This Pumpkin Cream Cheese Swirl Cake recipe combines pumpkin cake and cheesecake layers into one beautiful dessert and is perfect for afternoon tea or brunch.
For the pumpkin cake batter:
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar (dark or light)
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
For the cream cheese layer:
- 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- Preheat oven to 325°. Grease a 9” x 5” loaf pan. (For extra insurance against sticking, you can also line the pan with a layer of parchment paper before greasing; this is optional.)
- Whisk together the dry ingredients for the cake batter in a medium bowl: 1 1/2 cups flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and pumpkin pie spice.
- In a separate large bowl, whisk the 2 eggs until slightly frothy. Add in the brown sugar and 1/2 cup granulated sugar, whisk until smooth and sugar begins to dissolve. Whisk in the pumpkin, oil, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Add the dry ingredients gradually, whisking to combine after each addition. Continue to whisk just until the batter is smooth, set aside.
- Add the softened cream cheese to the bowl of a stand mixer or separate medium bowl (you can use the same bowl that was used to mix the dry ingredients!). Using the stand mixer or electric beaters, beat the cream cheese on medium speed for about 30 seconds, then add the remaining ½ cup granulated sugar and beat until smooth, scraping the bowl down as necessary. Beat in the remaining 1 egg and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Sprinkle in the remaining 1/4 cup flour and beat until just combined.
- Add a thick layer of the pumpkin mixture to the bottom of the greased loaf pan, spreading the batter out toward the edges of the pan. Then add a scoop of the cream cheese mixture directly on top of the pumpkin mixture. Continue adding large scoops of the pumpkin and cream cheese batters directly on top of one another until all the batter is in the pan. Wiggle the pan gently to help level out the top. (See notes section for more tips on creating the layers.)
- Bake in the preheated oven for 65 – 75 minutes or until the top of the cake is firm and cracked. Let the cake cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then remove it to a wire rack to finish cooling.
The number of layers you want the cake to have is up to you – five layers of each will create a beautiful intricate design, but you don’t get as much cream cheese flavor in each bite. Three layers created a less intricate pattern but will have nice thick cream cheese bites while eating. Four layers of each is a happy medium (this is my preferred way)!
For more random layers, stack the scoops of batter one on top of the other, but don’t smooth them out. For more even layers, smooth each layer out towards the edge of the loaf pan before adding the next scoop of batter.
The cake is best when served the same day, but can be stored in the fridge, tightly wrapped, for up to 3 – 4 days.
Keywords: pumpkin bread, pumpkin cake, pumpkin cream cheese cake, pumpkin cream cheese bread