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Pumpkin Walnut Cake with Orange Glaze

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A delicious moist Pumpkin Spiced Bundt Cake with Walnuts and Golden Raisins topped off with a fresh Orange Zest Glaze and a sprinkle of chopped walnuts is the perfect Fall Snack Cake or Dessert!

Pumpkin Walnut Bundt Cake on a white cake plate surrounded with orange slices and topped with a delicious orange glaze and chopped walnuts.

I love the simplicity of a bundt cake! I’m not a huge “frosting” lover so when I can create a delicious moist cake with a simple glaze, I’m one happy baker! (Not to mention dessert devourer! Is that a word? More importantly is it a job!)

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You wouldn’t think that Pumpkin and Orange go together! They’re such opposing flavors. One leans towards warm and savory…the other towards sweet and vibrant! Like most couples…opposites attract! They compliment each other in the best possible way!

This Pumpkin Spice cake is like eating your favorite cup of Spiced Pumpkin Latte! All the flavors of Autumn combine to create this cozy treat. More snack cake than a fancy dessert cake, it’s perfect for an afternoon tea or luncheon with girlfriends, or a after school treat for the kids! (It’s also a great cake for Mom to hide out in the closet with! Just sayin’!!!)

Don’t get me wrong…you could easily serve this up for Thanksgiving dinner and there’d be no complaints! It’s just that good! Why wait for Thanksgiving when you could be enjoying this delicious cake now!

How To Make Pumpkin Walnut Cake

Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare a 10 inch (12 cup) bundt pan by spraying the pan with Non-Stick Baking Spray. Set the pan aside. Pssst…You’ll notice I used my favorite Nordic Ware Fall bundt pan. I found mine at T.J. Maxx, but I’ll post a link for it below.

Note: Baking spray is different from non-stick cooking spray. Baking spray is a combination of flour and oil. It can be found at any grocery store with the cooking oils.

Baking bundt pan prepared with baking spray.

In the bowl of your stand your mixer, or in a large mixing bowl, combine 2 cups, firmly packed light brown sugar and 3/4 cup butter flavored shortening. Beat at low speed until creamy.

Brown sugar and butter flavored shortening in the bowl of mixer.

Add eggs, four of them, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

TIP: Crack your eggs in a separate bowl, then drop them one at a time, into your mixing bowl. This prevents any egg shell from dropping into your batter.

Adding eggs to creamed butter and brown sugar.

Stir in 1 (16 ounce) can of solid-packed pumpkin, and 1/4 cup water. You can stir it in by hand or add it to your mixer and mix until just combined. Either way will work. (I say let the mixer do all the work. You’re gonna have to save your strength to eat this cake later. lol It’s all about Priorities!)

Adding canned pumpkin and water to batter mixture in mixing bowl.

In a medium bowl combine 2 1/2 cups cake flour, 1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 Tablespoon pumpkin pie spice (You knew that was coming right? Tis’ the season!), 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda, and 1 teaspoon salt. Whisk together to combine.

Mixing dry ingredients in a bowl for cake batter.

Why Cake Flour?

Cake flour is a low protein flour that’s milled to a fine consistency. It contains about 7-9% protein, while all-purpose flour is a harder flour that contains about 10-12% protein. Lower protein means less gluten is formed during the mixing and it creates a more tender crumb for your cakes and baked goods.

With the mixer set to “low speed” (unless you LOVE wearing flour and having your kitchen coated in the stuff, then by all means crank that baby up to high!) add in the flour mixture, a little at a time, until blended. Now you can turn up the mixer speed to medium and beat for an additional 2 minutes.

TIP: It’s important not to “over mix” cake recipes. Too much air beat into the batter means the cake will fall during baking.

Adding flour mixture to wet mixture in the mixer

Adding Dried Fruit and Nuts to Cake Batter

Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl to make sure all the ingredients are well combined. I find oft times the butter, or shortening, and sugar can stick to the bottom of the bowl. It’s always good to use a spatula to make sure all your ingredients are incorporated.

Fold in 1/2 cup chopped walnuts and 1/2 cup golden raisins.

Walnuts and Golden Raisins being added to cake batter.

Let’s Talk Raisins for a Minute!

Now before you go crazy on me with how much you hate raisins in baked goods…let me tell you about my new found love of golden raisins in baking! I’m right there with you if you’re not a raisin lover. I believe nothing ruins a cinnamon roll like a raisin!

However, Golden Raisins are different and here’s why… Golden Raisins and Regular raisins are actually made from the same variety of raisin. Thompson Seedless grapes. However it is how they are dried that separates them.

Regular raisins are laid out on paper and dried in the sun for about three weeks. Just like use humans when we lay in the sun…they turn dark brown and lose their “plumpness”! (I’m gonna try this as a new diet method for myself!)

Golden Raisins are not dried in the sun but in dehydrators at controlled temperatures, with controlled humidity levels. Golden Raisins are also treated with antioxidant sulfur dioxide, which is used for both it’s health properties and as a preservative in dried fruits and wines. The result is a raisin lighter in color, a little fruitier, with extra plumpness!

So give them a try! I was pleasantly surprised by how much I love them in my baked goods. They are nothing like their dried out darker grainier cousins!

Baking Pumpkin Walnut Cake

Spoon the thick cake batter into your prepared bundt pan. Use a spatula to make sure the batter is evenly distributed around the pan.

TIP: You’ll notice I place my cake pan on top of a baking sheet. I do this a lot in baking for two reasons. One to make it easier to get baked good in and out of the oven. The second, and most important, to keep any mess on the baking sheet and not the bottom of my oven. Cleaning a baking sheet is much easier for this ol’ gal than getting down to clean the oven.

Batter spread in cake bundt pan ready for baking.

Bake at 350° for 55-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted near the center of the cake, comes out clean.

Cool 10 minutes before removing from the pan. Place cake fluted side up, on serving plate and cool completely! Please note it is important the cake is completely cool before adding the glaze.

Cake cooling on plate waiting for glaze.

How To Make Orange Glaze for Pumpkin Cake

For the glaze, combine 1 cup sifted confectioner’s sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoons grated orange zest, and 2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice. Mix until smooth and all ingredients have combined.

Orange Glaze in mixing bowl with small wire whisk.

Glazing the Cake and Finishing Touches

Spoon the prepared Orange Glaze over the top of your cooled pumpkin walnut cake, letting excess glaze run down the sides of the cake. Sprinkle with additional chopped walnuts before the glaze hardens.

I love how this glaze finishes off this cake! The little bits of bright orange zest peeking through and the toasty warmth of the chopped nuts! It’s the perfect finish for this beautiful cake.

Glaze drizzled over cake with sprinkled chopped walnuts on top.

For additional garnish I placed orange slices around the bottom edge of the cake. It’s the perfect little extra pop of color! I think it makes for a charming presentation to this delectable dessert!

Cutting and serving the cake.

All that’s left to do is to cut and serve this wonderful cake! Be sure to give yourself an extra big slice. You’ve earned it! Enjoy!

Pssst…notice you can barely notice the golden raisins! Oh but the flavor they add is wonderful!

Slice of cake on a white plate ready to eat.

Other Great Pumpkin Dessert Recipes!

As always, Thanks for stopping by! I hope you enjoy this easy to make Pumpkin Walnut Cake and add it to your other Pumpkin Cake Recipes in your recipe box!

Happy Nesting!

Photo of Norine with her signature "Love Norine".
Yield: 12-16 servings

Pumpkin Walnut Cake with Orange Glaze

Pumpkin Walnut Bundt Cake on a white cake plate surrounded with orange slices and topped with a delicious orange glaze and chopped walnuts.

A delicious moist Pumpkin Spiced Bundt Cake with Walnuts and Golden Raisins topped off with a fresh Orange Zest Glaze and a sprinkle of chopped walnuts is the perfect Fall Snack Cake or Dessert!

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Additional Time 1 hour
Total Time 2 hours 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 cups, firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup Butter Flavored Crisco Stick
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 can (16 ounces) solid-pack pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 Tablespoon Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup Golden Raisins

Glaze

  • 1 cup confectioner's sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • 2 Tablespoon Orange Juice
  • 1/4 cup additional chopped walnuts as garnish

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare a 10 inch (12 cup) bundt pan with non-stick baking spray, or grease and flour pan. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of your mixer, combine brown sugar and shortening. Beat at low speed until creamy and smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in pumpkin and water.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda and salt. Whisk until blended. Add to pumpkin mixture. Beat at LOW speed until blended. Beat an additional 2 minutes at medium speed.
  4. Fold in 1/2 cup chopped walnuts and raisins.
  5. Spoon into prepared bundt pan. Using a spatula spread cake batter as evenly as possible in bundt pan. Bake in preheated 350° oven for 55-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted near the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes before removing from pan. Place cake fluted side up, on serving plate. Cool Completely.
  6. For the glaze, combine confectioner's sugar, orange zest, and orange juice. Whisk until smooth. Spoon glaze over the top of cooled cake, letting excess glaze run down the sides of the cake. Sprinkle with additional walnuts before glaze hardens.

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