Fall just became unforgettable with this decadent Chocolate Pumpkin Cake.
This Chocolate Harvest Cake is layered with moist chocolate cake, pumpkin cream cheese filling, and topped with a chocolate ganache. And the best news? It’s so incredibly easy you can make it on repeat all through the fall season.
This Chocolate Harvest Cake is in my Top 5 of chocolate cakes, I have a Top 10 list, but seriously this is in my Top 5. It is easy to prepare – just 10 minutes to make the batter!
The pumpkin cream cheese filling and glaze are just as easy and simple. It is a great dessert to serve any time of the year, but of course, fall was made just so we could serve this chocolaty pumpkin dream.
Years ago, I got this recipe from a friend who tore it out of a magazine while sitting at the doctor’s office, and every year since then I have made this cake.
I still love looking at the copy she gave me, it has oil and chocolate stains all over it. And even though the recipe will be here now, I can’t throw that piece of paper away, it brings back too many fond memories.
Chocolate Cake Ingredients
- Vegetable oil
- Baking soda
- All-purpose flour
- Unsweetened cocoa powder
Preheat oven to 350º F and grease two 9″ round cake pans with cooking spray and lightly dust them with some flour.
Pour the batter evenly into prepared pans and bake the cakes for 30 to 35 minutes. The cakes are done when you can lightly touch the center and it springs back.
Cool the cakes on a wire rack for 10-15 minutes and then turn them out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Pumpkin Cream Cheese Filling
While the cakes cool, you can make the pumpkin filling. Here are the ingredients you’ll need:
- Cream cheese
- Canned pumpkin
In a mixing bowl beat together cream cheese, pumpkin, sugar, and cinnamon until well combined and thick.
Place one cake layer on a serving plate or cake stand. Evenly spread the filling on top of the bottom layer, then add the second cake on top.
How to Make Chocolate Ganache
The finishing touch for this wonderful chocolate pumpkin cake is the rich and decadent chocolate ganache topping.
- Whipping cream
- Semisweet chocolate chips
Bring the cream to a boil in a saucepan. Remove the pan from the heat and add the chocolate chips. Do not mix or stir them in, let the chocolate sit for five minutes.
Don’t have any buttermilk on hand? You can DIY with milk and lemon juice. Just mix one cup of milk with one tablespoon of lemon juice and let it sit for five minutes before adding it to the batter.
Feel free to prepare and cool the cakes a day in advance. Wrap them tightly with plastic wrap once they are completely cooled. Prepare the filling and ganache the next day and then assemble the cake for serving.
In a real hurry? Use your favorite chocolate cake mix and skip making it from scratch. Most standard cake mixes will make two 9″ cakes. Make the filling and ganache from scratch and no one will know the difference!
Enjoy a piece of this chocolate pumpkin cake, I promise, you won’t be disappointed. It’s not really fall until I’ve made a chocolate harvest cake at our house – it’s a wonderful way to welcome the new season. Enjoy! XOXO San
More Fall Dessert Recipes
Love pumpkin? Check out my list of 50+ of the Best Pumpkin Recipes! Or try some of these favorite fall treats:
Don’t forget to pin this to your favorite Pinterest board to save for later!
Chocolate Harvest Cake
- 1 cup buttermilk or 1 cup milk + 1 tbsp lemon juice, stir and let it sit for 5 minutes
- 1 cup water
- 2/3 cup vegetable oil
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
Pumpkin Cream Filling
- 8 ounces cream cheese
- 1/3 cup canned pumpkin
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 cup whipping cream
- 4 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
- Pre-heat oven to 350º F. Grease two 9-inch round cake pans or a 9×13 pan with cooking spray and lightly dust with some flour, then set aside.
- In mixing bowl, add buttermilk, water, oil, sugar, eggs, baking soda, and salt; stir together until it is well combined. Add in flour and cocoa powder and whisk until smooth and there are no lumps.
- Pour batter evenly into prepared pan(s).
- Bake for 30-35 minutes, until you can lightly touch the center and it springs back. Cool pans on a wire rack for 10-15 minutes, then remove cake and allow to completely cool on the wire rack. Once cooled prepare filling.
- In a mixing bowl beat together cream cheese, pumpkin, sugar, and cinnamon until well combined and thick.
- Place one cake layer on a serving plate, I like to use a cake stand. Evenly spread the filling on top of the bottom layer, then add the second cake on top. Make the Chocolate Glaze.
- In a small sauce pan add the whipping cream and bring to a boil, remove from heat and add in chocolate chips. Do not mix or stir them in, let the chocolate sit for 5 minutes.
- After 5 minutes, stir until smooth. Let it cool for about 15 minutes, then pour over cake, allowing it to slowly drip down the sides. Set the cake in the fridge and let it chill for 30 minutes, until cake is set.
- Serve once the glaze is set and enjoy!