Thursday, September 26, 2013

Recipe Shortcut: Gluten Free Chocolate Pumpkin Squares

This is more of a recipe "how-to" than an actual recipe, because I made the cake from a mix, the icing is from a box, and I only made slight modifications. It's for those times when you want something baked, but want to expend minimal effort and still get great results.  These little cake squares are the perfect way to add some pumpkin to your fall baking without making things complicated. They would make a great addition to a Thanksgiving dessert table for those who don't love pumpkin pie. I could also see them decorated with some candy ghosts or mini spiders for Halloween.

Both my sons loved them, and one little square is actually a much smaller serving size than a whole piece of cake would be. The recipe is made from a mix that only makes one 8 inch cake, rather than a double layer cake, so the squares are half as tall as they would be otherwise, making them perfect for eating by little fingers.  The pumpkin icing trick is one my mom came up with a few years ago, and it's great on cupcakes too.


For Cake:
1 box GF chocolate cake mix that makes one 8 or 9 inch cake (I used President's Choice cake mix)
Ingredients for cake as indicated on box

For Pumpkin Icing
1 container GF vanilla icing (regular, not whipped or it will be too soft)
1/4-1/2 cup pumpkin puree (I freeze the remaining puree for other recipes)
Cinnamon & Nutmeg to taste


1- Preheat oven to temperature indicated on box. Mix together ingredients for cake according to instructions. Rather than pouring it into one cake pan, split the batter between two pans so that it will only rise a little.

2- Cook cake mix for about 1/2 the time called for on package. I check after ten minutes, and remove the cakes when a toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely.

3- When cakes are cooled, turn them out onto a sheet of parchment paper. Cut each cake down the middle so each cake is cut in two pieces. It's easier to top each cake with its own half then to try to flip a whole one over since they're so thin.

4- Put the icing, 1/4 cup of pumpkin puree and a small amount of cinnamon and nutmeg in a bowl. Mix to combine, and then adjust amounts of pumpkin and spices according to taste.

5- Frost one half of each cake, and then flip the unfrosted sides on top. Frost the top of the cakes and cut into squares.

Serve on a pretty platter or put a themed decoration on top. These are perfect for eating with your hands.

I won't tell.


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