By now I'm sure you've seen several pumpkin cake recipes swimming around. Well, I have another one for you. Don't worry, this is not your average pumpkin cake. To make this version extra special, I filled the center with cinnamon sugar cream cheese and topped it with a crunchy streusel. If you're tired of the normal pumpkin cake, I strongly urge you to try this pumpkin swirl cake with chocolate halva streusel. Trust me, it'll be hard to stop with just one slice.
Pumpkin Swirl Cake with Chocolate Halva Streusel
Chocolate halva streusel
- 4 ounces chocolate halva
- ½ cup all-purpose flour (74 grams)
- ¼ cup butter, melted (57 grams)
- 3 tablespoon brown sugar (37 grams)
- pinch of salt
- 4 ounces cream cheese softened at room temperature
- ¼ cup granulated sugar (50 grams)
- 2 teaspoon cinnamon
Pumpkin swirl cake
- 7 ounces pumpkin puree
- 2 large eggs
- ¼ cup olive oil (50 ml)
- ¼ cup applesauce (64 grams)
- 1 cup granulated sugar (200 grams)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour (222 grams)
- 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 10x5 inch loaf pan with cooking spray.
- Make the chocolate halva streusel. Chop the chocolate halva into small chunks. Combine the halva with flour, melted butter, brown sugar, and a pinch of salt. Set aside.
- Prepare the filling. Beat together the cream cheese with sugar and cinnamon until well combined. Set aside.
- Make the pumpkin cake. Beat together pumpkin puree with 2 large eggs, ¼ cup oil, ¼ cup applesauce, 1 cup sugar, and 1 teaspoon vanilla until well combined.
- Combine the flour with baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and mix just until combined. Pour half of the cake batter into the prepared loaf pan. Pour dollops of the cream cheese filling on top and swirl around the cream cheese with a knife into the batter. Add the remaining cake batter on top and sprinkle the chocolate halva streusel on top.
- Bake the pumpkin swirl cake for 1 hour - 1 hour 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool completely on a wire rack. Slice and serve.
**Helpful tips and common mistakes
I have been wanting to incorporate halva into a dessert for the longest time now. I discovered this confection during the summer and have been brainstorming a way to tie it with a dessert. Lo and behold, I was able to find chocolate halva and thought it was perfect for a streusel.
Halva refers to a type of Middle Eastern candies. For this recipe, I used a sesame-based halva that was coated in chocolate. If you never had halva before, it has a mild nutty flavor and soft crumbly texture. I can honestly say I never had anything else like it. Its subtle flavors make it perfect for incorporating to desserts, complimenting other flavors rather than fighting with them.
To make the pumpkin swirl cake with chocolate halva streusel, first make the streusel. I always use melted butter for my streusel toppings because I found that it's easier to mix all of the ingredients. Whenever I use cold butter, it doesn't mix as well with the other ingredients and I'll get inconsistent textures.
Chop up the chocolate halva into small chunks, then combine it with the remaining ingredients. Set it aside while you prepare the cake batter.
For the cake batter, beat together the wet ingredients including the pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, vanilla, and applesauce with the sugar.
Combine the dry ingredients, then add them to the wet mixture, mixing just until combined. Pour half of the cake batter into a greased 10x5 inch loaf pan. This recipe makes a large loaf so if your loaf pan is 9x5 inches, you can use the excess batter to make muffins. Alternatively, you can split the batter into 2 smaller loaf pans.
Place dollops of the cinnamon sugar cream cheese on the pumpkin cake batter and swirl it around with a knife. You don't want to fully mix the cream cheese with the cake batter, just spread it around.
Pour the remaining cake batter on top and sprinkle the chocolate on top in an even layer.
Bake the pumpkin swirl cake with chocolate streusel for about 1 hour and 10 minutes at 350 degrees F. Even with a 10x5 inch loaf pan, my cake did spill out just a little. I recommend placing a baking sheet under the loaf pan to catch any spills and prevent it from dropping onto the bottom of the oven.
To test if your cake is ready, insert a toothpick in the center. The cake should be done when the toothpick comes out clean.
Remove the cake from the oven and let it cool completely before serving.
You can enjoy this cake at room temperature or warm. I tried to resist and eat only one slice at a time but boy this pumpkin cake sure is addicting! Not overly sweet with a beautiful crunch, it's a delicious fall treat.
For more pumpkin treats check out these pumpkin cinnasticks!