Monday, October 25, 2010

Pumpkin Gooey Butter Cake

The last time I made Gooey Butter Cake, I was torn between different recipes, not being able to decide which was the REAL Gooey Butter Cake recipe. After trying several cakes, I've finally concluded that it doesn't matter which one is the ORIGINAL because I love all of them! And of course, you know I had to try some of the variations too! Kristin suggested trying this pumpkin variation, which is a Paula Deen recipe. Since I love anything pumpkin and I LOVE all of Miss Paula's recipes, I figured this falls into the "how can this not be good?" category.
 And speaking of gooey butter cakes, I was lucky to receive a few emails from Michael, a Gooey Butter Cake enthusiast from St Louis. He offered a recipe which is almost exactly the same as Miss Paula's, and he was happy to give a few tips to make your gooey butter cake even better. Thanx again Michael!
So, I guess the only thing left to be decided is:
Which gooey butter cake variation would YOU like to try??

1 (18 1/4-ounce) package yellow cake mix
1 egg
8 tablespoons butter, melted

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 (15-ounce) canned pumpkin
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
8 tablespoons butter, melted
1 (16-ounce) box powdered sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Combine the cake mix, egg, and butter and mix well with an electric mixer. Pat the mixture into the bottom of a lightly greased 13 by 9-inch baking pan.
To make the filling: In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese and pumpkin until smooth. Add the eggs, vanilla, and butter, and beat together. Next, add the powdered sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and mix well. Spread pumpkin mixture over cake batter and bake for 40 to 50 minutes. Make sure not to over bake as the center should be a little gooey.
Serve with fresh whipped cream.

For a Pineapple Gooey Butter Cake: Instead of the pumpkin, add a drained 20-ounce can of crushed pineapple to the cream cheese filling. Proceed as directed above.

For a Banana Gooey Butter Cake: Prepare cream cheese filling as directed, beating in 2 ripe bananas instead of the pumpkin. Proceed as directed above.

For a Peanut Butter Gooey Butter Cake: Use a chocolate cake mix. Add 1 cup creamy peanut butter to the cream cheese filling instead of the pumpkin. Proceed as directed above.

Btw, if you'd like to compare Paula Deen's plain Gooey Butter Cake recipe with the one I received from Michael, just take one of the eggs from the filling and add it to the crust, and change the vanilla from a teaspoon to a tablespoon. The rest of the recipe is exactly the same! 

Here are Michael's Tips / Tricks to "Make it even better":
1.  Use a disposable aluminum cake pan from the store.  I have used glass, metal, and various types of 9X13 pans.  The varying widths and baking durations make a difference (see tip 3) The disposables, seem to do the best for consistency.  Plus you can get one with a lid that makes your transport easier.  Lastly, you can just leave the pan and not worry about getting your pan back at the end of the event.
2.  When you spread the thick batter (bottom layer) on the bottom of the pan, make a mound in the middle and taper the batter out to the edges so it is paper thin at the outermost edge.  Most people make a nice even layer and therefore most Gooey butter cakes have thick outside crusts after it bakes.  By having paper thin edges, there is minimal crust.  You may have too large of a mound in the middle, so don't feel afraid to scrape some of the batter off and not use it.
3.  When I say don't over bake, I mean it.  You may have as little as 1 or 2 minutes between too gooey (under baked) and not gooey enough (over baked).  I usually set my timer for about 25 minutes and then for the last 10 minutes I monitor the cake and rotate it to ensure even baking.  May rotate it 180 degrees or 90 degrees depending on how and where the brown areas are.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

I bake a very similar gooey butter cake and was asked to bake 4 of them for a friend. I usually use a glass pan, so I was afraid to bake these all on disposable aluminum pans. I had been googling for an hour about it by the time I saw your recipe. I will try your advice on the baking time and I love the advice about making thinner edges, I just pray the middle cooks rights. hope so, Thanks for your advice. :D