This ultra moist vegan pumpkin cake recipe uses a full can of pumpkin puree and just one bowl! Topped with a silky vegan cream cheese frosting, this easy pumpkin cake is full of warm spices and is so tender, and rich!

sliced vegan pumpkin cake on a cake stand

You’re going to LOVE this vegan pumpkin cake:

If you love all things pumpkin (like vegan pumpkin spice latte, vegan pumpkin coffee cake, vegan pumpkin cheesecake, and of course vegan pumpkin pie) then you need to try this ultra rich and fluffy vegan pumpkin cake.

It’s soft, moist, and full of pumpkin spice flavor. Next to my chocolate vegan pumpkin cake, this is the ultimate Thanksgiving cake recipe (and for more vegan Thanksgiving desserts, check out our vegan Thanksgiving dessert recipes and vegan Thanksgiving menu!).

Like my pumpkin roll cake and pumpkin cupcakes, this pumpkin spice cake is full of fall flavors, super tender and soft, and deliciously sweet yet tangy, thanks to the dairy free cream cheese frosting.

AND the best part?! It’s made entirely in one bowl and we’re using a full can of pumpkin puree (though you could totally use homemade pumpkin puree as well). I mean, talk about easy!

Oh, and non-vegans will never be able to tell that this pumpkin cake is entirely dairy free, made without eggs, and vegan. My mom, who is the *toughest* critic of any dessert, said this cake literally blew her away. She couldn’t put it down.

I KNOW, right?!

frosted and decorated vegan pumpkin cake

Get ready for the best pumpkin cake you’ve ever had as well!

Vegan Pumpkin Spice Cake Ingredients

Here’s all that you need to make the best damn vegan pumpkin cake you’ll ever taste:

  • Flour: you can use gluten free 1:1 baking flour here or cake flour. I note in the recipe card below to use cornstarch or arrowroot powder if you’re not using cake flour! This yields an extra tender cake texture.
  • Pumpkin pie spice: or a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cardamom, and cloves!
  • Leavening agents: baking soda and baking powder
  • Vegan buttermilk: a mixture of dairy free milk (keep this vegan cake recipe entirely nut free with my oat milk) and apple cider vinegar.
  • Pumpkin puree: This replaces any need for eggs in our vegan pumpkin cake.
  • Vegan butter: I like Miyoko’s here.
  • Neutral oil: I like to use avocado oil for extra moisture, but you can also use olive oil or sunflower oil.
  • Sugar and light brown sugar: I recommend Florida Crystals sugar here, as they are vegan and sustainably produced.
  • Vanilla extract
slice of vegan pumpkin cake on a cake stand

How to make a vegan pumpkin cake with vegan cream cheese frosting

The vegan pumpkin cake

You just need one bowl to make this pumpkin spice cake!

With pumpkin, it’s a very dense ingredient, so the cakes take slightly longer to cool than any of my other vegan cake recipes.

I recommend allowing the cakes to cool in the pans first, then transfer them to a cooling rack to fully cool evenly. Only when the cakes are fully cool should you begin to frost! Otherwise, you’ll have cake layers slipping onto the floor!

The vegan cream cheese frosting

This is my favorite touch to this pumpkin cake that I think just really sets it apart.

My biggest tips for making an ultra velvety smooth and sweet yet tangy vegan cream cheese frosting are these:

  • Bring the vegan butter and vegan cream cheese to room temperature: you should be able to easily dent the two with your index finger.
  • Sift the powdered sugar: this ensures that there are no clumps of sugar in your frosting, and the dairy free frosting is so creamy and smooth.
  • Use dairy free milk for an ultra velvety texture: this ties together the entire recipe
  • Add in cinnamon for an extra fall kick!
bitten slice of vegan pumpkin cake

How to decorate vegan pumpkin cake

My absolute favorite part about make a vegan cake recipe is the decorating part.

I love topping this pumpkin cake with some homemade vegan salted caramel. For an even quicker topping, you could melt some biscoff cookie butter spread.

You can also top with homemade vegan cream cheese “pumpkins” or candies!

Here is what the cake looks like with the homemade cream cheese frosting pumpkins!

vegan pumpkin cake

You’re just going to LOVE this vegan pumpkin cake! If you make it, let me know down below in the comments section, as well as giving it a rating so that others may find it.

As always, I absolutely love to see your beautiful creations on Instagram and Pinterest, so be sure to tag me there!

Happy pumpkin cake baking!

Want to save this recipe for later? Add it to your favorite recipe board on Pinterest!

One Bowl Vegan Pumpkin Cake with Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting pinterest pin

If you make this recipe, please be sure to leave a comment and a rating ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ below. This helps others to find the recipes! As always, I absolutely love to see your beautiful creations on Instagram and Pinterest, so be sure to tag me there as well!

Print
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slice of vegan pumpkin cake on a cake stand

Soft & Fluffy Vegan Pumpkin Cake with Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Author: Britt Berlin
  • Prep Time: 30
  • Cook Time: 35
  • Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Yield: 16 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

This ultra moist vegan pumpkin cake recipe uses a full can of pumpkin puree and just one bowl! Topped with a silky vegan cream cheese frosting, this easy pumpkin cake is full of warm spices and is so tender, and rich!


Ingredients

Scale

Vegan Pumpkin Cake:

  • 1 1/4 cup (300 mL) vegan buttermilk
  • 4 cups (500 g) all-purpose flour (or gluten free 1:1 baking flour + 1 tbsp arrowroot or cornstarch)
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 cup (200 g) granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (200 g) light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (113 g) vegan butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup (110 g) neutral cooking oil
  • 1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup (60 g) dairy free yogurt, room temperature
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 batch vegan cream cheese frosting
  • 1 batch vegan salted caramel

Instructions

  1. Prepare the vegan buttermilk first: whisk together the dairy free milk and apple cider vinegar. Set aside for 5-7 minutes to curdle. You’ll start with the dry ingredients while this is setting.
  2. Prep: Preheat the oven to 350F and line three 8″ cake pans with olive oil and parchment paper.
  3. Make the batter: In a large bowl, add in the pumpkin puree, sugars, vegan butter, oil, dairy free yogurt, and vanilla extract. Whisk together until combined. Then add in the salt, baking powder, baking soda, and pumpkin spice. Whisk to incorporate again. Then add in the flour, along with the vegan buttermilk, and whisk just until incorporated.
  4. Bake: Divide the batter into the three cake pans evenly and place the cake pans into the oven to bake for 32-35 minutes, or until the toothpick comes out clean.
  5. While the cakes are baking: You can prep the vegan caramel if you’d like to use that for decoration.
  6. Cool: Remove the cake pans from the oven and let cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Then transfer the pumpkin cake layers to a cooling rack to fully cool before frosting. This should take between 35-40 minutes.
  7. Make the frosting: Once the cakes are cooled, you can prepare the vegan cream cheese frosting. Beat together the vegan butter and vegan cream cheese until fluffy. You can use a hand mixer or a stand mixer. Sift in the powdered sugar and continue to beat. Add in the cinnamon, maple syrup and dairy free milk while beating the vegan cream cheese frosting. The frosting should be fluffy and smooth.
  8. Frost the cake: Place one cooled cake layer onto a serving plate. Scoop about 2/3 cup of frosting on top of the first layer and spread the frosting to the edges of the cake. Then place a second layer on top, and repeat. Then place the third layer on top. Frost the outside of the cake, then place the cake into the fridge to chill for 10-15 minutes. 
  9. Top with the caramel: Once set, pour the vegan salted caramel on top, and spread to spill over the edges of the cake. Top with flaky sea salt.
  10. Serve and enjoy! Slice the pumpkin cake, serve, and enjoy! Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Notes

Gluten free: Swap in King Arthur’s Measure for Measure gluten free baking powder for a gluten free pumpkin cake.

Keywords: vegan pumpkin cake, pumpkin cake, pumpkin spice cake, vegan pumpkin spice cake, vegan cream cheese frosting, cream cheese frosting