Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Spiced Butterscotch Frosting

Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Butterscotch Frosting

Do you believe me when I say that this cake is actually healthy?  Well, you should, because it is!

This healthy Gluten-Free Pumpkin Cake with a special Butterscotch Frosting is whole grain, refined sugar free and contains ZERO butter (I think Paula Deen just shuttered there for a moment).  This cake may be good for you, but trust me, you’d never know it.

Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Butterscotch Frosting

Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Butterscotch Frosting

See that wonderful texture?  The fork just sinks right through.

This cake is soft and moist, you’d never guess that it’s made without a copious amount of butter and oil.  The entire recipe only calls for one tablespoon of oil!

The cake and frosting together are sweet and packed with flavor, you’d never know that the slice in front of you is refined sugar free and all natural.

This cake is unbelievably delicious, everyone who tried it loved it (especially the frosting, my friend and I ate the extra bit leftover straight out of the mixing bowl…  don’t judge us, you will too)

Healthy Gluten-Free Pumpkin Cake with a Spiced Butterscotch Frosting (no sugar added, low fat)

Yield: three 6 inch cake layers

Healthy Gluten-Free Pumpkin Cake with a Spiced Butterscotch Frosting (no sugar added, low fat)



    For the Cake:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and spray three 6" cake pans with PAM cooking spray.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the sorghum flour, brown rice flour, starch, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.
  3. In a stand mixer bowl with whisk attachment, add the pumpkin, soy milk, egg whites, vanilla sugar, oil and extracts. Whisk on medium/low speed.
  4. Add the vinegar to the mixing stand mixer, then slowly add in the dry ingredients. When all is incorporated, scrape down the sides of the bowl. Whip batter on medium/high speed for 20-30 seconds.
  5. Pour batter into the three prepared pans and bake for 28-33 minutes, or until the surface of the cakes spring back when tapped.
  6. For the Frosting:
  7. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together both protein powders and the coconut flour.
  8. Whisk in the soy milk, then whisk in the extracts, spices and natural food coloring. Frosting should be thick (add coconut flour or protein powder if you want it thicker, added teaspoon by teaspoon).
  9. Frost the cake, refrigerate for ~30 minutes, then slice and serve!


**For easier frosting options, read beneath this recipe box below.

**I also added 35 drops of Natural Orange Food Coloring because I wanted the frosting to look more caramel-like, but it is totally optional!

This recipe is: sugar free, low fat, high fiber, high protein and gluten free!

I know the frosting recipe here is a little wacky, I made it on a whim.  Some easier frostings include:

Healthy Vanilla Bean Frosting, Healthy Caramel Frosting, Healthy Maple Cinnamon Frosting.

My anxiety level used to go THROUGH. THE. ROOF. every time I’d bake and it was time to remove a cake from its pan.  My heart would beat like I had just finished some crazy CrossFit workout because I was so scared about the cake sticking to the pan.  Back in July, I was baking a layered chocolate cake for a local restaurant (on a time crunch) and it totally slipped my mind to spray the cake pans with cooking spray. I’m sure you’ve guessed it…  the cakes stuck to those darned pans with all their might.  Tapping the pans with my hands didn’t help, and neither did slamming the pans onto my counter.  I used knives, I used offset spatulas, I even tried a spoon at one point.  After a painstaking fifteen minutes, the cake finally gave way…  a little.  Half of the cake landed onto the counter while the bottom half stuck to the pan.  That cake was laughing at me.  I know it was! *Sigh* If only my handy dandy notebook, I mean, little bottle of PAM Cooking Spray were there to save the day!  Don’t worry, I’ve learned my lesson from then.  In case you were wondering, I managed to scrape the bottom half of the cake out of the pan and conceal the hideously uneven cake with a thick chocolate ganache and chocolate glaze…  I’ve never told a soul, so SHHH!! Now I bake all of my reduced-fat and low-fat desserts with cooking spray.  It’s so much easier, quicker and healthier than smearing a stick of butter all over a pan.

Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Butterscotch Frosting

Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Butterscotch Frosting

Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Butterscotch Frosting

Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Butterscotch Frosting

Easy peasy.  That took less than 3 seconds!

Now it’s time for the ultimate baking test  (AKA, the “get-the-cake-out-of-the-pan test”)

PS:  the cake pictured below is different than the one in the post, that’s why it looks different  :)

Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Butterscotch Frosting

Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Butterscotch Frosting

Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Butterscotch Frosting

Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Butterscotch Frosting

Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Butterscotch Frosting


Thanks, PAM.  My heart rate has returned to normal.

Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Butterscotch Frosting

If you are baking (less-guilty) holiday recipes the last thing you need is for your lovely dessert to stick to its pan.  So save yourself some time and stress and use cooking spray!  It’s the holidays people, celebrate and relax.  Drink a little vino and eat some of this (secretly healthy) cake  😉

Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Butterscotch Frosting

Look at all that frosting!  I wish I could scoop some off the cake and hand it to you through the screen, but technology hasn’t caught up with Wonkavision yet…

It is holiday time…  PRESENTS!  GIFTS!  WOOHOO!!  Gifts always help get people into the holiday spirit and the winner of this giveaway will receive an amazing $100 VISA Gift Card! To enter, leave a comment telling me one of your favorite holiday shortcuts or tips! For good contest karma, like and follow Desserts with Benefits on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest!

This was a sponsored post, however all opinions (and embarrassing baking stories) are my own!  :)

Sweepstakes Rules:  GIVEAWAY IS NOW OVER

No duplicate comments.  You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt:  tell me one of your favorite holiday shortcuts or tips!

Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post

Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post

For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.  The Official Rules are available here.

This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winner  will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.

This sweepstakes runs from 11/20/13 – 12/29/13

Be sure to visit the PAM Cooking Spray page on where you can read other bloggers’ reviews and find more chances to win!

259 comments on “Healthy Pumpkin Cake with Spiced Butterscotch Frosting

  1. I like to take some spare time during the busy holiday season to unwind by watching a favorite holiday movie with my parents while snacking on healthy brown bag popped popcorn.

  2. My holiday tip….always bring a dish so you know there will be something good to eat. And always have a glass of wine handy in case of emergency interviews from relatives 😉

  3. my holiday tip: bake ahead of time!! especially for thanksgiving pies or Christmas cookie exchanges. this way you can prepare or come up with a plan b if something goes wrong!!

  4. Always to make the dessert ahead of time along with all vegetable prep!

  5. My holiday tip is to make sure you have more than enough wine on hand for your dinner/event. You never know who may show up! And if you have bottles left, that’s never a bad thing :)

  6. favorite tip shortcut: prepare all you can the day before the holiday to save time and enjoy your guests.
    jslbrown_03 at yahoo dot com

  7. I always bring a healthy dish to any holiday function I attend. That way I know there’s at least 1 thing that I can eat and not feel lousy about :)

  8. I love to buying a healthy twist to every dish and add as many veggies as possible.

  9. My tip: Plan the timing of every dish in/out of the oven, stove, refrigerator, etc. and create a schedule so the day you are going to cook it will be stress free ! I also like to set out ingredients for each recipe on a table and make sure to prep everything in advance.

  10. TIP:
    If you’re hosting a holiday dinner provide the main dish, and a side dish or salad, but ask your guests to bring something. It’ll save you so much stress and time. And always ask if you can bring something to a party you’re attending. Even if the host doesn’t require you to bring something, many times they at least appreciate the offer.

  11. My holiday tip/shortcut is to make a batch of cookies (varying recipes) once a week a few weeks leading up to Christmas. Bake one or two cookies from each batch to enjoy, but freeze the rest and bake as needed for holiday gatherings! I started doing this a couple of years ago, and it is so much less stressful than making a ton of cookies a day or two in advance. Good luck to everyone in the contest!

  12. My tip is to plan and cook ahead to save time

  13. I love lists! I like to organize my calendar and plan out my to-do’s and shopping lists to try and minimize the holiday craziness. Another thing that I have realized over the last couple of years… it’s okay to say no every once in a while and spend a quiet night at home!

  14. My holiday tip is to stop worrying! Your family and friends are there first and foremost to enjoy each other’s company, so no matter what you can whip together they will appreciate your effort and have a great time :)

  15. My short cut is making cookies in advance and then freezing them, I also tend to do that with scones, fruit pies and pound cakes as well! I also admit sometimes when I am short on time to using ready made frosting.

  16. The easiest and most delicious go-to for holiday gifts and parties is saltine cracker toffee. Everyone thinks you slaved over making it- but it just takes some basic baking ingredients and a few minutes in the oven!

  17. I make my pies the day before and cut up vegetables for the stuffing the day before so I just have to focus on the turkey!

  18. My tip is start shopping early-sometimes if I find good sales in the summer I will start stocking up for Christmas gifts!

  19. I think it’s absolutely impossible not to believe that all of your desserts are healthy now! You’ve given more than enough evidence in the past. :)

  20. I like to use the crockpot whenever possible, it leaves my oven free for other things!

  21. I shop online to avoid the traffic and stress.

  22. I try and purchase as many gifts as I can before Thanksgiving so I have more time to enjoy the Christmas season and all of its associated events

  23. My holiday tip is to not stress! It’s easy to be overwhelmed with things to get done around the holidays, but being a giant stress ball ruins everything! Get things done little by little and feel free to take breaks!

  24. My holiday tip is to fill clear jars with holiday candy and cookies. Set them on the coffee table or dining table and create a holiday themed vignette. Oh and hunt down candy coupons now for upcoming sales! I spy quite a few:)

  25. My holiday life saver tip is doing all prep work the night before. Having chopped veggies ready to go saves me an enormous amount of time day of.

  26. Using baking mats while baking cookies ensures perfect cookie every time!

  27. I use Pam for everything! My mom has a great holiday baking trick that I have adopted: she butters the pan and uses white sugar instead of flour. The sugar caramelizes the baked good and makes a slightly crispy and super sweet outside!

  28. My time saving holiday tip is I bake pies the day before the big meal and do as much prep work the day before. As far as shopping I do it as early in the year as I can so I can skip all that horrible holiday store crowd stuff.

  29. We keep it simple by only getting gifts for the kids and letting them pitch in with the dinner preparations.

  30. tweet–

  31. My shortcut is use the microwave! Instead of a double boiler to melt chocolate, I zap it in the microwave – so much easier and still creamy!

  32. scheduling in workouts keeps me sane!

  33. My favorite tip is to make whatever I can ahead of time. I love to do a makeahead casserole for xmas day.

  34. I cannot tell you how amazing this cake looks! Thanks for the giveaway!

  35. I forgot to mention my holiday shortcut tip in the first comment so I’ll do that and leave the link here! My tip is to start cooking at least two days before Thanksgiving with dishes that can be refrigerated and reheated! It saves so much time and scrambling on the big day! Thanks!

  36. I like to plan my holiday meals ahead of time

  37. I make lots of pie crusts ahead of time and freeze them!

  38. I’d say plan ahead as much as possible, but don’t worry if it doesn’t work out! The holidays won’t be ruined. :)

  39. my tip is get your mom to come over and help !:) and dont rush.. that’s when you tend to mess up…

  40. My biggest tip is always pacing! Use a relaxing weekend way before the holidays to prep things that can be frozen, do groceries gradually as you build up to the holidays for things that can be stored in the pantry/freezer, and even use Black Friday to do some casual holiday shopping (during the day, of course, when it’s less hectic!)

  41. best holiday tips? make sure you have a back up plan in case something goes wrong, like you mention with the cake!

  42. Holiday tip: cookies, bars, breads, or homemade bark can be a great gift, as long as the wrapping and delivery system is special! Cellophane or printed bags can add a special touch, as well as boxes or handmade labels.

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