Ooey Gooey Healthy Pumpkin cake is loaded with wholesome ingredients and turns out moist and decadent. Easy to make and with its wonderful flavor this is the perfect fall dessert.
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One of my favorite things to do with my cooking is to sneak nutrition into my loved ones in ways that they don’t notice.
It fills my heart with joy when they are eating a wholesome recipe and completely loving every bite.
Now don’t get me wrong, my obsession doesn’t always work out to be a dream meal. For example, just the other day I was determined to make dandelion greens taste amazing (just as a FYI, they are horrid tasting but are full of nutrition).
I sautéed garlic in olive oil and then sprinkled with them with sea salt. I was so excited to see if my approach worked.
Well my friend, it did not.
My husband and I took one bite and we immediately starting with some pretty heavy duty expletives. Basically, they tasted like what would be under Satans toenails.
Despite my run in with the devil’s toe jam, this time of year is perfect for some of the best healthy decadent types of recipes. In other words, full of nutrition and absolutely heavenly.
Some of my favorites as far as dinners are Beef and Brussels sprouts Stew, Chicken Sweet Potato Curry and Sweet Potato and Chorizo Soup. I am also all about Oat Flour Pancakes for breakfast and this Healthy Pumpkin Cake for dessert or breakfast this time of year.
Why is this Pumpkin Spice Cake Healthier?
In addittion to the ingredients listed below, what makes this cake uniquely healthy is the lower amount of white flour and sugar used. Additionally, there is no oil or butter in this recipe and yet it still turns out with gorgeous flavor and texture. Here are the powerhouse ingredients that really pack a nutritional punch.
Oats– High in manganese, antioxidants and soluble fiber, incorporating oatmeal into your diet may reduce the risk of heart disease.
Pumpkin– Packed with Beta Carotene, eating pumpkin can may help with better immunity and eye health.
Walnuts– A good source of healthy fats, protein and fiber, enjoying walnuts may also help to reduce the risk of heart disease.
How To Make Healthy Pumpkin Cake
One of the elements that allows this cake to still have great texture with a limited amount of flour is the ground oatmeal and walnuts. It is helpful to begin with grinding these two ingredients. Here are the steps in how to make this Pumpkin Cake.
- Preheat oven to 325℉ and grease and flour a 9×13 inch pan.
- Using a blender or blender attachment, measure 1/2 cup rolled oats and 1/2 cup walnuts and then grind.
- Add ground oats and walnuts to a medium sized mixing bowl. Add dry ingredients to bowl with the exception of chocolate chips and chopped walnuts. Mix well.
- In a stand mixer combine wet ingredients and mix well.
- Add half of dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix just until incorporated. Scrape down sides and repeat with second half of dry ingredients.
- Gently stir in chocolate chips and chopped walnuts.
- Pour into prepared pan and bake for 35-40 mins or until cake tester inserted into center comes out clean. Note: Try to test in an area that does not have chocolate chips. This is because inserting the cake tester into the chocolate can give the appearance that the cake is not done.
- Let cake cool completely before frosting.
Evaporated Milk vs Sweetened Condensed Milk
Both of these types of milk come in a can and are often located on the baking isle on your local grocery store. In short, they are a thicker version of milk due to a lower level of water content. However, it can be very easy to mix these two milks up with one another and doing so can definitely cause a problem in baking. The main difference to remember between these two canned milks is that sweetened condensed milk has added sugar whereas evaporated milk has no additional sugar added.
Note: For this recipe if sweetened condensed milk is accidentally purchased just simply substitute the same amount as the evaporated milk and eliminate the honey.
To make a cake that is perfect for breakfast with lower sugar levels, leave off cream cheese frosting. Also, lower chocolate chips to 1/4- 1/2 cup.
More Classic Fall Desserts
For anyone who adores pumpkin Homemade Pumpkin Pie and Pumpkin Spice Muffins are classic desserts they will love. For a bit of a twist on traditional pumpkin recipes, Pumpkin Pie Coffee Cake and Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies can be a fun change.
Healthy Pumpkin Cake
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 1/2 cup ground oats *measure 1/2 cup rolled oats first and then grind
- 1/2 cup ground walnuts *measure 1/2 cup walnut halves and then grind
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup brown sugar (packed) *light or dark
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp ground cloves
- 3/4 cup chopped walnuts
- 3/4 cup chocolate chips
- 2 cups canned pumpkin
- 2 tbsp oil *I used avocado oil
- 1/2 cup honey
- 3/4 cup evaporated milk
- 3 tsp vanilla
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 2 tbsp butter *room temperature
- 4 oz cream cheese *room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 1/4- 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 2 tbsp half and half *or evaporated milk
- Preheat oven to 325℉ . Grease and floour a 9x13 inch pan.
- Measure 1/2 cup rolled oats and 1/2 cup walnuts. Grind well using blender and add to a medium sized mixing bowl.
- Measure and combine remaining dry ingredients with the exception of chocolate chips and chopped walnuts and add to ground ingredients. Mix well.
- In a stand mixture measure and combine all wet ingredients. Mix well.
- Add 1/2 of dry ingredients to wet and mix until just incorporated. Scrap down sides of mixer bowl and repeat with remaining dry ingredients.
- Add chopped walnuts and chocolate chips to batter. Stir just until blended in.
- Bake for 35-40 mins or until cake tester inserted into center of cake comes out clean.
- Let cool completely before frosting.
Cream Cheese Frosting
- In a stand mixer, cream butter and cream cheese. Add powered sugar 1 cup at a time mixing thoroughly before adding next cup. Halfway through creaming process add vanilla. If frosting becomes to thick, add milk 1 tbsp at a time until correct consistency. Beat for a full two minutes at high speed.
- Measure the 1/2 cup rolled oats and 1/2 cup walnuts and then grind. This helps the cake to still have great texture with a limited amount of all purpose flour.
- Accidentally purchased sweetened condensed milk? No worries! Just simply eliminate the honey and use the same amount of milk.
- Eliminating the cream cheese frosting helps to lower the sugar levels for an even healthier cake.