Pixelated Crumb

Pumpkin Buttermilk Bundt Cake

Pumpkin Buttermilk Bundt Cake

I absolutely love fall foods and can’t get enough of all the pumpkin foods so prevalent this time of year. There’s of course the pumpkin cinnamon roll pancakes, which may well be my most favorite of all, there’s pumpkin bread, pumpkin pie, and even pumpkin pie soda from Maine Root (which I was initially wary about but am now totally addicted to). So when Joseph and I went to his parents house for the weekend to celebrate his dad’s birthday, pumpkin cake seemed like an easy choice.

Pumpkin Buttermilk Bundt Cake

My physical therapist has been giving me a hard time about how much I’ve been doing on my feet since my knee surgery a few months ago. Didn’t she understand that I needed to make those pumpkin cinnamon roll pancakes and then spend the afternoon checking out Oktoberfest in Harvard Square? Fall only happens once a year! Nevertheless, I promised her I would take it easy over the weekend, but there was no way I wasn’t going to make a cake to celebrate my father-in-law’s birthday! Luckily this pumpkin cake is both chock-full of fall and easy to make, which meant less time on my feet.

Pumpkin Buttermilk Bundt Cake

When Joseph and I arrived at his parents’ Friday night, we were greeted with the smell of not one, but two kinds of pork in the oven. The first was an old favorite, what we now call Bing ssäm (after my mother-in-law) adapted from David Chang’s bo ssäm, a side of pork that is cooked “low and slow” for 8 hours and is quite possibly the best thing on earth. The second was a new experiment my mother-in-law was working on: pork belly – vegetarians, close your eyes – topped with thick, crunchy chicharrón (pork skin). This was all served with a delicious soy ginger sauce, spicy homemade pickles, rice, and sangria. By the end of the meal I could barely sit up in my seat I was so full. It was the most amazing, decadent meal I’ve had in a long time.

Pumpkin Buttermilk Bundt Cake

All the same, I sliced up some very thin slices of the pumpkin cake for everyone and we all dug in. The thing with making cake to take with you is that you can’t very well slice a piece and try it ahead of time to make sure it’s ok. I love the classic fall spices (cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger) and had really dumped them in there, so I was worried it was going to be over-spiced, but it wasn’t at all. If anything, I would add more next time, just because I love those spices so much.I had thought the cake might turn out somewhat like pumpkin bread in bundt form, but it actually ended up being much lighter than I expected, which was perfect after such a big, heavy meal. For the sake of simplicity, I had simply dusted the cake with confectioners sugar, but you could dress this up with a simple glaze . The next time I make this cake, I’m going to add some bittersweet chocolate chocolate chips for some extra oomph in addition to some extra spices.

Pumpkin Buttermilk Bundt Cake

Adapted from Whipped

This cake on its own is a nice, simple pumpkin cake. I just dusted it with powdered sugar to keep it simple, but you can dress it up with a glaze (2 tablespoons melted butter + 1 cup powdered sugar + 1-2 tablespoons milk or cream + 1 teaspoon vanilla extract). Take it to the next level by adding a cup to a cup and a half (or more, who am I to judge?) chocolate chips, preferably bittersweet.

This cake really soaks up moisture and is best if eaten within the first three days.


  • 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened, plus additional for greasing bundt pan
  • 11 1/4 ounces (2 1/4 cups) all-purpose flour, plus additional for dusting pan
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 3/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 3/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups canned solid-pack pumpkin
  • 3/4 cup well-shaken buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 8 3/4 ounces (1 1/4 cups) granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Butter and flour bundt pan. Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, and salt in a bowl. Whisk together pumpkin, buttermilk and vanilla in another bowl.
  2. Beat butter and granulated sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes, then add eggs and beat 1 minute. Reduce speed to low and add flour and pumpkin mixtures alternately in batches, beginning and ending with flour mixture and mixing until batter is just smooth.
  3. Spoon batter into pan and bake until a wooden toothpick or skewer inserted in center of cake comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool cake in pan on a rack 15 minutes, then invert rack over cake and reinvert cake onto rack.