Nicole MacPherson: Meatless Mummy Con Carne


Pumped Up for Pumpkin: Perfect Pumpkin Spice Cake Recipe



Even before the air starts to feel crisp and the leaves start to turn, a large portion of the population becomes incredibly excited about the brief annual appearance of the much-celebrated Pumpkin Spice Latte. The very second the Pumpkin Spice Latte becomes available, people begin to rejoice, sing, and line up to partake. Pumpkin Spice Lattes multiply rapidly; they are everywhere, at every coffee shop, and they fill your Facebook feed with recipes and photos. Everyone, it seems, is in love with the Pumpkin Spice Latte.

Everyone, that is, except me.

Don't get me wrong: I like pumpkin spices, but I don't like them in my coffee. This has led to me being shunned by the community, or at least being subjected to extreme side-eye by my friends and acquaintances.

What I do love is pumpkin-based baked goodies, and specifically this pumpkin spice cake. The cream cheese frosting is not too sweet, and goes perfectly with this richly flavoured cake. It makes a great dessert, or even an accompaniment for a (non-pumpkin-spice) latte.


2 tablespoons ground flax
6 tablespoons water
3/4 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons coconut oil
1/3 cup grapeseed, canola, or other mild-tasting oil
1 cup canned pumpkin
1 1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg

For the frosting:

1-8 ounce package of cream cheese, softened (regular or vegan, but NOT low-fat)
3/4 cup icing sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
orange food colouring, if desired


  Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and lightly grease a mini-bundt pan. Don't have a mini-bundt pan? Use a muffin tin instead.

  In a small bowl, whisk together flax and water. Set aside in the refrigerator.

  Beat together brown sugar and coconut oil until crumbly. Add flax mixture, 1/3 cup oil, and pumpkin; beat until smooth.

  Stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, salt, and nutmeg. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir until combined.

  Spoon into mini-bundt pan (or muffin tin) and bake for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Allow to cool before frosting.

  To make the frosting: beat the softened cream cheese with the icing sugar and vanilla extract until smooth and creamy. Add food colouring if desired.

  Frost the mini-cakes, and decorate with small pieces of green candy for a stem (if desired).

  This makes a fun dessert for Thanksgiving dinner, or any occasion!

(Yield: 12 mini-cakes)

Want more pumpkin? Try my Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Snack Loaf! Did you buy a mini-bundt loaf pan and are looking for more ways to use it? Try my Homemade Doughnuts! Maybe you're just looking for a sweet treat. Try these Old Fashioned Oatmeal Cookies!