frosting! It may be one of my best creations using sourdough discard. This cake is so rich and the sourdough adds a level of depth and complexity to the crumb that is just incredible.

Each bite is a harmonious blend of rustic charm and warm autumn flavors, with the aroma of pumpkin spice. The silky, sweet cream cheese frosting that crowns the cake really takes it to the next level. This dessert is truly an indulgent treat that is perfect for the cozy days of fall.

sourdough pumpkin cake on fork

Why you’ll love this sourdough pumpkin cake recipe

  • Easiness: I try to make sure all my recipes are straightforward and uncomplicated and this one is just that! The cake and frosting are both made with simple ingredients and require no fancy equipment.
  • Great sourdough discard recipe: I absolutely love using my discard in sweet recipes because it adds a lovely, complex texture to baked goods. This is a useful way to use up some discard while creating something amazing. It is a win-win!
  • Flavor & texture are incredible: Using sourdough discard in this recipe adds a level of complexity to the texture that is heavenly. The cake is so rich and dense you just have to try it for yourself! The addition of pumpkin and autumn spices makes this dessert feel nostalgic and warm.
  • Cream cheese frosting: While I am aware making a cream cheese frosting is not the optimal choice for health, it is so worth it in moderation. This cream cheese frosting encompasses 4 simple ingredients that make this cake to die for. It is so silky and sweet, but not too sweet. It tops the sourdough pumpkin cake perfectly making it the quintessential autumn treat!
sourdough pumpkin cake

How to make sourdough pumpkin cake

Ingredients & Equipment:

For the cake:

  • 1 cup of sourdough discard (fed or unfed brought to room temperature)
  • 1 cup of pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1/2 cup of unsalted butter (melted)
  • 2 eggs (brought to room temperature)
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1.5 teaspoons of baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice

For the cream cheese frosting:

  • 8 oz of cream cheese (brought to room temperature)
  • 1/2 cup of unsalted butter (brought to room temperature)
  • 3 cups of powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
Sourdough Pumpkin Cake - ingredients

You will need:

  • Mixing bowls
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • 1 9×13 inch cake pan
  • Electric hand mixer

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and grease a 9×13 pan with butter or oil.
  • In a large mixing bowl beat together the melted butter and sugar until creamy.
In a large mixing bowl beat together the melted butter and sugar until creamy.
  • Next, add the sourdough discard, pumpkin puree, eggs, and vanilla extract and beat on low speed until everything comes together.
  • In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice.
  • Gradually add the dry mixture to the wet mixture until everything is combined. No need to overmix here. The mixture will be on the thicker side and this is okay!
  • Spread the mixture evenly into the cake pan and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the cake.
  • Allow the cake to cool for at least 1 hour before frosting it.

How to make the cream cheese frosting

Tip: make sure all ingredients are brought to room temperature for success.

  • In a large mixing bowl, add the softened cream cheese and butter.
  • Using your electric hand mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter together on medium speed. Mix until they are well combined and have a smooth, creamy texture. This should take about 2-3 minutes.
cream cheese frosting
  • Pour the vanilla extract into the cream cheese and butter mixture.
  • Continue to mix with the hand mixer on low speed, gradually increasing it to medium. Blend until the vanilla extract is fully incorporated, about 1-2 minutes.
  • Reduce the speed of your hand mixer to low. Slowly add the powdered sugar, about one cup at a time. This prevents a sugary mess and ensures that the powdered sugar is incorporated evenly into the mixture.
  • After each addition of powdered sugar, increase the mixer speed to medium and continue to blend until the frosting becomes smooth and well combined. Be sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula to ensure even mixing.
  • Coat the cake with the frosting evenly using a silicone spatula.
  • I sifted ground cinnamon over my cake (this is completely optional). Feel free to top it with walnuts, pumpkin seeds, or even fresh fruit if desired!
I sifted ground cinnamon over my cake (this is completely optional).

How to store your sourdough pumpkin cake

  • To store the cake in the refrigerator, place it in an airtight container or cover it tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil to prevent it from drying out or absorbing odors from the fridge.
  • A sourdough pumpkin cake, properly stored in the refrigerator, can last for about 3-5 days.
  • Remember that the cream cheese frosting should always be refrigerated, even if the cake itself is at room temperature. When removing the cake from the refrigerator, allow it to come to room temperature for about 30 minutes before serving. This will help the cake and frosting achieve their ideal texture.
  • Enjoy! 🙂
sourdough pumpkin cake

More sourdough discard recipes:

sourdough pumpkin cake
Print Recipe
5 from 5 votes

Sourdough Pumpkin Cake

Enjoy this perfect blend of autumn flavors in this sourdough pumpkin cake. A delightful, seasonal treat with simple ingredients!
Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Course: Dessert
Servings: 1 cake
Calories: 282kcal

Equipment

  • Mixing bowls
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • 1 9×13 inch cake pan
  • electric hand mixer

Ingredients

For the cake

  • 1 cup sourdough discard fed or unfed brought to room temperature
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter melted
  • 2 eggs brought to room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

For the cream cheese frosting

  • 8 oz of cream cheese brought to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter brought to room temperature
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

Instructions for the sourdough pumpkin cake

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and grease a 9×13 pan with butter or oil.
  • In a large mixing bowl beat together the melted butter and sugar until creamy.
  • Next, add the sourdough discard, pumpkin puree, eggs, and vanilla extra and beat on low speed until everything comes together.
  • In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice.
  • Gradually add the dry mixture to the wet mixture until everything is combined. No need to overmix here. The mixture will be on the thicker side and this is okay!
  • Spread the mixture evenly into the cake pan and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the cake.
  • Allow the cake to cool for at least 1 hour before frosting it.

How to make the cream cheese frosting

  • In a large mixing bowl, add the softened cream cheese and butter.
  • Using your electric hand mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter together on medium speed. Mix until they are well combined and have a smooth, creamy texture. This should take about 2-3 minutes.
  • Pour the vanilla extract into the cream cheese and butter mixture.Continue to mix with the hand mixer on low speed, gradually increasing it to medium. Blend until the vanilla extract is fully incorporated, about 1-2 minutes.
  • Reduce the speed of your hand mixer to low. Slowly add the powdered sugar, about one cup at a time. This prevents a sugary mess and ensures that the powdered sugar is incorporated evenly into the mixture.
  • After each addition of powdered sugar, increase the mixer speed to medium and continue to blend until the frosting becomes smooth and well combined. Be sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula to ensure even mixing.
  • Coat the top of the cake with the frosting evenly using a silicone spatula.
  • I sift ground cinnamon over my cake (this is completely optional). Feel free to top it with walnuts, pumpkin seeds, or even fresh fruit if desired!

Storage Instructions

  • To store the cake in the refrigerator, place it in an airtight container or cover it tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil to prevent it from drying out or absorbing odors from the fridge.
  • A sourdough pumpkin cake, properly stored in the refrigerator, can last for about 3-5 days.
  • Remember that the cream cheese frosting should always be refrigerated, even if the cake itself is at room temperature. When removing the cake from the refrigerator, allow it to come to room temperature for about 30 minutes before serving. This will help the cake and frosting achieve their ideal texture.

Notes

Make sure all ingredients are brought to room temperature for success. 
Ensure that you are using pumpkin puree and not pumpkin pie filling which has additional ingredients. The only ingredient should be pumpkin. 
The cake needs to cool for at least 1 hour before applying the frosting. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice | Calories: 282kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 13g

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Comments

  1. Absolutely the best frosting !5 stars

  2. I can’t wait to try this recipe! Beautiful write-up too!5 stars

    1. Thank you Laura! Let me know if you try it!