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Pinterest Peekaboo Cake

peekaboo cake

Last November, I found and pinned this adorable dessert recipe on Pinterest. Like so many things I pin, I didn’t get around to making, as planned, last holiday season.

But, also like so many wonderful things I find on Pinterest, it was there when I wanted it (that is the joy and wonder of Pinterest!) and I got around to not only making it this year, but also sharing it with others at the cooking class I taught last night at Les Gourmettes Cooking School.

I’ve rewritten the recipe to be a little more clear and detailed.

pumpkin cutters

When I first tested the recipe, I used two different size pumpkin cookie cutters. A 3×3-inch cutter that made the most of the pumpkin bread cutouts. And a smaller 2×2-inch cutter.

big vs small

I was surprised to find that the cutouts from the smaller cutters looked nicer when the cake was sliced.

batter on bottom

This is a photo of the second cake I made, once I’d figured out the tricks and tweaks. All other photos are of cake number one.

I found that covering the bottom of the loaf pan with a thin layer of the pound cake batter, then arranging the pumpkin bread cutouts on top, created a cleaner and more defined pumpkin look.  This is something that could not be done with the larger cutter, because the cake would be too tall and not covered with enough pound cake batter down the center, on the top.

There is a bonus TIP at the bottom of the post. Just in time for all of your Holiday Baking. You are gonna LOVE it!

pumpkin bread pound cake peekaboo pumpkin

Peekaboo Pumpkin Pound Cake

14-ounce box pumpkin bread mix (plus 2 eggs and 3 tablespoons oil, or as called for on box)
Orange food coloring
16-ounce box pound cake mix (plus 1/4 cup butter and 2 eggs, or as called for on box)

Brown Butter Pecan Icing
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
2 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons milk, cream, or half-and-half
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup toasted and chopped pecans

pumpkin bread

Mix up pumpkin bread ingredients according to the directions on the box. Add orange food coloring to make the bread more orange and less brown looking.

from a mix

Bake in a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan according to the package directions. Remove from oven before completely done, about 8-10 minutes less than instructed. You are under-baking it because it will be going through second baking. If you were to test the center with a toothpick it will NOT come out clean.


Let cool completely, remove from pan and refrigerate for at least four hours. (Chilling the cake makes it possible to slice, even though it is not completely cooked through.) 


Slice the cold pumpkin bread into about 12 thick slices.

use the smaller cutter

Use a cookie cutter to cut pumpkin shapes from slices.

mix up pound cake

Mix up the pound cake batter according to the package directions.

batter on bottom

Spoon a thin layer of the pound cake batter, just enough to cover the bottom, into the well-buttered and floured  9 x 5-inch loaf pan. Align the pumpkin bread cutouts down the center of the pan.

dont overfill

Spoon more of the pound cake batter over and around the pumpkin bread cutouts in the pan, making sure to cover the tops of the pumpkins. You will have more pound cake batter than you need.  Do not overfill the pan.

mini me

I greased another small loaf pan and baked a small pound cake at the same time I was baking the peekaboo cake.

2 baked cakes

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick is inserted into both the center of the cake (where the pumpkin bread is) and the sides, (where there is no pumpkin bread) when it comes out clean in all areas of the cake, it is done. Cool on wire rack.

Meanwhile, prepare the Icing:

melt butter

In a medium saucepan, melt butter and simmer, stirring until it starts to brown and forms dark flecks on the sides and bottom of the pan.

add half sugar

Remove from heat.  Mix in 1 cup of the powdered sugar.

half of the sugar

Add the milk and vanilla.

brown butter icing

Stir in the remaining cup of powdered sugar and mix until combined and creamy.  Add more powdered sugar if it seems too runny or more evaporated milk if it is too stiff.

ice the cake

Remove cooled pound cake from pan and top with brown butter icing.

peekaboo pumpkin cake

Sprinkle with chopped pecans.

pumpkin bread pound cake peekaboo pumpkin

Cut into slices and delight your guests with the pumpkin-shaped surprise that peeks out from inside!

Serves 10 to 12

Bonus TIP If you are anything like me. You forget to take out butter to soften for baking recipes.  I do it (or don’t do it  – as it may be) ALL the time.

But, I have a quick trick that softens the butter immediately.

to soften butter quickly

Grate the butter directly into the mixing bowl.

softed grated butter

That’s it! Now it is softened and ready to go.

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1 comment

1 Peggy { 11.21.13 at 8:37 AM }

Pretty cake and easy too!

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