Pumpkin Toffee Cakes with Cranberry-Caramel Sauce



1 cup (250 mL) granulated sugar
3 tbsp (45 mL) whipping cream (35%)
3 tbsp (45 mL) unsalted butter, cubed
3 tbsp (45 mL) dried cranberries, coarsely chopped


Non-stick cooking spray
2 cups (500 mL) all-purpose flour
2 tsp (10 mL) baking powder
1 tsp (5 mL) cinnamon
¾ tsp (4 mL) ground ginger
½ tsp (2 mL) salt
¼ tsp (1 mL) baking soda
Pinch ground allspice
Pinch ground cloves
¾ cup (175 mL) lightly packed brown sugar
¾ cup (175 mL) canned pumpkin purée
½ cup (125 mL) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 eggs
¼ cup (60 mL) buttermilk (shake carton well before measuring)
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla
½ cup (125 mL) dried cranberries                                                                      



1 cup (250 mL) whipped cream
¼ cup (60 mL) dried cranberries


  1. For sauce, cook sugar in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally with a fork, until completely liquid and pale gold, about 10 minutes.
  2. Continue to cook melted sugar over medium-low heat, swirling saucepan occasionally but without stirring, until it turns deep gold, 8–10 more minutes.
  3. Remove saucepan from heat. While standing back (in case caramel spatters), carefully and gradually add cream and butter.
  4. Return saucepan to medium heat and simmer, stirring often, until sauce is smooth, 2–3 minutes. Remove saucepan from heat and stir in dried cranberries. (If making ahead, reheat sauce gently before serving.)
  5. For cakes, preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Spray a 12-cup muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  6. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, salt, baking soda, allspice and cloves.
  7. In a separate bowl, whisk together brown sugar, pumpkin purée, butter, eggs, buttermilk and vanilla. Add brown sugar mixture to dry ingredients and stir just until combined. Stir in cranberries.
  8. Spoon batter into muffin pan, dividing evenly. Bake until a cake tester inserted in a centre cake comes out clean, 20–25 minutes. Let cool in pan on wire rack for 5 minutes.
  9. To serve, remove cakes from muffin pan. Slice 6 cakes in half horizontally. If you like, reserve remaining cakes to freeze and serve another time. Put bottom halves onto individual plates. Pour sauce over cakes, dividing evenly. Replace tops. Garnish with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of dried cranberries.
Serves 12


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