If you are one pumpkin spice latte away from a total squash overdose, you may have read the words “Pumpkin Sheet Cake” and felt the twinge of an eye roll. If this is the case—if even the prospect of the fluffiest, most moist pumpkin spice cake you’ve ever tasted cannot tempt you—I still have a very compelling reason why you should bake this Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Greek Yogurt Cream Cheese Frosting anyway.
One of my less-polite habits is wiping all but the thinnest layer of frosting from my of slice cake, because I find most frosting recipes to be overly sweet or even greasy. I’ve even gone so far as demonstrate this behavior at weddings, which is usually the point in the evening when, if he didn’t already at the site of my attempted line dance to “Cotton Eyed Joe,” Ben pretends he doesn’t know me.’ But this cream cheese frosting recipe? I could eat it on a slice of cardboard. THAT GOOD.
Seeing as we have an extra fluffy, super moist pumpkin sheet cake available as our frosting vehicle, however, let’s enjoy it that way instead, shall we?
For the Pumpkin Sheet Cake:
- 1/2 cup canola oil — or melted cooled coconut oil
- 1/2 cup non-fat plain Greek yogurt
- 2/3 cup brown sugar — light or dark
- 1/4 cup honey — plus 2 tablespoons
- 4 large eggs — at room temperature
- 1 cup pumpkin puree — NOT pumpkin pie filling
- 1 1/8 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder — I recommend aluminum free
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice — or substitute 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, 1 teaspoon ground ginger, 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, and 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 cup white whole wheat flour
- 1 cup all purpose flour
For the Greek Yogurt Cream Cheese Frosting:
- 6 ounces 1/3 reduced-fat cream cheese — also called Neufchatel; do not use fat free
- 3 tablespoons non-fat plain Greek yogurt
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter — softened to room temperature
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9×13-inch baking pan with parchment paper, then lightly coat with baking spray.
- In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or a large mixing bowl, beat together the oil, Greek yogurt, brown sugar, and honey until well blended and smooth. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, incorporating between each. Beat in the pumpkin puree.
- Sprinkle the baking soda, baking powder, salt, and pumpkin pie spice over the top. Mix to combine. Then, sprinkle in the whole wheat flour and all purpose flour. By hand with a wooden spatula or spoon, stir the batter, just until the flour disappears.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan, then with an offset spatula or spoon, smooth the top. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Place the cake on a wire pan to cool completely.
- To make the frosting: In a medium bowl, beat together the cream cheese, Greek yogurt, butter, vanilla extract, and salt at medium speed for 2 minutes, until fluffy and well combined. Reduce the mixer speed to low and gradually add the powdered sugar, increasing the speed to medium as you go. Beat for 1-2 minutes until well combined. Spread frosting evenly over top of cooled cake. Let the frosting set for 10 minutes (you can pop the cake into the refrigerator if you are in a hurry), then slice and serve.