Pumpkin Chai Caramel Cake Recipe | Almonds and Apricots
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6 Mins read

Pumpkin Chai Caramel Cake is perfect for the pumpkin lover. It has three moist Pumpkin cake layers filled with fluffy cream cheese Ermine frosting. Top this show-stopping cake with a luscious homemade caramel drip and buttercream swirls. This dessert will wow everyone you share it with during the fall season!

This post is sponsored by Zulka®, but all opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Almonds and Apricots possible!

What sets this Pumpkin Chai Caramel Cake apart? The secret lies in the all-natural sweetness of Zulka®, who sponsored this blog post today. Imagine layers of tender pumpkin chai cake mingling with the creaminess of luscious caramel and paired perfectly with cream cheese frosting. This recipe is elevated by the gentle natural touch of Zulka® Morena Pure Cane Sugar and a generous pinch of salt for balance.

SO get your bag of Zulka® Morena Pure Cane Sugar https://www.instagram.com/zulkasugar/ and lets GET BAKING!

Want more Pumpkin!? Check out my scrumptious No Bake White Chocolate Pumpkin Cheesecake with Caramel Cream The perfect no-bake dessert to launch you into the fall feeling.

Why You’ll Love This Cake

  • Balance: The balance of pumpkin chai spice mingled with sweet caramel is a combination that will take your breath away!
  • Cream Cheese Ermine Frosting: Imagine a soft, velvety, and oh-so-delicious frosting that is incredibly simple and easy to make. And guess what? I have made it even more special by incorporating Zulka®’s natural cane sugar.
  • Natural Sweetness: Baking with Zulka®’s all-natural cane sugar is a true delight—a vegan-friendly ingredient that’s more than just sweetening. It’s about embracing a conscious world of flavors that align with your values.  enjoy making this cake, but you will LOVE eating it even more!

Equipment You’ll Need:

  • 3 8-inch round cake pans
  • Mixing bowls
  • Whisk
  • Saucepan
  • Sieve
  • Stand mixer or handheld mixer
  • Oven

Ingredient Overview

For the Cake

  • Zulka® Morena Pure Cane
  • Vegetable oil
  • Large eggs
  • Vanilla bean paste
  • All-purpose flour
  • Baking powder and baking soda
  • Salt
  • Cinnamon, ground ginger, nutmeg, and allspice
  • Chai Tea Bags (tea removed)
  • Sour cream and whole milk
  • Pumpkin puree

For the Homemade Caramel

  • Zulka® Morena Pure Cane Sugar
  • Unsalted butter
  • Half and Half
  • Flakey sea salt

For the Cream Cheese Ermine Buttercream:

  • All-purpose flour
  • Whole milk
  • Zulka® Morena Pure Cane Sugar
  • Unsalted butter
  • Cream cheese
  • Vanilla extract

Cake Making

How to Make the Pumpkin Chai Caramel Cake:

Make the Caramel:

  • Combine all caramel ingredients in a medium saucepan and simmer until thickened and darker in color.
  • Mix in flakey sea salt and set aside to cool.

Make the Cake:

  • Preheat the oven and prepare cake pans.
  • Mix wet ingredients and sugars together until well combined.
  • Sift dry ingredients and combine the sour cream and milk in a separate bowl.
  • Gradually add dry and wet ingredients to the sugar mixture, alternating, until just combined.
  • Fold in pumpkin puree.
  • Divide batter among pans and swirl in half of the caramel sauce.
  • Bake and let cool in pans before transferring to a wire rack.

Make the Cream Cheese Ermine Buttercream:

  • Whisk flour, sugar, and milk in a saucepan until smooth and cook until thickened.
  • Let the mixture cool completely.
  • Beat butter until fluffy, then add the cooled flour mixture and cream cheese.
  • Add vanilla and beat until smooth and fluffy.

Assemble the Cake:

  • Level cake layers if needed and place one layer on a serving plate.
  • Spread a layer of Cream Cheese Ermine Buttercream.
  • Place the second layer and frost the top and sides with the remaining buttercream.
  • Decorate with caramel, cinnamon, or nutmeg.

Make Ahead Tips:

  • The caramel sauce can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator. Gently heat in the microwave in 30-second intervals until the sauce returns to the right consistency.
  • The Cream Cheese Ermine Buttercream can be prepared and stored in an airtight container in the fridge for a few days. Let it come to room temperature and re-whip before using.
  • Extend Shelf Life: A frosted cake is a joy that can last. Keep it in the fridge for up to a week, or pop it in the freezer for up to a month. The buttercream is a delicious seal, preserving the cake’s freshness and flavor.
  • If there are leftovers (a good problem), here’s a trick: use any extra frosting to cover the cut sections. This keeps the cake moist and ready to enjoy. Store it in the fridge for up to a week and savor the goodness, one slice at a time. 🍰🌟

Get ready to infuse your fall baking with the magic of Zulka®’s all-natural cane sugar. Visit https://www.instagram.com/zulkasugar/ to discover the sweetness that aligns with your values. Create fall flavors, memories, and mindful choices with Zulka®  🍂🍰🍂

Indulge in the flavors of fall with my Pumpkin Caramel Chai Cake. This recipe is a delightful fusion of seasonal ingredients and comforting spices, making it the perfect dessert for any autumn gathering or a simple treat to celebrate the season’s beauty. With layers of moist pumpkin cake, creamy chai spices, and luscious caramel, this cake will become a favorite in your fall baking bucket list!

Recipe Card




Cake Image

( 5 STARS ) | 1 REVIEW



Pumpkin Chai Caramel Cake is perfect for the pumpkin lover. It has three moist Pumpkin cake layers filled with fluffy cream cheese Ermine frosting. Top this show-stopping cake with a luscious homemade caramel drip and buttercream swirls. This dessert will wow everyone you share it with during the fall season!


  • 450 grams (2 1/4 cups) Zulka® Morena Pure Cane Sugar
  • 255 grams (1 1/2 cups) vegetable oil
  • 6 large eggs (room temp)
  • 5 tablespoons vanilla bean paste
  • 510 grams (3 1/2 cups) of all-purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/8 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/8 teaspoons salt
  • 1 ½ tablespoons cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ⅜ teaspoon allspice
  • 2 Chai Tea Bags (Open and pour out the tea, and discard the bags)
  • 170 grams (3/4 cup) sour cream
  • 90 grams (3/8 cup) whole milk
  • 1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree (one 15-ounce can)
  • For the homemade caramel:

  • 1 cup (220 g) Zulka® Morena Pure Cane Sugar
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup Half and Half
  • Pinch or two of flakey sea salt
  • (double this recipe for extra drizzle)

    For the Cream Cheese Ermine Buttercream:

  • 80 grams (9 tablespoons) all-purpose flour
  • 345 grams (1 1/2 cups) whole milk
  • 591 grams (3 cups) Zulka® Morena Pure Cane Sugar
  • 680 grams (3 cups) unsalted butter, softened
  • 8 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 3 tablespoons vanilla extract


  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C)—grease and flour 3 8-inch round cake pans.
  2. Make the Caramel:

  3. Combine all caramel ingredients in a medium saucepan and mix. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook on low for 5-7 minutes or until slightly thickened and turns dark in color.
  4. Mix in flakey sea salt.
  5. Set aside to cool.
  6. (Double this recipe for extra caramel drizzle.) SEE NOTES**

    Make the Cake:

  7. Whisk the sugar, vegetable oil, vanilla, and eggs in a large bowl until well combined.
  8. In a separate bowl, sift together the all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ground ginger, ground nutmeg, ground allspice, and loose-leaf chai tea.
  9. In a glass, Combine sour cream and buttermilk together and mix well.
  10. Mixing the batter

  11. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the egg mixture, and beat for 30 seconds until just combined.
  12. Then add the milk mixture, mixing until just combined another 30 seconds.
  13. Scrape down the bowl to ensure everything is incorporated, and beat again if needed.
  14. Lastly, fold in the pumpkin puree until evenly distributed throughout the batter.
  15. Divide the batter evenly between the three prepared cake pans and smooth the tops.
  16. Bake in the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cakes comes out clean.
  17. Remove the cakes from the oven and let them cool in the pans for 10 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.
  18. Once cooled, wrap in plastic and store on the counter until ready to decorate or overnight. Leaving them on the counter will give your pumpkin cake an incredibly moist texture!
  19. Cream Cheese Ermine Buttercream:

  20. Whisk together the all-purpose flour and sugar in a saucepan on medium-high heat for 1- 2 minutes to heat through.
  21. Pour in Milk- cook the mixture over medium heat, whisking constantly, until it thickens and forms a paste-like pudding. Keep stirring, and do not let the bottom burn. This will take about 10 minutes.
  22. The thicker the pudding, the more sturdy your frosting will be.
  23. Remove from heat, add plastic wrap touching the surface of the pudding mixture, and let it cool completely on the counter, then chill in the fridge.
  24. In another bowl, beat the softened unsalted butter until light and fluffy.
  25. Gradually add the cooled flour paste to the butter mixture, beating until well combined.
  26. Next, beat in the softened cream cheese until smooth and creamy.
  27. Add vanilla extract, and continue beating until the frosting is smooth and fluffy.
  28. Assembling the Cake:

  29. Place cakes to thoroughly chill in the fridge or freezer for about 30 minutes to ensure the cake layers are chilled- this will help the buttercream set up as you frost.
  30. Place one cake layer on a cake board or stand and then onto a turn table.
  31. Spread a generous layer of Cream Cheese Ermine Buttercream on top.
  32. Drizzle the caramel on top all over the buttercream.
  33. Carefully place the second cake layer on the caramel drizzle and frosting.
  34. And repeat with the third layer of cake.
  35. Place the cake in the freezer for 20 minutes to help the frosting firm up before frosting.
  36. Frost the top and sides of the cake with the remaining Ermine Buttercream, creating a smooth and even finish.
  37. Carefully drip your caramel off the sides of the cake as desired.
  38. Decorate the cake with additional piping, cinnamon, caramel, or a sprinkle of nutmeg.
  39. Note: ***If your caramel gets hard while you decorate. Stick it in the microwave for 30 seconds until bubbly and stir until smooth- if it’s too thick, add a splash of cream or milk and stir until smooth.

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