Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Brown Butter Frosting

Pumpkin sheet cake with brown butter frostingIf you’ve been around this blog for awhile (or at all. ever.), you know all about my (not-so-secret) love affair with pumpkin-spiced everything. In fact, I’ve recently been told by a dear friend that I am always the first PSL (pumpkin spice latte) to grace her Instagram feed, thus ringing in the official start of fall for her every year. Some people cure cancer. I am the bringer of autumn. It’s cool. We each have our own unique talents.

Pumpkin sheet cake with brown butter frosting

It’s a disappointing appalling delightful 90-degrees in Northern Virginia today, which means that it feels nothing like fall outside. But there are crunchy leaves on the sidewalks, the PSL is back at Starbucks, we’ve witnessed the autumnal equinox, and I’ve already pulled my boots and scarves out of the closet. I don’t care what Mother Nature says; fall. is. here.

Pumpkin sheet cake with brown butter frosting

In honor of the start of my all-time favorite season of the year, I’m sharing my new favorite pumpkin cake recipe with you. The cake in this recipe couldn’t be easier. Grab a few ingredients (which you probably already have in your pantry), throw them together in your stand mixer, pour into a 9×13, and bake. Done.

Pumpkin sheet cake with brown butter frosting

But what MAKES this cake is the frosting. I have no idea why I’ve never thought to use brown butter in a buttercream frosting before, because it is LIFE. CHANGING. I won’t judge if you end up eating all of this frosting with a spoon. (Just a word of advice: if you’re prone to eating delicious frostings before they actually make it to your cakes, maybe double the frosting recipe? Not that I would know anything about that.) I promise that after you make this frosting, you will find approximately 7 million other cakes/breads/muffins that would be exponentially better with the addition of brown butter frosting. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Pumpkin sheet cake with brown butter frosting

Oh, and if you want to be crazy over-the-top and make this simple cake even more spectacular, top it with homemade sprinkles. Check back in the next few days for my sprinkles recipe (so easy, I promise!)


Pumpkin sheet cake with brown butter frosting

Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Brown Butter Frosting
Recipe courtesy of a cozy kitchen 
Start to finish: 1 hour
Makes 1 9×13″ cake

For the cake
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 3/4 cups white granulated sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 (15-ounce) can of pure pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the brown butter frosting
1 1/2 cup unsalted butter, divided (2 sticks at room temperature)
4 cups powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt
2 tablespoons heavy cream

For the cake
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9×13-inch cake pan with cooking spray and line with parchment paper. Set aside.

In the a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda and salt.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the eggs, vegetable oil, pumpkin, and vanilla until smooth. Add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.

Pour the batter into prepared pan. Transfer to the oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean.

Allow to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes and then carefully invert cake onto a cooling rack.

For the frosting
While the cake is baking, make the brown butter. Cube 1 stick (1/2 cup) of butter and add to a small saucepan set over medium heat. Once it’s melted, it will begin to foam up and bubble a bit. Allow it to cook until you begin to see lightly browned specks beginning to form, stirring occasionally. Don’t remove it from the heat too early–you want it to be deeply browned for that nutty flavor! Once browned, transfer the brown butter to a heatproof bowl and stir to cool it down.

Place the bowl of butter in the refrigerator and cool to room temperature (so that it’s a similar consistency to your other 2 sticks of butter).

Place browned butter and the other 2 sticks (1 cup) of room-temperature butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.

Sift in the powdered sugar and add the vanilla extract, salt and heavy cream. Beat the frosting for about 3 minutes. The fluffiness from the heavy cream really lightens up this frosting so be sure to beat it for the full 3 minutes.

Pour all of the frosting on the cooled sheet cake and spread it around, creating swoops as you go. Top it with some sprinkles, cut it up, and serve! Cake will stay moist for about 3 days. Store in the fridge and bring back to room temperature before serving.

Pumpkin sheet cake with brown butter frosting

2 Comments on Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Brown Butter Frosting

  1. John
    September 29, 2017 at 7:26 am (3 months ago)

    Very nice.
    At the end of Assembly you meant to say “.. before serving at every meal.”

  2. Kasha
    September 29, 2017 at 5:26 pm (3 months ago)

    Just made this today! Yum 🙂


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