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Pumpkin Caramel Poke Cake

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I’m really excited for today’s Pumpkin Caramel Poke Cake recipe. It is simple and so easy and delicious, perfect for pumpkin season! Ever since I made my Caramel Carrot Cake Poke Cake, I’ve been getting a lot of requests for a similar cake made with pumpkin. That cake is from scratch, and for me, 2020 has been all about keeping things as simple as possible, so we’re asking our friend Betty Crocker for some help with this one.

Pumpkin Caramel Poke Cake

This recipe has been adapted from this Betty Crocker Pumpkin-Spice Cake. We used their pumpkin cake, made with cake mix, for the base of the recipe, only instead of spice cake we used yellow cake mix. It is super simple- here’s what you’ll need to make it.

poke cake ingredients

Pumpkin Cake Ingredients

  • 1 box of yellow cake mix
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1 15 oz. can pumpkin puree
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Then, you’ll also need a 16 oz. container of Betty Crocker’s Cream Cheese Frosting, and about a cup of caramel sauce. You can use this homemade caramel sauce recipe, or just use store bought caramel sauce. Alternatively, for a lighter topping, you can easily just top this cake with cool whip whipped topping.

Making this cake is just as simple as the ingredients, so here’s what you’ll do.

pumpkin caramel poke cake directions

Pumpkin Cake Directions

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees farenheit (325 degrees for dark or non-stick pans).
  • Grease a 9×13 inch pan with cooking spray, set aside.
  • Combine all of the cake ingredients into a large bowl. Beat with a whisk or a electric mixer for 2 minutes- until all ingredients are well combined.
  • Pour batter into your prepared pan.
  • Bake in a 350 degree oven for 35-40 minutes, until a tooth pick inserted in the center comes out clean. I’m not a big fan of the toothpick test, and I never have them on hand, so you can also do like me and use a fork to flip over a small piece of the center of the cake. If it looks light and fluffy, it is done, if it is gooey, add 5 minutes to your cook time and check again.
  • Let the cake cool completely.

How To Make a Poke Cake

To make your poke cake, once your cake has cooled, use the end of a wooden spoon, or in my case, a large straw, to poke holes throughout the cake.

pumpkin poke cake

Then, you’ll take your caramel and drizzle some into each of the holes of the cake, plus a drizzle across the top of the cake. Be sure to save some to go on top of the frosting. If you are using homemade caramel, it may be best to give it just a few minutes to cool, but you’ll still want warm caramel so that it still pours easily.

pumpkin poke cake filled with caramel sauce

Then, frost the cake normally, and add another drizzle of caramel on top.

My whole family loved this cake, even my husband who isn’t necessarily a pumpkin fanatic like I am. It came out light and fluffy with just the right amount of pumpkin and sweetness. This is such an easy pumpkin dessert, with moist pumpkin cake, sweet caramel, and fluffy cream cheese frosting.

To store this cake, we cover the cake pan tightly with foil so that it doesn’t touch the frosting, otherwise it will stick to your foil and peel right off your cake when you remove the foil next time. We then store this in the refrigerator for 3-4 days, if it makes it that long.

pumpkin poke cake filled with caramel sauce

Poke cakes are just a super fun cake alternative, so we love coming up with different creations. What kind of poke cake should we make next? Tell us in the comments.

You can get a printable version of this recipe, below. Then, be sure to sign up for my email list so you never miss another recipe!

Yield: 20 servings

Pumpkin Caramel Poke Cake

Pumpkin Caramel Poke Cake

A delicious pumpkin poke cake filled with caramel and topped with cream cheese icing and a caramel drizzle.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes


  • 1 box Betty Crocker Butter Recipe Yellow cake mix
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1 can pumpkin puree
  • 16 oz. Betty Crocker Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 1 cup Homemade or store bought caramel sauce


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees farenheit (325 for dark/nonstick pans).
  2. Spray a 9x13 inch pan with non-stick spray, set aside.
  3. Combine cake mix, sugar, eggs, vegetable oil, water, sour cream, and pumpkin puree into a large mixing bowl.
  4. Beat for 2 minutes with a wire whisk or a hand mixer, until all ingredients are combined.
  5. Pour cake batter into 9x13 pan, and bake in a 350 degree oven for 35-40 minutes, until the cake is completely cooked to the center.
  6. Poke holes into your cake with the handle of a wooden spoon or a large straw.
  7. Pour caramel sauce into the holes, and drizzle across the top of the cake, saving some to drizzle over top the frosting.
  8. Frost the cake with the cream cheese frosting.
  9. Add a drizzle of caramel sauce across the top.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 288Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 3gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 41mgSodium: 262mgCarbohydrates: 47gFiber: 1gSugar: 34gProtein: 3g

Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.

You might also like these other fun poke cake recipes-

Butterscotch Poke Cake

Caramel Carrot Cake Poke Cake

We also have lots of delicious pumpkin desserts-

Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler

Pumpkin Cupcakes

Pumpkin Spice Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

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