Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler

I am in a state of seasonal confusion. On the one hand, I never want summer to end. On the other, PUMPKIN PECAN COBBLER.

Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler. Buttery pumpkin cake on top, hot caramel sauce underneath. The BEST pumpkin dessert! @wellplated
I can’t decide which part of this Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler has me most smitten. The soft, buttery texture? The cinnamon brown sugar topping? The fact that this Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler makes its own hot caramel sauce in the pan as it bakes?

Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler with Hot Caramel Sauce. @wellplated

It’s definitely the caramel sauce.

When you pull the Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler out of the oven, it won’t look like much at first. Yes, it will be golden. Yes, your house will smell like a tantalizing cross between a cinnamon bun, a roasted nut stand, and caramelized sugar.

Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler. Cake on top, hot caramel sauce underneath! Easy recipe that’s perfect for your fall dessert table. @wellplated

The best part of this Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler, however, can’t been seen from the outside. It’s the surprise you’ll find when you dig your spoon through the sticky pumpkin cake layer to reveal what’s underneath.

TA-DA!

Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler. Fluffy, buttery pumpkin cake with a brown sugar cinnamon topping and caramel sauce. TO DIE FOR. @wellplated

I’m a sucker for homemade caramel sauce, and the fact that this Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler makes its own in the oven bewitches me. The recipe starts with an easy, one-bowl pumpkin spice batter, which is spread into the bottom of the pan. Next, a generous dusting of cinnamon, sugar, and pecans are showered over the top. Last—this will sound odd, but go with it—hot water. Pour it on, and trust.

In the oven, the hot water and sugar bubble and combine into a rich, hot caramel sauce, and the airy pumpkin cobbler batter rises to the top. When I dug through the pumpkin layer to reveal the sweet caramel below, it honestly felt like magic!

Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler. MIND BLOWING! Makes its own caramel sauce while it bakes! @wellplated

Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler tastes like magic too. Whether you are looking for a sweet treat to spoil family and friends, a guaranteed hit for work or a dinner party, or a fun fall dessert to bake with kids, this easy Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler will not disappoint.

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Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler

Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler. An easy and DELICIOUS fall dessert that makes its own hot caramel sauce in the pan while it bakes!

Yield: Serves 8

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Ingredients:

Pumpkin Layer:

  • 1/2 cup + 3 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour (or additional all purpose flour)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder (I prefer aluminum free)
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup, plus 1 tablespoon milk (any kind you like—I used skim), at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Topping:

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar (light or dark—I used dark)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 1/2 cups very hot water
  • Vanilla ice cream, heavy cream, and/or whipped cream for serving

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly coat a 2-quart casserole dish with cooking spray (a deep 8×8-inch or 9×9-inch pan will work also).
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the all purpose flour, pastry flour, baking powder, salt, granulated sugar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves. Set aside.
  3. In a smaller bowl or large measuring cup, stir together the pumpkin, milk, melted butter, and vanilla to combine. Pour the wet ingredients into dry ingredients and stir gently, just until combined. The batter will be very thick. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan, smooth into an even layer, then place the onto a large, rimmed baking sheet to catch any drips.
  4. Prepare the topping: In a small bowl, stir together the granulated sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon until well combined. Stir in the pecans, then scatter the topping mixture over the pumpkin batter. Pour the hot water evenly over the top. DO NOT STIR. Carefully lift the baking sheet with the pan on top and place in the oven. Bake for 40 minutes, just until the middle is set. Remove from the oven and let cool 5 minutes. Serve warm, topped with vanilla ice cream, a splash of heavy cream, or whipped cream, as desired.

Adapted from Lauren’s Latest

// All images and text ©/Well Plated.

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 of 8 (without ice cream or other extra toppings)

  • Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories: 316
  • Total Fat: 9g
  • Saturated Fat: 4g
  • Cholesterol: 15mg
  • Sodium: 92mg
  • Carbohydrates: 57g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Sugar: 42g
  • Protein: 3g

Did you try this recipe? I want to see! Follow Well Plated on Instagram, snap a photo, and tag it #wellplated. I love to know what you are making!

About Erin Clarke

I’m fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food taste incredible. Wearer of plaid, travel enthusiast, and firmly convinced that sweets and veggies both deserve a place at the table. MORE ABOUT ERIN…

27 comments

  1. Do you think this would still work out without the nuts? I don’t care for them in baked goods, but this looks amazing! 

    • Definitely Ruby! You can simply omit them. Or, if you have others who do enjoy nuts that will be eating the dessert, you could always toast some on the side, then anyone who cares for some can sprinkle them on top afterwards.

  2. Erin, do you think this can be doubled and baked in one 9 x 13 pan?
     

    • Suzi, I honestly don’t know, since I’ve never tried the recipe this way. A 9×13-inch pan holds 14 cups of batter, while a 2-quart casserole like the one I suggest for the recipe holds 8. For that reason, you’d want to do about 1.75 times the recipe, versus doubling it directly. I would start checking the baking time early too, just in case. If you decide to experiment with a larger pan, I’d love to hear how it comes out!

  3. This cobbler looks so good! The center looks warm and gooey and I just cannot resist pecans :)

  4. Erin, my husband is still raving about the strawberry bars and tells everyone he knows about them. I make them at least once a week; that said, this is getting made this weekend. WE LOVE PUMPKIN ANYTHING! But I’m going to show my ignorance and ask why kosher salt? I’ve never used it and am having trouble finding kosher salt in my small town that isn’t in bigger chunks. Does it make a difference? Also in reading your replies, I love that you shared how many cups in a 9x 13 versus an 8 x 8. Did not know and I’m feeling smarter already. You’re a gem and I love your recipes! Thanks much!

    • Not a silly question at all Tami! Kosher salt has slightly larger grains than table salt, but they are not nearly as large as a flaked sea salt (which it sounds like might be what your store carries?). I prefer kosher salt, because table salt is more heavily treated, and I think it has a bit of an off, almost chemical taste. Kosher salt tastes cleaner to me, so I like using it in all of my recipes. Because the kosher salt grains are larger, if you want to swap table salt, just use a slightly lesser amount. And isn’t that  a great tidbit about the pan sizes? If you ever want some fun reading, Google “pan size conversions” and see what comes up! You can find lots of handy charts, which is how I learned in the first place. Thanks so much for your kind words about my recipes too. It really means a lot!

  5. I love these cobbler recipes. Beautiful combination (:

  6. Wow! This looks like a tasty fall dessert! I can’t wait to try it. Thanks!

  7. hey girl this looks so yummy!

  8. This is brilliant! We LOVE pudding cakes!

  9. I made a slight variation with chunks of fresh butternut squash, using three quarters of a cup (which is about the same as the half cup of pumpkin puree). It definitely was a positive difference as the color of those chunks stood out from the rest of the cobbler and made for a more festive dish! However, I doubt that I would make the recipe again because there is way too much sugar —three times as much as the pumpkin or butternut squash. All that sugar is overly sweet and the caramel sauce really adds nothing to the taste. I feel a more traditional cobbler with far less sugar would be healthier.

    • Hi Arthur! The amount of sugar in the recipe is for the purpose of forming the caramel sauce (it would end up being about the same amount if you cooked it separately). I’m sorry this was too sweet for you—it’s meant to be a more decadent dessert for every now and then vs. a healthy everyday treat. If you prefer healthier desserts, I have quite a few in my recipe archives you might enjoy! You can find them here: https://www.wellplated.com/category/recipes-by-diet/healthy-sweet-treats/.

  10. Hi Erin! This recipe looks amazing and I am hoping to make it for (Canadian) Thanksgiving–do you think it could be made ahead and reheated? Or does it need to be cooked right before consumption? If so, what parts do you think I could do ahead? Any advice is appreciated!

    • Hi Dee! I’ve reheated this in the microwave with good results, but I don’t think that’s the best option for a party. If you can, I’d prep everything right up until you pour in the hot water in advance (maybe morning of, then leave it at room temperature), then pour in the hot water and bake right before serving. I hope you all love it! My father in law is Canadian and misses Canadian Thanksgiving now that he’s here :)

  11. Dear Erin ,
    This is a fabulous desert! Great for a family get togeather or something for the office . Well Done idea 😁😁
    Donna

  12. This was incredible!!! It’s officially been added to my cookbook and dessert repertoire. I love pecans so I added nearly a cup. I couldn’t wait to make this. It’s super easy and tastes amazing. I’ve never seen a recipe where you pour hot water over everything before you bake. I served mine with Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Ice Cream. My girlfriend immediately asked for the recipe so I turned her on to your blog and recipe!! Next I’ll make the Pumpkin Energy Balls.

    • Jennifer, what a pumpkin feast! I love pecans too and am so thrilled to hear you enjoyed this recipe so much. Thank you for trying it and for taking time to leave this kind review.

  13. Hi Erin. I tried making these just as instructed. However, it turned out gummy and the sugary mixture came out more like syrup and less of the cake baking thru (like your photo shows). Where am I going wrong?

    • Hi Serena! Following up on my mis-mashed email here :) Sorry again about that! Unfortunately, it’s really hard to say what happened with the cake without being in the kitchen with you. It sounds like maybe the ingredients were not blended properly or it could be a measuring issue. Or perhaps your water wasn’t hot enough? Be sure to also make sure your baking powder isn’t expired (it can happen faster than you think). The cake should be very moist and spongy, and the sauce caramel-like in texture. If you decide to try again, I hope it turns out better next time!!

  14. Do you know if this can be altered to be vegan-friendly? I tried as is last night and it was amazing (seriously if you’re thinking of trying it, do it because it’s so good) but I have a few vegan friends who I would love to share this with. I have a feeling the milk can be replaced with coconut milk but what about the butter? Do you think coconut milk or vegan butter would alter the structure too much? Thanks in advance for any help!

    Rating: 5
    • Michelle, the flavor would be different with coconut milk, but if that doesn’t bother you, I do think you could use coconut milk and vegan butter. I hope you and your friends enjoy it, and I’m so happy you loved the original version too!

  15. Made this and it was really tasty – it was amazing how the caramel sauce formed on the bottom!! One thing I am considering for next time is perhaps making it so the sauce turns out to be more of a salted caramel – thoughts? I’m guessing you would just add some salt to the topping mixture? Let me know!

    Rating: 4.5
    • Elizabeth, if you like a salted caramel taste, you can definitely experiment! Another idea would be just to sprinkle some nice flaked sea salt on top of the finished dessert. You could even put a bit just on part of the cobbler so that you can taste it first to see what you think. I hope you enjoy it!

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