Pumpkin S’mores Layer Cake

I was planning on bringing you another savory pumpkin dessert this week, but I just didn’t like the recipe I made last week for a Pumpkin Black Bean Burger. While the burger wasn’t bad, it was just overpowered with cumin, which isn’t a bad thing, but I just felt that it shouldn’t be the only thing you taste especially after topping the burger with other things. All is well though as I am bringing you a cake that has a lot going on, but it adds up to one thing… Deliciousness! It’s a Pumpkin S’mores Layer Cake.

I made a few adjustments to the original recipe that I got from an issue of Food Network Magazine about two years ago. I came across it in my dessert binder while looking for another recipe. The original recipe called for the cake to be a four-layer cake. Baking two 9-inch cakes and then cutting them in half. I opted to bake the cake in three 9-inch pans to make it a three-layer cake and since I am not keen on meringue frosting, I whipped up the Marshmallow Whipped Cream Frosting I used for the S’mores Cupcakes I posted back in August.

So, you have a three-layer pumpkin cake that had graham crackers crumbs added to the batter separated by a chocolate filling that is made with chocolate and marshmallows and it’s all topped with a light and not overly sweet marshmallow whipped cream frosting… YUM!

 

Pumpkin S’mores Layer Cake

Ingredients:

For the Cake:

12 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

6 whole graham crackers

2 1/4 cups flour

2 tablespoons cornstarch

2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup sugar

3/4 cup light brown sugar

4 large eggs, at room temperature

1 15 oz. can pumpkin puree

1/2 cup buttermilk*

 

For the Filling:

4 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped

12 large marshmallows or 1 1/2 cups mini marshmallows

2 tablespoons unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder

1 cup cold heavy cream

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

 

For the Frosting:

2 cups heavy cream

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 7oz. jars marshmallow cream

 

*Make your own by combining 1/2 cup whole milk with three teaspoons of white vinegar and let it sit for 10-15 minutes until it thickens and appears to curdle

 

Directions:

Begin by making the cake. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Spray three 9-inch round baking pans with baking spray.

In a food processor pulse the graham crackers into fine crumbs. Add in the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt and pulse to combine.

In a large bowl beat the butter and both sugars with handheld mixer until medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla extract. Reduce the speed to low and add in the pumpkin puree. The batter will appear curdled. Beat in half of the flour mixture, then the buttermilk and finally the remaining flour mixture. Divide the batter among the prepared pans and tap the bottom of the pans on the counter to release any air bubbles.

Bake the cakes in the preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let the cakes cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack and then invert the cakes on the racks to cool completely.

While the cakes are cooling make the filling. In microwave safe bowl combine the chocolate, marshmallows, cocoa powder and 1/3 cup of the heavy cream and microwave in 30 second intervals. Stirring between each interval. Continue microwaving until everything is melted. Continue stirring the mixture until smooth and then stir in the vanilla extract. Let cool to room temperature.

While the chocolate mixture is cooling, whisk the remaining 2/3 cup heavy cream in a medium bowl until stiff peaks form. Whisk a third of this cream into the cooled chocolate mixture and then gently fold in the rest with a rubber spatula. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.

To make the frosting, add the heavy cream and vanilla extract to a large bowl and beat with a handheld mixer until soft peaks form. Add in the marshmallow cream and continue beating until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use.

To assemble the cake, place one of the cake layers on a cake board or cake stand. Transfer some of the frosting to a piping bag and pipe around the perimeter of the cake and then spread half of the chocolate filling in the center. Repeat with another cake layer and then top with the final cake layer and then frost the cake with remaining frosting.

Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Recipe modified from Food Network

S’mores Cupcakes

Happy National S’mores Day! The day to celebrate the summer and campfire sweet treat. This year to honor the day I decided to make a S’mores Cupcake. It starts off with a graham cracker crust, followed by a chocolate cupcake and topped with a marshmallow whipped cream… YUM!

After lining a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners I made the graham cracker crust. I crushed a few graham crackers into crumbs by placing them in a resealable bag and rolled them with a rolling pin. I then combined the crumbs with melted butter and sugar. I placed a tablespoon of the crumbs into the bottom of each cupcake liner and then pressed them down with the bottom of a cup. I then baked them in a 350 F preheated oven for 6 minutes. Once they were done, I set the pan aside so the graham cracker crust could cool.

Next, I made the batter for the cupcakes. Now, you could make your cupcakes from scratch, but I decided to go the easy route and use a box mix of chocolate cake. I prepped the batter per the box directions and then filled each cupcake liner with a quarter cup of the batter. With the leftover batter I made a 6-inch chocolate cake so it wouldn’t go to waste. If you would like to make 24 cupcakes, you can easily double the ingredients for the graham cracker crust and use the leftover frosting to frost additional cupcakes. I baked the cupcakes for about 18 minutes and let them cool in the pan for a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Once the cupcakes were cooled, I made the marshmallow whipped cream frosting. Using a handheld mixer, I whipped heavy cream and vanilla extract together until soft peaks formed and then added in a 7oz. jar of marshmallow fluff (also known as marshmallow cream). I continued mixing until everything was well incorporated and the whipped cream was smooth. It was a bit lumpy at first, but, as I continued to mix it the lumps smoothed out.

I transferred the whipped cream to a piping bag fitted with a round tip and piped the frosting onto the cooled cupcakes and then topped them with graham cracker crumbs and shaved chocolate. The consistency of the frosting was a bit thin and I was concerned that it would be runny on the cupcakes, but it held up quite well. Definitely keep these in the refrigerator if making them on warm days.

And here is a pic of each layer of this delicious cupcake…

Looking for some more S’more inspired treats…

S’mores Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

S’mores Brownies

Malted S’mores Ice Cream

S’mores Icebox Cake

S’mores Chocolate Chip Cookies

 

S’mores Cupcakes

  • Servings: 12 Cupcakes
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Ingredients:

Graham Cracker Crust

3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

2 tablespoons sugar

 

Chocolate Cupcakes:

1 box chocolate cake mix along with the ingredients necessary to make the batter

 

Marshmallow Whipped Cream

1 cup heavy whipped cream

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

7 oz. jar marshmallow cream

 

Graham cracker crumbs and shaved chocolate for topping

 

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners.

Make the graham cracker crust: Combine the graham cracker crumbs, butter and sugar in a medium bowl until well combined. Place a tablespoon of the mixture in the bottom of each cupcake liner and press down with the bottom of a cup. Bake in the preheated oven for 5 – 7 minutes, until set, and then let cool while making the cupcake batter.

Cupcakes: Prepare the cake mix per the instructions and pour 1/4 cup of batter over the graham cracker crust. Use the remaining batter to make a small cake. Bake the cupcakes for 15-18 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let the cupcakes cool in the pan for a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Frosting: Using a handheld mixer, beat the heavy cream and vanilla extract in a medium bowl until soft peaks form. Add in the marshmallow cream and continue beating the mixture until it’s smooth. Transfer to a piping bag fitted with a round tip and pipe dollops of the frosting onto each cupcake.

Top each cupcake with graham cracker crumbs and shaved chocolate and enjoy!