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vegan pumpkin cake

Soft & Fluffy Vegan Pumpkin Cake with Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Author: Britt Berlin
  • Prep Time: 40
  • Cook Time: 35
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 16 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan


This is the BEST vegan pumpkin cake ever! Topped with a silky vegan cream cheese frosting, this pumpkin spice cake is full of cinnamon and fall flavors while being super moist, tender, and rich!



Vegan Pumpkin Cake:

  • 1 cup (240 mL) vegan buttermilk
  • 3 1/2 cups (440 g) all purpose flour or gluten free 1:1 baking flour
  • 1 3/4 tbsp pumpkin spice
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 650 g pumpkin puree
  • 3/4 cup (150 g) sugar
  • 1/2 cup (110 g) brown sugar
  • 6 tbsp (87 g) vegan butter, melted and cooled to room temperature
  • 3 1/2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 3/4 tsp vanilla extract 
  • 1 batch vegan cream cheese frosting


  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. Preheat the oven to 350F and line three 8″ cake pans with olive oil and parchment paper.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, pumpkin spice, baking powder, cinnamon, and baking soda. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, add in the pumpkin puree, sugars, vegan butter, maple syrup, and vanilla extract. Whisk together until combined. Then add in the dry ingredients, along with the vegan buttermilk, and whisk just until incorporated.
  5. 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.
  6. 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. 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.
  8. 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.
  9. When ready to frost your cake, reserve about 1/2 cup frosting for making the pumpkins. If making the pumpkins, add in turmeric powder and beet powder or your favorite vegan orange food coloring, and mix the food coloring into the frosting. Place the frosting into the fridge while you frost the rest of the cake. Then layer the frosting onto each cake layer and use a bench scraper to smooth the edges.
  10. Place the cake into the fridge to set while you make the pumpkins. Roll the frosting into small oval balls, like a pumpkin, and place onto parchment paper. Place them back into the fridge to set for 10 minutes. When ready to serve, remove the pumpkins and the cake from the fridge and place the pumpkins on top. You can use cinnamon sticks, chocolate chips, or twigs for the pumpkin stems. Decorate and serve!


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