Gingerbread Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Espresso Caramel Frosting- Vegan and GlutenFree from HeatherChristo.com

Have you ever made a cake or something really, really good and then it is so good that you are like mad at yourself for making it?? Because I was so bummed with myself last week when I made this and proceeded to eat WAY TOO MUCH.

I thought, I just know it will be good, I will take a small portion and confirm what I am just SURE will be true. It started with a lick of the frosting.

And then my eyes bugged out of my head. Next came me “licking the spatula.” Next came me licking the bowl… and every other thing that had touched the frosting.

Then I actually put the frosting on the cake (before I could destroy the whole recipe by eating all of it.) And OMG. What was a delicious, really moist tender cake that was wonderfully spiced and autumnal, and took it to the NEXT LEVEL. A lovely little sprinkle of powdered sugar would have been perfect as a snack cake or even for a breakfast cake- but oh boy with that frosting!!!

Gingerbread Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Espresso Caramel Frosting- Vegan and GlutenFree from HeatherChristo.com

I know that the presentation is not the fanciest- do you guys have any ideas on how to make it make it prettier? I am not sure I even care with how good it is on it’s own, but this will most definitely be a part of Thanksgiving dessert, humble in appearance or not. I am thinking maybe a chocolate drizzle or go the kitchy route and do sprinkles, pretending it’s for the kids and then eating it all myself. As of yet, I am undecided.

By the way- this makes a huge portion. I filled a whole sheet pan, which when cut into reasonable portions (not the size I really wanted to eat!) makes 36 bar sized pieces. Obviously you could go larger in size, or cut the recipe in half if you have a quarter sheetpan in your baking arsenal.

But if you make the full size, please know that this freezes really well, and I have left half the pan in the freezer and slice off bars for the kids lunches (it is perfectly thawed by lunch time!) and for our own desperate late night sweet cravings! And if you serve it on Thanksgiving, just send any leftovers home with your guests- they will be thrilled!

Gingerbread Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Espresso Caramel Frosting- Vegan and GlutenFree from HeatherChristo.com

Gingerbread Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Brown Sugar Espresso Caramel Frosting- Vegan and Gluten Free
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 36
 
Ingredients
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk (the kind in a carton that is refrigerated)
  • 1 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 4 ½ cups gluten free all-purpose flour (I use bobs red mill)
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon xanthum gum
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons allspice
  • 2 teaspoons nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 cups unsweetened pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • Brown Sugar Espresso Caramel Frosting
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • ½ cup unsweetened canned coconut cream
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 ½ cups powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup hot espresso or hot coffee
Instructions
  1. For the cake:
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a rimmed sheetpan with a sheet of parchment paper and some baking spray.
  3. In a smaller bowl, combine the coconut milk and the apple cider vinegar. Set aside.
  4. In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a whisk and combine the dry ingredients. Add the pumpkin puree, vegetable oil, coconut milk mixture and molasses and mix really well until completely combined. Transfer the batter to the prepared sheetpan and spread evenly. Bake the cake for 30-35 minutes and then transfer to cool while you make the frosting.
  5. For the frosting:
  6. In a smaller saucepan combine the brown sugar, coconut cream, coconut oil and salt and bring to a boil. Boil for about 5 minutes and then pour into the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a whisk. Let the caramel cool for 8-10 minutes. Add the powdered sugar and whisk. It should be dry and crumbly until you add the hot espresso and whisk on high- then it should turn into a thick smooth shiny caramel frosting. Spread the frosting over the cake while it is still warm, but then let the cake and frosting be completely cool before you slice it.

 

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Gingerbread Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Espresso Caramel Frosting- Vegan and GlutenFree from HeatherChristo.com

Have you ever made a cake or something really, really good and then it is so good that you are like mad at yourself for making it?? Because I was so bummed with myself last week when I made this and proceeded to eat WAY TOO MUCH.

I thought, I just know it will be good, I will take a small portion and confirm what I am just SURE will be true. It started with a lick of the frosting.

And then my eyes bugged out of my head. Next came me “licking the spatula.” Next came me licking the bowl… and every other thing that had touched the frosting.

Then I actually put the frosting on the cake (before I could destroy the whole recipe by eating all of it.) And OMG. What was a delicious, really moist tender cake that was wonderfully spiced and autumnal, and took it to the NEXT LEVEL. A lovely little sprinkle of powdered sugar would have been perfect as a snack cake or even for a breakfast cake- but oh boy with that frosting!!!

Gingerbread Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Espresso Caramel Frosting- Vegan and GlutenFree from HeatherChristo.com

I know that the presentation is not the fanciest- do you guys have any ideas on how to make it make it prettier? I am not sure I even care with how good it is on it’s own, but this will most definitely be a part of Thanksgiving dessert, humble in appearance or not. I am thinking maybe a chocolate drizzle or go the kitchy route and do sprinkles, pretending it’s for the kids and then eating it all myself. As of yet, I am undecided.

By the way- this makes a huge portion. I filled a whole sheet pan, which when cut into reasonable portions (not the size I really wanted to eat!) makes 36 bar sized pieces. Obviously you could go larger in size, or cut the recipe in half if you have a quarter sheetpan in your baking arsenal.

But if you make the full size, please know that this freezes really well, and I have left half the pan in the freezer and slice off bars for the kids lunches (it is perfectly thawed by lunch time!) and for our own desperate late night sweet cravings! And if you serve it on Thanksgiving, just send any leftovers home with your guests- they will be thrilled!

Gingerbread Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Espresso Caramel Frosting- Vegan and GlutenFree from HeatherChristo.com

Gingerbread Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Brown Sugar Espresso Caramel Frosting- Vegan and Gluten Free
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 36
 
Ingredients
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk (the kind in a carton that is refrigerated)
  • 1 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 4 ½ cups gluten free all-purpose flour (I use bobs red mill)
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon xanthum gum
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons allspice
  • 2 teaspoons nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 cups unsweetened pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • Brown Sugar Espresso Caramel Frosting
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • ½ cup unsweetened canned coconut cream
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 ½ cups powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup hot espresso or hot coffee
Instructions
  1. For the cake:
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a rimmed sheetpan with a sheet of parchment paper and some baking spray.
  3. In a smaller bowl, combine the coconut milk and the apple cider vinegar. Set aside.
  4. In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a whisk and combine the dry ingredients. Add the pumpkin puree, vegetable oil, coconut milk mixture and molasses and mix really well until completely combined. Transfer the batter to the prepared sheetpan and spread evenly. Bake the cake for 30-35 minutes and then transfer to cool while you make the frosting.
  5. For the frosting:
  6. In a smaller saucepan combine the brown sugar, coconut cream, coconut oil and salt and bring to a boil. Boil for about 5 minutes and then pour into the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a whisk. Let the caramel cool for 8-10 minutes. Add the powdered sugar and whisk. It should be dry and crumbly until you add the hot espresso and whisk on high- then it should turn into a thick smooth shiny caramel frosting. Spread the frosting over the cake while it is still warm, but then let the cake and frosting be completely cool before you slice it.