Dry ingredients - Combine flour with baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin spice, and salt - set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixerwith the paddle attachment cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy Pro tip - we want to add some volume in the batter and the sugar completely dissolved so make sure to cream well.
Next, add eggs one at a time. Followed by the pumpkin puree and vanilla extract.Pro tip- ensure the eggs are at room temperature or the batter will curdle. If that happens just add a tablespoon or two of flour and combine well.
Then, add flour mixture and sour cream alternating in three batches.Pro tip - since sour cream is thick the batter looks a bit stiffer than regular vanilla cake but the cream will melt in the oven so don't add any more milk
Scrape the sides of the bowl, ensure you have a smooth batter. Then, divide the batter between the three prepared baking pans.Pro tip - use an offset spatula to spread the batter evenly in the pan so it bakes evenly.
Bake for about 25 to 30 minutes until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.Pro tip - I like to use cake strips to ensure my layer cakes bake flat.
Cool in the pan for 10 minutes then invert on a cooling rack and cool completely. Always cool cakes completely before you decorate or store them away.Pro tip - Wrap in plastic wrap and place in the freezer for an hour. This will make fewer crumbs when torting and leveling the cake.
Cream cheese frosting
Add cream cheese, lemon juice, and whipping cream in a stand mixer bowl with the paddle attachment. Whip until it is light and fluffy. Pro tip - ensure the cream cheese is thawed to room temperature otherwise the frosting will be lumpy.
Add powdered sugar one cup at a time until you’ve used all of the powdered sugar. Then add the vanilla extract and pumpkin spice. Continue to whip for a minute or more until light and fluffy. Pro tip - Check consistency – if too soft add a little more powdered sugar.
The more you whip, the lighter this frosting will be but over whipping can cause the frosting to break down. Pro tip - if the cream cheese becomes too warm it will start to melt. So do not over mix. Place it in the fridge to chill for a few minutes before you use it.
Prepare simple syrup. Add sugar, water, and lemon juice to a saucepan over medium heat. Cook until sugar dissolves then boil two minutes more - cool completely before using.
Using a bread knife or cake leveler cut the domes off the cake layers. Cut each layer in half horizontally giving you a total of four layers. Brush each layer with the cooled simple syrup
Place a cake layer on the cake board or cake stand.Pro tip -if you plan to move the cake again, it is best to use a cake circle under the cake, so you can pick the cake with its base and without any accidents.
Top the second cake layer on top followed by more frosting until you have used up all the layersPro tip - it is best to lift individual cake layers on pieces of clean cardboard or cake lifter so you do not break them from table to cake.
Place the cake in the fridge for 15 minutes so the layers hold together. Pro tip - Chilling the cake at this point will ensure the layers don't move when you frost the outside. Though, if you leave the cake uncovered in the fridge for too long it can dry out. So, 10 minutes is all you need.
Spread the remaining buttercream around and the top of the cake. Use a cake bench scraper to smooth the sides and an offset spatula for the top.
One smooth, place the remaining cream cheese frosting in a piping bag with a star or round and pipe a border
Spices - I am using pumpkin spice and nutmeg. Alternatively, you can also add
¼ teaspoon of ground cloves,
½ teaspoon cinnamon,
¼ teaspoon all spices,
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
Make ahead instructions -
The cake layers can be made up to 2 to 3 days ahead. Unfrosted the layers will keep in the fridge for up to 3 days. Alternatively, you can freeze the layer well wrapped in plastic for up to a month. Thaw in the fridge for best results.
You can assemble chilled cakes but bring them to almost room temperature when serving.
The frosting has whipped cream so it is best prepared just before frosting the cake. The frosting will start to become soft as the whipped cream loses volume over time.
Other pans suggestions - If you don’t want to make a layer cake like this. you can
Pumpkin sheet cake - Pour this batter in a sheet 9 x 13 sheet pan. Bake for 25 to 30 mins
Pumpkin bundt cake - Pour the batter into a well-greased and dusted 10 or 12 cup bundt pan Bake for 35 to 45 mins.
Pumpkin cupcakes - This batch will make 24 beautiful cupcakes. Bake for 20 to 22 mins
The nutrition information and metric conversion are calculated automatically. I cannot guarantee its accuracy. If this data is important to you please verify with your trusted nutrition calculator. Thank you